Creative articles about sewing

Crossroads Pictogram Project

dawn finishes 1

Like the other participants, I eagerly opened my parcel and found I had the man plus a piece of mustard coloured felt and gold and mustard threads to match.

I initially thought sand, sea, desert and mellow Cotswold stone but nothing came with a blinding flash so I put it to one side to mull over for a week or so.

Watching the BBC news one evening, there was an article on the Middle East, the horrors of war and the changes over the years from desert tribesmen to fighters and refugees. This was it!

They were at a crossroads where they could either fight to a standstill with modern weapons or return to their older position as tribesmen and desert warriors.


I used my Bernina V7 software to digitise and place a bird of prey, an oasis and a tribesman on his camel down the one side and an aeroplane, modern city blocks and a fighter with gun down the other – these were the choices.


The man himself I dressed one half as a traditional desert dweller in white with headdress and the other as a city dweller with jeans and tee-shirt.


The line splitting the two halves represents the crossroads at which he stands facing his future today.

Dawn Cowling



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  • Jan Allston

    If only we’d knows a couple of days ago how relevant this piece would be Dawn. It captures the essence of the conflict in the world we live in. Well done for such a strong reminder of our different cultures.

  • roscro

    This really captures the starkness of difficult choices, not just for the peoples who inspired your work but the wider world too. Not an easy subject to tackle either so well done, Dawn.

  • Hilary Gooding

    Oh so pertinent. The conflict between peoples, between east and west, north and south, between cultures, religions… I could go on but you have expressed it so well. Hilary

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