Biography by Chelsea West herself.
I learnt how to sew at a fashion and textiles club at my school, and later during my advanced highers looking for other mediums my teachers told me to knit and sew instead, and from then on I started to sew things that inspired me, which was 95% drake... no regrets whatsoever though.
I only embroider things that I love. If you’re going to sit and work on a piece of art for a month, then you have to really love it or else you’ll get bored easily. For the most part I sew rappers and artists, I mostly find inspiration in popular culture. I love following Instagram pages for inspiration, such as boyhardie, hanecdote, badcrossstitching, the list could go on...
I find it interesting taking a medium which has and is still to this day considered lower in the hierarchy of art, one which is thought to be outdated and traditional and mixing it with contemporary ideas and designs to create something of a hybrid art. There are many issues surrounding embroidery including status and even gender. The biggest misconception of sewing is that it’s a woman’s art, it’s what your grandma does, you know? I don’t believe this should be the case, but unfortunately there are a very small number of males who sew professionally, or even in their day to day lives! I believe that everyone should know how to sew, it’s pretty vital for adulthood, and you can’t ask your mum to sew on your shirt buttons when you’re 30, can you?
When I finish off a work I feel a great sense of pride. It’s extremely satisfying after the amount of hours I spent working on it. Although sewing can be incredibly stressful, it passes the time like nothing else ever will for me.
My method is quite simple but it seems to take me forever to get it set up. I pick my design, I look online for images or I sketch out an image, I then use a lightbox to transfer my work onto fabric, and start stitching! But this process takes about 2 days because I’m pretty lousy at drawing.
Sewing is challenging, however it’s been a fantastic way for me to express myself and I would recommend it to everyone.
Checkout out Chelsea's Instagram: sew.est https://www.instagram.com/sew.est/