Martine van ’t Hul
One Week About Fashion & Textile by Lilian Driessen
Martine van ’t Hul (1975) graduated in 2000 as a fashion designer at the Artez Hogeschool voor de Kunsten in Arnhem and in 2002 at the Master’s program of Fashion Institute Arnhem. Subsequently, she has worked as a designer for various brands in Milan and the Netherlands, often with a focus on yarns, embroidery, knitwear and fabrics. Since 2009 she has dedicated herself fulltime to embroidery by hand as well as by machine.
Martine has been embroidering since her childhood. As a fashion designer her embroideries initially were decorations or treatments of garments. She is mostly attracted to the manual aspect of embroidery, because just like any handwriting, the embroidery always reflects the soul of its maker.
Next to traditional techniques she masters Japanese embroidery techniques, point-de-Marseille, lace embroidery and bobbin lace. By continuously zooming in on the embroidery itself, a new, less applied world opened up. In this manner she detached herself from “fashion” embroidery and now makes embroidered pieces that stand on their own. Martine virtually paints with yarns, beads and sequins.
Apart from that she also started using machine embroidery in her work, which offers its own character and possibilities. She preferably combines various techniques within one piece. She sees the machine as an extra set of hands. Physically interfering with the machine during the embroidery process, she adds irregularities to the texture almost as unique human traits.