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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Ecclesiastical Embroidery: Annunciation Cope and More


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When spring starts to tickle the landscape, my thoughts turn to travel. There’s nothing I like better, when the weather gets warmer and the landscape comes back to life, than to indulge in exploratory day trips (or two-day trips) that have some kind of needlework potential to them.

Whether it’s visiting a distant needlework shop (we don’t really have any close-by fine needlework shops) or a distant museum with some great textiles, either makes a great excuse for day tripping.

If you live in the Midwest, if you’re hankering for a road trip, and if you’re into ecclesiastical embroidery – or fabulous examples of beautiful embroidery – today, I thought I’d highlight two pieces of ecclesiastical embroidery appropriate for the day, that are within road-trip reach of Midwesterners this spring (and beyond).

(For those who don’t know, I live in Kansas. I tend to think “Midwest” frequently, but this isn’t to say that people outside the Midwest can’t visit these destinations as well!)

One exhibition is time sensitive. Even though I’ve mentioned it before, I think it’s worth mentioning again because it’s a grand opportunity to see two magnificent pieces of embroidery here in the States that you’d have to travel overseas to see, otherwise.

The other is a permanent exhibit that you can visit if you’re ever wandering through the wilds of northern Missouri.

Annunciation Cope, Clyde Missouri

The Annunciation Cope featured in the photo above is one of the many beautiful exhibit pieces at the Convent of Perpetual Adoration in Clyde, Missouri.

Years ago, I wrote a little bit about the Benedictine convent in Clyde and their vestment display. You can find that article, which goes into more depth about the vestments and the convent, here.

Clyde is located in northern Missouri, about 100 miles north of Kansas City and 145 miles south of Des Moines, Iowa. The convent museum is well worth visiting, especially if you’ve never had the chance to marvel, up close, at intricate hand-embroidered vestments and learn about how they were made.

You can contact the convent directly for information about visiting their museum, using the information on this page of their website. I don’t know if they have any current restrictions still in place.

Loreto Embroideries at University of Dayton

And then, there’s this!

Two of the panels from the Loreto Embroideries held by the RSN will be available to view this year here in the States. They are part of the exhibit A Vision of Art & Faith featuring the work of Ezio Anichini, running April through August this year.

I know I’ve mentioned them before, but it bears mentioning again, since it is such a fabulous opportunity to see these panels in person here in the United States.

The embroideries are meticulously worked reproductions of Anichini’s Litany of Loreto postcards, in fine gold and silk threads. You can read more about Anichini and his art – as well as the Loreto postcards – in this article here on Needle ‘n Thread, which features a fascinating article written by John Shaffer, a foremost expert on Anichini and collector of his art.

There have been some attempts at embroidered renditions or imitations of the panels in recent years. The only one I’ve seen that captures some of the delicacy of style and expression in the original art and the embroidered panels is this one. It would be nice to see some other beautiful renditions in the style, that’s for sure!

Someday, I’d love to explore, with needle and thread, one of Anichini’s works that hasn’t already been captured in embroidery. But that’s for another time!

I plan to visit Dayton this spring or early summer to see the panels there in person. Do you?

Coming Up

Next week, we might talk beads. We had to do some re-organization here lately – the beads are getting out of hand. I took pictures. I will share some insights.

And there’s a stitch that is cracking me up in more ways than one. It makes me laugh… but it’s also frustrating me. So we will discuss it!

I also want to show you some Italian reticella (needle lace).

In the meantime, I’m still taxing. (And it’s taxing!)

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!


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(2) Comments

    1. Oh wow, Kate! Thank you so much! Your close ups are fabulous – they really show the crosshatching so well. It’s hard to see that when just experiencing distant photos. It’s even hard to see it in person – it’s nice to be able to see the “macro” zoomed-in images. Those are fabulous photos. And now I just can’t wait until you post the hands. LOL!

      Fabulous pictures. Thanks so much!

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