top of page

Online talk on Monday 12th February 2024

Linda Miller - In Stitches


On a cold winter's night we were treated to a day trip to the seaside, where the weather is breezy, happy dogs run in the wind and ruddy cheeked people enjoy the fresh air and scenery. This of course was a talk by renowned textile artist Linda Miller whose name is forever attached to charming machine embroidered pieces depicting the joys of being outside in nature.


Young Linda absorbed the making bug at home, from her mother who made furnishings and her tailor father. Knitting, macramé, drawing and painting were her things and this led her onto a foundation course at technical college, which she enjoyed and wanted to become a printmaker. Intervention by an art teacher led her path to Winchester to take a degree course in textiles. There she had her light bulb moment and discovered machine embroidery. The rest was history. With the aid of the Arts Council, Linda spent a year's apprenticeship with Alice Kettle, who was a great inspiration to her and prepared her for launching her own identity and brand as a textile artist.


Since 1988, Linda has been producing her trademark happy little machine embroidered images. She demonstrated the ease of making these little scenes at the beginning of the talk, by outlining a face and a tiny cat on a piece of calico. Her images start out as drawings made with black thread. Subsequently the whole surface of the piece is covered in tiny machine stitches. By blending colours and thread types she creates enchanting colourscapes conjuring up the sights and moods of the four seasons.  Direction of the stitches further enhances the images.  She works in a small scale, ranging from tiny images suitable for badges, up to A4 sized images.


The world of Linda's embroideries is full of happy people enjoying the outdoors – often wearing their wellies. Whimsical bunnies, birds, dogs and cats share the landscapes with the people. As Linda described the stories behind her images, it became apparent that in the tiny details incorporated in the images, big stories were hidden. Capturing the moments of happiness is a recurring theme for her work and doing exactly what one is not supposed to do crops up delightfully often too.


If you would like to find out more, or perhaps have a go yourself, Linda's second book Stitched Pictures: Techniques and Projects is a good place to start. She is also hosting a workshop at the Oxford Summer School in the summer of 2024.


All in all, it is easy to see how Linda's imagery has endured. The scenes and colours just transform you to a happy place.

Words © Pirkko Soundy/CETG 2024

Photos © Linda Miller

Linda Miller 1 sm.jpg
Linda Miller 3 sm.jpg
Linda Miller 5 sm.jpg
Linda Miller 4 sm.jpg
bottom of page