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Märchenhaftes Sticken

General presentation

After a doctorate in archaeology at the University of Groningen in 2010, Jessica decided that time had come to give her more creative side a chance.

From her paternal grandmother and her maternal grandfather, who was a gifted silk shader, she inherited her love for, and skill in, hand embroidery. During her study in archaeology, she was introduced to textile conservation at the County Conservation Centre in Salisbury. She started the RSN Certificate in 2010, advancing and completing the RSN Diploma in early 2012 and became an RSN-tutor.

Her vivid purple anemone won her the Hilda Watson Prize for Silk Shading in 2011.

In the same year, Jessica started teaching embroidery from her home studio in the Netherlands. She enjoys transferring RSN embroidery skills to students in an inviting and stimulating environment. Mid 2014, Jessica started teaching embroidery courses in her new studio in the Bavarian Alps, near Munich. In 2016, her embroidered interpretation of Millie Marotta’s fox won her first prize in the Stitch your Heart out competition.

Imagine we don’t’ know anything about it… can you describe your profession?

I create beautiful pieces using needle and thread to adorn walls, clothing and sewing equipment

What materials do you use?

Natural fibres (fabric + yarn) as much as possible

Who is you ideal client’s profile? 

Someone who is appreciative of my skill

You chose to be a craftsman. How did this decision appear to be an evidence to you?

After years in the academic environment, there was something important missing from my life. Something that was there as a child. I then went back to my first love: embroidery.

Would you define your job a passion? What is the best moment you had in your job? 

It is a huge passion! Creating things of beauty every day is a privilege. I love it when people say that they were unaware that these skills still exist today. Most do not know that embroidery is much more than cross-stitch and table cloths.

What role do “talent”, “know-how” and “creativity” play in your profession? 

Talent is important, know-how is essential and creativity a must. But above all you’ll need self-critique and perseverance!

And what about innovation, what are the changes since you started? Do you use new materials, tools, processes, marketing. What’s the impact of innovation on your performances? How could your profession be more innovative? 

From my former archaeological career, I bring a love for the traditional. However, I enjoy combining different embroidery techniques into one piece. Rediscover techniques from the past and combine them with different materials.

Where and how long did you train before you were ready for creating your business? Imagine that you want to invite young generations to choose your profession, what would be your message to them?

Start young! When I rediscovered my passion for embroidery at 30, I was already too old to become really, really good. And be prepared to embrace life-long learning. I slowly start selling my original artwork now as before, I didn’t think I was good enough. So, I needed about 7 years to get to this point.

In conclusion, describe a meaningful experience or a personal reflection that you would like to share with us and explain why. 

I am a lover of beauty and a true child of the age of enlightenment. I strongly believe that being surrounded by beauty makes us better people.


To know more about this craftsman, see her profile

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