in Tasmania this year, it was my absolute pleasure to meet Dr Christina Henri, who has been ‘artist in residence’ at Cascades, the female convict factory in Hobart. Christina has made it her life’s work to honour each of the women transported to Australia, through the medium of embroidered bonnets. Such a simple idea, but one full of resonance. These women had so little in life and yet we should honour them as pioneers, who helped found Australia. By using the bonnets as an educational tool, Christina is spreading the message globally. Women from around the world are getting involved in creating and embroidering the bonnets and services are then held in cathedrals to remember the women.
A few years ago, Christina worked the Embroider’s Guild in England on this project and she would like to do something similar next year. I am no embroiderer, but I know the female convict story and I want to help spread the word. I have the pattern for the bonnet. Let me know if you would like to get involved. Wouldn’t it be great to have a ‘blessings of the bonnets’ in England next year? Many bonnets are here, stored in England, waiting for another opportunity to be displayed and blessed. You can see more about this project on Dr Henri’s Facebook page, christina henri – roses from the heart