Crewel Nature: The Needlework of Georgiana Brown Harbeson & Joanna Reed


A recent newsletter from Sublime Stitching’s Jenny Hart alerted me to the naturey needlework genius of Georgiana Brown Harbeson. Jenny Hart had come across a Needlecraft Magazine cover from 1931 featuring Brown Harberson’s work and set out to learn more. One of her readers was kind enough to send her a photo of their large Rousseau-style piece Brown Harberson designed:

Definitely matches the decor! I also found another cover by Brown Harberson on ebay.

The listing for this one has already ended, but there’s another one up for sale now. She also apparently put out a few books – might have to add them to the wishlist. The newsletter reminded me of an article I’d read in the Aug/Sep 2010 issue of Organic Gardening about another famous embroiderer-extraordinaire of garden goodness – Joanna Reed:

This unassuming woman, who would become president of the Herb Society of America in 1980, and who was profiled in Star Ockenga’s 1998 book Earth on Her Hands, as one of America’s most notable woman gardeners, was also a talented embroiderer…and her garden, a work of art that attracted visitors from all over the world, was her inspiration.

“Her work was very realistic,” says her daughter…”she would go outside with her basket of yarns to see what was in bloom, and then she’d compare her yarn colors to the colors of the flowers, to see if she had the right shades. If she did, she’d pick the flower and put it in a bud vase, and then off she’d go,” translating the flower onto her fabric.

This beautiful work really inspires me to get to work on a crafty project – I hope it does the same for you!

First 2 photos from Sublime Stitching
Needlecraft cover from ebay
Last photos from Organic Gardening



One thought on “Crewel Nature: The Needlework of Georgiana Brown Harbeson & Joanna Reed

  1. Pingback: Cryptoquote Spoiler – 02/21/12 « Unclerave's Wordy Weblog

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