Thursday, 6 January 2011

Finding inspiration in the strangest places

You wouldn't think that you would find sewing inspiration at your local hospital but thats exactly what happened when we had to take Sam to Bristol Children's Hospital recently following 'the buggy incident' in Waitrose. Whilst we were waiting for the extremely young (and extremely handsome) doctor to discharge him, we decided to wait in the corridor where there was a bit more space. On the walls were a series of amazing pictures. Jon and I both thought they were paintings but on closer inspection I realised that they were in fact the most fantastic embroidered/appliqued pictures. We couldn't believe that someone could create something so intricate and with so much detail on a sewing machine. I made a note of the artists name and googled it when I got home and came across a lady called Louise Gardiner who creates these fantastic embroidered art pieces. Her work is amazing - a mix of free machine embroidery, illustration, applique and painting.

I contacted Louise to say I would like to blog about her work when I noticed that she was appearing on Kirsties's Handmade Home the following week teaching Kirsty to do free machine embroidery. It looked like great fun. Kirstie was equally impressed calling freestyle embroidery 'the crack cocaine of the crafting world' and saying that she was addicted!

Louise does workshops at her studio is Cheshire. I was really tempted to treat myself as a Christmas present but its a bit too far for me to go. I've cheekily asked if she'll do one down south. I'll keep you posted if she does. I would love to go along and learn some new sewing machine skills. I really want to have a go at free machine embroidery - I've got a new foot already for my sewing machine, I've lowered my feed dogs in preparation and I'm ready to have a practice....

Louise also has a blog here if you want to know more.

I'll be back tomorrow with photographic evidence of my first attempts at free machine embroidery so watch this space!


  1. Ooooohhhh! hello!

    How lovely to be featured on your blog.
    A lovely blog.
    I hope you can come see my exhibition in May ... and yes I am sure we can organise something I have a lot of requests from Bristol...

    Keep in touch.
    Louiji Gardinelly.

  2. This is gorgeous!
    I'd be interested if Louise ventures south (I'm in Gloucestershire!)

  3. Wow! The work is amazing - I love it when you see amazing work that is so different from the norm! Going to check out her blog!

  4. I need to grab a foot so I can freehand machine emb

  5. yes I really want to try freehand machining too. love this post

  6. I love her work, I think she did windows for Liberty last year too. Look forward to seeing your machine embroidery, I'd love to have go.

  7. Wow, it's beautiful. What a talented lady x


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