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Gazzola, Gisella Tamagno (2008). Il Mio Bandera, Turin: Il Quadrifoglio, Italian and English. Price: €28 euros.

Bandera embroidery originates from the town of Bandera just outside of Turin. It is characterised by the use of a diamond trellis work cloth that is produced especially for this type of work, and the use of woollen embroidery threads (crewel work) with an emphasis on shading and the blending of one colour into another. The floral designs created are worked in a small range of stitches, notably chain stitch, satin stitch, stem stitch and split stitch, with some knot stitches as well. It is more of a how-to book than a detailed historical account. There are numerous colour illustrations depicting the various stitches, working methods and designs associated with this type of Italian embroidery. According to the author this type of embroidery was influenced by many forms, including French and Ottoman styles. This is not surprising, given Turin’s position as a textile centre for many centuries.

Recommendation: This book is not easy to find, but it is worth while having for anyone interested in the history of European and especially Italian embroidery, and those who enjoy crewel work.

Gillian Vogelsang-Eastwood

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Stichting Textile Research Centre

TRC Gallery exhibition:
5 Febr. -27 August 2020: American Quilts

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