A Stitch Out of Time
By Anaïs Beaulieu
French artist Anaïs Beaulieu learned the craft of embroidery from her grandmother, a practice passed on through the generations of women in her family. A Stitch Out of Time features images of her botanical embroidery on throwaway plastic bags, typically used for disposing waste. The book plays with two powerful themes: environmental degradation symbolized by the ubiquitous take-over of our surroundings by plastic, and the slow time of creation, whether of a plant, or a piece of embroidery.
Published by our favorite independent, artist-run publisher, Tara Books in Chennai, India, A Stitch Out of Time is a result of collaborative artisanal processes: embroidery, tailoring, screen-printing, and book-binding. The cloth-bound cover features an inlaid panel of embroidered plastic, the endsheets are hand-silkscreened, and each book is carefully packaged in a commemorative black cotton tote bag — one side of which is specially embroidered, with the other side ready for you to embroider yourself (see below for an instructional video!) This is a beautiful and poignant book that would make a wonderful gift for a conscientious crafter.
Read a fascinating blog post about the making of A Stitch Out of Time.
Tara Books, hardcover (embroidered cover) in a commemorative tote bag, 13 x 9.25 in, 32 pages.
Learn how to embroider your tote bag:
Tara Books is an award-winning, internationally-recognized independent publishing house made up of a collective of writers, designers and book artisans who favor a non-hierarchical mode of functioning, informed by feminism and other movements for social justice.
Founded in 1994 by Gita Wolf and based in Chennai, India, Tara Books runs its own print shop, employing over 25 bookmaking artisans on a fair-trade basis. Known for their handmade books, they use handmade paper and non-toxic inks to create numbered artists’ books, as well as art prints and unique stationery (we also carry their wonderful Flukebooks!)
They collaborate with a range of writers, artists and designers from lndia and elsewhere, and an integral part of their publishing is a pioneering engagement with the rich diversity of Indian folk and tribal art.