Hardanger Embroidery (Norway)

Example of modern Hardanger embroidery Example of modern Hardanger embroidery

Hardanger embroidery (Hardanger work) is a general term for various forms of counted thread and whitework that were originally produced in Norway. Hardanger work derives from the Hardanger district in the western part of the country. Traditional Hardanger work is characterised by the use of a white, even-weave cloth (sometimes with double warp and weft threads) with a fairly thick, white cotton or linen embroidery thread.

The designs are built up using blocks of geometric designs worked in satin stitch or straight stitch (sometimes called kloster blocks) and small open squares that are formed when both warp and weft threads are removed in a particular area (as in cutwork) or pulling either warp or weft threads (as in drawn thread work). This type of embroidery is used to decorate garments and household furnishings, such as doilies, table cloths, towels, etc.

Hardanger whitework is also a feature on the hem area of aprons associated with traditional women's costumes from this part of Norway. Hardanger embroidery became popular in various other countries from the late nineteenth century until the present day. In addition, coloured threads have also started to be used.

See also the entry on woven bars.

Source: EARNSHAW, Pat (1982). A Dictionary of Lace, Aylesbury: Shire Publications, esp. p. 78.

Digital source of illustration (retrieved 4 June 2016)


Last modified on Tuesday, 24 January 2017 19:48
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