Thursday, 26 July 2007

cross stitch, blackwork and pattern recreation

I'll follow wish of introducing oneself. tb is me, Anna Syveken, and I like to try out a lot of new stuff. Right now I have two "projects":

1) trying out Hohlsaumstickerei. (hem stitching)

2) trying to create a pattern for this piece of cloth:

It can be found at the museum of Fine Arts, Boston, with the following information: Punto di Milano, Italian, 16th–17th century. Overall: 10 x 132 cm (3 15/16 x 51 15/16 in.)Linen and silk; embroidery. White linen embroidered with red silk. Carolina Amari. Greek needle work. Gift of James William Paige, 1883. Accession number: 83.236.

So far I don't have an idea, which kind of stitch it is. Blackwork combined with cross stitch maybe?

I love geometric patterns and to create patterns from existing pieces of cloth. Normally I like to learn new techniques but I'm not the type of stitcher to start a bigger project, because I want to see results very quick.

So, I guess, that's it for now. :)


Racaire said...

I am not familiar with greek needlework but for me it looks like Assisi work:

"a variation on cross stitch ... first developed in medieval times in the town of Assisi, in Italy. Traditional motifs include stylized birds and beasts ... and simple floral designs, worked on white or cream evenweave linen. All designs are treated in a similar way: the main motif is left unstitched, but outlined Holbein stitch in a dark color. The background is then filled with ccross stitch, usually in blue or red,...."
("The Embroidery Stitch Bible" by Betty Barnden - ISBN 0-87349-510-1, page 209)

...that's only my suggestion for this design - as far as I can suggest for a picture of this size.

Hope this helps

Hexenstern said...

okay ...i post in the wrong comment ..but yes it´s assisi ...i have some more patetrn here and i know a side where the english names and the itailian names for the stiches will be explain ...i can search my links list for it ,when somebody ist dont find much pattern about assisi in the net ,but it gives some book from dover with pattern,but they really modern
i have some original pattern from older burda embroidery specials .. please mail me on for it by interesting

many greetz alenn

Kim said...

Long armed cross stitch for the background; foreground voided motifs outlined and details worked in double running/Spanish Stitch/Holbein stitch (your pick of name). This is the style that is at the root of what's today called Assisi work. Easy to do and lots of fun.

Several examples of pattens suited to work this way are in my book "New Carolingian Modelbook". There's an illustration of one of them here:,guid,08a27449-c864-3542-e29b-0007e96ddfa0.aspx


Sandy said...

There's a picture of a piece like this in "Apropos Patterns" by Margaret Abegg; the book says "cross stitch or punto croce" (it's compared with a very similar pattern in a 16th century Italian pattern book). I agree most of the references say long-armed cross stitch was preferred over modern cross stitch, though. Marie Schuette in "History of Embroidery" shows a 16th-century Italian hanging done in voided work in long-arm cross stitch. It's a scene (Judith and Holofernes), though, so the design lines all seem to be outline/stem stitch rather than backstitch or double-running.
I can send you the two pictures if you give me your email (send it to

- Susana