WIP Charnia Lace Silk Brooch

For those of you who don’t know (and I didn’t until just recently!) WIP means Work-In-Progress. It’s a great hashtag to browse on instagram to lose an hour or two looking at artists’ new projects. I thought I’d share these WIP shots of my new Charnia Silk Brooch. Please click on the image gallery below, the pictures will expand and image captions will give more information about the making process.


This lace motif is one of my ‘Charnia’ designs, created for my Master degree earlier this year (2020). I took inspiration from both the Charnia Masoni fossil, and also living ancestors of this life form, such as sea pens. I drew the whole design freehand using a continuous line technique and tried to give it movement and ‘life’. This motif is the top section, the shape from a shadow cast through a laser cut piece. (see image)

Lace shadows


The text on this brooch says ‘She found an interesting thing’, part of a longer text written as part of my MA studies. It tells the story of Tina Negus, the young fossil hunter who found the first Charnia fossil in the 1950s, but was not believed by her teacher. The text runs around the outer edge of the lace like a picot, looped edge. You can read the full story on my MA website Sprigs and Brides.


The brooch has a felt backing, to help the brooch keep it’s shape. The front is raw silk in a contrasting shade to the lace. I’m delighted to be using this silk from my stash. I bought ‘quite a lot’ when I travelled to Bangladesh in 1991 to undertake research for my first degree. That degree (Development Studies) is unrelated to what I am doing now, I was researching Health Education outcomes for leprosy patients. I still managed to visit all kinds of textile makers and handicraft projects during my time there.


You can buy the lace silk brooch online, or click contact at the top of this page to commission something in your own colour palette. Want your own text or sentiment as picot? Just let me know and I can design it just for you.

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