Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Goldwork Technique: Or Nué Resources & Pictures


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Or Nué is undoubtedly the most advanced type of goldwork, and it’s an embroidery technique that fascinates me! Here are some resources…

First, I should clarify: I’m not talking about the half-way hazy “Or Nué” kits, where you get to work cotton threads over DMC metallics, and produce a vague image of something, but you’re not quite sure what.

While these projects do introduce the concept of Or Nué, they aren’t what fascinates me! It’s the historical stuff that I can’t get enough of!

So I wanted to share with you a couple resources on this technique, so that you can see what it is, maybe dabble in it yourself, or just delight in the historical pieces that reflect an unbelievable level of craftsmanship with needle and thread.

First of all, there’s this article that Megan sent me a link to, although (grin) I did already have it! But she reminded me of it, and that’s what counts! The article is titled “Classnotes on Or Nue Embroidery,” and it’s a 3-page PDF file with two nice, clear black and white photos. The article contains some useful information about the technique, and a good desicription of what it’s all about. The article comes from an SCA site that actually has a whole index of articles on metal thread.

Then there’s this post about Or Nue on Needle ‘n Thread from not-too-long-ago, within which you will find some good resources and a picture of the Mantle of the Virgin.

Example of Or Nue goldwork technique up close

The sparkle of the gold through the silk is lovely. And the shading on this piece is INcredible! And of course, I love the pearls! You can pan the image while it’s zoomed, which is a nice feature.

One of these days, I want to work up some tutorials that cover goldwork! Here’s hoping it will happen over Christmas break.

In the meantime, do enjoy the links above!


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(4) Comments

  1. Or nue is one of my all time favorite techniques. Although time consuming, the results are beautiful. Some time ago Inspirations magazine had a beautiful or nue beetle project. It was done in copper thread, rather than gold. I finished it and was hooked. Definitely worth the effort, but you must be patient!

  2. You might not be able to post an answer to this, but e-mail.

    But what is your opinion on


    especially vs the or nue kit on the page before

    which mentions DMC thread.

    I do wonder if the articles I send you are useful, because you’ve been involved so long and I’m discovering stuff. I just hope to be useful and enjoy sharing what I’ve found. I hope some of the stuff I’ve sent is new *grin*

  3. Of course it’s new!! I’ve gotten SO MANY great resources from you, E-R!! Thank you!

    I like the first link – they’re gorgeous… the second link is kind of that “hazy” or nue look I meant. I don’t like it so much… but you’ve got to admit, the mantle in the link above outshines them all! (I have to say that, because it’s a favorite piece of mine!)

    If I could ever undertake a “reproduction” project, it would be on something like that. But I don’t think I quite have the skill, or the years left…!

    Thanks, E-R!

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