"I am a British designer-maker from Cheshire in the North West of England, producing unique embroidered artworks. Drawing freely with thread on a domestic sewing machine, carefully painting and embellishing with stitch, I convey my complex organic designs and drawings onto canvas with energy and precision. Welcome to my website!" LG
A unique British designer-maker from Styal, Cheshire, Louise creates exclusive embroidery and appliqué artworks for exhibitions and to commission. From these, a British luxury product range of Lou Gardiner silks and velvets has also evolved.
Drawing with a free-motion sewing machine needle and thread, Louise conveys complex organic designs and drawings onto linen and canvas with energy and precision.
From embroidered illustrations, to large-scale artworks and commemorative capes, Louise’s dynamic embroideries showcase the highest levels of craft and technique. Layering appliqué, inks and paints with intense stitching and hand-sewn beads, the works shimmer with magical depth and catch the changing light. Every piece is meticulously made, labour-intensive and energetic. She has pioneered this unique practice since graduating with a BA Hons in Fine Art Textiles at Goldsmiths, London University in 1996 and with an Illustration MA in 2004 from Manchester Metropolitan University. Since, Louise has maintained a full-time studio practice, employing and training work experience students and promoting contemporary embroidery in many unusual channels such as television, radio and advertising.
Parallel to a rich portfolio of commissioned work Louise has also designed and developed a range of British high end products in silk and velvet including large silk scarves, kimono-style jackets and hand made velvet furniture. All the products are made by British manufacturers and kept as local to Louise's studio as possible.
Louise remains a passionate and energetic ambassador of stitch and individual creativity. Contemporary embroidery is an exciting medium, with endless possibilities and she has shared her techniques in talks and workshops in India, France, NZ and Australia. Her energetic approach blows the cobwebs off this under-rated craft and she has proved that intricate handmade textiles can inspire a surprisingly thoughtful and intense response from an extremely varied audience.
Louise continues to promote the versatility and beauty of contemporary embroidery through lively social media content, talks and international workshops.
Through a huge variety of both public, commercial and private projects and commissions, Louise has demonstrated embroidery’s potential for innovation. She has created commemorative pieces for Liberty windows on Regent Street, exhibited a five panel installation at Collect - The Saatchi Gallery, created a #womankind campaign and the 'Cape of Empowerment' for Pukka Tea. Recently, she was invited by the RHS to design and create an artisan studio at Chelsea Flower Show with the Malvern Collection and in 2019, Louise won 4 stars for her trade stand designon her return to CFS.
She says " My experience as a artist, designer and maker has shown me embroidery’s power to inspire sharing, energy and creativity. Through my work, I aim to create new opportunities for positive interaction with this authentic and exciting medium, to celebrate 'the feminine' and our connection with nature."
Louise is about to embark on an ambitious campaign with a Scottish client to celebrate creativity, nature and to promote British makers called 'The Cape of Creative Purpose.'
Lou has recently set up a new studio in Bristol, the South West of England and will begin to create a new series of large embroideries which will celebrate our natural environment and our connection with nature for a solo show in 2022.