Artist Transforms Dried Leaves With Embroidery as a Way to Reconnect With Nature

Leaf Embroidery Art by Hillary Waters Fayle

Although leaves often go unnoticed by the average passersby, artist Hillary Waters Fayle has made them the focus of her latest embroidery project. Entitled Botanical Stitchwork, this ongoing series uses the organic materials that the artist collects on her walks as canvases for intricately stitched designs, which range from geometric patterns to stylized floral renderings.

The stitching atop the leaves is an unlikely pairing but one ripe with metaphors. “I want to salvage and revive our connection to the natural world,” Fayle tells My Modern Met. “I study textile and printmaking traditions and processes, using them in collaboration with found botanical and organic material to symbolically bind nature and the human hand.” This can be seen in her creative approach. Since leaves lack space between their fibers, Fayle must first create the holes that will allow her needle to pass through. Then, as she fills the space with colorful thread, the leaf appears whole again and more elaborate than before.

Fayle says this tiny act of “destruction and reparation” feels like a gesture of hope for our relationship with the natural world. “Leaves are ephemeral but are more resilient than they might appear,” she explains. “Leaves are icons of the idea of ‘nature’, and infinitely replenishable, but taken for granted to the point that we now have the term ‘plant blindness.'” By embroidering this common organic material, Fayle hopes it will change the way we look at our surroundings. Each of the artist's creations is completely unique and holds a special relationship with the leaf it was made on. “These botanical embroideries and blueprints are born of my desire to illuminate our connection to the environment and my curiosity about the overlapping of sacred geometry, with patterns in nature.”

Scroll down to see more amazing embroidery art by Fayle, and follow the artist on Instagram to keep up to date with her latest creations.

Embroidery artist Hillary Waters Fayle explores her connection to nature by stitching directly onto leaves.

Leaf Embroidery Art by Hillary Waters FayleHilary Water Fayle Leaf Embroideries

Each one is inspired by the patterns found in nature and completely unique.

Leaf Embroidery Art by Hillary Waters Fayle

She hopes that these tiny creations will change the way we look at the natural surroundings we take for granted.

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Watch this video to learn more about Fayle's leaf embroidery:

Hillary Waters Fayle: Website | Instagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Hillary Waters Fayle.

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Margherita Cole

Margherita Cole is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met and illustrator based in Southern California. She holds a BA in Art History with a minor in Studio Art from Wofford College, and an MA in Illustration: Authorial Practice from Falmouth University in the UK. When she’s not writing, Margherita continues to develop her creative practice in sequential art.
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