Videos Latest Feature Sports Your Videos

Patch up fabric leftovers into fine arts

Patch up fabric leftovers into fine arts
0 CommentsPrint E-mail CNTV, October 22, 2010
Adjust font size:


China is the world's largest textile maker, which means that every year, a large number of scraps are left over.


Now, giving new life to those discarded remnants is Jin Yuanshan, a folk artist from northeast China. Our reporter attended an exhibition dedicated to displaying the beauty of patching art. There, she spoke with the artist to find out how she does it and why.

A heap of scraps. Throw them away? No. They are the perfect stuff to patch for Jin Yuanshan. The 64-year-old women has the talent and the patience, transforming hundreds of pieces of scraps into an accessory, a dress, home decorations, or a work of art.

A palm-sized flower like this takes a whole day to complete. To accomplish the entire piece, Jin spent seven years. When this work was displayed in Shanghai in August, Jin refused an offer of five thousand US dollars from an Italian collector.

Jin Yuanshan, quilting artist, said, "Each of my works is unique. If I sell it, I can't re-make another one, because I made them impromptu. I never prepare to draw a sketch or design the pattern beforehand. It depends on what I have on hand, then my inspiration flows out."

Jin immersed herself into the world of patching after her husband died of cancer in 1997. The time-consuming work focused her concentration away from the grief. She never thought she could quilt her way up to one of the few patching artists in China, a country with such a long history of quilting.

Throughout ages, patching up discarded fabric has been shared as a virtue and then a tradition by diligent Chinese women. The earliest one, a head cover found in a tomb in northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region dates back to the Tang dynasty some 14 hundred years ago.

1   2   3   4   Next  

Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comments

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from