What is Slow Stitching UK?

Welcome back to the Thread and Fold blog where we showcase our latest handmade embroidery kits, printed fabrics for embroidery and embroidery art. This week on our social media channels we have been celebrating slow stitching with our gorgeous slow stitch patches. In today’s blog we look at what slow stitching is, how to slow stitch and detail a few of our slow stitch works. 

Slow stitching is a movement that has been gaining popularity within embroidery circles over the last few years. As the world becomes increasingly hectic, as time seems to fleeting slip away in the madness of the modern world, slow stitching has become a popular form of stitching that offers an escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Slow Stitching is a form of embroidery that forgoes the usual practice of completing or designing a strict pattern (however beautiful we add!) and completing the work. Instead, slow stitching is more of a freestyling method of stitching where creative freedom is cherished over the completion of a set pattern. The idea behind slow stitching is to allow creativity to flourish and to focus on the method of sewing, an enjoyment of needlework rather than the outcome. Using simple hand stitching techniques and focusing on the enjoyment of the stitches and movement is the crux of slow stitching. 

In essence, one could look at slow stitching as being more about the journey than the destination and how to do slow stitch itself is a contradiction. As we have covered in our five basic stitches blog, there are a number of useful stitches that anyone new to the world of embroidery can try. Indeed, slow stitching lends itself particularly well to beginners as it allows for repetitive (in a good way!) practice of individual stitches. What’s more, slow stitching is not an expensive pursuit and can be used from old pieces of fabric, odds and sods kept over, and threads that need to be used up. Of course, should you wish to create a more “coherent” design then we recommend using complementary fabrics, textures and colours of threads (thicknesses too!) that can help you to make a more collected piece. The beauty of slow stitching is that it’s entirely your choice and it is this freedom that makes it so popular. 

Below we have chosen three of our one-of-a-kind slow stitch pieces to inspire you.

Pink Silk slow stitch embroidery
Materials : Pink hand dyed silk, white linen, DMC stranded threads
Embroidered area is 5" x 5" (130x130mm)

example of slow stitchingThis embroidery was one of the first slow stitch embroideries that I made. It took a while because I was experimenting quite a lot, but it didn't stop my mind wandering off thankfully. The pink silk is from a piece of a hand dyed sari remnant. The hand dying process has has created varying shades of pink across the fabric. Looks like nature had a hand in it!

Silk on linen
Embroidered area is 3" x 4" (75mmx100mm)

what is slow stitching?I called this embroidery Kimono because it turned out to have a Japanese vibe to it. There are three different colours of silk layers sewn over the white linen and I used quite a variety of stitches over the top of it all

Blue on Blue Silk slow stitch embroidery
One-off slow stitch embroidery (only one available)

Materials : Blue hand dyed silk, white linen, DMC stranded thread
Embroidered area is 3" x 3" (80x80mm)

how to slow stitchThis is a unique, slowly stitched embroidery that I made recently. The fabric is white linen and I used a hand dyed silk which I purchased as sari remnant. The blue dye is uneven and natural looking as if nature has created it. The remnants come as crumpled up strips of silk which I ironed out into flat pieces. It's a bit of a fiddly process, and I'm really not a fan of ironing, but it was also quite satisfying to see a lovely piece of smooth silk emerge from the scrap of straggly looking fabric that I started with.

Have you tried slow stitching? Do you enjoy it? Let us know in the comments below. 

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