About Jen Goodwin
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"In my embroideries I use regular cotton threads - the type you can buy in any haberdashers.
I like the way they are organised in the shop, how the numbers aren’t in order but the colour is meticulously graded in terms of hue and tone.
I stitch on canvas painting with the threads, using a digital image as a template."
Studio: Walford Mill Crafts
I was born in Poole in 1980. I then trained at the Royal School of Needlework (RSN) as part of the apprenticeship scheme between 2000-2003. The training I received at the RSN was a fascinating one with a firm base in tradition. These established methods are very important to me as so often these traditional techniques are diluted over time under the banner of 'contemporary stitches’.
Since I finished my training, I have regularly passed on my knowledge and passion for embroidery at the RSN in a mixture of short courses, the certificate and diploma programme and by assessing the work submitted by students. The RSN holds a unique place in textile tuition and I am proud to say I have been associated with them for the last sixteen and a half years.
Through this continued association many exceptional stitching opportunities have been available over the years. I have embroidered elements of the Duchess of Cambridge's wedding dress, including a pair of her shoes. I have also worked on a dress for the Oscars as well as many ecclesiastic projects which I have been proud to work on.
I established my own studio space at Walford Mill Crafts in 2013, where I am now able to devote more of my time to developing my own embroidery practices. My aim is to produce highly detailed and specialised stitching which encourages the viewer to spend time studying the work carefully. I enjoy adding in little details you need to really look for. Hand embroidery is often considered old fashioned, but if I can create work which makes someone ponder hand stitching in an unexpected way, then I will feel I have succeeded.
Some of my most recent work has been focusing on goldwork embroidery. My stitching manipulates metals, often around areas of high padding, to create light play across the work. This technique dates back to the medieval period. The production of these metals and purled wires is still produced in the same way, in the midlands by highly trained wire drawers. I love this style of work due to the technical complexities of mixing different metals together, I enjoy testing my own limits with the unforgiving materials. Each has a different set of constraints and if you push too far the metal is damaged beyond repair.