Ecclesiastical Sewing is a craft steeped in history and tradition. It is often relaxing to take a little break from working on vestments and Ecclesiastical Embroidery, to enjoy a visual feast for the eyes and to seek out information on vestments from around the world. One way to see vestments and Ecclesiastical Embroidery from around the world is Pinterest. Pinterest has become a wonderful source for photos and images of Church Vestments. There are some stunning hand embroidered Ecclesiastical pieces being made in the countries of Russia and the Ukraine, to name a few.
Over the years, as one reads and researches, one becomes familiar with the vestments used in the Western Church. In the Orthodox Church, the names and styles of the Vestments are slightly different. The Metropolitan Museum of Art has a short little document put together by their Textile’s Curator explaining some of the differences between the vestments in the Orthodox Church and Western Church. The article is entitled Splendor From Old Russia
Pictured in the document are the Russian Phelonion ( Priest’s vestment). The closest vestments to this from the West are the Cope and Chasuble. The author explains how both Orthodox and Western vestments are descended from an earlier classical poncho-like cloak with a hole for the head.
The vestments featured in the article from the Metropolitan Museum of Art date from the years 1802 to 1877. The author describes four gorgeous vestments in their collection as being “as luxurious as weaving and embroidery can make them.” Made from fabrics which contain a great deal of gold and silver, the vestments are enhanced with silver and gold bells, and buttons shaped like balls, which attach to the hems. Other little interesting facts include details on the unique garment labels found on the vestments, one of which reads, “Cathedral of Saint Sophia, Kiev.”
For those fortunate enough to live or be visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the vestments, at the time of the writing, were located adjacent to the Textiles Study Room in the north wing. Please be sure to leave a comment about any beautiful Orthodox Vestments you have been fortunate enough to see!
Solo Dei Gloria
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Filed under: Ecclesiastical Embroidery, Ecclesiastical Sewing, Metropolitan Museum of Art Tagged: Ecclesiastical Embroidery, Ecclesiastical Sewing, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Orthodox Church, Orthodox Vestments, Priest Vestments, Russian Phelonion, Splendor from Old Russia, Western Church