HNW - Re: HNW Quick question - way off present topic.

Curtis & Mary ladymari at
Sat Sep 19 06:38:27 PDT 1998

mharrison wrote:

> A question has come up on another list asking for a simple definition to
> distinguish embroidery from crewel work.

***************************I would define crewel work as a form of embroidery.
Afterall, embroidery is a catchall word and covers most any form of decorative
stitching on the surface of cloth with thread.

'Crewel Embroidery in England' copyright 1975 by Joan Edwards, published by
William Morrow & Co. Inc., N.Y.,N.Y.  ISBN 0-688-02919-1

"As fas as I know nobody has ever previously attempted to give an account of the
various ways in which the English embroiderer has used her crewel wools.
......Here we see her using her crewels on the Bayeux Tapestry for couching and
laid work;there for canvas and needle painting; and in the workrooms of Morris &
Company and the Royal School of Needlework for enormous hangings  densely
covered with long and short stitch.
        But it was the seventeenth century embroiderer who, taking one glance at
the patterns on the painted cotton hangings imported from India by the directors
of the East India Company, suddely pushed aside the tiny inhabitants of her
stumpwork world, ......created out of one of the commonest and coarsest of
household textiles and her crewel wools an entirely new method of embroidery
that we today call crewel work."

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