New Talent Fashion

Industry Hot Take with Lucy Martin Embroidery

Image courtesy of Lucy Martin Embroidery

The use of a needle and thread is an art that has not only revolutionised the way clothes are designed but also how they are appreciated in modern fashion. Despite its ancient roots, embroidery remains to be a prominent aspect of art and design within the fashion industry. In recent years, we have seen how embroidery can be used to elevate modern fashion to a level of creativity and beauty. This week, we chatted with Lucy-Marie Martin, a design student who recently graduated from the Royal School of Needlework. A bespoke award-winning hand embroiderer and tutor, Lucy has seen first-hand the rise of embroidery in modern fashion and how it has affected the attitudes toward embroidery. We asked her a few questions on how embroidery has made a recent comeback in the fashion industry, and if we should expect it to stay for years to come:

Q: How has embroidery revolutionised the fashion industry? What does it bring to design that is so unique aside from other techniques?

L: Embroidery has been integral to fashion since fashion existed. There are ancient examples of embroidery in garments to symbolise status, wealth and purely for decoration. Embroidery brings a plethora of different aspects to fashion, it adds a traditional flavour through the practice of ancient arts but is often in a contemporary context keeping the techniques alive and current. Embroidery elevates a garment as the maker crafts each piece to be unique. 

Q: What do you see currently trending in the UK fashion industry and what should we remain on the watch for in regards to up and coming styles?

L: The rise of period dramas such as Bridgerton through lockdown has given rise to a rebirth in hand embroidery. The desire to craft your own period-inspired outfit by bringing ancient techniques through to your contemporary wardrobe has exploded in popularity. Sustainability and prolonging the life of garments that we already own has been a huge conversation as well recently. Hand embroidery to mend and upcycle pieces have been a trend I’ve seen grow over the past 12 months and I would love to see more of it. 

Q: Is embroidery making a comeback? How has that area of design been changed or used in the last decade and should we expect to see a lot more of it?

L: Embroidery is a stunning art form that is as contemporary and relevant as ever. There are many preconceptions about hand embroidery that push this art form into being something outdated and dull whereas the reality is very different. Hand embroidery is making a comeback through many industries and the fashion industry is just one of these. 

Be sure to check out Lucy’s work on her socials:

Instagram: @lucymartinembroidery


Keep an eye out for more Industry Hot Takes coming soon!

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