Cannabis embroidery is the healthy cannabis decor you need
Can embroidery help normalize grass? God knows devil’s lettuce has never looked less threatening than when it’s threaded.
Cannabis embroidery is more than just a kitsch decor in the heart of a cottage; it’s a welcome departure from the “stoner aesthetic” that is so often stereotyped by old tie-dye tees and dated comedy specials.
Below, discover cannabis in this unique art form.
Grass as a serious artistic subject
Many of the best examples of cannabis in embroidery mimic the style of a UK based tattoo artist and embroiderer, Chloe O’Malley.
O’Malley was formally trained in the arts of embroidery at Manchester Metropolitan University and has gone from sewing traditional floral designs to depicting stunning cannabis buds with surprising realism. She has amassed over 24,000 Instagram followers since she sewed her first cannabis hoop in 2017 as a gift for her partner. “He’s a heavy smoker, so that seemed like the perfect gift to me!” She said. Cannabis Now in 2019.
Made with thread, these flowers take on a sculptural allure; flat-sewn sugar sheets covered with French knots to add dimension. Running offers a chance to observe and appreciate the diversity of different cultivars; unique physical attributes, bud structure and color gradients.
Breeder and embroiderer based in British Columbia, Lucky Saumur, shares the same sentiment, “Since starting to sew flowers, I have noticed the structure and colors of the buds in a way I have never seen before. I’m used to the usual green and purple tones, but when I look closely for a reference there’s a hidden rainbow. “
Some of the funniest examples of cannabis embroidery evoke the aesthetic of Victorian-era botanical illustrations used in studies of plant anatomy. Others maximize the potential of the medium, depicting the stigmas of feathered plants in 3D threads in a way that could never be captured in 2D.
Cannabis embroidery and its therapeutic potential
Similar to how Subversive cross stitch designer Julie Jackson describes her artwork “as a form of anger management therapy,” embroiderer Kaitlin Earl, aka @HealTHCareEmbroidery, says she started sewing French knots to calm her anxiety, “Something about watching a flower grow from thread and fabric [calms me] when nothing else alleviates the stress and panic that come with the day. “
And while its rise in popularity coincides with the onset of the pandemic, cannabis embroidery isn’t just another analog business to keep busy in the midst of a lockdown. The popularity of cannabis-centric crafts means a change in attitude towards weed and weed cultivation.
Cannabis embroidery somewhat counts as a subset of “craftsmanship”, a term coined by Betsy Greer to describe the intersection of craftsmanship and activism, often reappropriating traditional ‘women’s’ hobbies and decorative arts that were, like Screw up the dish, “originally used as a way to promote a girl’s domesticity and femininity.”
It’s this very familiar and genteel aesthetic that makes cannabis embroidery so, well… harmless. A loving gaze, attention to detail, nuanced observations all serve to soften the public image of the once-forbidden plant.
And in contrast, seeing talented women (and artisans of all genders) possessing their affinity for the plant helps challenge classic – and often unflattering – stereotypes of stoners. It’s a bit like the time I found a bundle of leopard rolling papers in one of my grandmother’s drawers. This moment at the same time normalized the weed for me and made my grandma even cooler.
Already, DIYers and decorators around the world have embraced crafts with designs and boards proliferating across every corner of Pinterest, Etsy and the r / embroidery subreddit. “I have sewn for people all over the world including, but not limited to, the United States, Canada, Germany, Singapore, Finland and Mexico,” Earl said. “I have clients who work in the cannabis industry as breeders who request specific strains… clients who are dispensary owners and workers, growers and pretty much anyone who loves this plant. “