Our Barehands collaborated with Inez Tan from (www.inez-designs.com) on an embroidery project that saw her upskill a mother from Singapore who may not have flexible work opportunities due to various circumstances. The result was nicely hand-painted, hand-embroidered and sequined studs co-laboured with love from both of them. Here's a close up interview with Inez and why she decided to be part of this project:
1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
Inez: Hello! I’m Inez, the mother of two beautiful children, Miya and Tyler. I create embroidery art on hoops and jewellery made to be loved and worn. I’ve always loved creating and working with my hands. I was formerly a fashion buyer with a Bachelor of Arts in Fashion from RMIT but started making jewellery in my free time.
I needed a colourful fashion accessory to go with an outfit and decided to make one on the whim – a necklace crafted out of vintage buttons and scraps of fabric. My side gig of producing hand-made jewellery took a hiatus when I became a mother. However, the project was re-ignited when an old customer requested for a custom piece! Like my eclectic personality, my work is ever evolving although I do lean towards the bohemian with a dash of kitsch. I love to embroider themes revolving around magic, star constellations and esoteric symbols.
I love that embroidery is timeless, exciting and provides endless possibilities. I do like a bit of chaos and a fusion of old and new - embroidery to me encompasses that. The art requires a whole lot of patience.
2. When and why did you start Inez Designs?
Inez: Inez Designs started in 2010 as a side project. I was then selling handmade jewellery while working full-time. It was only in 2016 that I made my first commissioned embroidery piece. Not before long, I began incorporating thread work into my jewellery. After leaving my full-time role, I found embroidery and jewellery-making to be a meditative and creative outlet, and eventually turned my practice into a business. I now collaborate with my daughter where she doodles and i embroider her drawings.
My vision for Inez Designs is to perhaps publish a book on my kids' doodles with some pieces embroidered, make children’s postcards and greeting cards, create a children’s art exhibition or run a workshop for parents who want to embroider their kids drawings.
3. Why did you decide to partner with Our Barehands in this project?
Inez: The collaboration aims to help other mothers out there including single mothers - to create small side job opportunities for them, improving their craft skills while boosting their confidence. This is very meaningful as I hope to create social impact through providing small and meaningful craft jobs in the single mum community, while hoping to maintain the products that are of quality, well-designed and affordable. My hope is to see more collaborations like such in the future as I feel that women helping and encouraging each other make a better team!
What story will your hands tell?