Friday, 17 December 2010

A Stitch In Time

I was glancing through a recent edition of The Scots magazine when I came across an interesting article about the Prestonpans Tapestry.

More than 200 volunteer embroiderers worked over 25,000 hours from January to June 2010 to create the 104 X 1 meter panels, which is now the longest tapestry in the world and contains over 10 million stitches. The tapestry commemorates Bonnie Prince Charlie's journey from France to his victory at Prestonpans in 1745 and is said to "celebrate the enduring triumph of youthful Hope and Ambition".

Now I know that readers will have differing opinions on Bonnie Prince Charlie, or The Young Prestender, or whatever you want to call him, but you've got to admit that it was a quare interesting period in history, whatever your viewpoint.

The tapestry even has its own website - where you can view each of the panels. This is a great website and includes background on the historical events depicted, the research and design which went into the making of the tapestry, and education resources.

Wouldn't it be great if the Ulster-Scots could take a leaf out of the Scots' book and produce something similar depicting significant events in our history. Apart from the artistic, historical and cultural significance, this would be a great educational resource relevant to various subjects within the school curriculum.

That said, before I get the needle and thread out, I have to admit that the last thing I embroidered (when I was about 18) was the back of my Wrangler jacket, with the name of the wee rock band I knocked around with - No Hot Ashes (as in the stickers they used to put on the wheelybins) in red silk.

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