♦ The Divine Jester ♦
Mooshi enters Hand and Lock Prize embroidery competition with it’s fun and play submission entitled “The Divine Jester”!
*** UPDATE *** OUR SUBMISSION DIDN’T MAKE THE CUT!
The annual hand embroidery event draws entries from all over the world and we felt it was about time we entered too! This year’s theme for the competition is “fun and play” and the celebration of heritage and innovation. The theme is in recognition of Hand and Lock’s 250th anniversary as a British institution of fine hand embroidery heritage and tradition. So with this theme, we have designed a hand embroidered outfit representative of history past and present in a spirit of fun and celebration underlined with a mood of melancholy and the need for spiritual reconciliation and renewal.
Drawing on a primary source of inspiration found in nature, we have designed a three-piece outfit that is not only an aesthetic response to Hand & Lock’s brief but a female characterisation of the theme; a character that embodies meaning, emotion and movement through playful humour and fun. The character is a female jester. The primary source of inspiration taken from nature and developed into a narrative of symbolic icons is the three leaf clover.
The three piece outfit features our recently completed red tulle halter neck bodice. Hand embroidered stretch tulle briefs with a billowing harlequin appliqued tulle skirt and embroidered stockings complete the set. By using sheer tulles to create a costume representative of a historical character typically symbolic of fun and play, the design contrasts tradition with the modern age. In medieval history, jesters were typically identified as male. Here we are portraying the jester as female, suggesting female empowerment and the freedom of female expression in the modern age.
The following narrative and imagery were put forward in our submission to Hand and Lock.
“The Divine Jester”
The primary source of inspiration for this submission is the three leafed clover.
In history, the three leafed clover is associated with the Shamrock, The Trinity and Christianity. The underlying message symbolised by this icon is the residing of one divine God in three entities; the underlying message being that we are all one and that there is unity in division.
We live in a time of fear, grief and apprehension. Our faith in a divine source no matter what the denomination, is being challenged. We are in the midst of death and rebirth, change, uncertainty and constant aggression. Our way of life, our values, and our identity are under threat.
We find solace in nature and in the joy of humour that liberates us from evil, death and destruction. Order and harmony can be found in nature through golden proportions and patterns. Subconsciously we are able to find respite and joy in the creation of nature.
The sacred power of the number 13 (and identified as a golden proportion number) is recognised throughout history as divine. Thirteen is a unifying vibration, it is the Christ with the 12 disciples. It has been associated with the Divine Feminine, and there are 13 months in the lunar calendar and in music. A scale is composed of 13 notes¹.
Joyful abandonment by the human spirit is found in the history of costume through the medieval jester, the Ziegfeld Follies, the circus and in music. The Divine Jester draws inspiration from these sources to draw strength from joy and faith in the renewal of happiness. As a female jester, the goddess within her is free to express herself with reckless abandon. She does not mock the pains of the world but seeks to restore and celebrate the human spirit which finds the greatest joy in union, peace and love.
This narrative is represented by the symbols (iconography) shown in the following images which when placed in Fibonacci sequence from 1 to 13 form the design of the stockings for the Divine Jester costume.
Fibonacci 1: Three Leaf Clover and The Trinity
At the base of the sequence is the number 1: the three leaf clover is at the foundation of the source of inspiration, the Shamrock, Christianity and The Trinity: The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit. One God in three Divine entities, Union.
Fibonacci 2: Wings
Symbolic of the Dove which symbolises The Holy Spirit. Wings also symbolise freedom, escape, and exhilaration. A higher perspective of the world.
Fibonacci 3: The Sun
Three radiating beams of light from the sun; the rising sun, the setting sun. Symbolic of the life force that brings warmth and comfort.
Fibonacci 5: The Heart
Symbolic of love, a heart in the fifth position represents family: two adults and three children.
Fibonacci 8: The Clef
A musical note representing the pattern of a scale of notes, the rest in between notes. Silence, peace, begin again.
Fibonacci 13: the Moon
The Divine Goddess. Traditionally associated with the Divine Feminine, there are thirteen full moons in the lunar calendar and thirteen menstrual cycles annually. The thirteenth letter of the alphabet is M representing mother, Mother Mary, Magdalene.
The two remaining images represent inspiration for the design of the tulle skirt for the Divine Jester costume. Across the smocked tulle skirt will be a series of hand embroidered harlequin diamonds designed to conform to the golden rule of proportion. A sample of the embroidery is shown below.
Entries closed on 30 June. Unfortunately, our submission didn’t make the cut. Nevermind, there’s always next year !