‘Evergreen’, embroidered wall hanging

This large wall hanging was embroidered for the artist Katie Paterson. The work, entitled Evergreen, reflects the style of the arts and crafts movement and depicts every extinct flowering plant.

We were tasked with working the incredible design, which by the time it got to us had already been through quite a journey. The plants were individually drawn by botanical artist, Deborah Lambkin, and then sent on to the Fraser Muggeridge Studio to be simplified into an all over graphic design. While we waited for the final design, we worked a sample of several plants so that the Katie Paterson Studio could decide on the technique they wanted. They chose a selection of black threads, including one strand of stranded cotton, cotton machine embroidery thread in 30 and 80 and a Kimono silk thread. All these were worked on a natural Linen Twill. 

Framing up
Framing up

When the design was transferred onto the fabric only the main details were drawn on, all the little details were stitched freehand using iPads and photocopies to work from. The final design was received in February, with the first panel required by the end of March to go into the Ingleby Gallery in Edinburgh. This meant our saying ‘never a seat shall go cold’ was very poignant and the Studio team led by Gemma Murray put their heart and soul into the piece, working longer days and weekends.

Transferring the Design

The work Evergreen (2022) is a study of nature in time and space, depicting flowers that no longer exist in the style of the Arts and Crafts movement, especially homages May Morris´ (1862-1938) iconic embroidery Owl from 1905-1906. In Evergreen the extinct plants are given eternal life, beautifully hand-embroidered in to a work of art.

Katie Paterson

The second deadline for hanging two was the end of May when the panel was being hung at Galleri F15, Moss, Norway. The team dug deep and this second deadline was met with a member of the Katie Paterson Studio taking it as hand luggage on a flight to Norway. Despite the urgency of both hangings it has been an amazing piece to work and the results are absolutely stunning.

In our 150th Anniversary year it seemed very appropriate to be working a piece inspired by May Morris who has an early link with the RSN.