Cantor Deborah Katchko-Gray Shows How to Make Prayerful Creations with Swedish Weaving in Her New Book
Books / The Arts / Embroidery

Cantor Deborah Katchko-Gray Shows How to Make Prayerful Creations with Swedish Weaving in Her New Book

Deborah Katchko-Gray is a professional cantor and accomplished needle artist. When she’s not weaving melodies with her voice she’s weaving embroidery thread, creating Judaica with a technique called Swedish weaving. Swedish weaving is a type of embroidery in which the stitches are worked on the surface of the fabric. Rather than the needle passing to … Continue reading

For Brides, Pilgrims, and a Certain Angel: The Wreath as a Jewish Decoration and Symbol
Shavuot / Symbols / Weddings

For Brides, Pilgrims, and a Certain Angel: The Wreath as a Jewish Decoration and Symbol

Wreaths are not a major motif in Judaism, but Jews used wreaths as holiday decorations and wedding accessories even in antiquity, when the Temple stood in Jerusalem. Although today wreaths are strongly associated with Christmas, Jews made wreaths for Shavuot and other festive occasions before the birth of Jesus. And as a symbol, the wreath … Continue reading

Embroidering Sacred Texts – A Book of Judaic Needlework Designs from Rachel Braun
Books / The Arts / Embroidery

Embroidering Sacred Texts – A Book of Judaic Needlework Designs from Rachel Braun

This month, when so many students are going back to school, seems like the perfect time to highlight Rachel Braun’s book, Embroidery and Sacred Text: New Designs in Judaic Needlework, in which Rachel draws on principles of mathematics to develop needlework designs that explore Jewish spirituality. Rachel teaches high school math and statistics, and she’s … Continue reading

Introducing the Maraviglia Star – Free PDF Pattern
Free Patterns / Symbols

Introducing the Maraviglia Star – Free PDF Pattern

When looking for Jewish design inspiration, illustrated Jewish manuscripts offer a treasure trove of themes and forms. And now, the British Library has made dozens of illustrated manuscripts from the Middle Ages accessible online through the Hebrew Manuscripts Digitisation Project. Within the digitized collection you’ll find hand calligraphed Passover Haggadahs, daily prayer books, Kabbalistic texts, … Continue reading

Introduction to Drawn Thread Embroidery – Open Sky Sukkah Workshop
Communities / Embroidery / Holidays / Projects and Tutorials / Sukkot

Introduction to Drawn Thread Embroidery – Open Sky Sukkah Workshop

This Sukkot I got the chance to lead a workshop for the Beacon Sukkah Project, a Sukkot-long program of arts and lectures organized by the Beacon Hebrew Alliance and Beacon Arts in Beacon, New York. To fit this year’s theme, “Open to the Sky,” I led an introduction to drawn thread embroidery, and thought I’d … Continue reading

Let’s Sew in the Sukkah
Communities / Sukkot

Let’s Sew in the Sukkah

During the festival of Sukkot we eat in the sukkah, visit with family and friends in the sukkah, and sometimes, so I’ve heard, sleep in the sukkah, although I’ve never done that. Why not sew in the sukkah? Particularly during the intermediate days of the festival when we’re less likely to be entertaining friends for … Continue reading