South American Embroidery | September Instagram Inspiration

Collage of South American Embroidery including hand stitched jumpers, embellished shoes and heart shaped decorations
Hand Stitched Treats from South America by: Top Row (L-R) @by.karin @mariatenoriog Bottom Row (L-R) @ay.palomay @aguamielbordadosmex and @lolkina_mx

Our regular dose of Instagram inspiration jets off to explore the colourful world of South American embroidery this month.

Negotiating Instagram can be tricky especially when it comes to finding hashtags to add to your posts and like-minded folks to connect with. So, we asked Shannan from Bobbin and Fred to take up the mantel and hunt through all of the stitch-tastic grids to bring you the best of Instagram’s embroidered posts.

Shannan has put together a selection of beautiful floss-filled photos to inspire your craftsy souls and make your embroidered hearts sing this September, all on the theme of South American embroidery. As well as all of that, she’s added­ in her favourite from the images posted under our hashtag. Tag your photos with #SewandSo for a chance to be featured next time!

Over to Shannan.

Hey Lovely Fibre Folks,

This month I packed my virtual sewing kit and jetted off to South America and, my oh my, I found bright colours, expressive stitching and a great variety of applications. Talented South Americans are embroidering hats, bags, shoes, jeans and more! The stitching is much freer and more playful than I’ve seen elsewhere and I left feeling inspired and raring to go, wanting to create embroidery packed with spirit. I’m sharing my Top Nine South American embroidery finds here but do explore #bordadoamano and #bordadomexico and #bordados to see all of the other outstanding pieces I drooled over but couldn’t squeeze in.

1. By Karin gives old jumpers an embroidered makeover to die for. Karin teams bright colours with painterly florals stitched in chunky yarns to create these striking pieces of wearable art. Wreath your jumpers in your own flowers or bag yourself one of Karin’s when she has some back in stock.

2. It wouldn’t be right to visit South America without giving a nod to The Day of The Dead and this intriguing piece by Kuro Bordados certainly fulfills the brief. I love the variety of stitches Kuro has used, especially the button stitch which evokes the sense of a gold gilt frame so well for this morbid yet cheery cameo.

3. In South American embroidery pom-poms are used to decorate clothing of both men and women and have different symbolic meanings depending on the colour and where the pom-pom is placed. For a man they can indicate his martial status and colourful pom-poms symbolise happiness and it’s easy to see why… these embroidered heart decorations complete with bright pom-poms by Maria Tenorio definitely make me feel happy! If you’d like to add pom-poms to your creations, Clover’s pom-pom maker is an easy and quick way to make them.

4. We reported on the embroidered denim trend sweeping the catwalks and DIY fashion world in the summer and this trend is rife in South America too! Trini of Holaleon embroidered this first-rate pair of jeans to match a jacket you can see on her grid. Trini’s nailed the use of line and filled in shapes to create a free-flowing design that draws the eye down the length and curves of the legs.

5. Karen of Ay Palomay celebrates the style and stitches of the Otomi women from Tenango de Noria in Mexico who sew multi-coloured embroideries of stylised animals and plants taken from drawings found within the Sirius caves. Karen teaches a workshop that teaches how to honour the Otomi women and value their work and respect their authorship while using it as a starting point for your own designs.]

6. Also in Mexico, Aguamiel captures the spirit of the Otomi style using a variety of stitches to create texture and mid-century style florals to create an all-over design on evenweave linen. This piece is so full of life and colour, I can’t help but smile when I look at it. If you’d like to try stitching on linen we have lots of colours for you to experiment with here.

7. There’s no way I could walk on by these pretty embroidered shoes by Lolkina! These are one pair of happy feet and they aren’t the only ones, check out their grid to see all of the artsy pairs they’ve stitched. These shoes are 100% Mexican made and help promote the economic development of Mexico’s indigenous women…so not only can you walk cool, you can walk tall wearing these pumps.

8. Embroidered denim isn’t just for women, Amarpo shows us men can also express themselves via hand stitched clothing! Decorating you or your guy’s clothing with embroidered patches depicting your favourite hobbies and interests looks a lot of fun and is sure to be a conversation starter. My jacket would have patches of pretty boxes, Bobbin and Fred, flowers and my favourite bands on it, what would yours look like?

9. Every month I share my favourite photo by you tagged with #SewandSo. I couldn’t resist this super cute llama print pouch made by Oggiddy Inc. In Peru, bright yarn tassels are sewn into llamas ears to help farmers identify their herds and the pom-pom and tassel decorations may look pretty but are also functional, they help the llamas swat flies and insects! These little llamas fit right in with this month’s finds, thank you Oggiddy.

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This one also comes in a black background. #llamalove

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Use #SewandSo to show us your stitchy Instagram photos. We love celebrating your creativity!

Whether you’re making a kit, taking part in a stitchalong or crafting your own design, tag your photo with #SewandSo to be featured here. Don’t forget to follow SewandSo and Shannan on Instagram to stay up to date with all our sewing news.

If you’ve enjoyed this month’s South American embroidery finds you’ll love Japanese Hand Stitch Instagram Finds For July and Indian Embroidery Instagram Inspiration for August. If you’re bang up to date, Shannan will be back with more Instagram inspiration in October!

Shannan of Bobbin and Fred

Shannan Grierson
Needlework Designer and Bloggeragra,
Restyling plastic canvas one stitch at a time
Follow along at Sewing With Bobbin and Fred

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About Ame

Ame Verso is the daughter of legendary cross stitch designer Jo Verso and has been cross stitching since the age of 10. She also sews and crochets and is the face of the SewandSo YouTube channel.