Found on everything from stockings and nightgowns to wedding dresses and wall hangings, embroidery has been used to decorate textiles for over a thousand years. From cross-stitch to underside couching, our collection includes examples of embroidery techniques from across the world, by skilled professionals and amateurs alike.

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Embroidery designs by William Morris are represented alongside exquisite examples of medieval opus anglicanum, 17th century caskets and modern masterpieces of couture by Cristóbal Balenciaga and Christian Dior.


Header image:

Waistcoat with blackwork embroidery, maker unknown, 1620 – 25, England. Museum no. T.4-1935. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London