The Wager

I have started another panel in the series I have been working on sporadically since my accident. All the quotations refer, more or less, obliquely, to fate and infinity and their relationship to textile work. This new one is a quote from Blaise Pascal. "The last proceeding of reason is to recognize there is an infinity of things beyond it." I think he said it in the context of his famous Wager, and for me it does reflect a search for greater meaning in life.

Here are the previous works in the series:
Infinity (2009) This is really big, 14"(h)x56"(l)

Fate (2010) 20"x20"

Warp &Weft (2010) 24"x30"

I have written before about my method of rendering Text in Thread. For this piece I chose High Tower Text, a version of Baskerville, a commonly used typeface in Pascal's time (1623-1662). I have traced it using graphite paper onto a found linen cloth. I'm not sure what colour thread I will use for the embroidery, and I think I will be adding more lace to the border. But we shall see, things may change as I go, a metaphor for my life if there ever was one..

Looking at what I have done previously, I shake my head. Why do I hand embroider when I could achieve perfection by having it done by machine? A heretical question on this blog, for sure, but one I have often been asked. The answer, of course, is that the process is so important. As I stitch, time slows down, and I allow myself the luxury of carefully considering the statements that I have chosen. And the fact that it is MY hand guiding the needle is an assertion of creative autonomy, at least in the realm of this small piece of cloth.

It's just a short break from the Codex works, there's still lots to come there.


  1. Anonymous10:29 AM

    wonderful project and so "you". I know why you hand embroider, never stop, the world is a better place for it and you. ps my robot-proof word is "roarious"

  2. oh these are beautiful Heather, all your work is!


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