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Guizhou Miao Embroidery Stitches


During Sister's meal festival on the third lunar month, Miao new year on the tenth lunar month, and Lusheng festivals on the first and ninth lunar month, you will come across many Miao girls in gorgeous embroidered jackets, skirts, aprons and shoes in Guizhou. Maybe you will be surprised at these beautiful costumes and amazing embroidery stitches, you can't imagine how they are so skillful.

Oh yes, they start to learn to stitch when they are still 12, 13 or 14 years old, so before their weddings or important festivals, they need to finish their holiday bests, and they will wear their own best dresses which are stitched by themselves to show their skills, a good embroider is highly respected by the others in that area including the old and young.

Usually one or several embroidery stitches are practiced in one area of a sub group of Miao, or even you may find several stitches on one jacket. Of course there are many embroidery techniques among the Miao and Shui in Guizhou, here I will give you some simple but useful introductions to these stitches, please see each stitch below for the details. You also see the book-One Needle, One Thread for more details.

Unfortunately, when you travel to a Miao village, and when you ask married women for their embroidered works, they always say: "well, I can't do as good as the old, the old make much better", the old always say: "mine is not good, I can't see any more, so I will give up soon", the young girls always say: " I don't have time to learn any more, I need to go to school". It's so sad, maybe these stitches will disappear someday in the future.

Tin Weaving Stitch

Horse Hair Stitch

Split Stitch

Silk Cocoon Stitch

Flat Stitch

Braid Stitch

Crepe Stitch

French Knot Stitch



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