Great Saint Claire of Assisi

Patroness of Needleworkers

St. Claire of Assisi

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Every embroiderer needs a patron saint to watch over her needlework. St. Claire of Assisi is considered the needleworkers’ patron, and here is depicted as the subject of a beautiful illuminated capital. Claire of Assisi is the founder of the Franciscan Sisters and is shown in her religious habit, seated on a small chair in front of a beautiful stained glass window. In her hands she holds her needlework.

The large, elaborate “C” which begins her name is interpreted in beautiful shiny silk, embellished in gold and other metallics. This is a modern interpretation of traditional calligraphy. I adapted the Rhodes heart to be worked on the diagonal—which was a bit of a challenge. Several couching techniques are employed to create this beautiful letter. The remainder of Claire’s name is lettered in foundational letters, surrounded by
couched Japanese gold. St. Claire herself is worked in the most appropriate of techniques: Assisi! She is outlined in double running stitch, with the interior space left unstitched. The stained glass window, worked in a number of vibrant colors, serves as the background, and thereby combining two techniques and interpreting them in a modern way. The prayer to St. Claire was composed by me. It is reproduced on an elegant paper and the gold capitals are retouched with gold by hand.