Where Are They Now? Degree Graduate Hattie McGill

24th February, 2021

From Hampton Court Palace to the Big Screen, Degree Graduate Hattie McGill works under the dazzling lights of film and TV, as well as continuing her own creative practice for private clients.

Driven by her lifelong passion of embroidery and fine sewing, Hattie graduated from the BA (Hons) Hand Embroidery Degree in 2016, having previously completed an Art Foundation from UCA and receiving a First Class Honours in ‘Furniture Conservation, Restoration and Decorative Arts’ from The National School of Furniture, Bucks New University.

“Since graduating from the RSN, I have worked hard to achieve a consistent flow of work as a freelance Hand Embroiderer in Costume and Film. The most recent film projects I have worked on include ‘Emma’, ‘Enola Holmes’ and ‘Death on the Nile’. I have also undertaken embroidery tutoring for both private clients and for the London Embroidery School.

Alongside my freelance costume work, I run my own embroidery business where I sell hand embroidered accessories, specialising in the technique of Goldwork.  My pieces are sold through Etsy, Not On The High Street, and various art fairs throughout the South East of England. Recently, I was commissioned by Orion, the publishers of the bestselling author Ben Aaronovitch, to embroider the fox on the front of ‘What Abigail Did That Summer’, a new novella and part of the #1 bestselling ’Rivers of London’ series, out this month.

During much of the pandemic, the film industry was shut down which put a halt to the majority of my freelance income. Like many self-employed workers in the same position, this was hugely worrying, and a difficult period. However, it did allow me to focus all my time on developing my embroidery business. I have had an aim for several years to design and launch a Goldwork kit, but had struggled to dedicate sufficient time to the project.

Being able to create and launch the kit has been a major upside of 2020 for me. On launch day, the kit sold out! This was such a good feeling, and has motivated me to create more kits to launch over the next few years. I’m also incredibly proud that the kit was published as a tutorial in ‘Stitch’ magazine last summer.

Last year, I was nominated for a small business award in the Holly & Co. ‘Independent Business Awards 2020’. This is led by Holly Tucker MBE, founder of Not On The High Street and Holly & Co., and UK Ambassador to Creative Small Businesses. Despite not winning, I was incredibly proud to be recognised and nominated out of thousands of small businesses. Following this, Holly’s team secretly commissioned me to create a Goldwork pin to celebrate her 100th ‘Conversation of Inspiration Podcast’ and offered it to her as a surprise on an Instagram Live, which was so very exciting! This has given me a welcome boost over a difficult period, and the confidence to push myself further this year.

Thankfully, the film industry has slowly opened back up recently and I am now working on costume embroidery for a Netflix series. When not in the Costume Studio, I continue to work on my embroidery business and private commissions in my own Studio, and I hope to produce and launch some new kits later this year!”

We can’t wait to see the costumes in Hattie’s Netflix series (top secret for now!) and, in the meantime, you can follow Hattie on her Instagram page.

If you are interested in finding out more about the Degree Course, book your place on the next Open Day at 7pm on Wednesday 17 March.

Find out more about our Degree Course.