Hawthorne & Heaney needs you !


As artisans we are drawn to beautiful things.  

The art we work on is a reflection of our taste and dedication.



We asked ourselves why shouldn’t the the luxury we surround ourselves with daily be reflected in the tools of our trade.

As embroiderers, frustrated with hunting through the ever dwlinding treasure trove of vintage and second hand, we decided to create some tools that would be a pleasure to use, collect and admire.

After all the journey is as important as the destination !



The Heaney’s Haberdashery team want you to tell us about the tools you use.  Let us know your favourites and the reasons behind why.  

We are developing some long lost gems and we need your feedback on what tools you would like to see and why.

Sign up to the Newsletter to find out how you can get involved, VIP access to limited edition runs, Early Bird discount codes and updates on our progress.

Follow us on Instagram for a sneak peak on how things are going daily !

Hawthorne & Heaney :Dismantling of a Victorian Mourning Shawl


Hawthorne & Heaney was given the Victorian shawl by Sue Thomas from Savile Row bespoke.


In the Victorian era, black was considered the appropriate colour to be worn when mourning the loss of a loved one and in some cultures, this is still the case today. It is believed that the mourning attire was a protection against negative thoughts. By wearing the colour black it also informed family, friends and acquaintances that the wearer had recently lost someone close to them and was a warning not to approach them within this sad period of time. For women, the fashion symbolised the depth of affliction with the colour of clothing indicating the gradual return from black to bold clothing through the hues of purple and violet, this was recognised as the second stage of mourning. The length of time Victorian women wore mourning garments varied on the degree of relationship with the deceased from a week up to a year.


The dismantling of the shawl was a very long process as parts of the shawl was originally constructed using an embroidery technique called tambour beading. Tambour is French for drum and is done by using a hook where the fabric is stretched as tight as a drum. The fabric can be stretched by being sewn onto a rectangular frame or placed in a wooden hoop. The Tambour hook makes a chain stitch in a technical order where it will keep each bead securely in place. If the knot or process of the tambour chain stitch was to be done incorrectly then the whole beadwork would come undone. Depending on your experience using the Tambour technique beads can be secured in place very fast this is why a lot of fashion houses such as Dior are well known for using this technique in order to get garments completed on a tight time schedule. To get each bead loose from the shawl the embroidery stitches were cut allowing the bead to be free. Once all the beads were eventually dismantled from the Victorian shawl they were sorted into bags so all the same beads were neatly secured and measured ready to be used again. Below you are able to see photographs of sections from the shawl being dismantled.


It is very important to Hawthorne & Heaney that the beads are used in another exciting project. This is because of the heritage behind this shawl and the construction that went into the making of it was exquisite. With the shawl being so old it was beginning to fall apart and unable to be restored therefore there was no other option but to take it apart and store the beads safely away until we find a project that will give them a new purpose. We are unsure currently what that project will be but we are sure we will know when the time comes.

Hawthorne & Heaney chats with Riddle Magazine

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Hand embrodierer extraordinaire Megumi Endo working on a monogrammed handkerchief

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A few weeks back, we took some time out to chat to Rupert Watkins of Riddle Magazine and friend of Hawthorne & Heaney. We were delighted when he said he wanted to do an article on us for Riddle and so after lots of conversation and a little time with their photographer Andy Barnham, the article is ready to be shared with you.

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Close up detail of raised machine embrodiery

The article covers a little of the history of how Hawthorne & Heaney came to be as well as the sort of pieces we work on. Here are a few of the pictures from the article to give you a taste, follow the link to read the article in its entirety.

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Hawthorne & Heaney’s Director, Claire Barret at her drawing desk

Hawthorne & Heaney: Thanks for coming!

Last Week, we had a little gathering at the studio as an official welcome to our new studio and get together of industry contacts. Thanks to everyone who came along, we hope you had a lovely time, as we throughly enjoyed ourselves.


For those who couldnt come along, here is a little glimpse of what we got up to.IMG_0218

As well as a peek at the new studio space and how we work, we were also offering a few freebies in the form of personalised hankies or tote bags.


We had a couple of machines offering the service while you wait with 2 of our lovely machinists, Maianh and Ella operating them with Pearl and Hasina to assist.


Our expert hand embroiderer Meg was demonstrating some traditional goldwork techniques for people to watch.

It wasnt all serious work though…

Embroidery wizardry #movinginparty #embroiderythursdays #witchcraft #embroidery #bespoke #fun

A video posted by Hawthorne & Heaney (@hawthorneheaney) on


Hawthorne & Heaney Visits Molly Goddard’s ‘What I Like’ Exhibition at the NOW Gallery

Central Saint Martins graduate and one of London’s newest emerging designers, Molly Goddard, is holding a new, interactive exhibition at Greenwich’s NOW Gallery where you are invited to sit and embroider one of her floor to ceiling tulle dresses for free. When an opportunity like this comes up we just had to go and check it out for ourselves!


In one large, sunlit room, the six colourful oversized dresses hang from the ceiling on pulleys so that the whole length of the dress can eventually be covered. You are encouraged to sit on one of the chairs around the dresses and embroider absolutely anything you like on them.

For Molly, the exhibition is about people ‘enjoying doing something with their hands’ and she hopes that people from all walks of life will come and make their mark on one of her dresses.



Around the room are simple and clear instructions for basic embroidery stitches, meaning anyone from an absolute beginner to an embroidery artist can come and express their creativity on the dresses. This is such a lovely way for everyone to experience embroidery and is a fun way to introduce people to the traditional craft. The whole exhibition is also very child friendly with blunt, plastic needles and scissors attached to a chain in the centre, making it an excellent activity for the whole family to take part in.


Collecting a oversized needle and some thread from the central podium, I chose a blank space and began to stitch directly onto the tulle. The whole experience was very relaxing and there was no pressure on what you did with the thread so you could just experiment and let your imagination run wild!


Each little stitch helps the dresses to grow and evolve and it was very exciting to be able to add my own personal mark amongst all the others in what feels like a huge community project.


The exhibition only opened and already the bottom of the dresses are filling up with an array of interesting designs and colour from a variety of different people. I can’t wait to see what they will look in February when the exhibition closes and one of the dresses will be auctioned off for charity.





Don’t miss out on your chance to be a part of this very unique interactive art installation!

The exhibition runs from 4 November 2016 to 19 February 2017

Monday to Friday 10am – 7pm

Saturday and Sunday 11am – 4pm

Closed for Christmas 24 December – 2nd January


NOW Gallery

The Gateway Pavilions

Peninsula Square


SE10 0SQ

By Jessica Eykel

Hawthorne & Heaney For Elle Magazine, September Issue 2016

2016 has been a pretty packed year for us at Hawthorne & Heaney, but one of the highlights has to be the Elle magazine cover we produced for their September issue. As one of 5 covers released we were delighted to be commissioned to produce this one for the project.


The theme of the issue was Icons of Change, as we shared the honour of the cover with the likes of Zayn Malik and Kristen Stewart. Our cover was designed to be as subtle as possible, a blank canvas on which the main question could be asked; ‘Now what?’ as the issue marks a change in direction for Elle magazine.


In house, it was a really exciting project for us as it gave us a rare opportunity to amalgamate hand and machine embroiderery techniques, unifying our departments. The main title and the label’s lettering were done by CAD machine embroidery in a light shine thread over raisings.  The finer details were added in hand embroidery which can be seen in ‘ElleUK.com’ and ‘September 2017’ as well as the stitches applying the label.



Along side the work itself, our name can be seen on the contents page. If you would like to see more on this issue, check out some of the features below:

Elle is Changing, elle.com

Icons of Change, elle.com





Hawthorne & Heaney for Monki Jeans

Earlier this month, we had the opportunity to work with the lovely people at Monki Jeans on their customisation event. Hawthorne and Heaney were in store stitching for the launch day where customers could have their denim hand embroidered with an initial or a little symbol.

monki-2As per our usual event, the customers had a choice of fonts and colours for their personalisation.


Quite a few people decided on the classic white on denim look for their embellishments.



Whilst others vamped up bolder, already embroidered designs with their personal monogram.

monki-1If you are looking to have something similar done to a garment of your own, or hold an event of a similar nature then get in touch with us.

Hawthorne & Heaney for A V Robertson


If you follow our Instagram, then  you may have seen our post earlier in the week about the Fashion East show which we were delighted to have played a part in.  The mancunian designer, A V Robertson who specialises in embellished womenswear created a collection of elegant looks with an abundance of 3D leaves and hand embroidered elements. We were responsible for creating the leaves and petals that grow out of the garments, each of which was individually hand made.


The process started with making hundreds of meters bias binding which would seal and finish each of the pieces. As you can see Amie from A V Robertson had chosen a very exciting colour palette to work with, so there were many combinations to choose from.


After pressing all the binding into shape, it was then applied to the center fabric that made up the body of the leaves.

img_0483With 8 colours of binding, 13 fabric insides and 8 leaf shapes, there were hundreds of potential combinations.


Then it was over to Amie to put her creations all together, if you would like to see the whole collection, click here for the vogue website.






Hawthorne & Heaney for Young Designers

At this time of year we are lucky enough to get a sneak peak at some of the freshest fashion talent around as Students from all over contact us with their ideas for their final collections. This insight into the future of fashion is always so exciting to see and often pushes us beyond our usual style or way of approaching a project. This year we have been working with designers such as Mary Ashcroft, Naomi Bartling and Palmina Cerullo.

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mary ashcroft

Mary Ashcroft has a bold aesthetic, using machine embroidery also to add large strokes of texture to her piece emulating a paint brush. With this piece she brings together multiple textures of fabric as the embroidery act as the seam between Mac plastic, Velvet and Felt. This exposes the way the fabrics react differently to the introduction of the embroidery with the punched out nature of the plastic and the way the pile of the velvet peeks through the heavy stitching on the velvet areas.

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Naomi Bartling took a very different approach to the other graduates, using embroidery to bring together many different elements to built a multitude of colour texture and interest. This eclectic approach to her embroidery created some really eye catching pieces as we took apart existing hair pieces and corsages, and reassembled them. We also produced this moss covered piece for her, embellished with a range of 3D beaded motifs.

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Palmina Cerullo from the University for the Creative Arts went for a more traditional embroidery route, with her hand embroidered blue bullion work chair designs. The punchy colours of the bullion stands out wonderfully against the suiting fabrics.


If you would like to get in contact with us about a project you are working on, please drop us an email, we would love to hear your ideas…