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Designing for Stitch
with Pauline Barnes
on 03 July 2018

From stitching at six years old to teaching patchwork and quilting at Sutton Coldfield, Pauline has always been involved in some form of sewing or textile art. She was looking for a course to extend her abilities and found a 3 year design course for craftsmen, which was the best thing she has ever done. Involving challenges such as drawing without removing pencil from paper, and revising, reviewing and refining shapes and ideas, in her research and own drawings , it gave her a grounding that she uses to this day. All this was displayed in various workbooks, so the processes could be seen evolving the image.

“Design is all about imagination”, is a quote from a US professor that Pauline uses as a mantra. Harnessing ideas, which can come from anywhere, then need to be filtered via brainstorming, word association, collecting images, or drawing. Follow this up by playing with samples, perhaps in paper and then in stitch.

In preparation, line, colour, shape, texture and form have to be considered. In composition, symmetry, emphasis, proportion, movement, balance, and space within the whole piece play a part. Evaluation of work should be postponed so you step away and come back with fresh eyes.

Pauline took us through the processes of making her wonderful jungle quilt using photos, stencils, felt making and twin needle machining to demonstrate how she used the methods she had described.


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