I created a new stitch journal for 2021, this time in a slightly different format – a single sentence for every day, and one panel per month.
The sentences are deliberately short for ease of stitching – the previous stitch journal became a significant time commitment, so this time I can stitch a word or two in between other tasks, allowing me to have some material engagement while I push words around on the screen in front of me. As with the previous iteration, the subject of the sentences is my daily life.
This time the materials are more tightly controlled: DMC coton à broder 25 in B5200 colourway, on Rose & Hubble craft cotton in ‘silver’ colourway. This combination transpired, as do many of my creative ideas, from scraps of fabric on my desk, half in my eyeline, distracting me from other tasks. I’d tried writing in white thread on the grey fabric during summer 2020, listing things I was looking forward to when the first UK Covid lockdown was into its sixteenth week and confinement seemed endless. That project went nowhere, but the idea lingered: to suggest murmured thought rather than explicit speech. After all, a diary is often a private space full of thoughts and ideas that aren’t for public declaration.
N.b. the change of thread colour in October is intentional, rather than, say, because I ran out of white thread. 2021 turned out to be a brutal year. Each month is stitched onto a ‘fat quarter’ of cotton poplin; they may be assembled into a concertina book at some point, but for now the year is tucked away in a box with a very secure lid.