Detail of Sleeves from Qalamoon
Syria traditional clothing dresses folk Damascus


Silk embroidery thread in the sleeves of the dress from Qalamoon adds a glimmer to the alternating bands of satin stitch embroidery in purple, fuscia and cream. Individual silk threads were unwound from the cocoons, were dyed and then twisted together to form a floss as delicate as the tiny stitches in the embroidery. Fine triangles patterns outline each band of satin stitch, with a floral motic completing the bar.

Every other band is made of tatted lace inserts with a European floral motif. The flower at the end of these rows features xxxx.

The fine quality of this embroidery suggests that it was produced by a professional who earned her livelihood from her handwork. Embroidery could be ordered from these experts for special occasions, such as weddings.