This issue I have decided to let textile artist Jessie Chorley take over my column’s content. Producing ranges of timeless textile pieces, whimsical in nature, yet often with practical use. She merges her fine art skills with embroidery, bringing unique designs to life. She is of Welsh origin, yet studied in London. Staying on location, she currently owns an independent shop where she sells her works as well as teaching others. What a great life!
At this time of year, we may be feeling sluggish, or maybe we are anxious to start something new! Either way, maybe Jessie can inspire you to create something new.
In order to understand her work, we thought you all may like a look at an example of Jessie’s work….lets let her explain…..
The Jessie Chorley Anniversary Sampler Kit
What inspired the kit?
I have designed and constructed The Jessie Chorley Anniversary Sampler Kit to celebrate the last fifteen years of my life as an artist, designer and shop-owner from 2005 to 2020.
What does it contain?
The hand-printed template that is the centre of this embroidery kit uses elements of the designs from several of my favourite illustrations. These symbols run throughout my work in embroidery, ink and collage. My illustrations are brought together and celebrated within this anniversary kit. The design has been screen-printed onto a soft, natural cotton fabric base, perfect for stitching into with your embroidery threads of choice.
The central motif in my design is a large teapot. The original drawing for this motif comes from a teapot that sits in my mum’s cottage in North Wales, and was a gift from me to her on a memorable birthday. I conceived and drew the design many moons ago, while sitting in her kitchen enjoying a steaming cup of tea on a cold January morning. In the sampler illustration, the teapot is surrounded by precious personal images that reflect different chapters of my life. It is my intention that through my own illustrated story, you too can find a personal narrative in stitch that will evolve from my design.
What techniques are included?
This kit uses two of my favourite techniques, hand-stitching and fine needle-turned appliqué patchwork. I hope that you too can find joy in the process of slow stitching and making marks with your needles, threads and fabrics to create your own unique stitched story.
I have left three areas in the enclosed template empty, so that you can fill them in with motifs and designs of your choice. These areas are inside the teapot, between the moon and the butterfly, and above the handle of the ink pen. You can see how I have incorporated my own imagery in these areas, by stitching a house inside the middle of the teapot, an ink pot directly above the pen, and a sail boat on a wavy sea between the moon and the butterfly.
Beginning the sampler
To begin the sampler, I initially worked into the printed areas, building up each section stitch by stitch. I then introduced scattered needle-turned appliqué details. I would encourage you to follow the same steps, beginning your individual sampler by working within the printed areas of my template, then adding details around them.
Fabrics and colours
The fabrics that I have used for my appliquéd patchwork details come from my extensive personal collection of vintage fabrics and materials. I would encourage you to start your own collection of fabric scraps and samples, to incorporate into your own craftwork. I have mainly used plain tones and muted colours for my patchwork details, giving me the option to work back into these areas at a later stage in further depth and detail. In my own version of the sampler, in addition to quieter colours, I have also added a scattering of small ruby red fabric patches, to make my overall design ‘pop’ – this richly coloured material was taken from a larger piece of 1940s French patchwork quilt.
The symbols that I have stitched into my patchwork border include the following: a horse; a clock; a group of birds; a postcard and postage stamp; a guitar; a heart; flowers; and an anchor. I encourage you to choose or even invent your own symbols, in order to evoke and represent a personal narrative.
The kits intentions
This anniversary kit is a celebration of my ongoing passion for my work as a social artist; I am encouraging you as fellow stitchers and students to embark on a new creative journey with me. Since it is not always possible for us to meet in person (perhaps on one of my workshops or through a tutorial), feel free to message me directly via my website to ask any questions you might have about your sampler, or simply to keep me updated on your progress.
What the kit contains
The Jessie Chorley Anniversary Sampler kit is available to order online and comes with the following items enclosed:
A hand printed fabric template.
*An a5 favourite stitches card to guide you.
*A full colour booklet of instructions and inspiration.
*Embroidery threads in a selection of x 5 shades.
*A packet of assorted fabric scraps.
This will enable you to make your very own version of my anniversary embroidery sampler, as seen and described above and below.
To view and to purchase this new kit from Jessie Chorley directly please visit www.jessiechorley.com
So…what are you waiting for everyone? Please check out her website as linked above. Why not check out her Instagram too?