The Nettle Dress
Venue: The Corn Hall
Directed by Dylan Howitt, UK, 1hr 28mins
This beautifully constructed documentary sensitively tracks the journey of textile artist Allan Brown who spent seven years making a dress by hand using only the fibre of locally foraged stinging nettles. His ‘hedgerow couture’ is the greenest of slow fashion. It also proved to be his medicine. It is how he survived the death of his wife and found a beautiful way to honour her.
The challenge of foraging, spinning, weaving, cutting and sewing the cloth meant re-learning ancient crafts. Finally, the healing vision of seeing the dress back in the woods where the nettles were picked, worn by one of his daughters.
Making a dress in this way becomes devotional, with every thread representing hours of mindful loving craft and over the seven years Allan is transformed by the process just as the nettles are. A modern-day fairytale and a hymn to the healing power of nature and slow craft, both the film and dress are a hand-spun labour of love in the truest sense.
This film is being screened to complement the designermakers21 exhibition A Celebration of Textiles: Surface which will run in the Upper & Lower Galleries from Saturday 2 September until Saturday 14 October.
If you have access issues, please contact the Box Office on 01379 652241 to complete your booking. This will enable us to ensure that your visit is as comfortable and safe as possible. For fire safety reasons mobility scooters are not permitted in the Auditorium and we are limited on the number of wheelchairs we can accommodate at a performance. For this reason, wheelchair spaces should be reserved in advance to avoid disappointment.
‘An exquisite, inspiring film.’
Sir Mark Rylance