Book Review: Schwalm Embroidery

Originating in Germany, this whitework embroidery form incorporates a number of techniques including pulled fabric, needlelace, drawn thread and needleweaving combined with surface stitches. Keeping with traditional Tree of Life design elements, the projects begin with an Heirloom Cloth that demonstrates how to properly prepare the fabric and transfer the design before getting into fancy stitchwork.

Detailed, close-up color photography of the pieces coupled with comprehensive line drawings of each design’s layout and stitches provide experienced embroiderers with the means to recreate lovely samplers, tea cozies, needlecases and pin cushions with confidence. Beginner embroiderers would do well to hone their skills before tackling Schwalm embroidery as uneven tension will produce less then satisfactory results. For experienced needleworkers new to this style, try working one of the pincushions or box tops before attempting the larger sampler or tablecloth.

Complex and lacy, Schwalm embroidery will appeal to those interested in keeping the old techniques alive. Bishop makes it easy with enlargement ready patterns and detailed stitch instructions for embroidery artists looking to raise their work to a whole new level. 


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