Embroidery has always had a presence in the Chandler Family. Growing up in the Eastern Cape, I have early school holiday memories of female relatives doing needle-work on cool verandas or sun-lit arm chairs. I learnt cross-stitch at an early age, but it was embroidery that really caught my imagination. Embroidery didn’t work off a grid-like pattern; there were variations of stitches, colours and techniques. Many years later, I re-discovered this old art-form through a new technology.
Today, I use high-tech machines and computer software to make designs which are massively intensive that just wouldn’t be possible if they were to be hand-done. Despite using a machine to produce these beautiful embroidered pieces below, I feel that I would be a lot poorer off if it wasn’t for those early seeds of stitching that my grandmothers passed down to me.
By clicking on the titles below, you will be directed to the full feature on the piece.
A Detail of an Embroidered ‘VOC’ Plate – Embroidered Cotton.