Resht Handbag & Jewellery Roll by Margaret Light

12th May 2023

We hope you’ve been enjoying our recent articles exploring some of the wonderful projects featured in Margaret Light’s new book, A Fine Tradition 2.

It seems that every time we turn the pages of her book in preparation for writing about another project, there are yet more exotic techniques and locations to discover, some of which we’ve never had the opportunity to share before.

This week is yet another first as we learn the technique of Resht embroidery that is featured in two projects from the book, the Resht Handbag and Jewellery Roll.

Whether you refer to it as Rasht, Rescht or Resht, this style of embroidery originates from a port city by the same name located on the Caspian Sea in the Gilan province of Iran.

A technique typically used for prayer rugs, tent panels, saddle cloths, wall hangings and the like, it is most commonly worked onto a background of wool felt, broadcloth or velvet.

Margaret has chosen felt for both her handbag and the jewellery roll along with the clever use of inlay instead of appliqué.

In this way, the process you follow is to cut out the shapes of the motifs from the felt ground fabric creating a stencil. Pieces of coloured felt are then cut into shapes matching the stencil and sit in the felt ground and are tacked in place.

Once in position, each element is secured with a variety of different embroidery stitches to both conceal the tacking stitches and add decorative embellishments to the edges.

You’ll notice that the edging stitches are wide enough to span both the edge of the stencil and the inlay pieces. This is achieved predominately through the use of chain stitch, double chain stitch and our personal favourite, magic chain stitch.

Magic chain stitch is when you thread your needle with two different coloured threads and then alternate between the colours as you lay each stitch.

After all the inlaid elements are complete you’re ready for construction, the instructions for which are included on the pattern sheet for both the handbag and the jewellery roll, along with all the stencils and patterns for the cut outs.

We just love the bold statement these designs make with the vivid coloured motifs contrasting against the black, don’t you?

The end result is an eye catching, crowd stopping pair of stylish fashion accessories that are as practical as they are beautiful.

Make Your Own Resht Handbag & Jewellery Roll

Step 1 – Purchase Project Instructions

Resht Handbag & Jewellery Roll by Margaret Light are two stunning pieces featuring inlaid techniques.

Printed Books

A Fine Tradition 2

Step 2 – Purchase Ready-To-Stitch Kit

The Inspirations Ready-To-Stitch kits for Resht Handbag & Jewellery Roll include everything* you need to re-create these beautiful Resht projects: Fabrics (unprinted), wool felts, bag batting, fusible webbing, cotton tape, buttons, zip (Jewellery Roll), acetate film, sewing threads, embroidery threads and needles.


Resht Handbag – AFT2 Kit


Resht Jewellery Roll – AFT2 Kit

*Please Note: To cater for flexibility of purchase, instructions are not included with our kits. For step-by-step directions on how to create this project, please refer to the book.

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