Embroideries

Embroideries

Reshetylivka is located in Poltava, in the centre of Ukraine, and has long been a centre of traditional hand made embroidery. As with other embroidery forms from central and eastern Ukraine, the colours of the local embroidery are subtle, with black-on-white, blue-on-white and grey-on-white colour schemes being particularly popular. Pulled thread work is also being created. An important motif is that of the Tree of Life.

Rhodes embroidery is the name for a form of pulled thread work that was popular in northwestern Europe in the early twentieth century. Rhodes embroidery, which is often classed as a form of embroidered lace, was apparently based on traditional drawn thread work from the Greek island of Rhodes. 

Various styles of decorative needlework from Europe and North America use a narrow ribbon rather than a thread to create the required stitches and/or pattern. Ribbon work may be worked in combination with embroidery thread, such as floss silk, perlé cotton and/or mercerised 6-stranded thread.

Rice embroidery is a type of whitework, which extensively uses rice stitch or point de riz. This is a free-style stitch that resembles individual grains of rice. It was popular in late nineteenth century Western Europe and North America.

Richelieu work, or Richelieu embroidery, is a form of cutwork lace. It was especially popular in the fourteenth to sixteenth centuries. Since the dominant colour is white, it may also be classed as a form of whitework. There are various designs, and these are outlined with buttonhole stitches and with bars connecting the open areas. The bars themselves are also provided with buttonhole stitches and picots.

In the late nineteenth century, there were two forms of Rococo work in Northern Europe. The first consisted of silk ribbons being sewn to a satin or velvet foundation (China ribbon work), while the second, basically a form of cutwork, was described by Caulfeild and Saward as being a variation of Roman work.

Roman work is a late nineteenth century form of cutwork, worked on an ecru linen or a batiste. It was considered suitable for cushions and banner screens.

The Textile Research Centre in Leiden holds a cotton blouse from Romania. It dates to the 1950s and 1960s and measures 52 x 30 cm. It has a gathered neckline and sleeve heads.

Rudesyning is a form of cutwork embroidery from Denmark and produced in the Hedebo tradition. This type of work was regularly used until c. 1900 to make monograms and to decorate towels, knædug (a pole for drying socks over a stove) and the posts attached to either side of the door of a small wall cupboard in small farming communities. This technique is not as open as that of drawn thread work.

Sardinian knotted embroidery is a form of whitework from the town of Teulada, in southern Sardinia. Teulada embroidery is locally called Punt ‘e Nù (‘knotted stitches’) and is a form of counted thread work. The main stitch is the coral stitch, which is worked in geometric patterns of varying degrees of complexity. The designs are usually worked in diagonal lines, working from left to right.

Schwalm embroidery (Schwälmer Weißstickerei) is a form of whitework embroidery that originated in Germany. In particular it is said to have come from the Schwalm region of Hesse Province, in West Central Germany (hence its alternative name: Hessenstickerei or ‘Hessen embroidery’).

Spanish work is a sixteenth century English term for blackwork embroidery, especially in the double running stitch (Holbein) form. The technique of blackwork embroidery was reputedly brough to England by Catherine of Aragon, the first wife of Henry VIII. 

St. Gallen embroidery is the common name for (machine) embroidery, often a form of whitework, which is produced in St. Gallen, Switzerland. By the early twentieth century, embroidery production was the largest export product of the country. The First World War led to a steep decline. Nowadays, St. Gallen Spitzen, as it is called in German, is a highly prized product, especially with the famous haute couture houses in Paris.

Strapwork is a stylised and ornamental representation of leather straps. Strapwork was popular in sixteenth and early seventeenth century Europe and was revived in the nineteenth century. A strapwork design consists of a series of bands worked into geometric patterns of varying degrees of complexity. This style of work was used for architectural details, stucco panels, as well as for textile and embroidery designs.

Stumpwork is a form of embroidery whereby the stitches form figures that are raised from the ground material. The figures can be made around pieces of wire and take the shape of humans, animals, birds, petals, leaves, insect wings, etc. Another method uses layers of cloth or felt that are used as padding underneath the stitches. Stumpwork can use a wide variety of techniques, including beadwork, goldwork, needlelace etc.

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