About Crewel Work
A type of surface embroidery at least 1000 years old, crewelwork takes its name from the wool used - a fine two ply yarn. The colourful designs are worked on a neutral, closely woven linen. Various stitches are used to outline and fill elaborate designs, creating pattern and texture.
During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries crewelwork was used to decorate domestic furnishings. Designs were influenced by Indian chintzes and included wild exotic flora and fauna; a Tree of Life provides the central motif, surrounded by whimsical insects, birds and animals.