The Textiles trip was a great opportunity for us to be inspired by other creative artists. At the Contemporary Stitched Art Exhibition there was a vast range of work from sculptures to framed embroideries. We spent the morning sketching and taking photographs of the work on display. Rachel Brown had embroidered a really colourful and detailed portrait of Zandra Rhodes that captured her bright pink hair with couched woollen yarns and linked well with what was in store for us in the afternoon. A very moving and meaningful piece by Stacey Chapman was a pillow with human hair used to make the words “loss”, which represented the condition of hair loss. This showed us how to use our personal experiences to inspire our work and create messages.
We were particularly impressed with the work of Zandra Rhodes who uses bold colours and screen-printed designs on chiffon. It was amazing to see the wide variety of dresses that she had made over the course of her 50-year career in fashion. We learnt that Zandra Rhodes is mainly inspired by her travels to India, Egypt and Morocco (just to name a few) and she motivates herself to do one sketch per day.