20 Embroidery Books You Need in Your Reference Library | Blog | Domestika (2024)

Textile artists recommend the embroidery books that helped them the most. Use them to find inspiration for your next projects

There are plenty of embroidery resources online, but don't overlook traditional books as sources of inspiration. You'll discover new artists and see techniques, stitches, finishes, or materials in much more detail.

We asked several textile artists to give us their favorite recommendations for embroidery books. What are yours? Let us know in the comments!

Nayla Marc (@naylamarc)

This designer and embroiderer based in Villa Ballester, Argentina, teaches the course Introduction to 3D embroidery. Among the books she enjoys most about the art of thread and needle are the following:

The Embroidery Stitch Bible: Over 200 Stitches Photographed with Easy-to-Follow Charts, by Betty Barnden

This is a reference guide for those who want to perfect their embroidery technique and learn new tricks. It includes basic stitches, such as the classic cross stitch, and more elaborate ones explained thoroughly. It has more than 200 techniques and stitches with enlarged diagrams and photographs.

A-Z of Embroidery Stitches: A Complete Manual for the Beginner Through to the Advanced Embroiderer, several authors

This is a manual designed with a single goal: for embroiderers of all levels to learn new techniques. It includes instructions for embroidering with cotton thread or alternative materials, such as wool or ribbons, and has more than a thousand color photos of each stitch's different steps.

Art Forms in Nature, by Ernst Haeckel

This is not exactly an embroidery book, but it will help you get inspired if you like creations inspired by nature. Ernst Haeckel was a prominent naturalist and biologist of the late nineteenth century, and this book compiles his drawings of different species of plants and animals.

Gimena Romero (@gimenaromero)

The textile artist, embroiderer, and artist teaches several courses in Domestika, such as Painting with Thread: Textile Illustration Techniques. She is also an embroidery researcher and author of several books on the subject:

Camino a Tenango, by Gimena Romero

Gimena explores this magical place in Mexico where this particular embroidery school, also called tenango, originated. Learn about the history and cultural richness of this indigenous expression of textile art.

México bordado. De la tradición al punto contemporáneo, by Gimena Romero

An exhaustive look into the embroidered artisanal heritage of the different regions of Mexico. In an unprecedented compilation of traditional and contemporary embroidery, you will learn techniques such as tenango embroidery, purépecha, mixe, and mazahua, and how to perform different stitches through detailed explanations.

Hebra de agua, by Gimena Romero

In this beautiful book, Gimena stitches together a poetic and textile illustration project. Each piece works as a separate project through diptychs that offer different levels of reading.

Bambi, by Félix Salten, illustrations by Gimena Romero

In this book, Gimena illustrated a different version of Bambi than the one we know from the famous Disney film. His beautiful textile illustrations give new depth to the characters.

Adriana Torres (@soymigadepan)

This designer and embroiderer teaches the course Introduction to Raised Embroidery, highlighting some of her favorite books.

Encyclopedia of Embroidery Stitches, Including Crewel, by Marion Nichols

This renowned embroiderer introduces you to different techniques with a compendium of 178 stitches, as well as their variations. It is divided by stitch families and includes 1,400 detailed images with suggested applications and examples.

Constance Howard's Book of Stitches, by Constance Howard

In this illustrated book, the author shows the versatility of different stitches, showing the patterns and textures you can use. Learn how to combine stitches to create new ones and work on textures when mixing materials.

Encyclopedia of Needlework, by Therese de Dillmont

This book is a classic that talks about different aspects of textile work: sewing, repair, embroidery, tapestries, needlework, crochet, lace, and much more.

Valentina Castillo (@insanitynice)

This graphic designer and embroiderer teaches the Domestika course Needle Painting for Beginners and tells us about some of the books that inspire her with their content and visual resources:

I Love My Dog Embroidery: 380 Stitch Motifs for Dog Moms and Dads, by Oksana Kokovkina

Embroidery artist MakikoArt, along with six other creators, including Valentina Castillo herself, compiled this book with patterns and dog motifs. You will find different breeds and dogs in fun situations and classic poses, with many ideas for your next projects.

Cat Lady Embroidery: 380 Ways to Stitch a Cat, by Applemints

Very similar to the previous book, but for those of us who are cat lovers. In this book, you will find patterns and guides to create embroidery projects for different occasions.

The Subversive Stitch: Embroidery and the Making of the Feminine, by Rozsika Parker

In this book, the author reflects on the relationship of women and embroidery, from domestic privacy and their inner world to their arrival in the fine arts, their inclusion in the history of art, and the contemporary dynamics.

Coricrafts (@coricrafts)

A specialist in botanical embroidery, Coricrafts teaches Introduction to Botanical Embroidery in Domestika, where she recommends some of the embroidery books that have inspired her in her own creation:

Thread Folk: A Modern Makers Book of Embroidery Projects and Artist Collaborations, by Libby Moore

In this book, you will learn different basic stitches and how to choose materials and patterns to create your own projects. It also includes a series of collaborations with other textile artists and illustrators.

Señorita Lylo (@MissLylo)

This graphic designer and embroiderer has focused on the creation of experimental pieces with different techniques. In her Domestika course Basic Embroidery Techniques: Stitches, Compositions, and Color Ranges, she recommends the following books:

La hora del té. Guía básica de bordado, by Misako Mimoko

This is a hard-to-get collectible book, but it is still available on the author's page. It is an illustrated guide with step-by-step guides for colorful projects.

Puntadas de bordado mágicas suaves y esponjosas, by Laura Amoeba

This book is available only in Japanese, and its title is もこもこ、ふかふか 魔法の刺繍ステッチ: フリーステッチングニードルの技法とパターン&図案. It features Laura's personal project photos and has images you can follow to understand the process behind each one.

Ofelia & Antelmo (@ofeliayantelmo)

Gabriela Martínez is the founder of the textile art workshop Ofelia & Antelmo. In her course Embroidery: Clothing Repair, she mentions some of these books as part of her inspiration:

The Pattern Base: Over 550 Contemporary Textile and Surface Designs, by Kristi O'Meara and Audrey Victoria Keiffer

In this book, the authors–co-founders of the creative studio The Patternbase–compile more than 500 patterns from 150 designers from around the world. You'll find them divided into categories such as geometric, floral, abstract, illustrative art, and more.

Slow Stitch: Mindful and Contemplative Textile Art, by Claire Wellesley-Smith

This book explores the slow stitching movement's bases, promoting the values of artisanal and handmade pieces. Find reflections on the importance of working by hand, enjoying a slow process that connects you with yourself.

Elidé Rangel Soto (@florula)

This designer and visual communicator has also dedicated herself to the art of embroidery as part of her graphic expression. In her course, Embroidered Letters: Thread as a Graphic Tool, she recommends some exciting books:

Embroidery: A Maker's Guide, by the Victoria and Albert Museum

Compiled by the prestigious British museum, this manual contains 15 projects for creators of all levels. You will find traditional pieces from different countries, as well as some contemporary ones.

Colour Confident Stitching: How to Create Beautiful Colour Palettes, by Karen Barbé

In this book, Karen (@karenbarbe) explores the theory of color applied to textile projects. Anyone interested in expanding their experience by working with all kinds of fabrics, fibers, and threads will find it useful to plan their next creation.

English version by @angeljimenez

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20 Embroidery Books You Need in Your Reference Library | Blog | Domestika (2024)
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