The sailor's needle

This embroidered picture depicts a two-masted sailing barque, the "Emma", which traded between London and Hartlepool in the second half of the 19th century. The Master was Southwold born Capt. Everitt. The picture was executed on board in 1879 by Capt. Everitt's nephew, a member of the crew. The ground fabric is linen canvas. The embroidery is in wool thread with details in silk and is carried out in large long and short stitching; in the ship, the stitching follows the different directions of the design whilst the rigging is depicted with long silk threads. It was given to the museum by Mrs Allen (the embroiderer's sister) in 1963.

The picture has recently been restored and part of the cost was met by a grant from the East of England Museums, Libraries and Archives Council whose help in this respect is gratefully acknowledged. Conservation work is by May Berkouwer of Sudbury (textiles) and Stephen Wells of Southwold (Frame).

Scroll down this page until the cream panel is all visible. "Emma" in closeup. By moving your mouse over the image below, you can bring some of the more interesting details into closeup. There are seven closeups to find.