“I’m not a pattern designer, and I never really intended to be one. But there is just the reality that my culture tends to be a little underrepresented.” says Laura from her YouTube video (embedded below). I thought it important to start off this article with that impactful sentiment because it’s certainly not the first time I’ve heard it. In fact, Laura goes on to talk about other marginalized pattern designers that have inspired her.
In the cross-stitch community, YouTube videos on the subject are known as Flosstube. In the video announcing her pattern, Laura cites Ana Aguayo a Peruvian-born designer known as Peruvian Flair and Maryam of Marroomy Crafts sharing her own Iranian heritage in her designs; as well as others who aren’t designers but share their cultural heritage and how it affects what they stitch.
Laura goes on to explain that she is mixed Shimanchu which represents a variety of different cultures from the Ryukyu Islands. They are the series of nearly 200 islands south of Japan but also close to the southern coast of China and Taiwan. The Shimanchu heritage is more complicated historically and today, so be sure to watch Laura’s video to learn more! And because Laura hails from diverse cultures, she wanted to reflect those cultural motifs in her design. She shares with us her pattern Shimanchu Rabbit 2023 available on Ko-fi and what each area of stitching represents in this Lunar New Year design.
Her video began with telling us that the year 2023 is interpreted to be a year of hope. I really appreciate Laura’s work and that of others who broadens the boundaries of our cross-stitch community. And I certainly hope to learn more in the coming year.
Laura of Tarsier Stitches:
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