The fashion frontline: Trend – Embroidery
By Shanel Williams-O’Reilly
In a world where the closest us mere mortals get to the magic of Haute Couture is by inhaling the high gloss pages of Vogue, it is no wonder that this ancient art form once and still used to differentiate social classes has got the fashion pack masses in a full on needlework frenzy.
For the majority, Embroidery is most likely to be firmly affiliated with the ‘mend, make and do’ practice of our elders, along with the not very attractive interior decorative features we were surrounding by in our youth. However, it appears that it is this very sense of awakened nostalgia that has made the trend so widely appealing, as Embroidering in all its old fashioned glory has brought back a welcomed sentiment of authenticity and enrichment.
Consumed in the digital age where what you see is not necessarily what you get, where apps and filters have made our daily imagery highly subjective and Star Trek themed technological advances has now made it actually possible to print 3D clothing, The Embroidery trend and its thrifty characteristics can be seen as the fashion worlds small representation in a shift towards some sort of resistance. A skillset that combines both intricacy and simplicity, in it’s time consuming creation is a testament to original artistry and our newfound love for it lends an appreciation and recognition of what can often be an understated talent.
Only recently it was reported that the daughter of a Russian oligarch wed in a Ralph and Russo Haute Couture dress that held an eye-watering price tag of £500,000. An extreme example to highlight the accomplished levels of dexterity but one that undoubtedly has to be the seamstress equivalent of computer coding for NASA.
The beauty about this trends wearability is there are so many applications, AND you can even do it yourself- giving everyone a free ticket to comfortably jump on the hand-stitched bandwagon. Following on from the summer, the 1970s flower power vibe continues to provide a prominent feature for all things denim and now leather, whilst this season has seen black become the go to backdrop for Japanese florals and ornamental graphic designs. As designers go, Gucci is by a long stitch the head of this Embroidery class table, where no items of clothing or accessories- printed or plain have escaped its enchanted needlepoint.
So, whether you’re a pop-culture patches kind of gal or are ready to channel your inner granny chic, as always here are a few of my inspired faves.