Thursday 4 March 2010

Crewel Intentions!

Last week Bob came in with a book - a friend at church thought I might possibly like it. I was ecstatic!


Back in the 1970's I was fascinated by this gifted lady, who was considered then to be the person in the world of embroidery. According to one article I read... "When this book hit the scene in 1973, it was very very HOT. Erica Wilson was the leader in teaching & designing just about any kind of NEEDLEWORK you could think of or imagine. She was really unparalleled by anyone else in the field."

Erica had TV shows about embroidery and was so enthusiastic. I loved watched her demonstrating [making it look so easy!]

My art teacher used to rave about her


She was born in Scotland in 1930 and after studying in London at the Royal School Of Needlework, moved to the USA in 1954 to become a needlework instructor.

This book is the ultimate guide to stitching, covering every topic you can imagine  ...

Crewel Embroidery, Needlepoint, Silk & Gold Threads, Black Work, White Work, Stump Work, Monograms, Applique, Shisha Work, Mixed Media, Design & Colour, etc

The book is utterly fabulous, with mostly black and white, but some colour illustrations. 374 pages of sheer delight

stitches 1

I love the carefully illustrated step-by-step instructions for the wonderfully named stitches

stitches 2

florentine, cloud-filling,  pekinese, crested chain, palestrina knot, turkeywork, interlaced herringbone - and the amazing 'burden stitch'


The historical detail and illustrations are stunning - I love this interpretation of a Tudor lady in Blackwork.DSCF1237

I shall spend hours enjoying this book. It is so inspiring. There is a whole section devoted to Mary Queen of Scots - and we saw some of her stitchery on display in Oxburgh Hall when we were at Cornerstones last year.

Even though the book is almost forty years old, there is so much in it which is still relevant. I shall have to take it to show the girls at Sewing Club.

This is a real treasure, and I am truly grateful to have been given it!


  1. These classic books will always be useful even if the projects may date. The techniques will always remain basically the same. Lovely book and loving gift.

  2. I love finding old needlework books. Some of the old designs are very inspiring - Everything seems to come back in style at some point...
    Happy Stitchin'...
    An encyclopedia of needlepoint stitches…


Always glad to hear from you - thanks for stopping by!
I am blocking anonymous comments now, due to excessive spam!