• Sarah Jane

BA3b - T-Shirt & Embroidery.....

After doing my fleece embroidery, I wanted to experiment with other pieces of clothing from the workplace and try to create a piece which looks official but when you look closer it actually has a fact on the issue gender discrimination within the workplace. I chose to use a black shirt without a logo from my workplace due to ethics and not wanted to have the company being featured alongside the facts as they are not the one's being critiqued and I wanted to stay neutral and not name any company directly.


For the initial embroidery, I used an embroidery hoop to stretch out the fabric so that the stitching wouldn't affect the shirt and have it crease or fold and the lettering would be readable. I chose to use a gold thread initially as I felt this would stand out effectively from the black fabric of the shirt. For the text I chose to use the factoid; 'Women are more likely to work as employees than be self employed.' I thought this fact was interesting as well as shocking as it amazes me that women are still more likely to work in a position of less power than men who are more likely to work in a position of power. Women are not always encouraged to be self-employed as the pressures of looking after family, or the partner is more important according to society which I think is wrong and should be highlighted. I have rarely seen female managers in the businesses that I have been employed in which demonstrates this ever present issue of gender discrimination within the workplace.

I started to embroider this text into the shirt but I couldn't embroider it accurately from eye, as I'm used to using a guide so I know where to stitch. I didn't like how the stitching was coming out, and at one point there was a hole beginning to form as I was stitching. In the end, I decided to cut a small square of felt, wrote out lightly in pen, the text I wanted to stitch, and then I stitched the patch onto the lapel and tried to make it look like a work shirt. I do think that I could have added a symbol or something else to really make this look like an official work shirt, as I do think as it is now, it looks effective, but it could be even more effective.


After doing this piece, I did want to do another one, but I think if I did do another one I need to plan out how to create this patch to make it look or relate to the workplace that the text is critiquing, or perhaps use a piece of text that isn't a generic fact but something that depicts my own experiences. Possibly just embroidering one word perhaps? Trying to emulate the style of embroidery seen in professional work shirts?

One thing I could possibly do, which I might do in the future for my fleece, is to order a shirt or fleece with one of the words I've written down on the lapel to have a piece which is professionally embroidered. I think this would be interesting for a degree show piece, and would be interesting to compare to my original fleece piece. Overall I do think that this piece was an interesting experiment, but I do think that it needs more work if it is to be a key piece. I do think that this piece has helped informed my ideas for my fleece piece, and has allowed me to develop this piece further.

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