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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Reticello Sampler & Explorations: Watch this Space


Amazon Books

I’m making up a little reticello sampler.

Reticello is a style of Italian cutwork + needle lace, or cutwork lace. I’ve been exploring it, by following the directions in some new Italian needlework books that I plan to show you soon.

I figure if I really want to test the book’s instructions thoroughly, I need to pick up my needle and do as the book says. So far, so good.

I’m having a wonderful time exploring, and I’m learning a lot. This is a style of needle lace that I have loved for a long time, and although I’ve dabbled in it, I’ve never really explored it thoroughly.

Reticello Sampler & Explorations

Traditional reticello isn’t necessarily multicolored in this way, but whenever I’m working a sampler of sorts to learn something, I like the visuals to be super clear. And while I may some day take up some white thread and white linen, or ecru thread and white linen, or yellow linen and yellow thread… for now, in my explorations, I’m using a yellow linen and any colors of coton a broder #25 I have on hand, that looks decent on the yellow linen (aside from yellow).

This way, I can see clearly the structure, stitches, and so forth against the linen.

I’m starting simply by making a series of windows, into which I’ll try out a variety of needle lace motifs.

Some windows are 4 paned, some are 9 paned (like the window above), and perhaps I will also work 8 pane windows and some strips of 2×8, 3×6 or 9 or 12, or what-have1you! There are many options!

This is truly a sampler. I’m sampling different stitches, techniques, and motifs, and I haven’t really laid it out in any particular plan. The end result could end up a bit discombobulated and messy. Or it might end up looking like it was surprisingly well thought-out. I just need a piece of linen that’s set up and ready to go when I want to test something – and enough room on the linen to test it. So that was the only plan I really made when I started.

As I work through this, I’ll share it with you, and I’ll talk about the different techniques involved. If reticello is something that piques your interest, watch this space! We’ll visit the topic again in the weeks ahead!

Other Happenings

We did manage a small restock on the Bee-Jeweled Pincushion materials kit, if you’d like one. They’re available here now, where you will also find a good selection of spring ready-to-stitch towel kits in stock.

We’re working towards starting the next Stitch Snippet project tutorial shortly after Easter. Keep an eye out for that! Can’t wait!

Hope your week’s off to a swell start!


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(10) Comments

  1. Mary, I am so excited to see this! Reticello is a technique I really want to learn, but have been completely intimidated. With your style of teaching in easy to follow mini lessons, I have no doubt that I will be checking reticello off of my to-learn list and gain the confidence to tackle Tricia Nguyen’s whitework sampler class. I can hardly wait!

  2. At first this looked like hardanger which I’m very familiar with…but I’m truly fascinated with Reticello. I haven’t found lot of resources in English on the subject, but if you have some other resources that I could read, I’d appreciate it.

    Many thanks,

  3. Oh, this is sooooooo exciting. This is what I have wanted to do for several years now, as soon as I first saw it. I have purchased books from Italy (maybe the same as you have?). They were beyond me to get a start, so then I purchased from a Russian lady who had not only very thorough instructions, but also provides youtube videos once purchased that are so helpful for those complicated filler stitches. My question is: what are those stitches to set up your panes for working in? When you start demoing this are you going to show us “start to finish” for those of us that are totally clueless from the get-go? LOL, that’s what I need. Once started I think I’ll be fine, it’s the “getting started”… So, so looking forward to this! I can’t tell you. I’m almost literally jumping up and down with joy!

  4. That’s interesting Mary. I also follow a blog from an Italian lady, she does a sort of this embroidery. If you are interested the website is piaceredelricamo.blogspot.com (also available in English).

  5. Reticello reminds me strongly of hardanger embroidery. Certainly brings to mind the truth that we’re all connected. I imagine some poor Italian woman was brought to the shores of Scandinavia unwillingly and put a needle to fabric to take her mind off her unfortunate circumstances. Or maybe that’s just my imagination running away with me.

  6. When I looked at this it looks like the hardanger windows I have done. These have a fancier outside stitch but the techniques are just like hardanger. Can you tell me what the differences are between hardanger and reticula? Can’t wait to try this.

    I too have snipped a wrong thread and panicked! But there is a feeling of elation when you fix it.

  7. Love the width of the woven bars. I think they balance well with the rest of the piece and probably will not stretch while stitching, making them look limp and loose in the final project.

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