Dr. Emma Shercliff’s professional output

Hidden Values and Human Inconsistencies in Hand-Stitching Processes

Section of a Book – Published 8th Sep 16

The hegemony of digital production methods has transformed the human experience of working by hand and provoked a renewed interest in textile crafting.

The body is not relied upon as it once was in manually skilled manufacturing processes but human beings continue to use their hands, senses and emotions to explore and interact with the material world inviting revised examination of manual engagement with tools and materials. However, this embodied knowledge is often taken for granted and non-verbalized, hence ‘hidden’. Using examples from a series of hand-stitching workshops undertaken with student participants, this chapter explores some of the cognitive and emotional qualities embedded within hand-stitching processes. Conversation stimulated by the stitching tasks helped to articulate some of the sensations. Observations suggest that the focused, accumulative gestures of hand-stitching ground cognitive and emotional experience in a tangible process encouraging individuals to assimilate the surrounding material world and articulate themselves within it.

Publication details

Publication status Published
Refereed 1
Publication title Crafting Textiles in the Digital Age
Publishers name Bloomsbury Publishing
Number of pages 18
Page range 153–170
ISBN 9781474286206