Beijing  Patchwork in China



Patchwork first appears in the ancient Egypt and northern China,now popular in America, Japan and South Korea.

When Chinese people suffered a tough life before,mothers often collected the odd bits of cloth then quilted them into beautiful pattern for can’t afford for enough cloth. When the clothes was worn out, they would put patches again and again. (As shown in picture1, stage photo of a drama called Longxugou, photo taken by Ji Peng ) But nowadays patchwork used widely in art and sample items as clothes and hand phone bag.

Jin Shanyuan is the master of China patchwork. After her retirement in 1991, she threw herself into her patchwork. In most of Jin’s works, she uses three backward stitches, which is not the usual kind of stitch used in patchwork. Jin chose a different stitching method: After three steps’ backward, there is a stride forward. Chinese always say look before you leap. She thinks it’s a very good expression of Chinese style. She always use silk through others use cotton.

The picture2 shown many unfinished works made when Jin found new old bits.

The Picture3 was a gift for her unborn grandson, and she wrote a letter to her grandson after finishing it seven years later. “It took grandma seven years to sew the quilt stitch by stitch. My dreams, love and expectations are in the stitches. I hope you can become a surefooted boy and can walk forward step by step,” Jin wrote in her letter.

Photo 2-3 taken in the Mothers’ Fragrance exhibition of Jin Shanyuan.

Written by BingBing Du