‘Needlework’ in focus for exhibition

Needlepoint embroidered slipper c.1870.  INCT 29-735-CON
Needlepoint embroidered slipper c.1870. INCT 29-735-CON

Mid and East Antrim Council is exploring 250 years of history through the most basic of sewing tools.

The innovative exhibition will take place at Carrickfergus Museum & Civic Centre from August 1-29 and will examine the sewing needle as one of life’s small everyday essentials.

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor Billy Ashe said: “This loaned exhibition from the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum looks at the history of needle making and explores all the creative output made possible by the use of this most basic of sewing tools.

“The exhibition spans almost 250 years of sewing, from hand-stitched pictures of the 1780s to examples of the very latest machine embroidery using computerised technology.

“Also included are fine examples of costume and accessories such as Victorian smoking caps, embroidered slippers, shoes and gloves,” he said.

Whether it is the ‘make do and mend’ initiative of the 1940s, and how satisfying it was for people in those austere times to make their own clothing, or the intricate bead work, gold work, or cross stitch embroidery used in more contemporary dress-making, there is sure to be something for all in the exhibition.