Thinking in Stitches…


Shadow lines, layers and loose threads are characteristic of my work and I talk about them often – click on the tags to have a look at past images and words, or pop the words into the search box…


Stitch vocabulary or iconography such as buttonhole wheels and French knots


They are all personal reflections and my own mark making on cloth – so:

Knots feel like and represent thoughts like prayer beads

Herringbone is a journey with steps along the way

Feather represents my connection to the natural world

Buttonhole – whole thoughts or partial ones

Loose threads reach out and float, even melt into the atmosphere and connect with the viewer

susi-bancroftI think I will photograph some close ups for the next post! The above are all from Walcot Chapel where the walls, light and space are exceptionally beautiful…

Strand meditation 2

susi_bancroft.IMG_2958Strands of thread link the pieces

Joining, and leaving space

for movement: to attune, to ease in the water

susi_bancroft.IMG_2963There is a film of this work on show too – in my mind’s eye it was always drifting in the sea – in the liminal space – filmed at tide turns, dusk and moonrise…

susi_bancroft.IMG_2979At the end of the film, moonrise

2 women, quietly rinsing a cloth

Standing in the sea

Strand Meditation 1

susi_bancroft.through2Walking the shoreline

Tide turn – the space between

Rhythm of waves flowing….

Rhythm of breath, meditation

Dawn and dusk, stitching in early morning

The pause, stilling…..

Rhythm of stitch

The embroidered buttonhole wheels are complete thoughts

Others fragmented, partially formed

The seed beads

Those are the shells, stones, tiny claws

Found objects catching my gaze, mixed on the shoreline

susi_bancroft.IMG_3099detail of stitched piece..

See this – here Also the Brunel Broderers blog for all artists work for Strand


pure silk twist


susi_bancroftsusibancroft_techsusibancroftThe set up – tricky to capture! The middle image shows the amazing Poorman Project laptop Stevie made especially for the show, from which the images ran on slideshow and the audio played – a little, fragile, organic being – ‘made from bits of nothing’ he says – showing the inner workings like the inner thinking in my mind…

insignificant? …. potent?

susi_bancroft_buttonhole1A humble buttonhole – hidden by a bright button or a discreet one

Do we glance at, appreciate or pause to admire a fine hand-made buttonhole and acknowledge the craft and skill in it’s making?

What is our relationship with tailoring? What do we value and cherish in our clothing?

What of mass-produced fashion –  the skilled seamstress, the home-worker, the factory worker? Safe conditions, trade unions, care and compassionate attention?

These buttonholes are randomly stitched, uneven, deliberately stitched with a line across the centre

Closed mouth, closed eyes, stitched shut in vibrant thread

susi_bancroft_buttonhole2The art of tailoring I learned much about during this work

Exploitation and ‘throw-away’ fashion I thought about constantly – there is work for me to follow through here – a responsibility as an artist to find ways of promoting discussion and awareness.

The tragedy in Dhaka, Bangladesh happened at the end of this body of work and I grieved – I will not forget or lose the opportunity to work more on this….

made by faeries?

The waistcoat for the Mayor – made by faeries? Whose hands worked so hard to make such exquisite beauty?

susi_bancroft faerie dressA skirt of silk dyed with turmeric, seed beads, paper bodice dyed in tea – machine and hand stitch – and winged shoulder details made of garlic bulb leaves….

detail from Suited exhibition sketchbook piece

One and Twenty at Suited!

At Suited I was brave, a new direction – my sketchbook of work on the ‘one and twenty buttonholes’ was shown with audio pieces and a slideshow. I will show the ‘set up’ and some images over this week…

I didn’t want to show finished resolved stitch only – my jam-packed sketchbook of sampling, of thought, of ideas was the work itself..

susibancroft_suitedaThe slideshow was made up of images of sketchbook work – dilated images of stitch – powered from a wonderful deconstructed laptop by the poorman project – of which more later!