Biarritz hand embroidery design

Architectural Hand Embroidery Designs

Modern architectural hand embroidery design
This was one of my first Architectural hand embroidery designs inspired from the majestic buildings on Rue Rembrandt in Paris.

Architectural Hand Embroidery Designs, are the perfect blend between illustration and embroidery. When we first began to stitch, we missed the presence of new and modern designs. It was Charles who first came up with the idea that I should embroider my architectural sketches.

Since the first attempt I was hooked. Thanks to the power of thread and needle, I was able to create a 3D drawing. My illustration rather became a touchable drawing, which was absolutely captivating. Instead of only seeing the lines grow, you can feel them too. When you run your fingers along the threads you can even feel the flow of a building.

But how can a building have flow?

Whenever we teach workshops, we often get asked this question. The answer comes down to observation. The closer you observe different objects in your surrounding, the better you will see the smaller fibres and structures that makes up the object. For example, when you observe a building, do you have the impression that the walls rise high up or are spread out wide? Depending on the shape and size of a house, it’s usually vertical or horizontal structures that stand out.

Stockholm embroidery design
Click the image to stitch your version of the Stockholm embroidery design!

Hence, when you recreate architectural sceneries in modern hand embroidery designs, you base your stitches off these observations. If a building is tall and high, you will align your stitches in a vertical fashion. The opposite is true for for example one floor houses that rather spread broadly.

The Stockholm embroidery pattern that you see on the image to the left is a perfect example of vertical structures. To emphasise the height of the building, you make sure to align all your stitches vertically. You can either use the long short stitch technique or align vertical rows of split stitches.

Stockholm embroidery design
The Stockholm embroidery design shot in front of the 13th century buildings in the centre of the old town in the Swedish Capital.

Our philosophy is that whatever technique that feels the most natural to you, is the best technique. Because to embroidery should be a practise of freedom. Thus, to be able to freely experiment with your needlework is essential for creative fulfilment to flourish.

Most of our Architectural Hand Embroidery Designs are inspired from buildings or street scenes that we’ve visited or dream to travel to. Thus, you can see the original buildings of the Stockholm embroidery pattern on the image to the right.

Architectural hand embroidery designs allow you to travel in time

Considering the slow process of hand embroidery, you have time to get a deeper connection with the place you stitch. This is just another reason why I fell in love with the architectural style. In addition to creating a unique embroidered art work, I am able to become part of the location’s history.

To use the Stockholm design as an example again, it shows the strong historical influence. Most of the original buildings in the Old Town of Stockholm originate from the 13th-14th century! Thus, the rusty red and deep yellow are no longer modern colour choices. But rather, they’re connected to the rich history of the location.

Casa Batllo French Knot embroidery design
Click the image to try and stitch this unique modern embroidery design! Inspired from Casa Batlló in Barcelona.

Another of our architectural hand embroidery designs is the world famous Casa Batlló building. However, instead of using long and short stitch or split stitches for the walls, we’ve unconventionally used French knots. Thanks to the French knots you can capture the tiles, which contribute to the building’s character.

Furthermore, the French knots add texture and a more advanced look to the design. However, don’t forget that it’s still the basic techniques. It’s just the combination of them and the thinner threads that changes the impression.

Step out of the traditional needlework box

As Charles and I explored the architectural style further, it became clear that we took a stand away from the traditional stitchery box. The most important isn’t the name

Casa Batllo hand embroidery
The Casa Batlló embroidery design in front of the original Casa Batlló building in the centre of Barcelona.

of the technique. Rather it’s the impression that the technique gives ones it’s stitched.

In other words, a French knot can be used for mini florals one day and mosaic tiles another. The only limitation is your own imagination!

To the right you can see a process image in front of Casa Battló in Barcelona. We try to go back to the inspiration source as often as we can to connect to the embroideries to their origins. It has now become an important part of our creative process.

Have you heard or seen Architectural Hand Embroidery Designs before? We would love to hear your thoughts and impression of the style! Perhaps you’d even like to try it out yourself? If that’s the case we’ve got many unique designs in our Pattern shop here on Le Kadre.

We also offer online Masterclasses on Charles and Elin Academy for those who are completely new to the medium and wish to dig deeper into the Architectural Style.

Thanks for reading along!

12 thoughts on “Architectural Hand Embroidery Designs”

  1. Hello there!
    Your work looks amazing! I am in love with Casa Batto! Which fabric that you used there? It looks so well with the design.

    1. Hi!
      We’ve used a cotton canvas as the base! With a thicker fabric like this you can better support the small single stranded details :)!

  2. Well, these are just beautifully amazing! Reminds me of the book about observation. “On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes.” Thank you for sharing them.

  3. Pingback: Artist couple that thrives with modern Hand Embroidery | Charles and Elin

  4. Hasmath Marzuk

    Thank you so much for introducing something different. Beautifully done , bless you both ❤

  5. Sue Williams

    Thanks very much for introducing me to this Charles & Elin let you know how it goes, take care

  6. Jeanne Thompson

    Right on! I had wanted to an embroidery of my home, but thought people would think it hokey. I will do it as soon as I finish the sampler I am now working on.

  7. Susan Peterson

    I’m working on your free sample, and learning a lot as I go. Cannot put it down! Have always loved architectural elements and this is a wonderful mix of that plus sewing which I also love. I’ll definitely try some of your other patterns on the places I’ve actually travelled! Thank you!

  8. Pingback: How to do embroidery? | FREE video library | Charles and Elin

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