Artist couple that thrives with modern Hand Embroidery
Embroidery artists and married artist couple
We’re a married artist couple who got literally tangled together with threads and needle from day one. When we met in Paris, none of us had a clue of where the embroidery art medium would bring us. It was purely a shared passion for the arts and hand work that led us down the road of joint artistry and eventually to become an international embroidery artist couple.
Charles has a rigid background in the fine arts, with studies at the renowned Beaux Arts de Paris. However, his speciality was never in the fiberarts, but in figurative drawing.
Even though drawing and embroidery may seem widely different, there are many elements of the two art mediums that coincide. Especially with regards to the meditative movements and repetitions. In addition, many of our modern hand embroidery designs are more likened with 3D illustrations.
I feel like contemporary hand embroidery gives me the freedom to recreate my sketches in a tactile medium. Suddenly I’m able to touch my designs and add a deeper textural feeling to it.
It all began in Paris…
I, just like Charles, have longer history with traditional pen, paper, paint and pencils than with threadpainting. However, I had just picked up embroidery again a year before Charles and I met.
If you’re a fellow creative, you may know the feeling of an “art medium period”. I was in the period of hand embroidery and I just couldn’t stop. Each night as we’d sit in my tiny roof top studio next to Hôtel Invalides, I would embroider. After a few weeks Charles asked to try it… You may have figured what happened next. He couldn’t stop either!
Charles moved into my studio the same week we met. Thus, we’d come to call the tiny space (18m2) home for the next 1,5 year. Simultaneously, as I finished up my University studies, we began to slowly grow our influence in the embroidery space.
When we met, none of us had more than a few hundred Instagram followers. Fast forward almost 3 years and we can now call ourselves internationally known embroidery artists with a collective audience of 270,000+ by the end of 2019 via @petronella.art and @_charleshenry_ – .
“Why don’t you embroider your Architectural sketches?”
It all began to take up real speed, when Charles encouraged me to embroider my architectural sketches. I have always loved to draw architecture for its beauty and history, but I hadn’t thought of embroidering it! Nevertheless, since my first architectural embroidery art work, numerous online magazines such as Archdaily , My Modern Met, Fubiz, BrwnPaperbag , Martha Stewart and more featured our embroidery art. It was as if a giant wave came towards us and we just had to jump.
“We do everything together. In fact, part of our motivation to build our own creative business is to be able to always work together. We opened our first business after only 3 months of knowing each other and everyone around us thought we were nuts. But for us it was like our first wedding. We both dived in with our heads first and it’s our strong commitment to both our lifestyle, the arts and of course each other that keeps the wheel rolling.”
The wave came and we had to take it
A few months after the first wave, we decided to host our first workshop in Paris. As our work spread, so did the interest from other embroiderers to learn our modern approach to this ancient art form. We had no idea if people would actually show up, but we had to give it a try! What comes to mind when I write this is the old saying: You will never know what happens until you try it.
Thankfully, people came. In fact, people continued to come every time that we hosted new workshops. Thus, throughout the rest of our stay in the French capital we began to host frequent workshops at various Parisian cafés. It was an incredibly enriching experience and made us realise the love for hand embroidery at a more concrete level. It also contributed to the registration of our first business; Le Kadre that now became Charles and Elin.
As a young embroidery artist couple, we see it as part of our responsibility to contribute to the development of modern and inspiring designs
After a quick google search, it’s easy to think that hand embroidery is a dying art form. Nevertheless, in the last few years hand embroidery has completely exploded in popularity. Especially on visual social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest, where more and more embroidery artists share their embroidery art.
It’s incredibly inspiring to see how the love for this ancient art medium is growing. In just the past two years we’ve seen an exponential growth in both our audience count, but also the number of other embroidery artists.
I’m absolutely certain that a part of our initial exposure came as a result of our novel and unique designs. At the time there were no other accounts or artist couple who embroidered architecture in the way we did. Furthermore, we can’t deny that Paris is an attractive location… Our embroidery designs of Paris spread like wild fire!
Architectural hand embroidery designs
Thus, to both satisfy our own creative desires, and to nurture the growing trend of modern hand embroidery, we created a series of unique patterns. We continuously update our selection each month. Thus our aim is that you will always be able to find a new creative project to keep your hands creating.
In addition to unique embroidery patterns, we have also designed a Monthly Pattern Program. The goal is to encourage creation on a regular basis to stimulate creative fulfilment. Furthermore, a regular practise of hand work contributes to a calmer mind and body. We’re strong believers that to create is the ultimate practise for relaxation and creative mindfulness!
In depth learning with online courses
The more workshops we hosted, the more we received requests from people who were based elsewhere. Thus, what better than to create online courses to share the knowledge with the world? In the past year, we’ve created four different courses to tend to all your preferences.
Thanks to video, you’re able to follow along stitch by stitch from a close-up perspective. For someone who tries to learn embroidery, videos have proved to be highly effective. Embroidery for beginners can seem overwhelming, but with video tutorials you can paus and replay at your own pace! We love to take online classes to learn a new skill. Thus, we are sure that you will love it too! To learn should be fun and accessible, and online courses tick both the boxes.