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Vestment History from Around the Web

The Flickr photo stream might give a clue on how Ecclesiastical vestments are prepared for large events when hundreds of chasuble, mitres, dalmatics, and tunics are needed.  The Stadelmaier photo stream shows the background of a vestment manufacturer making Ecclesiastical Vestments: from the Vestment Design process to final construction, the photos tell an unknown tale. The photo stream also gives a clue as to how church vestments were made in the past by including a collection of old black-and-white photos.

Couching threads: Japan Thread in size 1 on two shades of gold and silver, and black cord

Outlining: Finishing Touch or Distraction

Ecclesiastical Embroidery and Vestment Projects,
– Improving faraway visibility in church embroidery can be tricky. Delicate silver thread on Angel Wings looks nice up close but might fade from a distance. Adding a black outline helps, but it raises concerns about muting the shimmer and blending with the blue background. Deciding between keeping the black for definition or adding more silver threads is a right choice in Ecclesiastical Embroidery.

Dice Trim used on Vestments and Altar Hangings

Something to Share

Sharing a vintage church embroidery design from the 1800s, still in the “rough draft” phase and the possibilities for church embroidery design are endless. On option is this versatile design could be used for whitework on altar linens or adapted for silk and gold threads on stole ends or maniples. Placing it in a quatrefoil frame makes it suitable for chasubles or burses. Stretching and elongating for a double oval ring offers options for stoles or chasubles. The design, enhanced with Dice Trim, can also adorn chasubles and dalmatics. The journey of creating ecclesiastical designs is ongoing, offering endless opportunities to learn and explore.

Simple Hand Embroidered Cross Design

Ecclesiastical Embroidery Designs A Starting Point

Entering the world of Ecclesiastical Sewing may seem challenging, with fears of intricate designs and historic techniques. However, beauty lies in simplicity, like a humble 1930s hand-embroidered cross. Draw inspiration from vintage patterns, such as Thomas Brown’s Church Embroideries, offering a variety of ideas. For machine embroidery enthusiasts, Windstar Embroidery digitizes Thomas Brown’s designs, providing creativity suggestions for hand embroiderers. Those with artistic talent can create personalized designs, adding a unique touch. To start, consider creating a stole, a beginner-friendly Ecclesiastical Sewing project.

Silver Check Thread

Time is Ticking Away

The ongoing Advent Vestment Set faces challenges in couching stitches. The Silver Check Thread, with its non-tarnish finish, offers a sparkle and shine in following curves, holding edges, and concealing stitches. Despite awaiting additional thread supplies, the emphasis remains on completion rather than rushing, with the Ecclesiastical Embroidery project.

Couching threads: Japan Thread in size 1 on two shades of gold and silver, and black cord,Art of Ecclesiastical Embroidery

Metallic Threads

Metallic threads, like Passing Threads and Kreinik Japan Threads, bring shimmer to Ecclesiastical Embroidery. While Passing Threads require careful handling due to their delicate finish, Kreinik Japan Threads offer a shiny, flexible, and affordable option. Despite challenges, the warm copper passing thread adds a contrasting touch. Thoughtful stitching and understanding each thread’s traits enhance the embroidery experience.

Color guide on a hand embroidery pattern

Rare Find Part II

The Monastery’s Ecclesiastical Embroidery Designs are truly amazing. What stands out is that many of these beautiful designs originated from understanding of geometry, design, scale and proportion. The Sisters, who created these designs, studied theology, understood the history and meaning behind symbols, and skillfully combined all this knowledge to create stunning Ecclesiastical Designs.

Some Drawings of Ancient Embroidery by Mary Barber

A Rare Find

Passionate about Ecclesiastical Embroidery, I’ve collected rare books and found a rare to find book by Mary Barber entitled  Some Drawings of Ancient Embroidery and received three sample designs from a closing monastery’s Art Needlework Department. The designs, featuring a Rose and Thorn, IHC, and Sword and Keys, offer a glimpse into the artistry of Ecclesiastical Embroidery.

Preparing the Advent Pulpit Fall Design

This Advent Vestment set is designed for a shorter lifespan, around 5 to 15 years. The construction process allows for quicker techniques, like using fusible web for the appliqué. Appliqué parts, cut from Silk Dupioni and a cotton/linen blend for the flesh tones, are ironed in place for easy and accurate positioning. The traced design on the blue silk aids in precise placement. While traditional methods may have used homemade paste, the use of fusible web aligns with the project’s practical goals.