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Title: Handbook of Embroidery
Author: Higgin, L.
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Handbook of Embroidery" ***

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                   HANDBOOK OF EMBROIDERY

                        BY L. HIGGIN.



                        AND IRELAND.



(_All rights reserved._)


Plates Nos. 4 and 19 show a portion only of the designs by Mr. W.
Morris and Mr. Fairfax Wade.



In drawing up this little "Handbook of Embroidery" we do not pretend
to give such complete technical directions as would enable a beginner
in this beautiful art to teach herself; because learning without
practical lessons must be incomplete, and can only lead to

We have sought, therefore, only to respond to the inquiries we are
constantly receiving, and to supply useful hints to those who are
unable to avail themselves of lessons, and are forced to puzzle over
their difficulties without help from a trained and experienced
embroiderer; at the same time, the rules we have laid down and the
directions we have given may serve to remind those who have passed
through the classes, of many little details which might easily be
forgotten when the lessons are over, though so much of the success of
embroidery depends upon them.

We have given a short description of the most useful stitches, and
have pointed out their applicability to different styles of work; we
have named the various materials which are best suited as grounds for
embroidery, and the silks, filoselles, crewels, &c., which are most
commonly employed, with practical rules for their use in the best and
most economical manner.

Also we have given such plain directions as to stretching, framing,
and cleaning the work as are possible in a limited space, and without
practical illustration. We venture to hope we have thus supplied a
want that has been long felt by those who interest themselves in the
art in which Englishwomen once excelled, but which had languished of
late years, and almost died out amongst us, though it has always been
taught in many continental cities, where embroideries have never
ceased to be required for church decoration.

We have abstained from giving any directions as to the tracing of
designs upon material, for two sufficient reasons: firstly, that the
Royal School of Art-Needlework has never supplied designs alone, or in
any other form than as prepared work; and secondly, that having made
experiments with all the systems that have been brought out for
"stamping," ironing from transfer-papers, or with tracing powder, it
has been found that designs can only be artistically and well traced
on material by hand painting. Those ladies who can design and paint
their own patterns for embroidery are independent of assistance, and
to those who are unable to do so we cannot recommend any of the
methods now advertised.

It has been thought unnecessary to enter into the subject of
ecclesiastical embroidery at present. This has been so thoroughly
revived in England, and practised in such perfection by
sisterhoods--both Anglican and Roman Catholic--as well as by some of
the leading firms of church decorators, that we have not felt
ourselves called upon to do more than include it in our course of

The æsthetic side of our subject we have purposely avoided, as it
would lead us further than this purely technical guide-book pretends
to go. But we propose shortly to bring out a second part devoted to
design, composition, colour, and the common-sense mode of treating
decorative Art, as applied to wall-hanging, furniture, dress, and the
smaller objects of luxury.

We shall examine and try to define the principles which have guided
Eastern and Western embroideries at their best periods, hoping thus to
save the designers of the future from repeating exploded experiments
against received canons of good taste; checking, if we can, the
exuberance of ignorant or eccentric genius, but leaving room for

Mrs. Dolby, who by her presence and her teaching helped Lady Welby to
start the Royal School of Art-Needlework, has left behind her a most
valuable guide for mediæval work in her "Church Embroidery, Ancient
and Modern," which will always be a first-class authority.

The Author and the Editor of this handbook are equally impressed with
the responsibility they have undertaken in formulating rules for
future embroiderers. They have consulted all acknowledged authorities,
and from them have selected those which the teachers in the Royal
School of Art-Needlework have found the most practical and

Should any of their readers favour them with hints or criticisms, or
give them information as to pieces of embroidery worth studying, or
stitches not here named, any such communications will be gratefully
received and made use of in future editions.






    _Page 1._



    Needles                                                1

    Scissors                                               1

    Prickers, &c.                                          2

    Crewels                                                3

    Tapestry Wool                                          4

    Arrasene                                               4

    Embroidery or Bobbin Silk                              5

    Rope Silk                                              5

    Fine Silk                                              6

    Purse Silk                                             6

    Raw or Spun Silk                                       6

    Vegetable Silk                                         6

    Filoselle                                              7

    Tussore                                                7

    Gold                                                   8

    Japanese Gold Thread                                   8

    Chinese Gold                                           8

    Gold and Silver Passing                                8

    Bullion or Purl                                        8

    Spangles                                               9

    Plate                                                  9

    Recipes for Preserving Gold                           10


    _Page 11._


    Linens                                                11

    Flax                                                  11

    Twill                                                 11

    Kirriemuir Twill                                      11

    Sailcloth                                             12

    Oatcake Linen                                         12

    Oatmeal Linen                                         12

    Smock Linen                                           12

    Bolton, or Workhouse Sheeting                         12

    Satins and Silks                                      14

    Silk Sheeting                                         14

    Tussore and Corah Silks                               15

    Plain Tapestries                                      15

    Brocatine                                             15

    Cotton and Woollen                                    16

    Velveteen                                             16

    Utrecht Velvet                                        16

    Velvet Cloth                                          16

    Felt                                                  16

    Diagonal Cloth                                        16

    Serge                                                 17

    Soft, or Super Serge                                  17

    Cricketing Flannel                                    17

    Genoa or Lyons Velvet                                 17

    Silk Velvet Plush                                     17

    Cloths of Gold and Silver                             18


    _Page 19._


    Stem Stitch                                           19

    Split Stitch                                          22

    Satin Stitch                                          23

    Blanket Stitch                                        23

    Button-hole Stitch                                    24

    Knotted Stitch                                        24

    Chain Stitch                                          27

    Twisted Chain                                         28

    Feather Stitch                                        29


    _Page 33._

    Frames and Framing                                    33


    _Page 37._


    Feather Stitch                                        37

    Couching or Laid Embroidery                           39

    Net-patterned Couching                                41

    Brick Stitch                                          41

    Diaper Couchings                                      42

    Basket Stitch                                         42

    Spanish Embroidery                                    43

    Cross Stitch                                          45

    Simple Cross Stitch                                   46

    Persian Cross Stitch                                  46

    Burden Stitch                                         50

    Stem Stitch                                           51

    Japanese Stitch                                       51

    Tambour Work                                          51

    Opus Anglicum                                         52

    Cut Work                                              54

    Inlaid Appliqué                                       54

    Onlaid Appliqué                                       54

    Gold Embroidery                                       57

    Backing                                               58

    Stretching and Finishing                              59

    Embroidery Paste                                      59

    Cleaning                                              60


    Description of the Plates                             62

    Sixteen Plates, containing 24 Designs           65 to 96







_Needles._--The best "embroidery needles" for ordinary crewel handwork
are Nos. 5 and 6. For coarse "sailcloth," "flax," or "oatcake," No. 4.
For frame embroidery, or very fine handwork, the higher numbers, from
7 to 10.

It is a mistake to use too fine a needle. The thread of crewel or silk
should always be able to pass loosely into the eye, so as not to
require any pulling to carry it through the material.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Scissors_ should be finely pointed, and very sharp.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Thimbles_ which have been well worn, and are therefore smooth, are
best. Some workers prefer ivory or vulcanite. Two thimbles should be
used for framework.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Prickers_ are necessary for piercing holes in gold embroidery, and
also for arranging the lie of the thread in some forms of couching.





_Crewel_ should be cut into short threads, never more than half the
length of the skein. If a long needleful is used, it is not only apt
to pull the work, but is very wasteful, as the end of it is liable to
become frayed or knotted before it is nearly worked up. If it is
necessary to use it double (and for coarse work, such as screen panels
on sailcloth, or for embroidering on Utrecht velvet, it is generally
better doubled), care should be taken never to pass it through the eye
of the needle, knotting the two ends; but two separate threads of the
length required should be passed together through the needle.

Crewel should not be manufactured with a twist, as it makes the
embroidery appear hard and rigid; and the shades of colour do not
blend into each other so harmoniously as when they are untwisted.

In crewels of the best quality the colours are perfectly fast, and
will bear being repeatedly washed, provided no soda or washing-powder
is used. Directions for cleaning crewel work are given later; but it
should not be sent to an ordinary laundress, who will most certainly
ruin the colours.

Crewel is suitable for embroidery on all kinds of linen--on plain or
diagonal cloth, serge, flannel, &c. It is also very effective when
used in conjunction with embroidery silk, or filoselle, either in
conventional designs, or where flowers are introduced. The leaves may
be worked in crewels, and the flowers in silk, or the effect of the
crewels increased by merely touching up the high lights with silk.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Tapestry Wool_ is more than twice the thickness of crewel, and is
used for screen panels, or large curtain borders, where the work is
coarse, and a good deal of ground has to be covered. It is also used
for bath blankets and carriage and sofa rugs. Tapestry wool is not yet
made in all shades.

Fine crewels are used for delicately working small figures, d'oyleys,
&c.; but there is also a difficulty about obtaining these in all
shades, as there is not much demand for them at present.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Arrasene_ is a new material. It is a species of worsted chenille, but
is not twisted round fine wire or silk, like ordinary chenille; though
it is woven first into a fabric, and then cut in the same manner. It
serves to produce broad effects for screen panels, or borders, and has
a very soft, rich appearance when carefully used. It is made also in
silk; but this is inferior to worsted arrasene, or the old-fashioned



_"Embroidery," or Bobbin Silk_, which has now almost superseded
floss, is used for working on satin and silk, or for any fine work. It
is made in strands, each of which has a slight twist in it to prevent
its fraying as floss does. As this silk is required in all varieties
of thickness, it is manufactured in what is technically called "rope,"
that is, with about twelve strands in each thread. When not "rope"
silk, it is in single strands, and is then called "fine" silk. As it
is almost always necessary to use several strands, and these in
varying number, according to the embroidery in hand, the rope silk has
to be divided, or the fine doubled or trebled, as the case may be.

If rope silk is being used, the length required for a needleful must
be cut and passed carefully between finger and thumb once or twice,
that it may not be twisted. It should then be carefully separated into
the number of strands most suitable for the embroidery in hand; for
ordinary work three is about the best number.

These must be threaded together through the needle, care being taken
not to tangle the piece of "rope" from which they have been detached.
There need be no waste if this operation is carefully done, as good
silk will always divide into strands without fraying.

In using "fine silk," one length must be cut first, then other strands
laid on it,--as many as are needed to form the thickness required.
They should be carefully laid in the same direction as they leave the
reel or card. If placed carelessly backwards and forwards, they are
sure to fray, and will not work evenly together. With silk still more
than with crewel, it is necessary to thread all the strands through
the needle together, never to double one back, and never to make a

It is intended in future to do away with this distinction between
"rope" and "fine" silk, and to have it all manufactured of one uniform
thickness, which will consist of eight strands of the same quality as
the "fine" silk at present in use. As it will, however, still be
necessary to divide the thread, and even perhaps occasionally to
double it, the directions given above will be useful.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Purse Silk_ is used sometimes for diapering, and in rare cases in
ordinary embroidery, where a raised effect is required.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Raw_ or _spun silk_ is a soft untwisted cream-coloured silk, used for
daisies and other simple white flowers, or in outlining. It is much
cheaper than embroidery silk or filoselle.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Vegetable Silk_ (so-called) is not used or sold by the Royal School.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Filoselle_, when of good quality, is not, as some people suppose, a
mixture of silk and cotton. It is pure silk, but of an inferior
quality; and therefore cheaper. It answers many of the purposes of
bobbin silk, but is not suitable for fine embroidery on silk or satin
fabrics. It should be used also in strands, and the same remarks hold
good with regard to its not being doubled, but cut in equal lengths.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Tussore._--Interesting experiments have recently been made with the
"Tussore," or "wild silk" of India, which bids fair to create a
revolution in embroidery. Not only can it be produced for less than
half the price of the "cultivated silk" of Italy, China, or Japan, but
it also takes the most delicate dyes with a softness that gives a
peculiarly charming effect. It can scarcely be said to be in the
market as yet, but in all probability before this work is through the
press it will have become an important element in decorative
needlework. It is much less glossy than cultivated silk.




"_Japanese gold thread_," which has the advantage of never tarnishing,
is now extremely difficult to obtain. Being made of gilt paper twisted
round cotton thread, it cannot be drawn through the material by the
needle; but must in all cases be laid on, and stitched down with a
fine yellow silk, known as "Maltese," or "Horse-tail."

       *       *       *       *       *

"_Chinese gold_" is manufactured in the same manner as the Japanese;
but being of a much redder colour is not so satisfactory in embroidery
unless a warm shade is desirable for a particular work.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Gold and silver passing_, a very fine kind of thread, can either be
used for working through the material, or can be laid on like the
Japanese gold. They are suitable for "raised gold or silver

       *       *       *       *       *

_Bullion, or Purl_, is gold or silver wire made in a series of
continuous rings, like a corkscrew. It is used in ecclesiastical work,
for embroidering official and military uniforms, and for heraldic
designs. It should be cut into the required lengths--threaded on the
needle and fastened down as in bead-work. Purl is sometimes
manufactured with a coloured silk twisted round the metal though not
concealing it, and giving rich tints to the work.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Spangles_ were anciently much used in embroidery, and were sometimes
of pure gold. They are but little used now.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Plate_ consists of narrow plates of gold or silver stitched on to the
embroidery by threads of silk, which pass over them.

       *       *       *       *       *

The French and English gold thread is made of thin plates of metal cut
into strips, and wound round strands of cotton in the same manner as
the Japanese gold. If the metal is real, the cost is of course great.
It is sold by weight, gold being about 20s. per oz., and silver, 10s.
per oz. In addition to its superiority in wear, it has this advantage,
that old gold or silver thread is always of intrinsic value, and may
be sold at the current price of the metal whatever state it may be in.
Many varieties of gilt thread are manufactured in France and England,
which may be used when the great expense of "real gold" is objected
to. But although it looks equally well at first, it soon becomes
tarnished, and spoils the effect of the embroidery. Gold and silver
threads are difficult to work with in England, and especially in
London, as damp and coal-smoke tarnish them almost before the work is
out of the frame. Mrs. Dolby recommends cloves being placed in the
papers in which they are kept.



We give here two recipes, which may be found serviceable. They are
from different sources; the first is a very old one. They may preserve
gold for a certain time.

1. Isinglass dissolved in spirits of wine and brushed over the thread
or braid, which should be hung over something to dry, and not touched
with the hand.

2. Spirits of wine and mastic varnish mixed very thin and put on in
the same way with a brush.






There are many varieties of unglazed, half-bleached linens, from that
thirty-six and forty inches wide, used for chair-back covers, to that
ninety inches wide, used for large table-covers, curtains, &c. There
are also endless varieties of fancy linens, both of hand and
power-loom weaving, for summer dresses, for bed furniture, chair-back
covers, table-cloths, &c.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Flax_ is the unbleached brown linen, often used for chair-back

       *       *       *       *       *

_Twill_ is a thick linen suitable for coverings for furniture.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Kirriemuir Twill_ is a fine twilled linen made at Kirriemuir, and is
good for tennis aprons, dresses, curtains, &c.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Sailcloth_ is a stout linen, of yellow colour, and is only suitable
for screen panels.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Oatcake Linen_, so called from its resemblance to Scotch oatcake, has
been popular for screen panels or washstand backs. It is very coarse
and rough.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Oatmeal Linen_ is finer and of a greyer tone. It is also used for
screens, and for smaller articles.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Smock Linen_ is a strong even green cloth. It makes an excellent
ground for working screens, and is also used for tennis aprons.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Crash._--Properly speaking, the name "_crash_" is only applied to the
coarse Russian home-spun linen, which has been such a favourite from
the beauty of its tone of colour. It is, however, erroneously applied
to all linens used for embroidery, whether woven by hand-loom or
machinery; and this confusion of names frequently leads to mistakes.
Crash is almost always very coarse, is never more than eighteen inches
wide, and cannot be mistaken for a machine-made fabric. It is woven by
the Russian peasants in their own homes, in lengths varying from five
to ten yards, and, therefore, though sent over in large bales, it is
very difficult to find two pieces among a hundred that in any way
match each other.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Bolton, or Workhouse Sheeting_, is a coarse twilled cotton fabric,
seventy-two inches wide, of a beautiful soft creamy colour, which
improves much in washing. It is inexpensive, and an excellent ground
for embroidery, either for curtains, counterpanes, chair coverings, or
for ladies' dresses, or tennis aprons.

It resembles the twilled cotton on which so much of the old crewel
embroidery was worked in the seventeenth century, and is one of the
most satisfactory materials when of really good quality.

       *       *       *       *       *

All descriptions of linen, except the "oatcake" and "sailcloth," can
be embroidered in the hand.





_Satins and Silks_ can only be embroidered in a frame. Furniture
satins of stout make, with cotton backs, may be used without backing;
but ordinary dress satins require to have a thin cotton or linen
backing to bear the strains of the work and framing. Nothing is more
beautiful than a rich white satin for a dress embroidered in coloured

For fans, a very fine, closely woven satin is necessary, as it will
not fold evenly unless the satin is thin; and yet it must be rich
enough to sustain the fine embroidery, without pulling, or looking
poor. A special kind of satin is made for the manufacture of fans, and
none other is available.

       *       *       *       *       *

"_Silk Sheeting_" of good quality, "_Satin de Chine_" and other
silk-faced materials of the same class, may either be embroidered in
the hand, or framed; but for large pieces of work a frame is
essential. These materials are suitable for curtains, counterpanes,
piano coverings, or panels, and indeed for almost any purpose. The
finer qualities are very beautiful for dresses, as they take rich and
graceful folds, and carry embroidery well.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Tussore and Corah Silks_ are charming for summer dresses, light
chair-back covers, or embroidered window blinds. They will only bear
light embroidering in silk or filoselle.

Within the last year successful experiments have been made in dyeing
these Indian silks in England. The exact shades which we admire so
much in the old Oriental embroideries have been reproduced, with the
additional advantage of being perfectly fast in colour.

Nothing can be more charming as lining for table-covers, screens,
curtains, &c.; and they are rather less expensive than other lining

The fabrics known as _Plain Tapestries_ are a mixture of silk and
cotton, manufactured in imitation of the handworked backgrounds so
frequent in ancient embroideries--especially Venetian. Almost all the
varieties of _Opus Pulvinarium_, or cushion stitch, have been
reproduced in these woven fabrics.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Brocatine_ is a silk-faced material, woven to imitate couched
embroidery. The silk is thrown to the surface and is tied with cotton
threads from the back.

As ground for embroidery it has an excellent effect.




_Velveteen_, if of good quality, makes an excellent ground for screen
panels, chair-covers, portières, curtains, borders, &c. It can be
worked in the hand if the embroidery be not too heavy or large in

       *       *       *       *       *

_Utrecht Velvet_ is only suitable for coarse crewel or tapestry wool
embroidery. It is fit for curtain dados or wide borderings.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Velvet Cloth_ is a rich plain cloth, finished without any gloss. It
is a good ground for embroidery, either for curtains or altar-cloths.
It is two yards wide.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Felt_ is sometimes used for the same purposes, but does not wear
nearly so well, and is difficult to work.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Diagonal Cloth_ can be worked either in the hand or frame, although
it is always much better in the latter. It is used for table-covers,
curtains, chair-seats, &c.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Serge_ is usually made thirty-six inches wide. It has long been in
favour for curtains, small table-covers, dresses, &c. It can now be
obtained at the school fifty-four inches wide, in many shades.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Soft or Super Serge_, also fifty-four inches wide, is an excellent
material, much superior in appearance to diagonal cloth, or to the
ordinary rough serge. It takes embroidery well.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Cricketing flannel_ is used for coverlets for cots, children's
dresses, and many other purposes. It is of a beautiful creamy colour,
and is a good ground for fine crewel or silk embroidery. It need not
be worked in a frame.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Genoa or Lyons Velvet_ makes a beautiful ground for embroidery; but
it can only be worked in a frame, and requires to be "backed" with a
thin cotton or linen lining, if it is to sustain any mass of
embroidery. For small articles, such as sachets or casket-covers, when
the work is fine and small, the backing is not necessary. Screen
panels of velvet, worked wholly in crewels, or with crewel brightened
with silk, are very effective. Three-piled velvet is the best for
working upon, but is so expensive that it is seldom asked for.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Silk Velvet Plush_ (a new material) can only be used in frame work,
and must be backed. It is useful in "appliqué" from the many beautiful
tones of colour it takes. As a ground for silk or gold embroidery it
is also very good.




_Cloth of Gold or Silver_ is made of threads of silk woven with metal,
which is thrown to the surface. In its best form it is extremely
expensive, varying from £4 to £6 per yard, according to the weight of
gold introduced. Cloth of silver is generally £3 the yard.

       *       *       *       *       *

Inferior kinds of these cloths are made in which silk largely
predominates, and shows plainly on the surface. They are frequently
woven in patterns, such as diaper or diagonal lines, with a tie of red
silk, in imitation of the diaper patterns of couched embroidery.

They are chiefly used in ecclesiastical or heraldic embroidery; their
great expense preventing their general use.




To avoid pulling or puckering the work, care should be taken--firstly,
that the needle is not too small, so as to require any force in
drawing it through the material; secondly, the material must be held
in a convex position over the fingers, so that the crewel or silk in
the needle shall be looser than the ground; and thirdly, not to use
too long needlefuls. These rules apply generally to all handworked


_Stem Stitch._--The first stitch which is taught to a beginner is
"stem stitch" (wrongly called also, "crewel stitch," as it has no
claim to being used exclusively in crewel embroidery). It is most
useful in work done in the hand, and especially in outlines of
flowers, unshaded leaves, and arabesque, and all conventional designs.

[Illustration: No. 1.--STEM STITCH.]

It may be best described as a long stitch forward on the surface, and
a shorter one backward on the under side of the fabric, the stitches
following each other almost in line from left to right. The effect on
the wrong side is exactly that of an irregular back-stitching used by
dressmakers, as distinguished from regular stitching. A leaf worked in
outline should be begun at the lower or stalk end, and worked round
the right side to the top, taking care that the needle is to the left
of the thread as it is drawn out. When the point of the leaf is
reached, it is best to reverse the operation in working down the left
side towards the stalk again, so as to keep the needle to the right of
the thread instead of to the left, as in going up.

[Illustration: No. 2.]

The reason of this will be easily understood: we will suppose the leaf
to have a slightly serrated edge (and there is no leaf in nature with
an absolutely smooth one). It will be found that in order to give this
ragged appearance, it is necessary to have the points at which the
insertions of the needle occur on the outside of the leaf: whereas if
the stem stitch were continued down the left side, exactly in the same
manner as in ascending the right, we should have the ugly anomaly of a
leaf outlined thus:--

[Illustration: No. 3.]

If the leaf is to be worked "solidly," another row of stem stitching
must be taken up the centre of it (unless it be a very narrow leaf),
to the top. The two halves of the leaf must then be filled in,
separately, with close, even rows of stem stitch, worked in the
ordinary way, with the needle to the left of the thread. This will
prevent the ugly ridge which remains in the centre, if it is worked
round and round the inside of the outline. Stem stitch must be varied
according to the work in hand. If a perfectly even line is required,
care must be taken that the direction of the needle when inserted is
in a straight line with the preceding stitch. If a slight serrature is
required, each stitch must be sloped a little by inserting the needle
at a slight angle, as shown in the illustration. The length of the
surface stitches must vary to suit the style of each piece of

       *       *       *       *       *

_Split Stitch_ is worked like ordinary "stem," except that the needle
is always brought up _through_ the crewel or silk, which it splits, in

The effect is to produce a more even line than is possible with the
most careful stem stitch. It is used for delicate outlines. Split
stitch is rarely used in hand embroidery, being more suitable for
frame work: but has been described here as being a form of stem
stitch. The effect is somewhat like a confused chain stitch.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Satin Stitch_--_French Plumetis_--is one of those chiefly used in
white embroidery, and consists in taking the needle each time back
again almost to the spot from which it started, so that the same
amount of crewel or silk remains on the back of the work as on the
front. This produces a surface as smooth as satin: hence its name. It
is chiefly used in working the petals of small flowers, such as
"Forget-me-nots," and in arabesque designs where a raised effect is
wanted in small masses.

[Illustration: No. 4.--SATIN STITCH.]

       *       *       *       *       *

_Blanket Stitch_ is used for working the edges of table-covers,
mantel valances, blankets, &c., or for edging any other material. It
is simply a button-hole stitch, and may be varied in many ways by
sloping the stitches alternately to right and left; by working two or
three together, and leaving a space between them and the next set; or
by working a second row round the edge of the cloth over the first
with a different shade of wool.

[Illustration: No. 5.--BLANKET STITCH.]

       *       *       *       *       *

_Knotted Stitch_, or _French Knot_, is used for the centres of such
flowers as the daisy or wild rose, and sometimes for the anthers of
others. The needle is brought up at the exact spot where the knot is
to be: the thread is held in the left hand, and twisted once or twice
round the needle, the point of which is then passed through the
fabric close to the spot where it came up: the right hand draws it
underneath, while the thumb of the left keeps the thread in its place
until the knot is secure. The knots are increased in size according to
the number of twists round the needle. When properly made, they should
look like beads, and lie in perfectly even and regular rows.

[Illustration: No. 6.--KNOTTED STITCH, or FRENCH KNOT.]

This stitch is very ancient, and does not seem confined to any
country, and the Chinese execute large and elaborate pieces of
embroidery in it, introducing beautiful shading. A curious specimen of
very fine knotting stitch was exhibited at the Royal School in 1878,
probably of French workmanship. It was a portrait of St. Ignatius
Loyola, not more than six inches in length, and was entirely executed
in knots of such fineness, that without a magnifying glass it was
impossible to discover the stitches. This, however, is a _tour de
force_, and not quoted as worthy of imitation.

There is one variety of this stitch, in which the thread is twisted a
great many times round the needle, so as to form a sort of curl
instead of a single knot. This is found in many ancient embroideries,
where it is used for the hair of saints and angels in ecclesiastical

Knotted stitch was also employed largely in all its forms in the
curious and ingenious but ugly style in vogue during the reign of
James I., when the landscapes were frequently worked in cross, or
feather stitch, while the figures were raised over stuffing, and
dressed, as it were, in robes made entirely in point lace, or
button-hole stitches, executed in silk. The foliage of the trees and
shrubs which we generally find in these embroidered pictures, as well
as the hair in the figures, were worked in knotted stitches of varying
sizes, while the faces were in tent stitch or painted on white silk,
and fastened on to the canvas or linen ground.

[Illustration: No. 7.--BULLION KNOT.]

Another variety of knotting, which is still occasionally used,
resembles _bullion_, being made into a long roll. A stitch of the
length of the intended roll is taken in the material, the point of the
needle being brought to the surface again in the same spot from which
the thread originally started; the thread is then twisted eight or ten
times round the point of the needle, which is drawn out carefully
through the tunnel formed by the twists, this being kept in its place
by the left thumb. The point of the needle is then inserted once more
in the same place as it first entered the material, the long knot or
roll being drawn so as to lie evenly between the points of insertion
and re-appearance, thus treating the twisted thread as if it were
bullion or purl.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Chain Stitch_ is but little used in embroidery now, although it may
sometimes be suitable for lines. It is made by taking a stitch from
right to left, and before the needle is drawn out the thread is
brought round towards the worker, and under the point of the needle.

[Illustration: No. 8.--CHAIN STITCH.]

The next stitch is taken from the point of the loop thus formed
forwards, and the thread again kept under the point, so that a regular
chain is formed on the surface of the material.

This chain stitch was much employed for ground patterns in the
beautiful gold-coloured work on linen for dress or furniture which
prevailed from the time of James I. to the middle of the eighteenth
century. It gave the appearance of quilting when worked on linen in
geometrical designs, or in fine and often-repeated arabesques.
Examples of it come to us from Germany and Spain, in which the design
is embroidered in satin stitch, or entirely filled in with solid
chain stitch, in a uniform gold colour.

Chain stitch resembles _Tambour work_, which we shall describe amongst
framework stitches, though it is not at present practised at this

       *       *       *       *       *

_Twisted Chain_, or Rope stitch.

[Illustration: No. 9.--TWISTED CHAIN.]

Effective for outlines on coarse materials, such as blankets, carriage
rugs, footstools, &c.

It is like an ordinary chain, except that in place of starting the
second stitch from the centre of the loop, the needle is taken back to
half the distance behind it, and the loop is pushed to one side to
allow the needle to enter in a straight line with the former stitch.
It is not of much use, except when worked with double crewel or with
tapestry wool; and should then have the appearance of a twisted rope.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Feather Stitch._--Vulgarly called "_long and short stitch_," "_long
stitch_" and sometimes "_embroidery stitch_." We propose to restore to
it its ancient title of feather stitch--"_Opus Plumarium_," so called
from its supposed resemblance to the plumage of a bird.

[Illustration: No. 10.--FEATHER STITCH.]

We shall now describe it as used for handwork; and later (at page 37),
as worked in a frame. These two modes differ very little in
appearance, as the principle is the same, namely, that the stitches
are of varying length, and are worked into and between each other,
adapting themselves to the form of the design, but in handwork the
needle is kept on the surface of the material.

Feather Stitch is generally used for embroidering flowers, whether
natural or conventional.

In working the petal of a flower (such as we have chosen for our
illustration), the outer part is first worked in with stitches which
form a close, even edge on the outline, but a broken one towards the
centre of the petal, being alternately long and short. These edging
stitches resemble satin stitch in so far that the same amount of
crewel or silk appears on the under, as on the upper side of the work:
they must slope towards the narrow part of the petal.

The next stitches are somewhat like an irregular "stem," inasmuch as
they are longer on the surface than on the under side, and are worked
in between the uneven lengths of the edging stitches so as to blend
with them. The petal is then filled up by other stitches, which start
from the centre, and are carried between those already worked.

When the petal is finished, the rows of stitches should be so merged
in each other that they cannot be distinguished, and when shading is
used, the colours should appear to melt into each other.

In serrated leaves, such as hawthorn or virginia creeper, the edging
stitches follow the broken outline of the leaf instead of forming an
even outer edge.

It is necessary to master thoroughly this most important stitch, but
practice only can make the worker perfect.

The work should always be started by running the thread a little way
in front of the embroidery. Knots should never be used except in rare
cases, when it is impossible to avoid them. The thread should always
be finished off on the surface of the work, never at the back, where
there should be no needless waste of material. No untidy ends or knots
should ever appear there; in fact, the wrong side should be quite as
neat as the right. It is a mistake to suppose that pasting will ever
do away with the evil effects of careless work, or will steady
embroidery which has been commenced with knots, and finished with
loose ends at the back.

The stitches vary constantly according to their application, and good
embroiderers differ in their manner of using them: some preferring to
carry the thread back towards the centre of the petal, on the surface
of the work, so as to avoid waste of material; others making their
stitches as in satin stitch--the same on both sides, but these details
may be left to the intelligence and taste of the worker, who should
never be afraid of trying experiments, or working out new ideas.

Nor should she ever fear to unpick her work; for only by experiment
can she succeed in finding the best combinations, and, one little
piece ill done, will be sufficient to spoil her whole embroidery, as
no touching-up can afterwards improve it.

       *       *       *       *       *

We have now named the principal stitches used in hand embroidery,
whether to be executed in crewel or silk.

There are, however, numberless other stitches used in crewel
embroidery: such as ordinary stitching, like that used in plain
needlework, in which many designs were formerly traced on quilted
backgrounds--others, again, are many of them lace stitches, or forms
of herringbone, and are used for filling in the foliage of large
conventional floriated designs, such as we are accustomed to see in
the English crewel work of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, on
a twilled cotton material, resembling our modern Bolton sheeting.

It would be impossible to describe or even enumerate them all; as
varieties may be constantly invented by an ingenious worker to enrich
her design, and in lace work there are already 100 named stitches,
which occasionally are used in decorative embroidery. Most of these,
if required, can be shown as taught at the Royal School of
Art-Needlework, and are illustrated by samplers.





Before proceeding to describe the various stitches used in frame
embroidery, we will say a few words as to the frame itself, the manner
of stretching the material in it, and the best and least fatiguing
method of working at it.

The essential parts of an embroidery frame are: first, the bars, which
have stout webbing nailed along them, and mortice holes at the ends;
second, the stretchers, which are usually flat pieces of wood,
furnished with holes at the ends to allow of their being fastened by
metal pegs into the mortice holes of the bars when the work is

In some cases the stretchers are fastened into the bars by strong iron
screws, which are held by nuts.


In choosing a frame for a piece of embroidery we must see that the
webbing attached to the sides of the bar is long enough to take the
work in one direction. Begin by sewing the edge of the material
closely with strong linen thread on to this webbing. If the work is
too long to be put into the frame at one time (as in the case of
borders for curtains, table-covers, &c.), all but the portion about to
be worked should be rolled round one bar of the frame, putting silver
paper and a piece of wadding between the material and the wood, so as
to prevent its being marked.

The stretchers should then be put in and secured with the metal pegs.

A piece of the webbing having been previously stitched on to the sides
of the material, it should now be braced with twine by means of a
packing needle, passing the string over the stretchers between each
stitch taken in the webbing, and, finally, drawing up the bracing
until the material is strained evenly and tightly in the frame. If the
fabric is one which stretches easily, the bracings should not be drawn
too tightly.

For small pieces of work a deal hand-frame, morticed at the corners,
will suffice, and this may be rested on the table before the worker,
being held in its position by two heavy leaden weights, covered with
leather or baize, in order to prevent them from slipping. It should be
raised off the table to a convenient height, thus saving the worker
from stooping over her frame, which tires the eyes, and causes the
blood to flow to the head.

There is no doubt that a well-made standing-frame is a great
convenience, as its position need not be disturbed, and it can be
easily covered up and put aside when not in use. It requires, however,
to be very well made, and should, if possible, be of oak or mahogany,
or it will warp and get out of order. It must also be well weighted
to keep it steady.

For a large piece of work it is necessary to have a long heavy frame
with wooden trestles, on which to rest it. The trestles should be made
so as to enable the frame to be raised or lowered at will.

A new frame has recently been invented and is sold by the Royal
School, which, being made with hinges and small upright pins, holds
the ends of the material firmly, so that it can be rolled round and
round the bar of the frame without the trouble of sewing it on to the

When a frame is not in use, care should be taken that it does not
become warped from being kept in too dry or too hot a place, as it is
then difficult to frame the work satisfactorily.

It will be found useful to have a small basket, lined with holland or
silk, fastened to the side of the frame, to hold the silks, thimbles,
scissors, &c., needed for the work. Two thimbles should be used, one
on each hand, and the best are old silver or gold ones, with all the
roughness worn off, or ivory or vulcanite.

The worker ought to wear a large apron with a bib to save her dress,
and a pair of linen sleeves to prevent the cuffs from fraying or
soiling her work.

Surgeon's bent scissors are useful for frame embroidery, but they are
not necessary, as ordinary sharp-pointed scissors will answer every

When silk, satin, or velvet is not strong enough to bear the strain of
framing and embroidering, it must be backed with a fine cotton or
linen lining. The "backing" in this case is first framed, as described
above, and the velvet or satin must then be laid on it, and first
fastened down with pins; then sewn down with herringbone stitch,
taking care that it is kept perfectly even with the thread of the
"backing," and not allowed to wrinkle or blister.

It is most important that a worker should learn to use equally both
hands, keeping the right hand above the frame till the arm is tired,
then letting the left take its place while the right goes below.

A cover should be made large enough to envelop both the upper and
under portions of the work, and to be fastened down to the sides, so
as to protect it from dust when it is not being used, and during work
it should be kept over the portion of the embroidery not actually in

Lastly, a good light should be chosen, so as not to try the eyes.

Many materials can only be embroidered in a frame, and most work is
best so done. A greater variety of stitches is possible, and on the
stretched flat surface the worker can see the whole picture at once,
and judge of the effect of the colours and shading as she carries out
the design. It is the difference between drawing on stretched or
crumpled paper.





_Feather Stitch._--In framework, as in handwork, we restore the
ancient name of _Feather work_ or stitch--_Opus Plumarium_. We have
already said that it was so-called from its likeness to the plumage of
a bird.

This comes from the even lie of the stitches, which fit into and
appear to overlap each other, presenting thus a marked contrast to the
granulated effect of tent stitches, and the long ridges of the _Opus
Anglicum_, having no hard lines as in stem stitch, or flat surfaces as
in satin stitch.

Feather stitch, when worked in a frame, is exactly the same as that
worked in the hand, except that it is more even and smooth. The needle
is taken backwards and forwards through the material in stitches of
varying lengths; the next row always fitting into the vacant spaces
and projecting beyond them, so as to prepare for the following row.

Every possible gradation of colour can be effected in this way, and
it applies to every form of design--floral or arabesque. Natural
flowers have mostly been worked in this stitch.

       *       *       *       *       *

A skilful embroiderer will be careful not to waste more silk than is
absolutely necessary on the back of the work, while, at the same time,
she will not sacrifice the artistic effect by being too sparing of her
back stitches.




This name is properly applied to all forms of embroidery in which the
threads of crewel, silk, or gold are laid on the surface, and stitched
on to it by threads coming from the back of the material. Under this
head may be classed as varieties the ordinary "laid backgrounds,"
"diaper couchings," "brick stitch," "basket stitch," and the various
forms of stuffed couchings which are found in ancient embroideries.
Couching outlines are usually thick strands of double crewel, tapestry
wool, filoselle, cord, or narrow ribbon laid down and stitched at
regular intervals by threads crossing the couching line at right
angles. They are used for coarse outline work, or for finishing the
edges of appliqué.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Plain Couching_, or "_Laid Embroidery_."--The threads are first laid
evenly and straight from side to side of the space to be filled in,
whether in the direction of warp or woof depends on the pattern; the
needle being passed through to the back, and brought up again not
quite close, but at a sufficient distance to allow of an intermediate
stitch being taken backwards; thus the threads would be laid
alternately first, third, second, fourth, and so on. This gives a
better purchase at each end than if they were laid consecutively in a
straight line. If the line slants much, it is not necessary to
alternate the rows. When the layer is complete, threads of metal, or
of the same or different colour and texture, are laid across at
regular intervals, and are fixed down by stitches from the back.

[Illustration: No. 11.--PLAIN COUCHING.]

The beauty of this work depends upon its regularity.

This kind of embroidery, which we find amongst the old Spanish,
Cretan, and Italian specimens, is very useful where broad, flat
effects without shading are required; but unless it is very closely
stitched down, it is not durable if there is any risk of its being
exposed to rough usage. It is possible to obtain very fine effects of
colour in this style of work, as was seen in the old Venetian curtains
transferred and copied for Louisa, Lady Ashburton. These were shown at
the time of the Exhibition of Ancient Needlework at the School in

Ancient embroidery can be beautifully restored by grounding in "laid
work," instead of transferring it where the ground is frayed, and the
work is worthy of preservation. It must be stretched on a new backing,
the frayed material carefully cut away, and the new ground couched as
we have described.

In other varieties of couching, under which come the many forms of
diapering, the threads are "laid" in the same manner as for ordinary
couching; but in place of laying couching lines across these, the
threads of the first layer are simply stitched down from the back,
frequently with threads of another colour.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Net-patterned Couching._--The fastening stitches are placed
diagonally instead of at right angles, forming a network, and are kept
in place by a cross-stitch at each intersection.

This style of couching was commonly used as a ground in ecclesiastical
work of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Brick Stitch._--The threads are laid down two together, and are
stitched across at regular intervals. The next two threads are then
placed together by the side, the fastening stitches being taken at the
same distance from each other, but so as to occur exactly between the
previous couplings. Thus giving the effect of brickwork.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Diaper Couchings._--By varying the position of the fastening stitches
different patterns may be produced, such as diagonal crossings,
diamonds, zigzags, curves, &c.


They are properly all gold stitches; but purse silk, thin cord, or
even untwisted silk may be used.

A wonderful example of the many varieties of diapering is to be seen
in the South Kensington Museum, No. 689. It is modern Belgian work,
executed for the Paris Exhibition of 1867. As a specimen of fine and
beautiful diapering in gold, this could scarcely be surpassed.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Basket Stitch_ is one of the richest and most ornamental of these
ancient modes of couching. Rows of "stuffing," manufactured in the
form of soft cotton cord, are laid across the pattern and firmly
secured. Across these are placed gold threads, two at a time, and
these are stitched down over each two rows of stuffing. The two gold
threads are turned at the edge of the pattern, and brought back close
to the last, and fastened in the same way. Three double rows of gold
may be stitched over the same two rows of stuffing.

The next three rows must be treated as brick stitch, and fastened
exactly between the previous stitchings, and so on, until the whole
space to be worked is closely covered with what appears to be a golden

Strong silk must be used for the stitching.

[Illustration: No. 13.--BASKET STITCH.]

The Spanish School of Embroidery has always been famed for its
excellence in this style, and has never lost the art. The
"Embroiderers of the King," as they are called, still turn out
splendid specimens of this heavy and elaborate work, which are used
for the gorgeous trappings of the horses of the nobility on gala days
and state occasions.

A beautiful specimen was exhibited at the Royal School of
Art-Needlework, in 1878, by the Countess Brownlow, of an
altar-hanging, entirely worked in basket stitch, in gold on white
satin, and a modern example is still to be seen at the School in a
large counterpane, which was worked for the Philadelphia Exhibition
from an ancient one also belonging to Lady Brownlow.

The Spanish embroiderers used these forms of couching over stuffing
with coloured silks as well as gold, and produced wonderfully rich
effects. One quilt exhibited by Mrs. Alfred Morrison in 1878 was a
marvel of colouring and workmanship.

Basket stitch is mostly used now for church embroidery, or for small
articles of luxury, such as ornamental pockets, caskets, &c.

Diapering is generally employed in the drapery of small figures, and
in ecclesiastical work.

       *       *       *       *       *

Many fabrics are manufactured in imitation of the older diapered
backgrounds, and are largely used to replace them. Among these are the
material known as silk brocatine, and several kinds of cloth of gold
mentioned in our list of materials.




_Cushion Stitch_--the ancient _Opus Pulvinarium_ of the Middle Ages,
likewise called "Cross Stitch"--may lay claim to be one of the most
ancient known in embroidery. There have been many varieties, but the
principle is the same in all. It is worked on and through canvas, of
which the threads, as in tapestry, regulate the stitches.

After six centuries of popularity it finally died out within the last
few years as "Berlin wool work;" but will doubtless be revived again
in some form after a time, as being well fitted for covering furniture
on account of its firmness and durability.

In Germany and Russia it is still much used for embroidering
conventional designs on linen; and the beautiful Cretan and Persian
work of which so much has lately been in the market, is executed in
this style.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Tent Stitch_ may be placed first under this class, in which the
thread coming from beneath is carried over a single cross of the warp
and woof of the canvas.

[Illustration: No. 14.--TENT STITCH.]

       *       *       *       *       *

_Simple Cross Stitch._--The worsted or silk is brought up again to the
surface, one thread to the left of the spot where the needle was
inserted, and is crossed over the first or "tent" stitch, forming a
regular and even cross on the surface.

[Illustration: No. 15.--SIMPLE CROSS STITCH.]

       *       *       *       *       *

_Persian Cross Stitch._--The peculiarity of this stitch is that in the
first instance the silk or worsted is carried across two threads of
the canvas ground, and is brought up in the intermediate space. It is
then crossed over the latter half of the original stitch, and a fresh
start is made.

[Illustration: No. 16.--PERSIAN CROSS STITCH.]

Much of the beauty of Persian embroidery is produced by the
irregularity of the crossing; the stitches being taken in masses, in
any direction that seems most suitable to the design in hand, instead
of being placed in regular rows, with the stitches all sloping in one
direction, as is the case with the modern "Berlin work," this, with
the happy choice of colours for which the Persians are so justly
famous, produces a singular richness of effect.

Allied to these canvas stitches and having their origin in them, are
the numerous forms of groundings, which are now worked on coarse
linens, or in fact on any fabric; and have sometimes, although
incorrectly, been called darning stitches, probably from their
resemblance to the patterns which are found on samplers, for darning
stockings, old table linen, &c. &c. Almost any pattern can be produced
in this style of embroidery, simply by varying the relative length of
the stitches.

Following the nomenclature of the committee which named and catalogued
the specimens of ancient needlework exhibited in the South Kensington
Museum in 1872, we have classed all the varieties of these grounding
stitches under the name of Cushion stitch.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Cushion Stitches_ are taken as in laid embroidery, so as to leave all
the silk and crewel on the surface, and only a single thread of the
ground is taken up; but in place of lying in long lines, from end to
end of the material, they are of even length, and are taken in a
pattern, such as a waved line or zigzag; so that when finished the
ground presents the appearance of a woven fabric.

[Illustration: No. 17.--CUSHION STITCH.]

We give an illustration of one variety of cushion stitch, which may
either be worked as described here, or in the hand, as in the woodcut.

A good modern example of this background was exhibited in the School,
on a bed-hanging, worked for the Honourable Mrs. Percy Wyndham, from a
design by Mr. W. Morris. In the Exhibition of Ancient Needlework last
year were many beautiful specimens: notably one enormous wall-hanging
of Italian seventeenth-century work, lent by Earl Spencer. Many of the
fabrics known as "Tapestries" are woven imitations of these grounds,
and carry embroidery so perfectly, that on the whole, except for small
pieces, it seems a waste of hand-labour to work them in, as the effect
is not very far removed from that of woven material, while the expense
is, of course, very much greater.

The ancient specimens of this stitch are worked on a coarse canvas,
differing greatly from that which was recently used for Berlin wool

It cannot now be obtained except by having it especially made to
order. It has been replaced by a coarse hand-woven linen for the use
of the School, but the ancient canvas is vastly superior, as its
looseness makes it easier for the worker to keep her stitches in
regular lines.

In some ancient specimens the design is worked in feather stitch, and
the whole ground in cushion stitch. In others the design is in fine
cross or tent stitch. There are several very beautiful examples of
this kind of embroidery in the South Kensington Museum--Italian, of
the seventeenth century.

A variety of cushion stitch, which we frequently see in old Italian
embroideries, was taught in the Royal School of Art-Needlework by Miss
Burden, and used under her direction in working flesh in some large
figures designed by Mr. Walter Crane for wall decoration, and
exhibited at the Centennial Exhibition at Philadelphia. The stitches
are kept of one uniform length across the design. The next row is
started from half the depth of the preceding stitch and kept of the
same length throughout. Its beauty consists in its perfect regularity.
If worked in the hand, the needle is brought back underneath the
material as in satin stitch; but in the frame all the silk or worsted
can be worked on the surface, with the exception of the small
fastening stitches.

The effect when finished is that of a woven fabric.

It is really more suitable in its original character of a ground
stitch than for working flesh. We have given an illustration of it,
because we are so frequently asked to describe "Burden stitch."

[Illustration: No. 18.--"BURDEN" STITCH.]

This form of cushion stitch worked extremely fine has been used for
flesh in very ancient embroideries, even before the introduction of
the _Opus Anglicanum_, and is found in the works of the Flemish,
German, Italian, and French schools of the fourteenth and fifteenth

It seems to have been worked in a frame on fine canvas, or on a fabric
of very even threads, and the stitches so taken that the same amount
of silk appears on the back as on the surface of the embroidery.

In a toilet cover of ancient Spanish work recently added to the South
Kensington Museum, the design is entirely embroidered in varieties of
_cushion stitch_ in black floss silk upon a white linen ground. It is,
however, extremely rare to see this stitch used in any other way than
as a ground, except in actual canvas work; in which we often see
varieties of it used to fill in portions of the design, while another
stitch will be devoted entirely to the grounding.

These stitches were often executed on an open net.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Stem Stitch_ is used in frame embroidery, and does not differ in any
way from that described at page 20, under "handwork," except that the
needle is of course worked through the material with both hands, as is
the case in all frame work.

The same may be said of "split stitch;" but this is more frequently
(because more easily) worked in a frame than done in the hand.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Japanese Stitch_ is a modification of stem, but its peculiarity
consists in the worker taking very long stitches, and then bringing
the needle back to within a short distance of the first
starting-place; so that they may be in even parallel lines, advancing
by gradation from left to right. It is principally used for working
water or ground in a landscape.

[Illustration: No. 19.]

       *       *       *       *       *

_Tambour Work_ has fallen into disuse, but was greatly admired when
our grandmothers in the last century sprigged Indian muslins or silks
with coloured flowers for dresses, and copied or adapted Indian
designs on fine linen coverlets. These were very refined, but no more
effective than a good chintz. There are exquisite specimens of the
stitch to be seen in most English homes, and in France it was in vogue
in the days of Marie Antoinette. Its use is now almost confined to
the manufacture of what is known as Irish or Limerick lace, which is
made on net in the old tambour frames, and with a tambour or crochet
hook. The frame is formed of two rings of wood or iron, made to fit
loosely one within the other. Both rings are covered with baize or
flannel wound round them till the inner one can only just be passed
through the outer. The fabric to be embroidered is placed over the
smaller hoop, and the other is pressed down over it and firmly fixed
with a screw. A small wooden frame of this description is universally
used in Ireland for white embroidery on linen or muslin. In tambour
work the thread is kept below the frame and guided by the left hand,
while the hook or crochet needle is passed from the surface through
the fabric, and brings up a loop of the thread through the preceding
stitch, and the needle again inserted, forming thus a close chain on
the surface of the work.

The difficulty of working chain stitch in a frame probably led to the
introduction of a hook for this class of embroidery.

       *       *       *       *       *

Perhaps we ought not to omit all mention of the _Opus Anglicum_ or
_Anglicanum_ (English work), though it is strictly ecclesiastical, and
therefore does not enter into our province.

Dr. Rock[1] and other authorities agree in thinking that the
distinctive feature of this style, which was introduced about the end
of the thirteenth century, was a new way of working the flesh in
subjects containing figures.

Instead of the faces being worked in rows of straight stitches (like
that described as Burden stitch on page 50) as we see in the old
Flemish, German, and Italian work of the same period, the English
embroiderers invented a new stitch, which they commenced in the centre
of the cheek and worked round and round--gradually letting the lines
fall into outer circles of ordinary feather stitch.

Having thus prepared an elastic surface, they proceeded to model the
forms and make lights and shadows by pressing the work into hollows,
with small heated metal balls, the work being probably damped as a
preparation for this process. So skilfully did they carry out their
intention, that the effect is still the same after the lapse of five
centuries. We must unwillingly add that, though much appreciated in
the thirteenth century, the effect is rather curious and quaint than

The Syon cope in the Kensington Museum, of the thirteenth century, is
a fine specimen of this attempt to give the effect of bas-relief to
the sacred subjects depicted. The whole cope shows how various were
the stitches worked at that period. On examination with a microscope,
the flesh stitch appears to be merely a fine split stitch worked
spirally, as we now work fruit.


[1] See Dr. Rock's preface to his "Descriptive Catalogue of TEXTILE
FABRICS" in the Kensington Museum.



Decorative cut work is of infinite variety, but may be divided into
two groups, "inlaid appliqué" and "onlaid appliqué."

       *       *       *       *       *

"_Inlaid_" appliqué consists in tracing the same pattern on two
different fabrics, say a gold cloth and a crimson velvet; then cutting
both out carefully, and inlaying the gold flowers into the crimson
velvet ground, and the crimson flowers into the gold ground.

This kind of work may be seen constantly in Italian rooms of the
seventeenth century, and the alternate breadths of crimson and gold
give a very fine effect as of pilasters, and in general are enriched
by a valance applied at the top, and a plain border at the bottom.

The _inlaid_ part is sewn down with thread, and covered with cord or
couchings of floss silk. Sometimes narrow ribbons or fine strips of
cut silk are stitched over the edges to keep them down flat.

       *       *       *       *       *

"_Onlaid_ appliqué" is done by cutting out the pattern in one or many
coloured materials, and laying it down on an intact ground of another
material. Parts are often shaded with a brush, high lights and details
worked in with stitches of silk, and sometimes whole flowers or
figures are embroidered, cut out, and couched down. This sort of work
is extremely amusing, and gives scope to much play of fancy and
ingenuity, and when artistically composed it is sometimes very

Another style of "onlaid appliqué" is only worked in solid outlines,
laid down in ribbon or cord, sometimes in both. This was much in vogue
in the time of Queen Anne, and for a hundred years after.

[Illustration: No. 20.]

The ribbon, very soft and thick, sometimes figured, sometimes plain,
was manufactured with a stout thread on each side, which could be
drawn, and so regulate the ribbon and enable it to follow the flow of
the pattern.

The German, French, and Italians often enriched this style of work
with a flower, embroidered and applied thrown in here and there. Very
small fringes also were introduced into the pattern, or arabesqued.

"Cut work," like the appellation "Feather stitch," has a totally
different meaning when it is given to white embroidery, and it has
nothing to do with appliqué, but takes its name from the fact that the
pattern is mostly cut or punched out, and then edged with button-hole
or plain overlaid stitch.

In working appliqué it is best, although not absolutely necessary, to
have the design traced on the material to be used as a ground, which
must then be framed as for ordinary embroidery. A copy of the design
must be made on tracing-paper, and the outlines carefully pricked out
with a needle or pin, laying the paper on several folds of flannel or
cloth for greater convenience in pricking.

A pad, made of a long strip of flannel about four inches wide, rolled
very tightly, must be made ready, and some pounce made of about equal
quantities of finely powdered charcoal and pipe-clay. The leaf or
scroll which is wanted for the work must now be selected, and the
pricked design laid face downwards on the fabric which is to be
applied. The flannel pad must be dipped in the pounce and rubbed well
into the outlines of the pricked design, which must be held firmly in
its place with the left hand. On lifting the tracing-paper, the design
will be found to be marked out on the material distinctly enough for
it to be cut out with a sharp pair of scissors. The pounce can
afterwards be dusted off.

The leaf or scroll having been thus cut out must be fastened in its
place on the design with small pins, and then carefully sewn down. The
edges are then finished off by stitches of embroidery or by a couching
line (_see_ page 39). The stems are frequently worked in with stem
stitching or couching, and the leaves enriched by large veinings of
crewel or silk work, or in conventional designs, with some of the many
varieties of herringboning.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Gold Embroidery_ on velvet or satin grounds requires to be worked on
a strong even linen, and then cut out and applied in the same manner
as ordinary appliqué. Where a particularly rich and raised effect is
required any embroidery may be treated in this manner. It is of course
more troublesome, but quite repays the labour spent upon it by the
increased beauty of the work.

The transfer of old embroideries on to a new ground is usually done by
appliqué, although we have already described a better process at page

In transferring old needlework it is necessary to cut away the ground
close to the edge of the embroidery. It is then placed on the new
material, which has been previously framed, and the outline tacked
down. The best way of finishing is then to work in the edges with
silks _dyed exactly to match_ the colours in the old work. If properly
done, it is impossible to discover which are old and which new
stitches, and only by examining the back, that the work has been
transferred at all.

We used the words "_dyed to match_" advisedly, as it is impossible
otherwise to procure new silks which will correspond with the old.

Embroidery transferred in this manner is as good as it was in its
first days, and in many cases is much better, for time often has the
same mellowing and beautifying effect in embroideries as in paintings.

A less expensive, but also a much less charming, method is to edge
the old embroidery after applying it to the new ground with a cord or
line of couching.

With this treatment it is, however, always easy to perceive that the
work has been transferred.

For almost all kinds of appliqué it is necessary to back the material;
and it is done in this manner:--

A piece of thin cotton or linen fabric is stretched tightly on to a
board with tacks or drawing-pins. It is then covered smoothly, and
completely, with paste. The wrong side of the velvet, satin, serge, or
whatever is to be used in the work, is then pressed firmly down on the
pasted surface with the hands, and then left to dry.

In giving the foregoing account of the most typical stitches, we hope
we have succeeded in showing the principle on which each should be
worked. They form the basis of all embroidery, and their numerous
modifications cannot be fully discussed in the limit we have
prescribed to ourselves. It is sufficient to observe that the
instruction we have tried to impart is that which it is absolutely
necessary for the needleworker to master thoroughly before she
attempts to cope with the artistic element of her work. That it is a
creative art is undoubted, for no two pieces of embroidery are alike
unless executed by the same hand, and from the same design.

For the advanced artist there is a store of instruction in the fine
collection at South Kensington, which, seen by the light of Dr. Rock's
invaluable "Catalogue of Textile Fabrics," is an education in itself,
of which the ethnological as well as the artistic interest cannot be
over-estimated, and it is within the reach of all who can find time to
bestow upon it.


Always avoid using an iron to embroidery. It flattens the work, and is
apt to injure the colour. For embroidery on linen, unless very badly
done, it will be found quite sufficient to stretch the work as tightly
as possible with white tacks or drawing-pins on a clean board, and
damp it evenly with a sponge. Leave it until quite dry, and then
unfasten it, and, if necessary, comb out the fringe. If it is new
work, it should not be fringed until after it has been stretched.

For crewel work on cloth or serge, it is sometimes necessary to rub a
little shoemaker's paste on to the back of the embroidery, while it is
tightly stretched. When pasting can be avoided, it is always better to
do without it; but it serves to steady the work in some cases, and
makes it wear better. Unless it is absolutely necessary, it is better
not to paste the back of screen panels, whatever may be the materials
on which they are worked; but more especially satin or velvet, as it
interferes with the straining of the work by the cabinet-maker.

       *       *       *       *       *

We give a recipe for EMBROIDERY PASTE, which is said to be
excellent:--Three and a half spoonfuls of flour, and as much powdered
resin as will lie on a half-penny. Mix these well and smoothly with
half a pint of water, and pour it into an iron saucepan. Put in one
teaspoonful of essence of cloves, and go on stirring till it boils.
Let it boil for five minutes, and turn it into a gallipot to cool.

    N.B.--Let the gallipot have in it a muslin bag: the
    water can then be drained out from time to time, and the
    paste will be much better.


Good crewels will always wash or clean without injury; but the cheap
and inferior worsteds will not do so. Ordinary crewel work on linen
may be washed at home, by plunging it into a lather made by water in
which bran has been boiled, or even with simple soap-suds, so long as
no soda or washing-powder is used. It should be carefully rinsed
without wringing, and hung up to dry. When almost dry, it may be
stretched out with drawing-pins on a board, and will not require

Embroidery on cloth or serge may often be cleaned with benzoline,
applied with a piece of clean flannel; but in any case, where a piece
of work is much soiled, or in the case of fine d'oyleys, it is safer
to send it to the cleaner's.

       *       *       *       *       *

    _Messrs. Pullar and Son, Perth Dye Works, are very
    successful in cleaning all kinds of embroidery without
    injuring it._

    _In many cases it may be well dyed--the silk in which
    the design is worked always showing a different shade
    from the ground._







No. 1.--DESIGN FOR WALL-PANEL. By Mr. E. Burne-Jones.

    Worked in outline on neutral-tinted hand-woven linen in
    brown crewel. This style of embroidery is very suitable
    for internal decoration, where a good broad effect is
    required without a large amount of labour. A frieze or
    dado, or complete panelling of a room, may be worked in
    this way at a comparatively small cost.

Representing the Four Elements.

    Embroidered in crewels on a silk ground of dead gold
    colour partly outlined.

No. 3.--DESIGN FOR QUILT OR TABLE COVER. By Mr. George Aitchison.

    A border of sunflowers and pomegranates, with powderings
    of the same for the centre.

    This has been embroidered on cream-coloured satin de
    chine in solid crewel work, with charming effect, both
    for a counterpane and curtains.


    To be worked in outline and solid embroidery, in silk or
    filoselle, on satin de chine.

No. 5.--DESIGN FOR QUILT OR COUVRE-PIED. By Mr. Fairfax Wade. To
introduce squares of Greek or guipure lace.

    Worked in golden shades of silk on linen, lined with
    silk of the same colour. The embroidery is partly solid
    and partly outline, very fine and delicate.


    Worked on hand-woven linen in two shades of
    gold-coloured silks. Outline.


    Worked in two shades of blue silk on hand-woven linen or
    satin de chine.

No. 8.--DESIGN FOR APPLIQUÉ. By Mr. Fairfax Wade.

Nos. 9 and 10.--DESIGNS FOR CHAIR-SEATS OR CUSHIONS. By Miss Jekyll.
Periwinkle and Iris.

No. 11.--DESIGN FOR BORDER. By Miss Webster. To be worked in outline
in silk or crewel.

Miss Burnside, of the R.S.A.N.

No. 13.--TABLE BORDER. Designed by Mr. Fairfax Wade. Conventional
Buttercup. To be worked either solid or in outline.

No. 14.--TABLE BORDER. Designed by Mr. Walter Crane. For solid
embroidery in crewel or silk.

No. 15.--TABLE BORDER. Designed by Mr. Walter Crane. For solid
embroidery in crewel or silk.

No. 16.--BORDER. Designed by Miss Mary Herbert, R.S.A.N. For crewel or
silk embroidery, either in outline or solid.

No. 17.--TWO PANELS. Designed by Rev. Selwyn Image. Representing Juno
and Minerva.

No. 18.--TWO PANELS. Designed by Rev. Selwyn Image. Representing Venus
and Proserpine. To be worked in outline on linen, as No. 1, or in
coloured silks on a groundwork of satin de chine.

No. 19.--WALL HANGING. Designed by Mr. W. Morris. To be worked on
linen in outline.

No. 20.--WALL HANGING. Designed by Mr. W. Morris. Worked on linen.
Background in Silk Cushion Stitch.

No. 21.--BORDER FOR APPLIQUÉ. Copied from Ancient Italian work.

No. 22.--ITALIAN DESIGN. A Specimen. Showing the application of
transposed Appliqué.

[Illustration: 1. DESIGN FOR WALL PANEL. _By E. Burne-Jones._]

[Illustration: 2. DESIGN FOR WALL PANEL. _By Walter Crane._]

[Illustration: 3. DESIGN FOR A QUILT OR TABLE COVER. _By George

Vincent Brooks Day & Son, Lith.]

[Illustration: 4. DESIGN FOR WALL PANEL OR CURTAIN. _By Fairfax

[Illustration: 5. DESIGN FOR A QUILT OR COUVRE-PIED. _By Fairfax

[Illustration: 6. DESIGN FOR A SOFA-BACK COVER. _By William Morris._]

George Aitchison._

Vincent Brooks Day & Son, Lith.]

[Illustration: 8. DESIGN FOR APPLIQUÉ. _By Fairfax Wade._]

IRIS.) _By Miss Jekyll._

Vincent Brooks Day & Son, Lith.]

[Illustration: 11. DESIGN FOR A BORDER. _By Miss Webster._

Vincent Brooks Day & Son, Lith.]

_By Miss Burnside._]

[Illustration: DESIGNS FOR TABLE BORDERS. _No. 13 by Fairfax Wade; 14
and 15 by Walter Crane; 16 by Mary Herbert._

Vincent Brooks Day & Son, Lith.]

_By the Rev. Selwyn Image._]

"PROSERPINE." _By the Rev. Selwyn Image._]

[Illustration: 19. DESIGN FOR WALL-HANGING. _By William Morris._]

[Illustration: 20. DESIGN FOR WALL-HANGING. _By William Morris._

Vincent Brooks Day & Son, Lith.]

[Illustration: 21. DESIGN FOR BORDER FOR APPLIQUÉ. _From Ancient
Italian Work._

Vincent Brooks Day & Son, Lith.]

[Illustration: 22. ITALIAN DESIGN. _Showing the application of
transposed Appliqué._

Vincent Brooks Day & Son, Lith.]


Royal School of Art-Needlework.

_Incorporated under "The Companies' Acts, 1862 and 1867," by licence
of the Board of Trade, granted under 30 and 31 Vic., c. 131, sec. 23._

Share Capital, £10,000, in 1000 Shares of £10 each. Debenture Capital,
£10,000, to be issued in Debentures of £50 each.




    _Princess of Great Britain and Ireland._



Managing Committee.

    (_With power to add to their number._)

Honorary Members of the Managing Committee.


Finance Committee.



    LONDON AND COUNTY BANK, Albert Gate Branch.


    MESSRS. TRINDERS & CURTIS-HAYWARD, 4, Bishopsgate Street
    Within, E.C.




The School was founded in 1872, under the Presidency of H.R.H. the
Princess Christian of Schleswig-Holstein, for the twofold purpose of
supplying suitable employment for Gentlewomen and restoring Ornamental
Needlework to the high place it once held among the decorative arts.

It was first established, under the title of School of Art-Needlework,
in Sloane Street; but in 1875 was removed to the present premises in
the Exhibition Road, and Her Majesty the Queen was graciously pleased
to grant to it the prefix of "Royal."

The Royal School of Art-Needlework exhibited at the Centennial
Exhibition of Philadelphia, 1876, and received a Certificate of
Award--medals not being granted to institutions or corporate bodies. A
Silver Medal was also granted by the Jurors of the International
Exhibition, Paris, 1878, for embroideries exhibited there.

The result of seven years' experience of the working of the School has
shown that the objects for which it was formed are appreciated by the
public, and has justified its establishment on a permanent basis. This
has accordingly been effected under a special licence from the Board
of Trade, granted under authority of an Act of Parliament which
authorizes the incorporation of associations _not_ constituted for
purposes of profit.

The ultimate profits of the Association, after payment of all
Debentures, are to be applied to such charitable or other purposes as
the Association may from time to time determine, not being
inconsistent with the provisions of the Memorandum of Association,
which require that the Shareholders shall not take any personal profit
out of the Association.

The government of the School is vested in:

    First.--A President, Vice-President, and General

    Second.--A Managing Committee to be selected from the
    General Council, except as to Honorary Members to be
    nominated by the Managing Committee.

    Third.--A Finance Committee, of whom a majority are to
    be elected by the Shareholders, and the remainder
    nominated by the Managing Committee. The sanction of
    this Committee is required for all expenditure.

Agencies have now been opened in Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds,
Norwich, Birmingham and Glasgow; and a member of the staff has been
sent out to take charge of the School of Art-Needlework in

The Show Rooms are open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Summer, and to 5
p.m. in Winter, and close on Saturdays at 2 p.m.

All letters must be addressed "The Secretary."

Lists of designs, prices of prepared and finished work, terms for
lessons, and addresses of Provincial Agents, may be obtained by
writing to the Secretary.

A Branch School for Scotland has now been opened in Glasgow. Show
Rooms at 108, St. Vincent Street.





Work can be obtained from the ROYAL SCHOOL OF ART-NEEDLEWORK having a
design traced, a portion of the embroidery commenced, and sufficient
materials for finishing. Ladies' own materials will be traced and
prepared for working if desired. Dresses must be cut out and tacked
together before being sent to the School, and lines marked on the
material to show where the design is to be placed.

When an order for prepared work is executed exactly by the directions
given, or when the selection of Design or Colouring is left to the
School, _the work cannot be exchanged or taken back_.

The materials supplied with the work are considered more than
sufficient to finish it, and if more are required afterwards they must
be purchased separately.

A few specimen prices are quoted, but _no estimates can be given for
prepared work_, except in cases of large orders where a great quantity
of material is supplied.

_All Designs supplied are Copyright of the Royal School of
Art-Needlework, and must not be made use of for purposes of sale._

Designs on paper are not supplied under any circumstances, nor can
work be sent out on approbation.

All work supplied is stamped with the monogram of the ROYAL SCHOOL OF
ART-NEEDLEWORK, as above, in addition to the letters P. W.

    N.B.--_An extra charge is made for all designs not
    ordinarily used for Prepared Work._


TABLE COVERS, on Diagonal, from £1 1s. to £5 5s.

  "      "    Serge         "   18s. to £3 3s.

LINEN TABLE COVERS, yard square, 14s. 6d. to £1 10s.

CHAIR BACK COVERS, Linen, 7s. 6d. to £1 1s.

BORDERS, on Linen, suitable for Table Covers or Dresses, from 5s. per

BORDERS, on Serge or Diagonal, suitable for Table Covers or Dresses,
from 7s. per yard.

BORDERS, on Serge or Diagonal, suitable for Curtains, Chimney
Valances, &c., from 13s. per yard.

    N.B.--_If several yards are ordered of one pattern the
    price is lower._

BANNER SCREENS, Linen (various), 8s. 6d. to 15s. 6d.

   "      "     Diagonal, 12s. 6d. to £2 2s.

BABIES' BLANKETS, from 14s. 6d.

BATH BLANKETS, yard square, 17s. 6d.; yard and a half square, 26s.

CHILDREN'S DRESS, from 18s. to £1 10s.

TENNIS APRONS, from £1 1s.

CUSHIONS, Linen, 7s. 6d. to 12s 6d.; on Diagonal, &c., 10s. 6d. to
£1 1s.

TOILET MATS or D'OYLEY, 8 inches square, from £1 6s. to £3 3s. per

FOLDING SCREENS, on Sailcloth, £1 1s. to £1 10s. per panel.


Crewels are sold at the rate of 8d. per ounce skein, or in
quarter-pound bundles, containing not more than four shades, at 2s. In
quarter-pound bundles, containing selected colours, at 3s.

EMBROIDERY SILKS, at 6s. 6d. per ounce reel, and 3s. 3d. per
half-ounce reel of one shade; or at 8s. per ounce of selected colours.

FILOSELLE, 3s. 6d. per ounce.

NEEDLES, 9d. per packet.

MATERIALS, suitable for embroidery, such as Homespuns, Fancy Linens,
Serge, Diagonal, Utrecht Velvet, Satin de Chine, &c. &c., may be
purchased at the School.






Honeysuckle, Bramble, Poppy, Passion Flower, Taxonia, Wild Rose, Apple
Blossom, Orange with Flowers, Virginia Creeper, Fish and Bulrushes,
Winter Cherry, Corn Flower, Hops, Carnations, Cherry, Daisy Powdered,
Primrose Powdered, Faust Motto, Iris Seed, Japanese, Jessamine,
Lantern Plant, Periwinkle, Potato, Zynia, Tiger Lily, Geranium,
Burrage, Corncockle, Hawthorn, Daffodil, Iris, Love-in-a-Mist, &c.
&c., with many conventional designs.



Love-in-a-Mist, Daisy, Poppy, Honeysuckle, Strawberry, Forget-me-Not,
Flax, Jessamine, Blackberry, Virginia Creeper, Hawthorn, Daffodil,
Cowslip, Cherry, Buttercup, Mountain Ash, Ragged Robin, Potentilla,
Apple Blossom, Strawberry and Blossom, Christmas Rose, &c. &c., also
many conventional designs.


Sunflower, Pomegranate, Passion Flower, Taxonia, Poppy, Lilies,
Magnolia, Orange, Hops, Marguerites, Love-in-a-Mist, Wild Rose,
Arbutus, Chrysanthemum, Iris, Cowslip, Primrose, Apple, &c. &c.

    _The same Designs can be had in Horizontal Borders for
    Chimney Valances, wide Table Borders, and can be adapted
    for any purpose._

    N.B.--The Royal School of Art-Needlework has no Branch
    School nor any Agency in London.

Royal School of Art-Needlework.


    _September, 1878._

The Committee of Management of the ROYAL SCHOOL OF ART-NEEDLEWORK has
now organized Classes for Teaching Ornamental Needlework at their
premises in the Exhibition Road, South Kensington.

These Classes are especially established for the instruction of Ladies
and Children, and include every kind of stitch in Crewel, Silk, and

Ladies who wish to take lessons, or send their Children, are requested
to send their names to the Secretary, who will inform them when to

Each Course will consist of Six Lessons.


                                                     _£  s. d._
    One Person                                        1  4  0
    Two of same Family                                1 16  0
    Three ditto                                       2  8  0



    One Person                                        1 10  0
    Two of same Family                                2  5  0
    Three ditto                                       3  0  0



    One Person                                        2  0  0
    Two of same Family                                3  0  0
    Three ditto                                       4  0  0


    One single Lesson (for 1 hour) on Lesson day      0  7  0
    Ditto                ditto        Special day     0  8  6
    Ditto on Ecclesiastical Work (at any time)        0 10  6

Private Lessons at Home, 10s. 6d. the hour and expenses.

_Special terms for Classes of Twelve and upwards._


CURTAIN BORDERS, on Serge or Diagonal Cloth, from £2 10s. to £10 10s.,
    about 3½ yards long.

DRESS BORDERS, on ditto, from 7s. to 18s. per yard.

  "      "     on House Flannel, from 3s. 6d. to 10s. 6d. per yard.

CURTAIN BORDERS, on Linen, from £1 10s. to £6 6s. each.

TABLE BORDERS, on Linen, from £1 1s. to £2 10s.

CHAIR BACKS, on Linen, from 14s. 6d. to £2 10s.

SOFA BACKS, on Linen and Silk, from £2 2s. to £10.

TABLE COVERS, on Linen, from £1 3s. to £5.

  "      "    Serge, from £1 1s. to £7.

  "      "    Diagonal, from 30s. to £26.

SMALL CHAIR SEATS, on Diagonal, from 13s. to £2 12s.

LARGE   "     "    Serge, from 13s. to £3 3s.

CUSHIONS, made up, from £2 2s. to £5 7s.

CHILDREN'S DRESSES, from £1 1s. to £3 3s.

    "      APRONS, from 12s. 6d. to £1 1s.

CHILDREN'S FRENCH BLOUSES, 18s. 6d. to £2 3s.

LADIES' LAWN TENNIS APRONS, from £1 5s. to £3 10s.

LINEN D'OYLEYS, from £2 7s. to £8 8s. per dozen.

TEA COSIES, on Diagonal, from 16s. 6d.

KETTLEDRUM D'OYLEYS, each 5s. 6d. to 16s. 6d.

SACHETS, with Mat to correspond, on Linen, from £1 6s.

FOLDING SCREENS, from £13 to £100.

CURTAINS, on Serge or Linen, from £10 to £60 per pair.

MANTEL VALANCES, from £2 2s. to £10 10s.

BANNER SCREENS, from £1 10s.

COUNTERPANES, from £6 to £80.

TABLE SCREENS, from £4 4s.

LADIES' ALGERIAN HOODS, from £3 to £10.

FANS, Mounted, from £2 7s. to £20.

CARRIAGE RUGS, from £2 to £10.


   "    on Linen, from £1 5s.

ENVELOPE BOX, on Linen, from £3.


BELLOWS, from £1 17s.

OPERA CLOAKS, from £3 3s.


BATH SLIPPERS, from 6s. 6d. per pair.

WASHSTAND BACKS, from £1 5s.

BLANKET MATS, for Bath, 15s. 6d.


SUNSHADE COVERS, from £3 3s.

PIANO PANELS, from £1 3s.


   "    CLOAKS, from £4 4s.



_P. O. Orders Payable to L. HIGGIN, Exhibition Road. Not more than 18
Stamps received._


_Liverpool_: Messrs. RUMNEY & LOVE, Bold Street.
_Manchester_: Messrs. E. GOODALL & CO., King Street.
_Leeds_: Messrs. MARSH, JONES, & CRIBBS.
_Norwich_: Messrs. ROBERTSON & SONS, Queen Street.
_Glasgow_: Messrs. ALEXANDER & HOWELL, 108, St. Vincent Street.
_Birmingham_: Messrs. MANTON, SONS, & GILBERT.

And for

_America_: Messrs. TORREY, BRIGHT, & CAPEN, Boston.



All information to be obtained at the Show Rooms, 108, St. Vincent

As advertisements have from time to time appeared in various
newspapers offering for sale designs of the Royal School of
Art-Needlework, the Public is requested to note that no designs either
on pricked paper, or in any other form than on commenced work, are, or
ever have been, sold by the School, or supplied to any agent. Further,
that no tracing powder is used in preparing the patterns, or sold for
that purpose. All designs, therefore, offered as those of the Royal
School are either entirely spurious, or are pirated from theirs.


Transcriber's Note

Minor typographic errors in punctuation have been corrected without

Hyphenation has been made consistent in the main body of the text
without note. Please note that the author uses the term 'high light'
rather than the more usual 'highlight'.

The following amendments have been made:

    Page 15--grounds amended to ground--"As ground for
    embroidery it has an excellent effect."

    Page 53--the page reference to Burden stitch has been
    amended from 49 to 50.

    The first 10 captioned illustrations (starting with
    "No. 1.--STEM STITCH") have been made consistent with
    the later illustrations, by the removal of the word
    Illustration and a comma at the beginning of each
    of those captions.

    The two illustrations on page 81 (Plates 11 and 12) were
    printed in reverse order in the original. The captions
    have been amended to the correct numeric order in this

Currency indicators (s. and d.) were printed in italics in the original
text. The convention has not been retained in this e-text.

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