Local Embroiderers Guild study rich embroidery from Russia
Last week Marlborough and District Embroiderers Guild enjoyed a talk by Pamela Smith about the history of metal thread and gold embroidery in Russia.
Pamela’s interest in Russia started at a young age when her father worked in London near to the Russian Shop. She was often given books and artefacts from this shop as presents.
Pamela told the group that the first evidence of metal thread work was found in Russia about 1592 as seen in a photograph of the Stroganov family shroud. In the seventeenth century the aristocracy wore long beards, flowing gowns and coats but this changed at the time Peter the Great. Beards were shaved off, the old style was banned and western court dress was worn.
Examples of textiles fortunately survived the Russian revolution whereas paintings did not. In 1903 a ball was suggested for pre and post revolution costumes and there still exist many photographs of the wonderful variety of outfits which were worn.
Today gold work is primarily found in church costumes. Torzhok, a town between St Petersburg and Moscow, is full of monasteries and has a school of gold embroidery. Girls are taught the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic and then they continue to the embroidery school.
The next meeting of Marlborough & District Embroiderers Guild will be on Monday 3 February 2020 at the Kennet Valley Hall, Lockeridge. The speaker will be Dr. Susan Kay Williams from the Royal School of Needlework and her talk will be entitled “Poison, Poo, Science and Serendipity” (part 2 of Susan’s talk on Colour in Textiles).
Doors open at 13.30 for a 14.00 start. All are welcome and if you have any queries please contact 01672 861658. For further details visit: http://www.marlboroughembroiderers.org