Needles And Nibs by Gail Sirna

For years I have been involved with The National Academy of Needlearts. This group certifies the teachers and judges of the needlearts, and is widely respected throughout the needleart community in this country. I am both a certified teacher and judge and have served on the NAN board of directors for years.

Some time ago I decided to pursue one more certification: Teacher cum Laude. The goal of this certification is to study some other art form, i.e., not needleart, and then integrate it into one’s designs. I chose calligraphy. For seven years I took calligraphy classes and participated in that culture. Finally I was ready to create my final project for the certification, and Needles & Nibs is the result

On each page of my accordion book there is an embroidered letter; they spell out Needleart. Each letter is worked in a different technique of embroidery. Each letter is also in a different “hand” of calligraphy. Then each page is worked in calligraphy, each in a different hand; the same one as the embroidered letter. I have also calligraphed each alphabet, and have added some other art work. At a recent convention I made my presentation and then my book was on display for the duration of the seminar.

Here is a synopsis of the needleart techniques and calligraphy hands that I have used:

Letter: Embroidery Technique: Calligraphy Hand
N: Canvaswork: Versal
E: Cutwork: Carolingian
E: Broderie Anglaise: Copperplate
D: Surface Embroidery: Uncial
L: Hardanger: Roman Capitals
E: Pulled Thread: Half Uncial
A: Assisi: Gothic
R: Ribbon Embroidery: Italic
T: Blackwork:Foundational