Constance Howard, was a inspiring teacher and author who pioneered embroidery in textile design and made a colossal impact on contemporary embroidery. Her books were published in the 60′s and 70′s and you spot them I am sure a contemporary embroiderer would still learn from them.
Make a cuppa and browse the Constance Howard Resource and Research Centre in Textiles which is hosted by Goldsmiths College, University of London. This is one of those online resources which become more enjoyable the more you poke about. You need to use the search box however. I typed “samplers” into the image search box and discovered lots of interesting textiles to browse and learn from.
Constance Howard worked this stitch sampler in black and white in the late 1970′s or early 1980s. It consists of rows of black and white stitching on a grey linen. Constance Howard is demonstrating working one stitch in 2 colours. Follow the link for close ups and details.
In this sample we can see Constance Howard experimenting with raised chain band.
This small sampler of multi-coloured, raised chain band is worked on red wool fabric by Constance Howard for one of her books
This sample worked by Constance Howard to illustrate the design process explained in her book ‘Inspiration for Embroidery’. The design is based on the two halves of a circle and realised in stiffened appliqué fabric.
This experimental sampler of free surface stitches is described as ‘Nets made with stitches, spots made with stitches‘ written on the mount by Constance Howard.
As I said all of these samples were worked between the 60′s to the 80′s and contemporary embroiderers owe her much as her creativity and emphasis on design pushed embroidery into a direction that many today do not venture! She was the first to say “it’s Ok to explore a stitch” and saw stitches as making graphic marks.
The Constance Howard sampler Resource and Research Centre in Textiles collection held by the University of London at Goldsmiths, pay the site a visit and learn a bit about contemporary embroidery too!
Make a cuppa and take a small break and view this TED talk by Margaret Wertheim as it is interesting and if you have not encountered the Coral Reef Project before it is quite amazing. The Beautiful Math of Coral is about the Crochet Coral Reef Project which is created using a crochet technique devised by a mathematician using hyperbolic geometry.
If you are an email subscriber click on the title which will take you to the blog where you can watch it.
If you have not heard of the Coral Reef Project visit their website
I found this neat online tool/toy which I think readers will enjoy. The Fuzzimo Embossed Label Image Generator website creates an image of embossed label which you can print out and use. There are 4 colours and 4 sizes to choose from and it literally takes minutes as you simply write text in a field and then click on the submit button. It generates an image that you can download and use.
I know scrapbookers and folks interested in paper arts will like it.
Also stitchers could easily print out the labels on fabric and incorporate them in stitched projects. It would be a great way to add your name to a quilt or wall hanging. The ideas run a little wild as you could add, dates and quotes or anything you choose to stitched work particularly if it had a vintage theme. Have fun with it and enjoy your day!
Scanned Images, Engravings and Pictures From Old Books is definitely worth browsing and bookmarking so make a cuppa and take a look there are some real gems to be discovered.
These images are not only a wonderful design source but they will be of interest to anyone who prints images on fabric, are interested in the book and paper arts or do mixed media collage pieces.
The site houses over 3,000 high-resolution free images which have been scanned from old out of copyright books. Images are tagged and described so it makes for interesting browsing. Take a look particularly at the decorative initials and borders as I am sure many stitchers will find these great inspiration and sources for designs.
Friday freebies is a regular series in which I highlight free resources online, free patterns and links that are of interest to fiber folks. All posts in the series are in the Friday Freebie category I hope you enjoy them.