Technique-CrossStitch

The embroidery techniques used are cross-stitch and couching in almost all embroidered items especially costumes.

 

More details

The following is a quotation from 'Palestinian  Embroidery' by Shelagh Weir and Serene Shahid, published by British Museum Publications Ltd., 1988:

 

"Cross-stitch is very simple, but there are various rules to observe for the best results.  Make sure the beginning and end of your thread is well-secured.  Do not use a knot or the lump will show.  Start by inserting your needle leaving a short end at the back of the fabric which you work over with your first few stitches, making sure it is firm before continuing.  When you start the next new thread, run the threaded needle under several of the stitches you have already made, then oversew it securely through the back of the last stitch before proceeding with the embroidery.  When you finish a thread, pass it through to the back of the fabric, then sew it firmly over four or five stitches.  Cut the end neatly."

 

"You will do some rows of embroidery horizontally, and others vertically and diagonally.  You may find it easier to do the cross-stitches in different ways.  When working horizontally, the easiest way is to work a row of stitches by doing one set of arms on one direction, and crossing them in the other.  This is also more economical with thread.  But if you need to do a vertical or diagonal row, you may find it easier to cross each stitch as you go along.   The diagrams below show the difference between these techniques.   Once you get started you will work out the method which best suits you."


The cross-stitch was most commonly used in Central and Southern Palestine.

Couching, the special technique used in Bethlehem, Beit Jala, and the Jerusalem area, was made by twisting the gold, silver or gold cord into circular and floral patterns.

In Upper Galilee geometric designs were embroidered in the running stitch, satin stitch and a little cross-stitch, often combined with patch work.

The main stitch in North Jordan is a fine running stitch called ragma.

Patterns are created by the empty space left in between the embroidery.

On the Salt dress a neat habke (binding stitch) goes on all seams in different shades of orange, red and deep pink.


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