WGBH Openvault

Erica; Roumanian Stitch

Part of From the Vault. Part of Erica Wilson: The Julia Child of Needlework.

02/08/1972

Roumanian stitch was traditionally used to decorate peasant costumes in the Baltic countries. Erica tells the audience that though it is called “Roumanian,” the stitch probably originated in China. She also tells us that the stitch was called “oriental laidwork” at the Royal School of Needlework. Yet another name for the stitch is “New England economy stitch.” Early American colonists often used this stitch in crewel embroidery, and Erica theorizes that New England settlers favored this stitch because it is so economical—hardly any thread is wasted on the back of the piece. Erica shows examples of items decorated with Roumanian stitch from the former Yugoslavia and historical examples from Massachusetts. She also shows bed curtains made by her students for a saltbox house restoration on Long Island. The project for this episode is a spring tapestry in Roumanian stitch. Summary and select metadata for this record was submitted by Amanda Sikarskie.


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Series
Erica
Program
Roumanian Stitch
Program Number

118

Series Description

Needlework series with Erica Wilson. “Erica Wilson, noted American authority on needlework, invites the viewer to explore the exciting possibilities of indulging his creative and artistic talents. In this series of color videotaped 15 minute programs she illustrates the wide vocabulary of stitches used in many types of embroidery including traditional crewel, needlepoint, bargello, and crewel point.

As well as demonstrating these stitches, Erica gives professional hints on creating useful and decorative objects. She encourages personalizing an original or derived design through the selection of motif, materials, stitch, color, texture, and size. C. 1971-2 Series release date: 1971

Program Description

Roumanian stitch was traditionally used to decorate peasant costumes in the Baltic countries. Erica tells the audience that though it is called “Roumanian,” the stitch probably originated in China. She also tells us that the stitch was called “oriental laidwork” at the Royal School of Needlework. Yet another name for the stitch is “New England economy stitch.” Early American colonists often used this stitch in crewel embroidery, and Erica theorizes that New England settlers favored this stitch because it is so economical—hardly any thread is wasted on the back of the piece.

Erica shows examples of items decorated with Roumanian stitch from the former Yugoslavia and historical examples from Massachusetts. She also shows bed curtains made by her students for a saltbox house restoration on Long Island.

The project for this episode is a spring tapestry in Roumanian stitch.

Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type

Video

Subjects
Needlework – Instruction
Royal School of Needlework
New England – Decorative Arts – 18th Century
Balkan Peninsula – Decorative Arts
Romania – Decorative Arts
New England – Decorative Arts – 17th Century
Embroidery
Wilson, Erica
Genres
Instructional
Topics
Crafts
Creators
MacLeod, Margaret I. (Series Producer)
Contributors
Wilson, Erica (Host)
MacLeod, Margaret I. (Producer)
Field, James (Director)
Mahard, Frances (Other (see note))
Publication Information
Copyright © 1971 Erica Wilson and WGBH Educational Foundation
Citation
Chicago: “Erica; Roumanian Stitch,” 02/08/1972, WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed December 9, 2016, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_DFFB92FB94D14A2296D9D2E78A71630D.
MLA: “Erica; Roumanian Stitch.” 02/08/1972. WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. December 9, 2016. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_DFFB92FB94D14A2296D9D2E78A71630D>.
APA: Erica; Roumanian Stitch. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_DFFB92FB94D14A2296D9D2E78A71630D
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