Feminist Embroidery - Sophie King
What do you think of when you think of embroidery? Before I learned of Sophie King, I thought of the beautiful dated designs my mother in law created. But Sophie, as an empowering feminist, has a lot of more bite with her needle and thread. Please read our fun interview below with the no nonsense Sophie King.
Where are you based?
The UK :)
When did you start Sophie King?
In 2011! A lifetime ago now.
What got you started in embroidery?
I’ve always been drawn to the way in which textiles can tell a story and how we can use it to send a message about ourselves and the world around us. I just love it!
How long have you been doing embroidery?
I would say I’ve been sewing since I was a little girl but it wasn’t until 8 years ago that I began embroidering pretty much everyday.
What made you decide to make embroidery a medium of feminist expression?
I just see it as an expression of myself, which in turn is an expression of my thoughts and life, which are influenced by feminism. I also like subverting the traditional stereotypes of embroidery and trying to show how it can be as meaningful as any other medium.
Where do you pull your inspiration from?
My own life! I also love the artist Louise Bourgeois, Leonor Fini and Leonora Carrington, the list goes on! I especially love artists that draw from their personal life, such as Frida Kahlo.
What is your newest design?
“I used to check your horoscope everyday, now I can’t even remember your sign” it’s about how I went looking for signs in horoscopes etc because my then boyfriend was sending mixed signals and playing mind games, whereas now I can’t even remember the things about someone I used to obsess over, who had me under the thumb.
Do you have a favorite piece? If so, which one?
Maybe “you’re not a bad boy, you’re just a bad person” because it sums up a personal revolution I had many years ago that really empowered me at the time.
Do you consider yourself a feminist?
You embroidered roses are beautiful. What inspired you to embroider flowers? Is it really hard?
I love roses and would buy them for myself is they were reduced at my local supermarket, one day I thought “why don’t I just embroider the things I stare at every day”, I like the idea of returning a romantic gesture back to someone but demonstrating that their cheap sentiments mean nothing when they’re a bad boyfriend. It is really time consuming and annoying when the petals break, you have to be really careful.
Have any celebrities worn your designs?
What makes you feel empowered?
Being in control of my life and freedom to be who I want to be.
Do you have a motto in life?
“You can’t rely on anyone but yourself”