Stoneleigh Badger by Nicola Jarvis

5th July 2024

In her book ‘Life in Seasons | Winter & Spring’, Nicola Jarvis shares the wonder of her encounters with nature as she takes her daily walks with her golden retriever, Quince, as together they explore the picturesque Warwickshire countryside.

These encounters sparked a series of stitched artworks that Nicola designed for the book, which also reflect the seasonal transformations throughout the year.

This week, we’re highlighting the captivating project ‘Stoneleigh Badger‘ and we hear from Nicola Jarvis herself as to how this piece came to be…

‘The main inspiration for the Stoneleigh Badger was on a walk in the misty meadows of the ancient Stoneleigh Abbey, Warwickshire that I enjoyed with Quince one winter afternoon when we were also accompanied by my husband David.’

‘This beautiful, wooded parkland is only a couple of miles away from where we live and it was here that I glimpsed a badger lumbering amongst the undergrowth beneath the trees. In that moment I knew I had to create an embroidery of this striking wild animal.’

‘It is not enough for me to just decorate an animal with random patterns just for the sake of it. The ornamentation that I invent is partly an unconscious process informed by the creature’s natural environment, that is then combined with a careful consideration of the animal’s physical form, colouring and texture of fur, feathers or scales.

When we are out walking I endeavour to use my binoculars and camera, to observe the characteristics and behaviour of an animal in its wild habitat before beginning any art or design work.

I allow my senses to soak up the surrounding landscape, conjuring detailed images in my mind’s eye with which I will eventually work. 

It is a kind of artistic alchemy, that begins with an initial impression but I never quite know how the animal will finally appear to me until the drawing process unfolds.’

‘The Stoneleigh Badger was formed from the high contrast of dark tree silhouettes against the pale grey light of that winter’s day. I knew I wanted to use a monochrome palette to echo the pied markings on his face and create striking botanical decorations for his coat.’

Nicola has indeed created a truly striking piece thanks to her clever selection of monotone colours and exquisite ornate patterns and embroidery.

Kits are available in limited quantities, but if you are looking to purchase one and the website is showing sold out, send us an email and you never know what we might find for you!

Also just a reminder, complete instructions for the kit are in the book ‘Life in Seasons | Winter & Spring’ plus we also have the pre-printed fabric panels that come in the kit, available for purchase separately HERE.

Make Your Own Stoneleigh Badger*

We have all the materials you need to re-create this project yourself, from easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions to a Ready-to-Stitch kit with everything sourced for you.

Printed Books

Life in Seasons | Winter & Spring


Stoneleigh Badger – LIS Kit


Printed Fabric Panel – Stoneleigh Badger

*A couple of tips when stitching Stoneleigh Badger:

Background – as this piece has been stitched on pre-printed fabric, to re-create it exactly as it appears in the book the kit comes with the pre-printed fabric included or separately. Alternatively, use the pattern sheet from the Life in Seasons book to transfer the design and create your own background elements as desired.

Instructions – As this kit does not include instructions, for step-by-step directions on how to create this project, please refer to the book Life in Seasons, purchased separately. 

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