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Raised Embroidery
Techniques, Projects and Pure Inspiration
Royal School of Needlework Series
Kelley Aldridge

Search Press
31 May 2017/ ISBN 9781782211891
How-To Books/Embroidery

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


Stumpwork, Brazilian embroidery, and needlelace are all forms of raised embroidery, a 3D style that uses padding and wire as well as the stitches themselves to produce a raised effect. Particularly popular in the 17th century, it was one of the more advanced and ornate styles, and the right instructions can make it accessible to modern stitchers.

This book fortunately contains instructions, photographs and diagrams which do just that. It forms part of the RSN series and is of the same high standard as all of their books, debunking the mystique surrounding this more challenging style and making it accessible and fun. After a very brief look at raised embroidery’s history, there is a short section on what you need, which is the usual kit for hand embroidery plus a few extras. Here the fun part starts to emerge as you can be a magpie and collect not only lots of different threads but beads, buttons, charms and found objects like feathers, shells and scrapbooking embellishments. Learn the stitches, discover how to prepare frames and pad your work, and then tackle some projects. Everything in this book comes with good sized clear photographs and plenty of them, so you can easily get some of the trickier stitches right. The three projects are a brooch, a phone sleeve and a biscornu pincushion, chosen surely because they have a direct link back to their 17th century equivalents. There are also lots of photographs of items decorated with raised embroidery and, although I would have preferred more projects, it is interesting to see what other uses you can put the style to. Armed with your new knowledge of raised work, you can start to devise your own pieces, which makes this a book suitable for beginners and those embroiderers who want to try something new. One for the keeper shelf.

If you cannot find a good range of embroidery materials locally try for a list of suppliers.

Reviews of other titles in the Royal School of Needlework Series

Silk Shading
Bead Embroidery
Raised Embroidery
The RSN Book of Embroidery

UK Reviewer: Rachel Hyde's work can be found in The Bead Magazine, Making Jewellery and
Reviewed 2017