This Saturday (Feb 4): A Talk on Slovak Needlework


Talk by Dr. Inez Giles

Where: Second-Floor Meeting Room, Arlington Central Library, 1015 N. Quincy St., Arlington, VA (located midway between the Virginia Square-GMU and Ballston-MU Metro stations) (Map)

When: 1:30pm

Cost: free

From the earliest times, every society has used the cross-stitch and the satin stitch as basic embroidery techniques. Over time, as skill levels increased and refined tastes developed, other techniques were added, reflecting political and economic influences in societies. In Slovakia, these advanced embroidery techniques include vyrez (cut work), mriezka (open work), kriva ihla (tambour), and beading, culminating in the zlata vysivka (gold work) embroidery from Piest’any and Trnava. Dr. Giles will look at creative needlework artistry that is uniquely Slovak, examine the motifs that Slovak embroiderers use to create their needlework art treasures, and look at specific Slovak textiles and folk costume pieces (kroj) and reflect on their context within Slovak society.

Attendees are invited to bring no more than three Slovak embroidered textiles for Dr. Giles to comment on (no appraisals will be done).

Inez Giles, is a professor of business and management, but her passion is, and always has been, Eastern European textile traditions. She is a certified judge with the National Academy of Needlearts (NAN) and a certified textile appraiser with the American Needlepoint Guild (ANG), specializing in Eastern European textile appraisals. Currently working on her NAN Honors research, Inez spends her free time traveling and researching Eastern European textile traditions. This summer she visited, and worked with, museum curators in Trnava, Slovakia, and worked with an artisan to learn kriva ihla, the tambour embroidery of Slovakia. The question which guides her research is: “How does this embroidered textile reflect the society in which it was created?”

 The photo shows Inez wearing an embroidered headdress.



The Loudoun Sampler Guild is a group of sampler enthusiasts based in northern Virginia. We meet monthly for lectures, needlework classes and workshops, and field trips.

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