For years Ulla-Stina Wikander has collected cross-stitched embroideries, amassing a collection of over 100 different designs. But it was only in 2012 that she knew what she wanted to do with that collection. Now, she covers ordinary household items with her embroidery collections, transforming anything from an old toaster to a flashlight into delicate pieces of art.
The items she covers are mostly household items from the 70s, like a vacuum cleaner, sewing machine, and electric mixer giving her collection a vintage, nostalgic sort of feel.
“I find it interesting to see how these objects transform in a new context; the obsolete, the things we do not want any longer, the old and forgotten things,” she writes on her website. “They become artifacts from a bygone era, disguised, camouflaged and dressed. I give them a second life and although I cut the embroideries into pieces, I think they look very beautiful when they have been ‘dressed up.'”
She finds most of her cross-stitch embroideries in flea markets and thrift stores. “I definitely have some favorite patterns and colors, but I buy all the embroideries I find because sometimes I need to cover parts that you hardly see,” she told My Modern Met. “Red cottages and birches, flowers, deer, and moose pattern and nature motifs are the ones I like best. If the colors are brilliant and they are well made, I like them even better.”
The work itself takes between a day or two for smaller objects to weeks on end for big installations. Over the last few years, Wikander has exhibited her work which is also available for purchase. You can also enjoy it on her Instagram page.