Feature by

And So…the Needlework Development Scheme

Both the And So To Embroider & And So to Sew bulletins were published by the Needlework Development Scheme. Established in 1934 and operating until 1961, the scheme was a partnership between educational establishments (Scottish art schools, Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow) and industry.  Its core aims were to raise the design standards in Britain and encourage more embroidery. 

These bulletins were printed as a single sheet and folded into a four-page guide, main funder J & P Coats spent the equivalent of £1m printing a total of 15 million bulletins, most of which were issued for free. The bulletins are packed full of ideas and guides on needlework and embroidery and the first copies were printed in 1949

The 1950s style is evident in these attractive pieces, in particular, the issues in colour which mix photomontage, colour and organic forms. The playfulness and vibrant colours of the bulletins represent the design output of the time. The mid-century aesthetic combined with a commercial and creative aim makes these a standout in my design collection.

And So To Sew Bulletin 16a
And So To Sew Bulletin 16a
and so to embrioder folder
and so to sew folder

Related Items from the Archive

From my archive:

More articles

Rudolph de Harak designed over 50 record covers for Westminster Records as well as designing covers for Columbia, Oxford and Circle record labels. His bright, geometric graphics can easily be distinguished and recognised.
I first came across Kens work in the Unit Edition’s superb monograph, Structure and Substance, published in 2012. Although I had owned a few of the British industrial design magazines, Design, for a few years before, in which Ken had designed numerous covers for.