Sunday, August 11, 2013

Delicious Umbrian Embroidery

The very best gifts are those that are unexpected. Last week a courier arrived with a package from Italy and I had no idea what it could be. The little girl in me took over as soon as I'd signed for it and I sat down right there on the stairs and ripped open the envelope. Inside was truly a wonder to behold and I sat there for the better part of an hour (probably with my mouth open the whole time).


As regular readers will know, I absolutely LOVE the textured Italian embroideries and this is a stunning example. An Umbrian Embroidery pillow cover in amazing condition!

This very fortunate find was discovered by Bianca Rosa Bellomo of the Associazione I Merletti di Antonilla Cantelli in Bologna. She told me that she found it at a stall in the market at an excellent price. The lady running the stall told her that it came from an rich estate in the hills which was vacated. It has certainly been well looked after!

In the book Ricami della Bell'Epoca I found two photos of a table cover with the same design (repeated seven times!). The caption says that that piece dates to the 1930s. I wonder how old the one I have is?


This book says that pieces of this kind of embroidery can be found in the collections of the Cooper Hewitt Museum in New York, the Museo Storico Didattico della Tappezzeria di Bologna and the Fondazione Ranieri in Perugia.

Detail of my pillow cover.


Four delightful knotted tassels, one at each corner of the pillow cover. Inside the head of each one appears to be a wooden bead.


Check out these exquisite buttons which run along the top edge to enclose a pillow! They are slipped through buttonhole loops to close.


Insertion stitching used on three sides to join the front and back together. See how the edging matches? The back has three sets of blanket stitches repeating all the way around and the front is bordered by chain stitching. The stitching matches along the edge of the insertion stitches.

Detail of my pillow cover.

Detail of my pillow cover.

Detail of my pillow cover.

Detail of my pillow cover.
I can study the back side of the embroidery too!


I just happen to have the perfect size pillow to put in it and now it sits on my bed so I can see it every time I walk into my room!

A tremendous and heartfelt thank you to Bianca Rosa for this most precious of gifts!


8 comments:

  1. What a beauty!!!!! I understand you love it.

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  2. Dearest Jeanine,
    Congratulations with your Christmas in August! What a gift, I would have sat there too and holding and admiring such a perfect piece of top Umbrian embroidery.
    Enjoy it; that makes for sweet dreams - not ON it but about it...
    Hugs,
    Mariette

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  3. How lovely, how perfect for you, how thoughtful!

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  4. Lucky girl! :)

    It's a beauty Umbrian embroidery is just beautiful!Congratulations!

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  5. Wow che pezzo magnifico, che squisito ricamo. Credo che non ti stancherai mai di guardarlo!

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  6. Hi Jeanine, what a precious gift!As "Star" saied it's perfect for you.
    Anna

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  7. All that gorgeous stitching! What a wonderful gift indeed.

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