Hand Embroidery Network

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Brazilian Embroidery

What is it?
Brazilian embroidery is a technique produced mostly in dimensional stitches using Z-twisted rayon embroidery thread. Brazilian embroidery patterns usually include flowers formed using both knotted and cast on stitches.

What is it's history?
Brazil started producing multicolored rayon threads in several weights. The popularity of the thread spread rapidly throughout Brazil to the point where variegated rayon embroidery became know as Vari-Cor embroidery. It wasn't long before the rest of the world noticed its popularity and immediately adopted it as "Brazilian". It was also developed in Brazil in 1960 by Mrs. Elisa Hirsch Maia (known as Madam Maia).

How do I do it?
In Brazilian embroidery it is important to tie knots at the beginning and the endings of threads. It is not necessary to use a hoop but some of the stitches such as bullion stitch, couching and stem stitch may benefit from a hoop. Some specialist needles are needed for example a milliners needle used for bullion and cast-on type stitches.

What are the best embroidery stitches to use for Brazilian embroidery embroidery?
Suitable stitches for Brazilian embroidery include: Bullion Stitch, Cast-on Buttonhole, Couching, Detached Buttonhole, Drizzle, Leaf Stitch, Pistil or Long-Tailed French Knot and Stem Stitch

Recommended Reading

The Art of Dimensional Embroidery (Paperback) by Maria A. Freitas (Author)

Brazilian Three-dimensional Embroidery (Embroidery, Needlework Designs Series) (Paperback) by R. Montague (Author)

Online Resources
EdMar Co. - Manufacturer of Rayon threads
Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery Information Guide

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Copyright 2009 Sarah Whittle - Hand Embroidery Network

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