New Acquisition: Vintage Vestment Book Treasure

This week marked the return of some favorite things to the Ecclesiastical Sewing workroom, as well as my return to the new work space.  Many things are in their new places, but there are a great many items in need of a place to call home. With sub-zero temperatures, some of the item must remain in their frozen storage space to await more temperate conditions for sorting and retrieval. With only half of my tools, and equipment available and half still MIA (missing in action), it is a challenge to begin new projects. There is always that point where nothing further can happen until something is found and brought back from storage.


So to help pass the time and wait for warmer weather, I thought it might be the perfect time to share a new and very special favorite thing: a vintage Church Embroidery book.  Although I have searched for years, it seemed as if locating an original copy of this book would be impossible. But in fact, I came across the volume quite by accident. Although I have owned a scanned version of the book for quite some time, it is a favorite that I have written about previously on Ecclesiastical Sewing. For those who love books, you know and understand the thrill and the difference between having an original copy of a book that dates back in time, in this case to 1894, and a modern scanned version of the same book. Now please do not get me wrong. It is a blessing that many books from a by-gone era are once again available to be read and enjoyed. But an original copy is something more. Rather than trying to explain, let me show you a few of the differences. It can often start with the cover of the book. In this case, the cover is a deep green cloth on boards. The front cover has an elaborate and detailed church embroidery design consisting of shields, bells, and pomegranates. The book title is written diagonally across the upper left corner, and the initials AR are in the lower left corner.  The inscription or dedication also lends a bit of mystery:

To my friend

Alethea Wiel

The Designs in this Volume



A. R.

After a further read of the introduction, the artist responsible for drawing the designs appears to be A. R. There is not further identification about who A. R. is. There is more to share about this lovely book……….but it must wait for another winter’s evening.

Solo Dei Gloria

Be sure to visit our online store front Ecclesiastical Sewing where you may shop for Liturgical Fabrics, altar linen fabrics, church vestment making patterns, liturgical machine embroidery designschurch vestment trims and notions and so much more. You may also find us on  Ecclesiastical Sewing  on Facebook , Twitter, and Pinterest. Sing up for our mailing list  at the bottom of the page on our online store front and receive a free copy of our Small Linens Booklet as our way of saying thank you for following along.



Filed under: Designs for Church Embroidery, Ecclesiastical Sewing Tagged: Alethea Wiel, church embroidery designs, Church Vestment Books, Designs for Church Embroidery, Designs for Church Embroidery by A. R., Ecclesiastical Sewing


Write a comment

Comments are moderated