Global Embroidery: A Hands-On History

Short course

+44 (0)20 7942 2000
  • Friday 3 November 2023 – Friday 8 December 2023

  • V&A South Kensington

    Cromwell Road
    London, SW7 2RL

  • Creative Studio

  • Course price £425.00

Sold out

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 all over the globe.

Note: This course is now sold out. To put your name on the waiting list, please email including the course title in your email...

In this six-week embroidery course you’ll dive into a different culture and technique each week to gain a deeper understanding of the history of each embroidery style followed by a practical hands-on session with a skilled practitioner.

Through lectures, discussions and object-handling you’ll get first hand access to some of the most beautiful examples in our collections guided by our expert curators. Join us to unpick the reconstructions of 16th century Blackwork embroidery, journey to Japan to discover the sophisticated techniques used to pattern kimono and Fukusa before immersing yourself in the richness of contemporary Mexican textiles among others.

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course photo
Portrait of V&A Academy Course contributors

V&A Academy
Course contributors

Toni Buckby, Anna Jackson, Midori Matsushima, Jennifer Wearden, Dr Alexandra Makin, Chloe Sayer, Ekta Kaul, Rachel Dedman, Lizzy Vartanian

The course exceeded my expectations. Not only did I learn techniques, as expected, but I discovered a greater confidence in my painting skills. Previous Academy student

Course overview

Week One: Blackwork Embroidery
This session will explore the stylistic development and application of Blackwork embroidery, using numerous examples of Blackwork embroidery in the portrait record as a guide.

Week Two: Japanese Embroidery
This session will give participants a chance to view the embroidery used to pattern kimono and Fukusa (gift covers) in the V&A collection.

Week Three: Opus Anglicanum
This session will give you a taster of what it was like to create the famous Opus Anglicanum embroidery technique using silk embroidery and gold metal threads.

Week Four: Mexican Embroidery
This is a cultural hand embroidery workshop, exploring the rich heritage of Yucatan-Mexican traditional embroideries.

Week Five: Kantha Stitching
Discover Kantha stitching with award winning artist Ekta Kaul.

Week Six: Palestinian Embroidery
This session will focus on the most popular Palestinian “Fallahi" stitch, allowing participants to design and create their own work inspired by traditional Palestinian embroidery motifs.


By the end of this course you will have:

Developed a deep and meaningful connection to a variety of embroideries styles from around the world. You will learn a variety of new stitching techniques and make new connections with fellow embroidery enthusiasts.

Enrol now

Short course: Global Embroidery: A Hands-On History

3 November 2023 - 8 December 2023


Sold out

Need help enrolling? Talk to the admissions team:

+44 (0)20 7942 2000

Open 10.00 - 13.00, Monday to Sunday (closed 24-26 December)

Related events

Header image: Sampler, Encarnacion castellanos, 1850, Mexico, Bequeathed by A.F Kendrick, Museum no.T.92-1954