How my love for the Lunéville embroidery technique started

Borduren Ecole Lesage Lunéville Borduurtechniek Paris

Luneville Embroidery Danielle Balfoort Until now I haven't really written a blog about the embroidery technique I use the most, I discovered. While I sit behind my frame almost every day and embroidery is my passion! So it was time for some more explanation. I'm talking about Lunéville embroidery and how my love for it came about...

Sometime in 2016 I was looking for options for sewing lessons. It had been a while since I had made anything with my hands and I felt like being creative again. Fortunately, I quickly found a nice address and I went there every week to work on a garment that I wanted to make.

Not long after that, the lady who was teaching unfortunately stopped, but in the meantime I had read somewhere (unfortunately I can't find the article anymore) an article about haute couture embroidery called Lunéville embroidery. That article triggered me because I have always been involved with fashion and the reader got a glimpse into the haute couture ateliers in Paris. I saw ladies at Chanel using some kind of crazy crochet hooks, making the most beautiful creations with sequins and beads. They worked on a wooden frame and each did some of the embroidery. What was this special thing?

My search began because where could you take lessons?

Through the grapevine I discovered that lessons were given at the Dutch couture academy in Doesburg in, among other things, Lunéville embroidery and after I followed a three-day beginners course in the studio, I was so enthusiastic that a follow-up course soon followed. Immediately afterwards I was able to follow two annual programs where you create and implement your own designs. You can guess that that's when I fell in love with embroidery ;)

Luneville embroidery blog danielle balfoort embroidery art

Now almost 5 years later, I have also started at the famous embroidery academy Ecole Lesage in Paris. This is one of my favorite cities, which makes it a joy to go and you will be taught together with students from all over the world by teachers who also work on assignments for fashion houses.

Read more about my first embroidery at Ecole Lesage here!

The technique:

In short, it involves working the chain stitch on an embroidery frame stretched with fabric using a type of crochet hook. The chain stitch is combined with the processing of beads and sequins. A difference with other embroidery techniques is that work is almost always done behind a wooden frame with a stretched base of, among other things, silk organza, so that the embroiderer has both hands free, unlike an embroidery hoop that you hold in your hands.

The advantage of working with the Lunéville needle is that you can process several beads or sequins in a row within a pattern, instead of one by one. This is the reason why this technique is used in the couture collections of the major fashion houses. Then we are talking about a large frame where, for example, 6 embroiderers on one side and 6 on the other side can work on a garment at the same time!

In the beginning it takes a lot of practice to get comfortable with the needle, but once you get the hang of it, you will notice what a nice addition this technique is.

The dove you see above is my very first embroidery made with Luneville. It seems big but it is only about 5 cm and it took me more than a week haha
Of course, there was also some frustration as to why things were going so slowly. But practice makes perfect :)

Luneville embroidery blog danielle balfoort embroidery art Would you like to know more about Luneville embroidery?
I have created an e-book 'The basics of Luneville' especially for newsletter readers that you can download for free. This freebie is packed with background examples and explanations about stitches and materials.

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