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
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?
We are delving back into the archives to revisit this really fun project we worked on for designer Hasan Hejazi in 2012. We were asked to create baroque inspired tonal cut work for three bespoke luxury evening dresses for pop goddess Marina from Marina and the diamonds. The project included some exciting names including Tim Bret Day (Photography), Thomas Knights (Film) and a suit for the designer by London tailor Gresham Blake.
Our designs and drawings were based on victorian florid ornament something that is very good to translate to cut work. The initial designs and refining took a long time and the annotations and notes for the embroiderers even longer as there was so much detail involved.
The embroideries were executed in cutwork in colours to match the dresses with a fade to either lighter or darker. There were also a few crystals scattered about to add a bit of light.
The dresses were then put together over four days ready for the photo shoot.
Before the event we hadn’t seen any of the dresses, so we were very excited for the launch. The first we saw was the full length red piece which marina wore for her performance at the beginning of the night.
She then changed into the blue knee length dress which is our personal favourite !
The final pink dress was saved solely for the photo shoot, which you can see in the photos below. It was lovely to get a chance to flex our cutwork drafting muscles this thoroughly, so we are very grateful to Hasan for getting us involved ! A wonderful project all round.
Hawthorne and Heaney are very fortunate have a a great variety of work that comes through our door which means that you may have unknowing seen our work.
Earlier this year, we worked on a piece for the advertising campaign for ‘Kalms’. They wanted to create an embroidery of their slogan onto the duvet with the real life packet.
The colour of the stitching was very important that it would photograph true against the colours of the packaging so we spent some time testing a few threads before settling on this one as the strongest option. The texture of the stitching was also very important to them as they wanted it to have a very hand embroidered feel, but the stitching is done by machine. Therefore we chose a cotton thread which is also used for hand embroidering and paid special attention to the direction of the stitched to make them look like they flow naturally, like ink from a pen.
We were very please with the end result, and feel that we achieved what we were trying to achieve with this project. Have you seen it about?
Embroidery repairs is a topic we keep coming back to but we thought we would share another project with you where embroidery was used to breath new life into a damaged garment.
Damaged area before embroidery
This jacket was made of a very rough grain tweed which through rubbing and wear had got damaged and started to ray over a large area of about 15 cm. The embroidery that was designed for the area was inspired by the Japanese practise of Kintsukuroi (golden repair) where broken pottery is fixed using gold laquer. It ties in with the philosophy of wabi-sabi, embracing of the flawed or imperfect which felt appropriate for this project given that we knew that the damage would still be to come extent visible but making the repair in an asthetically pleasing way makes the object becomes more beautiful for having been broken and fixed.
We used 4 shades of blue to reflect the different thread colours in the weave which are all in satin stitch to help to hold the damaged area together. Then there is a layer of gold metallic thread added over raisings to give it that laquered effect that is so significant to this technique and ties in with the metal details of the jacket. After the embroidery there were still a few threads to pulled through to tidy as can be seen and to reattach the hem, but we were very please with the end result.