Japanese Motifs in Stumpwork & Goldwork: Embroidered designs inspired by Japanese family crests

Search Pr. Oct. 2022. 184p. ISBN 9781782216797. $40. CRAFTS
Expert stumpwork and goldwork teacher Nicholas (Shakespeare’s Flowers in Stumpwork) draws inspiration from traditional Japanese family crests for this collection of small projects incorporating surface embroidery, stumpwork, and goldwork. These techniques combine exquisite metal threads and three-dimensional wirework to create ornate, decorative designs. Twelve small projects are included in the collection, ranging from goldwork butterflies that pop off the fabric to flower-and-insect pairings featuring sakura, peony, iris, and lotus flowers. Nicholas’s instructions are highly detailed, with guidance on specific threads, needle sizes, and thread lengths, and each project is divided into sections that focus on one part of the design. Both diagrams and close-up photographs of completed works and works-in-progress are included, allowing embroiderers to follow along with the instructions. A history of Japanese family crests and basic information about tools, embroidery stitches, and transfer techniques are featured in the introduction, and traceable and downloadable templates are provided for each project.
VERDICT Nicholas’s pieces are beautiful, but they’re best for embroiderers with experience in surface embroidery, stumpwork, and goldwork. For a thorough grounding in the basics of these techniques, beginners should start with the Royal School of Needlework’s guides.
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