Stories in Stitch Exhibition Coming Soon at the Royal School of Needlework

Royal School of Needlework

Come to the Royal School of Needlework (RSN) at Hampton Court Palace and see your favourite stories brought to life with the Art of Hand Embroidery. The latest exhibition, opening in September, will showcase a wide range of Hand Embroideries in Appliqué, Stumpwork and Raised Embroidery, featuring pieces from the RSN’s Archive Collection and its Students.

Princess & the Pea by RSN Future Tutor Graduate, Deborah Wilding, Stumpwork
Princess & the Pea by RSN Future Tutor Graduate, Deborah Wilding, Stumpwork

Visitors will be able to immerse themselves in these three enchanting techniques which lend themselves so perfectly to the world of storytelling. Whether the piece tells the whole story or just a vignette, visitors will be captivated by embroideries based on songs, nursery rhymes, film scenes and ranging from the mythical to the domestic. The historic heart of the exhibition will feature two 17th century pieces in stumpwork when this technique was at its most popular, including details of how they were worked and how the colours have now changed. It will then sweep into the 20th and 21st centuries using the range of themes in stumpwork and Appliqué covered by our current RSN Diploma, Future Tutor and Degree students. The exhibition will also include Raised Embroidery featuring more three-dimensional objects, for example in jewellery.

Humpty Dumpty and Alice by RSN Student Mary Laidlaw, Applique
Humpty Dumpty and Alice by RSN Student Mary Laidlaw, Applique

Dr Susan Kay-Williams says; “We have had such fun selecting all the pieces for this exhibition and it has triggered many memories and stories of our own. The exhibition will be a feast for the eyes and show how embroidery can be playful, amusing, dramatic and fun using these three creative techniques.

The RSN’s ‘Stories in Stitch’ exhibition runs from 19 September 2016 to 31 March 2017. Tours start from £16 per person. Individuals and groups are welcome. To book, visit or contact Natalie Thew on +44(0)20 3166 6939.

The Royal School of Needlework is the international centre of excellence for the art of hand embroidery. With a thriving education programme, the RSN offers a range of courses for beginners through to advanced. Students can choose to study short courses, a Certificate & Diploma, BA (Hons) Degree or gain a teaching qualification on the Future Tutor programme.

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Mr X

Jamie Chalmers, aka Mr X Stitch, aka the Kingpin of Contemporary Embroidery is the founder of the Mr X Stitch site, the world's longest running embroidery blog, the curator of PUSH Stitchery and the author of the Mr X Stitch Guide to Cross Stitch. He is also the founder of XStitch, the game-changing cross stitch design magazine which launched in Summer 2017.

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