Congratulations to Nikki for a well deserved result on her hugely imaginative and creative piece of work. Nikki was judged overall winner by Madeira and Husquvana representatives as well as by Pat Tempest from the Embroiderers’ Guild, who plans to write an article on Nikki in Contact magazine. Her photograph will also be in the next issue of Stitch. Well done, Nikki!
Her prizes, which comprise a Sapphire 930 Husquvana sewing machine, a chest of Madeira Threads and the ‘Crystal Rose Bowl’ trophy, were presented by the UK CEO of Madeira Karen Burrows. Although ever hopeful, Nikki was completely overwhelmed by the result and is still finding it hard to believe. She says that her inspiration was stimulated by the iconic film and figure of Mary Poppins from her childhood days and the seemingly bottomless carpet bag and its contents presented a 3D challenge! The bag, took 10 months to complete. Nikki bought a vintage brief case in a charity shop and reworked it using recycled fabrics from the Wiltshire scrapstore by embroidering  various images from the film. Integral to her work, particularly in the making of the contents, was the technique of needlefelting and the recycling of household items such as foil wrappers, ring-pulls, a champagne cage, a knitting needle, and many more. Nikki’s background includes a one year art foundation course followed by a degree in graphic design. She subsequently worked in advertising for 15 years before changing direction. Between 1997 and 2001 Nikki completed C&G  courses in both embroidery and in needlefelting to such a high degree that her work was exhibited at the V&A Museum for 6 months!
​When asked if she has a style, Nikki was hard to pin down as she says that she never makes the same thing twice, though her passion is free machining, mixed media and 3D, with recycling at the core of her work. She draws her inspiration from nature and history, and from famous artists such as Klimt, Turner and the Pre-Raphaelites. Most days she spends at least 4 hours in her purpose-made studio designing, creating and stitching on one of her 8 operational sewing machines or on one of her two embellishers. Nikki is also a collector of Victorian machines, of which she currently has 10 on display. There is no holding her back now that she has tasted success. She tells me that she has already started working on next year’s Madeira sponsored competition! 

Report by Maria F

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