Inspirations #120 Out Now!
13th October 2023
Roll out the streamers, release the balloons, light up the sparklers, and pop some champagne, as we have some VERY exciting news…. Inspirations issue #120 is FINALLY here!
After many months of talking, planning, curating, photographing, writing, getting every little thing *just* right, we are over the moon to share what we believe may just be one of our best issues yet.
A labour of love for our whole team, with each featured project, each image and each word intentionally and meticulously chosen to create this long-awaited celebratory issue.
We’ve included a special look back over 30 years as we acknowledge that none of what we do is possible without the incredible designers who share their love of embroidery with us, along with every single one of our readers who collectively form the amazing community we’ve built together.
So, without further ado, we are simply ecstatic to share with you the 30th birthday issue of Inspirations, #120!
The collection of projects we have curated is truly world-class, some of the best of the best, with each featured designer having a special connection to the magazine over the years, each in their own different way.
Fittingly, the exquisite cover project, Busy Bees, is from our very own Editor in Chief, Susan O’Connor who is celebrating her own milestone having worked for the magazine throughout all 30 years.
Busy Bees is an ingenious bespoke pincushion made from hexagons emulating a honeycomb, complete with a matching etui decorated with honeybees and red gerberas. It’s a visually striking yet elegant project with all the characteristics we’ve come to know and love about Susan’s designs.
Echinacea by Jo Butcher and Bella Dama by Ana Mallah are stunning floral stumpwork pieces, respectively featuring vibrant coneflowers and elegant, long-stemmed garden flowers. Jo’s design is embroidered against her beautiful, famed watercolour backgrounds, and Ana’s flowers have intricate three-dimensional petals, adding depth and dimension to her piece.
Cinnamon & Sugar by Hazel Blomkamp is an exquisite, tiny cushion. Versatile, and perhaps the perfect home for pins and needles, this stunning design features sophisticated shades of greys, beiges and whites adorned with tiny glass beads.
Bertie by Tania Cohen and Nature’s Realm by Trish Burr are designs that are both inspired by the idiosyncrasies of nature. Bertie is a delightful beetle brooch in striking greens and golds, embellished with subtle touches of paillettes and metallic threads. Nature’s Realm showcases an array of stunning threadpainted flowers and pollinators in striking shades of reds, yellows and oranges.
Jane Nicholas’ Grapevine & Ladybird is an eye-catching masterpiece. A metallic golden lattice supports lifelike, stumpwork leaves and intricately beaded bunches of grapes. Well-known for her love of embroidered insects, it would hardly be a Jane Nicholas project without a beautiful red ladybird hiding in the corner.
Betsy Morgan’s superb Favourite Things is a counted thread sampler with some of her favourite stitches, motifs and colours. As with most of Betsy’s designs, this has quickly become one of our favourite things, with her unique style shining through each and every motif.
For the icing on the birthday cake, there is a tribute article by Susan O’Connor reminiscing about her own needlework journey over the years and Ansie van der Walt shares not only her piece on Thirty Years of Inspiration looking back on the incredible journey that brought us to this milestone, in Loose Threads she also talks about the value of memories.
All in all, this is a simply unmissable issue – if you’re not a subscriber and are yet to purchase your copy of issue #120, please get in quick… demand has already exceeded supply so copies are limited.