Like many (crafty) youngsters in the 1980s and 90s, my mother introduced me to the fine art of cross-stitch, which I attempted once or twice with little patience and rare satisfaction. Partially complete cross-stitch swatches from my youth still languish in my sewing basket today!
I was recently introduced to blackwork, which is simple embroidery using black thread, through Sonia Lucano’s book, Made In France – Blackwork. I was immediately captivated by the possibilities of this cousin of cross-stitch, the book’s blurb hints at the goodness inside: “You’ll be seduced by this timeless and elegant form of embriodery.” Indeed I was.
A far cry from the fusty cross-stitch patterns of the past, Blackwork is full of contemporary inspiration and designs that translate effortlessly into the stylish home. (Okay, I am yet to embroider a tea-towel, but it’s not far off!).
PLUS I was curious to explore the mash-up of blackwork and letterpress. I finally got my chance to mash-it when my friend Ingrid had her first baby, beautiful Elise Grace, last month. I designed this card and matching envelope based on some of the themes in Blackwork, and was very pleased with the results.
Perhaps it will be my duty to introduce Elise to cross-stitch (or preferably blackwork!!) one day…..