We have organised a series of summer events around sashiko (刺し子), a traditional Japanese mending practice to accompany our exhibition ‘Connecting Threads: Fashion Inspired by the MEAA Collection’ (28 June to 22 December 2023). This series starts with an illustrated talk and discussion on textile repair movements delivered by specialist Thea Batty.
Historically, repair practices developed out of necessity and were passed down through generations. Today these practices can be approached as acts of care for our mental wellbeing and environmental sustainability.
This discussion delves into traditional East Asian repair methods: from the importance of embracing wabi sabi to the sashiko and boro reinforcement techniques. We will also discuss how Western cultures embraced East Asian repair practices and their transformation into Slow Stitch, Visible Mending, and Mindful Repair movements.
Whether you’re a textile enthusiast or a slow fashion activist, this illustrated talk will offer an engaging introduction to the ancient roots of repair practices in East Asia and its adaptations to contemporary Western culture.
If you are interested in diving deep into the practice of sashiko we recommend that you book the other events of the Sashiko Series (book here). However, you can also book this event on its own.
Thea Batty is a Welsh curator, educator, and textile repair specialist based in Wiltshire. With a Master’s in Fine Art: Curatorial Practices and BA in Textile Design for Fashion and Interiors, her mission is to challenge unethical labour practices in the fashion and textile industry.
Thea advocates for climate justice using gentle forms of activism, through facilitating creative learning workshops and producing contemporary exhibitions centred around fashion, textiles, and art. At the core of her practise resides researching, educating, and curating as a social practice.