Saturday, 27 August 2011

Embroidery Classes

 Embroidery and Craft Classes

I have started teaching (mainly) hand embroidery, within the craft classes that are held on Wednesdays  at the African Cultural Association, where it is also possible to learn about bag-making and other craft techniques. The classes are informal, a lot of fun and tend to cater for individual needs.
 The approach is based on sharing our knowledge and experience in what often becomes a two way process (there is no embroidery police or anything of the sort around!).
Sorting threads and making bundles

Multicoloured thread bundles

Demonstrating basic useful stitches and other techniques : how to use an embroidery  hoop (or round frame), how to transfer a design

Outlining the basic design with stem and split stitch

Filling out with chain and satin stitch

Saturday, 20 August 2011

At long last, my first post. What's in a name?

I am so excited: after years of thinking about it, I am finally doing it! So here it is, my first post!

By way of introduction, I thought I'd start by explaining my choice of name for this blog: it's a play on words, a composite, made-up word that sounds a lot like the Italian word 'pasticci'.
The singular of pasticci in Italian (my mother tongue) is 'pasticcio', originally used to indicate some sort of pie, a hodgepodge kind of thing. Even today anything that involves lots of ingredients shuffled together without much judgement in the hope that they will combine nicely, can be defined in culinary terms a 'pasticcio'.
Hence the translated extended meaning of 'mess' especially as in 'trouble' like in the expression 'siamo nei pasticci' or 'we are in trouble'. You can and will see that mess figures a lot in my life!
It also echoes the derived French word pastiche, that refers to things layered or arbitrarily put together to conjure up something else, raising questions about concepts such as those of authentic and fake, original and reproduction, unique and mass produced, the value placed upon them, and the ultimate nature of reality.
It also contains the word past that requires no explanation (or does it?) and the word stitches, which is one of the media I tend to favour to try and  piece reality together.

So since this is a 'material site' it will feature the things I make, especially in fabric and textile, but mixed media too, some other meaningful objects that I happen, have happened or will happen to come across, some recipes I am really keen on or proud of  and believe worthy of sharing (it will be like having you around for dinner or tea or whatever...) images, hopefully nice ones, and exhibitions/events reviews which is what prompted the thought of having a blog in the first place, a few years back.

Finally, it goes without saying, my opinions and views of the world will seep through the posts (I will strive to keep them to a minimum) and they will also offer you a glimpse of my existential struggle (or human adventure) if you are into that sort of thing!