Embroiderers Guild has got it all sewn up

Lillie Art Gallery, Maura McRobbie with her snowdrop embroidery.
Lillie Art Gallery, Maura McRobbie with her snowdrop embroidery.

A new exhibition celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Glasgow Embroiderers Guild opens at The Lillie Art Gallery this weekend.

Well-known Scottish journalist and TV presenter Kirsty Wark will be the guest speaker at the opening on Saturday, February 27, at 2.30pm.

The display of work entitled ‘Sparkling at Sixty’ includes a special diamond embroidery, made up of 60 miniature embroidered diamonds, each representing a year of Glasgow life from 1956 until 2016.

Scenes depict international visitors to Glasgow include the Pope, Nelson Mandela and Princess Diana.

The bright lights of the Barrowlands in the 1970s is also included, as well as the birth of the Celtic Connections music festival in the 1990s.

A lesser-known health campaign that helped to stamp out tuberculosis in the 1950s is also one of the embroidered diamonds.

Other items on display include wall hangings, costumes, collages, examples of stitching old and new, quilting and embroidered Travelling Books inspired by poetry, art and landscapes.

Guild members have been involved in some important projects over the past 60 years, including work on the embroidered cloths of estate at Stirling and Rothesay Castles, the Great Tapestry of Scotland and the most recent embroidered framed panels, commissioned by Ronald McDonald House, which are currently on display within the new Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow.

One member is currently employed as an embroiderer for the costumes in highly acclaimed time travel television drama Outlander.

Maura McRobbie, a member of the Guild, said: “As well as promoting the talent and skills of existing members, the aim of the exhibition is to attract more individuals to share in the relaxing and creative process of embroidery, beadwork and collage design.

“The key message is that embroidery is not dead, it is a vibrant and lively craft that is practised and appreciated all over the world.”

Workshops will be he