The Italian blog Elisabetta Ricami a Mano draws an international following for its splendid examples of hand embroidery. Many readers who visit–enchanted by the extraordinary ability of its talented founder–linger to experience the bliss of her journey with a needle and thread.
For needle artist Elisabetta Sforza, of San Bonifacio, Italy, childhood strolls through the ancient byways of Assisi led to creative expression. Women sat outdoors then, she recalls, embellishing linens with mythological figures rendered in powder blue or rusty brown. Captivated by this style of cross-stitch, the 7-year-old was also taken with the camaraderie among the villagers as they worked.
Soon thereafter, she attended a course on handwork under the tutelage of an instructor whose joyful spirit and kindly manners became inextricably linked to the craft in the youngster’s mind. Needlework remained Elisabetta’s cherished pastime for decades but became a serious pursuit when she had children. Today, her online journal, which she writes from home, offers an opportunity to share her passion for ricami a mano (hand embroidery) with a global audience.