The Royal School of Needlework Book of Embroidery


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Table of Contents

5 Contents
8 The Royal School of Needlework
10 About this book
12 Materials and equipment
14 Threads and needles
16 Fabric
18 Design
22 Using colour
24 Choosing stitches
26 Framing up: ring frame and slate frame
30 Transferring a design
34 Mounting your work
38 Starting to stitch
39 Essential stitches
42 Crewelwork: a history, specialist tools needed, stitches, building up a design, projects 
98 Canvaswork: a history, specialist tools needed, stitches, building up a design, projects 
144 Blackwork: a history, specialist tools needed, stitches, building up a design, projects 
180 Silk shading: a history, specialist tools needed, stitches, building up a design, projects 
232 Goldwork: a history, specialist tools needed, stitches, building up a design, projects 
282 Stumpwork:a history, specialist tools needed, stitches, building up a design, projects 
320 Whitework: a history, specialist tools needed, stitches, building up a design, projects  
350 Bead embroidery: a history, specialist tools needed, stitches, building up a design, projects 
384 Index

About the Author

This RSN compilation is written by eight qualified RSN graduates and tutors: Helen McCook (Goldwork), Sarah Homfray (Silk Shading), Kate Sinton (Stumpwork), Shelley Cox (Bead Embroidery), Becky Hogg (Blackwork), Lizzy Lansberry (Whitework), Rachel Doyle (Canvaswork) and Jacqui McDonald (Crewelwork).


In one word wow. Any embroidery enthusiast will doubtless flick through this book hundreds of times. This beautifully illustrated hefty tome shows stitches, numerous examples of work and projects. You'll find step by step stitch guides plus historical and contemporary interpretations of crewelwork, canvaswork, goldwork, whitework, blackwork, stumpwork, silk shading and bead embroidery. The blackwork section from Becky Hogg is my favourite. The stitch guides were previously published in the Essential Stitch Guide series of books. This resource also includes a section on mounting work. Lavish, informative, practical and inspiring - it forms the basis of a standard reference on embroidery from the highly acclaimed Royal School of Needlework.

This book brings together all the content from the RSN Essential Stitch Guides series, plus a new section on mounting your finished work, in one impressive volume. Students from the RSN each cover eight key embroidery techniques in detail: crewelwork, bead embroidery, stumpwork, canvaswork, goldwork, whitework, blackwork and silk shading. Each chapter opens with an overview of the history, design, style, tools and materials relevant to that technique. There are well-illustrated instructions of the range of stitches, and examples of contemporary and traditional embroidered designs, as well as advice on how to create your own designs. A good technique book is always worth the investment, and this book (especially in this larger format) repays you not only with trusted guidance but also with inspiration aplenty to explore these techniques in depth, whether you are a beginner or an expert. 
*Embroidery Magazine (Sep/Oct 2018)*

This is a compendium of all eight Royal School of Needlework primers, and an ideal book to own for anybody who wants to learn several core techniques. These comprise blackwork, whitework, goldwork, stumpwork, crewelwork, canvaswork, silk shading and bead embroidery. If you already own any or all of the earlier books this is basically the same material, but organized in a different way. All the information common to all the books such as using a hoop or slate frame, transferring designs, basic list of materials are in a section at the front. This includes an introduction to the work of the RSN and a useful list with page numbers so you can easily find diagrams of the basic stitches. The rest of the book is organized into chapters, one per book. These are not books of projects but instead show you how to do the stitches and techniques that are unique to each style and thus make up your own designs. There are examples from the RSN’s huge collection of historical embroidery also plenty of modern pieces showing how embroiderers can use the styles to tackle contemporary subjects. This book will appeal most to anybody who has done some basic embroidery and wants to explore some of its many variations. The many staged photographs make tackling even the more advanced work relatively easy, and because this book has much larger pages than the original books some photographs are a lot larger (although some are also smaller). I recommend this very user friendly primer to anybody interested in learning a range of embroidery styles.

This is a massive book, and perfect for lovers of embroidery.
It is beautiful. The stitchwork is photographed in full glossy colour, which shows each design and technique to it's best effect.
The projects and methods are easy to follow, and all are very detailed. This is a book perfect to teach, learn and master new skills.
There are specific notes and tips which give extra information for your work and everything from equipment to displaying your finished piece is covered.

I love that a history of each technique is given. Each section covers a method of embroidery, and the stitch section is amazing.

If you need an embroidery book then this is the one to have.It covers everything, it is a good reference guide and the beauty of it is in the stitches themselves. I adored the Goldwork, and I cannot wait to have a go.

The RSN Book of Embroidery is like a having a personal tutor at your fingertips.
*Postcard Reviews*

This is a great all-in-one book! It's the ideal book for the embroidery enthusiast who is interested in exploring and really learning the foundations of core needlework techniques. It is certain to be very influential on new generations of stitchers in the years to come, and a wonderful learning resource for needlework enthusiasts worldwide.
*Mary Corbet, Needle ‘n’ Thread*

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