We thought we would share with you, an exciting project we worked on at the end of last year that we were really pleased with the result of.We had a client that wanted to give a sketchy feel to their anatomical artworks of the heart and liver, encorportating loose threads into the stitching.
Frogging is an interesting word for an embroidery technique isn’t it. It is believed that it referes to the shape of the knot used in ‘frog fasteners’ with the center being the body and the sides being the wide back legs of the frog. The term over the years has come to refer to the embroidery done with this same type of appliqued chord onto garments though not resctricted to the original 3 part knot or for fastening purposes.
At Hawthorne & Heaney, we can produce traditional, hand embroidered frogging, where braid is manipulated and sewn down to create these elaborate patterns that you may recognise from historical garments and costume.
We also can produce similar effects using digital embroidery:
Playing cards inspired machine embroidery onto velvet sleeves before construction for Anderson and Sheppard
Playing cards inspired machine embroidery onto velvet fronts before construction for Anderson and Sheppard
Playing cards inspired machine embroidery onto velvet for Anderson and Sheppard
It is particulally fun when people want to push the traditional boundries with their order like these frogging inspired sleeves before construction:
Dogtooth sleeves with machine embroidered details for Kathryn Sargent
As well as being an embroidery studio, we also have a school which teaches embroidery some evenings and weekends. Our classes are mostly hand embroidery but we have recently added a machine embroidery class to our repetoire. The classes can be found under the London Embroidery School which is also us!
The London Embroidery School website as well as being a place to book classes and purchase embroidery materials is also a great information hub for tips and tricks for embroidery. These can be found under the pro tips series and range from the basics like how to thread a needle (we talk about 4 styles to choose from, not exclusively) to more specialist techniques like prick and pounce:
Or how to use a particular tool, like the curved scissors, a studio favourite;
After what you can see was a very busy and sucessful hand event, we can’t wait for our next one. If you would like to be our next event, get in touch!
When you think about personalisation, people usually associate it with garments, but it doesn’t have to be restricted to them. We recently did a project with a tablescape designer extrordinare Fiona Leahy for the Aerin èclat de vert perfume launch dinner in De Crillon in Paris.
(All above Images courtesy of Fiona Leahy Designs)
Last month, we had the pleasure of working on a bespoke patches order which pushed the boundaries of what we usually produce as it was for a very fast turn around. With the order being for 900 piece and only a coupld of weeks to the deadline, we really had to hit the ground running with the project.
By the end, with them all lined up, we were very pleased with the results of these freestanding pieces so we thought we would share them with you.
If your instagram feed is anything like ours then you will not have failed to notice the hugh amount of attention that the Dior: Designer of Dreams exhibition is getting at the V & A Museum at the moment. Following its opening on the 2nd February, the exhibition which is held in the museum’s new Sainsbury wing, it has received an unprescedented amount of visitors.
The exhibition is currently sold out, with tickets being drip released around the 15th of each month and a few kept back each day on a first come first served basis. Members of the V&A however can still visit at their leisure and Hawthorne and Heaney were lucky enough to visit the exhibition on members night in order to bring you our insight.
The London exhibition has a much greater focus on the individual designers of the House of Dior so if you had already seen it at Musee Des Arts Decoratifs in Paris, then this version brings a different angle. Split into a series of sections, this part of the exhibition really gives you a sense of what each creative director has brought to the house. Furthermore it also highlights some of the key aspects of Dior as a fashion house, which holds all the designs together over the years. Identifying these values allows them to keep delivering pieces which are recognisably ‘Dior’.
Each rooms has its own sense of the wow factor with the paper cut flowers room, displaying some of the more romantic pieces amongst the flowers which were dripping from the ceiling. The center piece of which is this gown embellished with hundreds of tiny cut feathers.
We can not cover this exhibition without mentioning the toile room. Probably the simplist room with its ehite cubes, it really brings home the process of producing couture garments and the work that goes into them. It is lovely to look around and recognise some of the dresses you have already seen the final versions of, in their developmental form. As well as taking the time to watch the series of videos they have on display amongst the toiles which show the making process of other Dior producs such as shoes and jewellery from their specialist makers.
From an embroiderers perpective, there is plenty to see and appreciate in this exhibition. The variety of styles and techniques is huge so whilst all the pieces may not necessarily be your taste, you can not help but be humbled by the skill.
Some of the more contemporary pieces provide a different perspective on ‘les petite mains’ (the little hands; referring to the skilled makers that create the designers vision) that we get to see a modern application of traditonal skills such as the use of beads and velvet in this a line evening gown.
If you find the opportunity, then this exhibition is a absolute must see for fashion, design and embroidery fans everywhere. Follow the link for all the booking details.
All photos courtesy of Natasha Searls-Punter
Dior: Designer of Dreams
The Victoria and Albert Museum, London
On now until 14th July 2019 (extended to the 1st Sept 2019)
Looking through our portfolio, there are lots of lovely examples of family crests in both hand and machine. These are usually in quite a traditional style with the sort of imagery you would expect from this sort of historical imagery; lions andleaves, scrolls and mantels. Every now and then, we get a customer that comes to us because they want to bend the ‘rules’ a little, and with the nature of bespoke ordering, you can do just that.
We had a lovely chap come into us with his design for a crest that he wanted to have embroidered onto a bathrobe for his father. The gift was to be presented to him on his 80th Birthday and so our customer wanted it to be extra special. Therefore he produced a design of his father’s favourite things and worked them into the crest.
Such a nice idea right?! What would you include?