The cloth we stitch on is called the ground. It is harvested from nature, spun from the fibres of plants and the coats of animals, dyed in the colours of the earth. Its spirit and the spirit of all those involved in its transformation - harvester, spinner, weaver, dyer, stitcher - lie caught within it. And when we embroider our natural world: - stitch our flowers, the leaves of trees, the wings of birds - sew them not just to celebrate their beauty but to transport their energy into our own lives.
Singer/storyteller Alison McMorland went to the Scottish island of Mull to collect the stories of its elderly residents. Her recordings were given to the artist Kate Downie who created a textured collage of the island's past: the crag of black stones, the gleam of an oil cloth spread over a kitchen table, the thicket of heather thatch, the rough stubble of scythed fields. Craftswoman Flora McDonald, helped by local schoolchildren, foraged for the colours of the land. They gathered indigenous plants and fungi to dye cloth, thread, wool into a palette of home. The stories were stitched together, materialising memory in a sensory sweep of an island's past.