Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Frequently Asked Questions



Q: Are computers involved?


Q: Do you draw or paint on the canvas when doing FAFME ?


Q: How long does it take to complete a piece?

Up to 400 Hours.

Q: What happens when you make mistakes?

I don’t make mistakes!

Q: Do you draw your designs first?

Yes, but on a piece of paper which I put next to the sewing machine. I am a proficient painter and drawer.

Q: Is it a special sewing machine?

No, but I prefer a Bernina.

Q: Do you give lessons?

Yes I have taught in USA, UK and throughout Australasia, contact me for details.

Q: Do you use cameras or photography?

No and I don’t use computers either.

Q: Are your images original?

Yes they come from my dreams and people I meet and nature , they are copy right

Q: Where do your faces come from ?

Real people and dreams , I have just finished embroidering portraits of a family..

Q: Who taught you?

I am formally trained as a fine artist but I have self taught myself machine embroidery.

Q: When did you start?

Before I started primary school I used to draw cartoons on my dolls cloths with my grandmother’s sewing machine.

Q: How many coloured threads do you use?

Not as many as I used to . I now use optical mixing in the tradition of the Impressionist Artists like Monet and Seurat.

Q: Do you practice other art forms?

My whole life is art, I draw all my work first, I paint, and I make one off exclusive museum pieces of wearable art.

Q: Which art form do you prefer?

I find the detail I can achieve with machine embroidery is so fine that this makes this my favourite medium.

Q: What is the correct name for this art-form?

FAFME or Fine Art Freehand Machine Embroidery. It has also been called Free Machine Embroidery, Freestyle Machine Embroidery, Freehand Machine Embroidery, Machine Embroidery and Thread Painting

Q: Do you embroider clothes?

Yes as a matter of fact I do not own any clothes that I have not made and I embellish them all. I am active in the worldwide Wearable Art Movement.

Q: Can I see your work?

Yes at Beltana Gallery by appointment

Q: Has you artwork changed over time?

Yes I continue to experiment and love a challenge I am now embroidering on paper.

Q: Which artists inspire you?

The old masters, the risk takers, those who strove for excellence. Matisse Picasso, Klimt, Klee, Dali, Blake & Turner: their colour, originality, imagery, passion and they broke new ground. They were willing risk-takers individuals, leaders, free to experiment even when criticized.

Q: How important is your art?

My art is me, personal, colourful, and my passion. I live each day to create the art on the wall and the art that I wear. Creating encourages me to think about possibilities – to ask- what if?

Q: What makes me happiest?

Following my dreams!!

Q: Do I have an audience in mind when I am creating?

No! I love to create what I want, I create for me, to express my dreams.

Q: What is your biggest artistic achievement?

Winning an Austraia wide art competition sponsored by Tourism Australia and The Arts Council open to any art form! Proving  that machine embroidery is part of the main stream art form.

Q: Are you a full time Artist?

Yes I create all the time, I frequently are so engrossed I forget meals.

Q: Do you paint or embroider animals ?

Yes I am a member of The Royal Zoological Society and my inspiration comes from my life drawing of animals on location. I have just done a new body of work which is predominantly animals. This was exhibited at a solo exhibition at The Adelaide Zoo.

Q: Are you on Instagram & Facebook?

Yes, I tend to post more often on Instagram


Ask Cheryl a question:

What makes you happy?

Creating experimenting and seeing people enjoy my work I love making people happy.