Hello, Mr X Stitch here. Today should have been a Fifth Friday Festival of Fabulousness, but I completely forgot. I’ve got a pretty good excuse in that I’ve been in the U.S. of A, so I thought I’d tell you about my trip to North Carolina!
It was a real pleasure to visit to the US and participate in the 2015 North Carolina State University’s College of Design Art2Wear season. Art2Wear is an educational programme culminating in a fashion show, intended on focusing the students’ work and grounding it in the practical processes of the fashion industry.
The College have a range of speakers throughout the season and it was an honour to be the first person this year. I was invited to do a lecture and workshop with the students and as usual, I brought the thunder.
And by “thunder” I mean “an exciting meander through the world of embroidery with a smattering of my own wisdom on using social media to build a visual brand”.
It was a packed lecture room, which may have been influenced by the free lunch provided, but I really doubt it. The lecture was good fun, with useful tips and a great moment where I somehow got the entire room to say the word “bollocks” in an English accent.
The cross stitch workshop went equally well – the class of 20 design students got their head around the simplistically complex cross stitch without too much difficulty. There was the occasional bout of over-thinking things, which is inevitable, but I was pleased to create a safe space wherein among the smiley face designs I’d been teaching a few F-Bombs got dropped.
I should add that I don’t actively encourage this behaviour, but it just seems to happen. I was also pleased to see these little pieces, inspired by the Makoto Oozu books I’d brought along. The class had learned couching techniques that morning, so the bicycle was a nice mashup of styles!
It was a great experience meeting the students (as well as Robin Hobbs) and doing my bit to inspire them. They’ll be livestreaming the fashion show in April and I can’t wait to see what the students come up with. You can find out more about Art2Wear at their website and Facebook page.
The next day I spent the day with my favourite dynamO and Mr X Stitch superstar Olisa “Cocoaeyes” Corcoran. Among other things we spent the evening in the company of Crystal Rhew, Keeley Murray L’Esperance and Becky and Bill Porter Stancill. We enjoyed fine southern food and good beers and a fine time was had by all.
This visit has really whetted my appetite for travelling around and connecting with students and Universities. If you’ve any recommendations for places that might benefit from a bit of Mr X Stitch thunder, please let me know!
After that I went to New York and survived Snowmageddon, but I’ll save that story for another day!