Crossover stitches

SHEFFIELD is hosting a national embroidery convention next weekend which seems set to dispel whatever genteel image such an event may suggest.

It includes, for example, the unlikely prospect of a DJ set when David Littler will make a presentation called Sampler-Cultureclash, bringing together the worlds of embroidery and DJing through the common word 'sampler'.

The Embroiderers' Guild Conference, entitled Melody of Stitch, is being organised by the Sheffield branch at Sheffield Hallam University's City Campus from next Friday, April 17, to Sunday.

They have laid on an unusual and exciting programme that explores the diversity of textile arts and a love of embroidery with an opportunity for delegates to meet like-minded textile artists, demonstrators, specialist traders and organisations.

Various talks and exhibitions in the conference programme are open to the public, including Sampler-Cultureclash in the Peak Lecture Theatre next Saturday afternoon.

The audio-visual talk/performance introduces collaborators DJ Jason Singh (DJ) and poet Yusra Warsama, combining the contemporary and the traditional way.

David Littler is director of London Printworks Trust, the UK's leading resource for experimental printed textiles and since the age of 16 has worked as a DJ and club promoter.

Sampler-Cultureclash is an international research project in collaboration with the New Embroidery Group, the Embroiderers' Guild, the V&A, and The Constance Howard Resource and Research Centre in Textiles.

Another open event is a talk next Friday morning on couture embroidery by Anthea Godfrey, principal lecturer at London College of Fashion and chairman of of the Embroiderer's Guild.

Sheffield-born, she is the daughter of the doyenne of embroidery art, Margaret Nicholson.

In a lifetime involved in fashion and embroidery, her accomplishments include being a couture embroiderer (including hand, machine, metal thread and beads), textile printer, couture button maker and embellisher, theatrical embroiderer for film, fringe, carnival and contemporary dance, catwalk choreographer, researcher and international lecturer.

Her 40-year teaching career spans almost all sectors including primary, secondary, FE, HE, adult education, prison and mental health. She is also an examiner.

"I consider Melody of Stitch to be a highlight of 2009," she says.

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