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Created by London based charity FAD and Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, the New East London Embroiderers is a project encouraging 14-19 year-olds to explore British heritage and cultural identity through stitch.

Can’t see the short film about the NELE project below? Watch it on Vimeo.

Inspired by the historic collections of Kensington Palace, in 2012 sixty school children and young refugees from East London took part in FAD workshops to learn traditional embroidery techniques, before creating six modern ceremonial garments of their own design.

In October 2012 these stunning works showcased to 50,000 people at The Knitting & Stitching Show held at Alexandra Palace in North London before being transported to Kensington Palace where they were placed on public display for four weeks.

Following these royal appointments the garments formed part of a touring exhibition visiting the schools and community centres who took part in the project. Among other this included Stoke Newington School in Hackney, Camden School for Girls, Barking & Dagenham College, Cumberland School in Newham and Brighter Futures London, a group for refugees and asylum seekers based in Bethnal Green.

Uniquely the NELE project has been made possible by the support of fifteen young volunteers; all aged 18 – 25 years old. Under the guidance of embroidery expert, Anthea Godfrey, the volunteers trained in leadership and traditional embroidery skills in order to support and mentor younger students to create the garments.

See photos and read more about the project on the NELE blog.