Seventeen-year-old Claire (Lola Newmark) lives in a small apartment in Angouleme, France. Her parents are still upset that she has left the farm and struck out on her own. She works at a supermarket but spends most of her time on embroidery for which she has both the patience and the passion to pursue with an ardent spirit. In a letter to her friend Lucile (Marie Felix), who has moved to Lyons, she shares the news that she is pregnant. The young man responsible works with her at the store, but she does not expect him to be involved with her anymore.
When Lucile arrives in Angouleme to visit her brother, Guillaume (Thomas Laroppe), the two friends catch up. Claire sees the scars on Guillaume's face and learns that he was in a motorcycle accident that killed the son of Madame Melikian (Ariane Ascaride), an Armenian embroiderer who has worked with many famous Parisian designers. The young man is still in shock, unable to work and relate to anyone. Yet something in him is drawn to Claire.
Unwilling to let either her family or her boss at the supermarket learn about her pregnancy, Claire takes two weeks off and decides to ask Madame Melikian if she could use any help. She is hired, and the two reserved women work side by side, mainly in silence. The older woman is in the throes of a deep grief and, being hypersensitive to everything going on around her, notices that Claire is pregnant but says nothing about it. A close bond grows between them through their mutual love of embroidery, an art form that involves intricate design work and a respect for details. The two women the pregnant adolescent and the middle-aged grieving mother become silent allies in a withdrawal from the world. In one of the most touching scenes, Claire gives Madame Melikian a beautiful stole she made especially for her. The older woman is brought to tears by this act of kindness.
Thomas Moore, in Dark Nights of the Soul, writes: "Beauty takes you out of your cramped, merely personal worries and lets you down in a field of eternity." Eleonore Faucher, co-writer and director of this exquisitely filmed story of female friendship, sets these characters in a place of beauty that enables them to transcend the anxiety that Claire feels and the loss that nearly upends Madame Melikian. The production qualities, cinematography, and music in Sequins brings to mind the same attention given to these departments in the enchanting Girl with a Pearl Earring. Lola Naymark's and Ariane Ascaride's performances are nuanced and emotionally resonant even though very few words pass between them. It is enough that they are together.
Special features include deleted scenes, script excerpts read by actress Ariane Ascaride, a booket featuring interviews with the director.