Graduate Selection Programme

Each year the Embroiderers’ Guild looks for graduating students to offer support and you may have seen them at the Knitting and Stitching Show in Harrogate. A number have been chosen from across the country, but the following ones have been chosen from the North West.

In 2013, we have looked at the work in Manchester School of Art and the following two students were selected :

• Bella May Leonard
• Rachael Alice Parkinson

Bella May Leonard – Websites

Gawthorpe Hall

As their commissioned artist for 2014, this page shows my journey as I visit Rachel Kay-Shuttleworth’s Textiles Collection at Gawthorpe Hall, Lancashire. From the end of November 2013 to March 2014, I will be developing and making work in response to the collection and site.

The exhibition will be opening on 29th March 2014, at Gawthorpe Hall.


The Spoon Inn, Chorlton


The Spoon Inn’s rear lounge has recently been transformed into the ‘Art House’. Here local artists hold residency in the Art House and showcase their works for a period of time.

First up we have Bella May Leonard (until mid March) in residency with her stitched installation and design. Using traditional embroidery techniques with man made materials, such as Perspex and threads of electrical wire, cable, synthetic trimmings and plastic yarn, hand- sewn embellishment is created on an unexpected mixture of materials and folk aesthetic reinforce the possibility for hand stitch to be practiced and installed in the modern environment.

Bella’s work is industrial-scale embroidery and we just love her!

Art House’s residents will rotate every six weeks and is curated by The Spoon Inn and Skyliner


Find out more about my practice and influences from this recently published interview with Sam and Joe from Read more ›

&made Mistletoe Decorations!

Hand embroidered mistletoe Christmas decs and D.I.Y kits on sale now at &made in Manchester Craft and Design Centre, Northern Quarter. Read more ›

Thanks to Craft Makes for putting me on Issue 65’s front cover… click full story for the interview
Craft Makes Online issue 65:

Rachael Alice Parkinson‎