Sally Milner Publishing contracted Mary to publish a book on gold work embroidery in 2005. Mary spent months in the United States of America, Britain and Europe doing research work for her book. She made appointments with numerous museums and private individuals to closely examine gold embroidered costumes and textiles for her book. As many of the costumes and textiles in her book had not been published before, the museums were prepared to do new photography specifically for her book. The 208 page book, which is titled Goldwork Embroidery: Designs and Projects was released in Australia and worldwide in 2007.
In the first half of the book, the reader is given a substantial history of gold work embroidery in Britain and Europe, plus technical information on the metal threads and how to use them. The second half features fifteen projects designed by Mary with visual and verbal instructions.
August 10, 2007
New Book! Goldwork Embroidery: Designs & Projects
Goldwork Embroidery Designs and Projects by Mary Brown hit the market this year (2007), and if you’re into surface embroidery and goldwork, it’s an essential edition to your library!
Mary Brown begins the book with acknowledgements to the Royal School of Needlework where she received her training. (I always love to see people acknowledge their teachers!) Section I of the book covers a rather thorough and fascinating history of goldwork embroidery punctuated with photos from the various eras (a real treat!), then proceeds to talking about metal threads, materials, and the techniques of metal thread embroidery. Here, you get great up-close, clear photos of the techniques, which are really essential if you don’t have a face-to-face instructor. The instructions are clear, the photos are great. It’s a perfect learning tool for the beginner and beyond.
But then, here’s the great thing. Section I of the book covers about 90 pages. They’re great pages. I didn’t find one that I could skip with the “same-old-stuff” attitude. Sure, you see most of the same techniques in other goldwork books, but her photos and her precise instructions are good, so it’s useful to read them and study them. BUT – (this is what I was getting at) – what comes next is 100 pages devoted to projects. There are 15 projects detailed in the book, all with design, supply list, step-by-step instructions, illustrations, photos of the steps along the way, and photos of the finished project. Talk about thorough. And the projects are absolutely gorgeous. All levels are well-represented.
This is a gem of a book! Thanks, Mary Brown, for the hard work that certainly went into it. It’s a masterpiece!
Reviewed by Mary Corbet — Review Link
June 19, 2012
Getting ready for RSN Goldwork course : text books
Some of you have asked about the text books required for the RSN Goldwork course and today I’m going to share that list with you.
There are four books that we’re asked to get:
Metal Thread Embroidery by Jane Lemon, New Ideas in Goldwork by Tracy A. Franklin, Goldwork Embroidery by Mary Brown and Royal School of Needlework Embroidery Techniques by Sally Saunders. I already owned two of these and two of them I’ve not had the opportunity to look at yet. They’re waiting for me at our friends home in England, having been delivered there by Amazon. It’s great to have such accommodating and lovely friends!
My favorite book on goldwork in my library is Goldwork Embroidery by Mary Brown. I like it because she’s included so much varied information. The first section of the book is about the history of goldwork from the 12th century through to the 20th century. She then writes a detailed and clear chapter about the history and construction of metal threads. I love learning about how the materials we use are made! Following all this historical information she discusses materials, equipment and preparation techniques for goldwork. The final chapter of the book (before the specific projects that are so inspiring!) is a chapter on goldwork techniques. From my perspective this is the most valuable part of any of the books I have in my library. Her instructions are detailed and really clear; I often refer to them when I’m unsure about something I’ve learned but can’t quite remember.
Reviewed by Kathy Andrews Berlin — Review Link