Strolling around Julie Romero’s site, it’s hard not to be impressed! Her talent is evident, both in her technique as in her imagination and her ability to use one for the other to create beautiful dreams. And yet the artist is a very warm, cheerful and luminous woman, who play the game of the interview with great simplicity. A magical encounter!
Photos – © Julie Romero – photos protected by copyright – thank you
Interview – Claire de Pourtalès
Originally from Latin America, I traveled a lot during my childhood because of my father’s work. As a child, I have always been surrounded by people with a great sensitivity for the arts: my uncles and aunts all had an artistic specialty. My father loved writing and wrote and published collections of poems, novels and essays.
It is thanks to him that I discovered authors like Arthur Rimbaud, William Faulkner, José Lezama Lima and that I secretly wrote poems ….
My maternal grandmother introduced me, without knowing it, to textile art.
She was a designer dressmaker by trade and with her, I spent all my childhood surrounded by threads, needles and fabrics. Her wardrobe was like a treasure for the child that I was, the little boxes full of sparkling beads, it was a pleasure to be with her! She was smiling, full of life, and always had her hands busy …
It is in this pool of creativity that I grew up. We didn’t have a lot of furniture but we had a lot, a lot of books, fabrics, odds and things to embroider or sew … and that took a central place in the functioning of our family. Creativity was our bond around which we shared precious moments.
The creative flame
It was during my parental leave in 2014 that I accidentally discovered a Pinterest post showing a magnificent pair of earrings. Thinking I was buying them, I was actually sent to a tutorial video and then there, a world opens up to me – the creative flame came back to me in great force.
I learned to embroider the soutache (braid), and I took courses with Italian soutache specialists like Monica Vinci. A friendship was born and from this friendship were born new encounters: what had started as a hobby, grew and I saw nothing coming!
On my Facebook account, I then kept a journal of all my discoveries, my creations, showing what I was learning and little by little, a community was formed. People were inviting me to lead classes, friends offer their homes, I participated in creative fairs. My colleagues bought my jewelry and little by little my work arrived at a large supplier of beads in New York who offered me to do the Bijorhca show in Paris. I had to show what could be achieved with his material and in return I had a space where I could exhibit my creations. This show marked a new stage, I was creating my business! Julie Romero Designs was born!
Switching to art embroidery
I quit my job and took control of my small business, but very quickly I felt that I lacked the tools to be able to make the type of creations that fascinates me: 3D!
So I had to learn more. I took an embroidery course in Lunéville and a few hours later, it was obvious: it was love at first sight! I registered for Victoria Darolti‘s courses and then I followed the course of the Lesage School. After my diploma, I got freelance contracts for haute couture workshops. I worked on these collections, but I realized that it didn’t suit me to embroider other people’s dreams 12 hours a day, I wanted to embroider my own, to create according to my ideas!
Initially, the idea of giving face-to-face lessons was an opportunity to formalize the creation of a school because I like direct contact with people, knowing them, knowing their history … but the pandemic came and the project was canceled to make room for virtual lessons. The demand was very high, the courses were a success and I was very grateful.
I am a creative person, and creating is a need, creating is my philosophy. Embroidery is an art for contemplating the world and which takes on its full meaning if done with love, for pleasure. It is for this reason that I had to slow down the pace of the lessons, to keep this desire for creation intact, to take the time necessary to nourish my inspiration and to be able to transmit my knowledge.
Having grown up in a Latin universe I am attracted by the warm colors, the nuances of the sea, trips, memories … each of my creation has a very personal source in relation to an experience, to someone, to something personal or special. The trait that defines me the most in embroidery is the relief aspect, the 3D.