New books are always a treat. Yesterday, there were several new Ecclesiastical Embroidery books waiting, in their quaint wrappings, for me when I got home from work. There is always a thrill of excitement and anticipation awaiting the opening of the box, removal of wrappings and taking that first peak and flip through of the pages.
So last night, there were four books on the counter. I would like to share a tidbit of one of them with you. The book is entitled Design for Church Embroidery by R.A., Althea Wiel. It was first published in 1894, and has been out of print for years. I discovered a copy of this book on Google Books a few years back. The book is now in the public domain and has been republished. It has been on the Amazon wish list for months. Final, its turn rolled up. The book made it to the shopping cart, and survived the final cut. It was ordered, and it has arrived. I can hold it in my hand, flip through the pages, admire the drawings, and leisurely read the content.
The book is a little book. There are not a lot of pages, and there is minimal text. To make up for the lack of pages, there is an entire set of 30 plates featuring illustrations and embroidery designs intended for use on Ecclesiastical vestments such as burses, stoles, chalice veils, and the like. The designs are somewhat different from designs used today for Ecclesiastical Embroidery.
The first design was intended or recommended for use on a chalice veil. It features rich symbolic meaning with images of Christ in the center of a box, pointing to His Sacred Heart, and holding a chalice. The box is surrounded by a wonderfully complicated design of grapes and vines with flowers which are again symbolic of Christ and His Church. The design has movement to it, especially with the Dove as the Holy Spirit descending with rays.
The elements of the design are very fine and detailed. From a stitching standpoint, it would be very complicated and would certainly take some diligent work to complete.
The book also features a few Ecclesiastical or church embroidery designs of a simpler nature. Take for instance design 22. This is a simple cross with ivy leaves on the ends of the cross. The artist has color suggestions that the cross be stitched in gold and the leaves in the colors to match the material it is worked on. It cannot get any simpler than that.
Thanks as always for reading.
Solo Dei Gloria
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Filed under: Ecclesiastical Embroidery, Ecclesiastical Vestments Tagged: Althea Wiel, Burse, Chalice veil, church embroidery, Design for Church Embroidery by Althea Weil, Ecclesiastical Embroidery, Ecclesiastical Vestments, embroidery designs, google books, Sacred Heart