Press

I am honored to have my articles and projects published in these wonderful magazines and books:

Ephemera: Irina Stepanova's Collection

Ephemera is Volume E in the UPPERCASE Encyclopedia of Inspiration. This 448-page book features gorgeous and inspiring collections of vintage ephemera along with profiles of 30 creatives who make art and business through their collections. Collage artists, illustrators, type designers, graphic designers, creative entrepreneurs and more! It has a dust jacket that can be folded to reveal one of four designs.

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Adorning Hearth and Home: Animals in Victorian Berlin Work

On June 28, 1838, described by historians as "a fine summer day," eighteen-year-old  Alexandrina Victoria officially ascended the British throne as Her Majesty Queen Victoria. She lived to become one of the most iconic and long-ruling monarchs. Her reign saw the Industrial Revolution and the expansion of the British Empire and produced an entire generation of people whose lifestyles, fashions, and morals we call "Victorian." 

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Alsatian Redwork Heart

Named for the Alsace region, located in eastern France, this design combines the traditional redwork embroidery color of the region with patterns and motifs to create a piece that is equally beautiful stitched over two threads or over one.

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A Biedermeier Wreath to Stitch

The Biedermeier period (1815-1848) played a significant role in architecture, literature, music, decorative arts, and interior design in Austria, Czech Republic, Northern Germany, and, to some extent, Italy and Scandinavia. It is considered a transi­tional period between the Neoclassical (1770-1815) and the Romantic (1840-1870) eras.

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The Fiery Sun, the Glorious Light: Embroidery Traditions of Southern Russia

The Desna River weaves its way through the malachite-green lowlands and meadows of southern Russia, its softly sloped banks dotted with villages with pictur­esque names such as Prudki (Little Lakes), Monastyrische (Large Monastery), Lyubozhi­chi (Pleasant Place), Golubcha (Doves' Land), and Lipovka (Linden Tree Hamlet). The river's gentle flow has been a lifeline for countless generations of Eastern Slavs (Russians) who first settled here in the ninth century. 

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Sweet Remembrance: The Language of Flowers in Needlework

Floriography has been known since the early ages. Greeks and Romans decorated their poets, patriots, and victors with floral wreaths, laurels, and oak crowns. At the end of the Roman Empire, the practice fell into disuse but returned during the Middle Ages—a knight showed his devotion to a lady by wearing her color on his casque, and she responded to his attention by choosing special flowers to wear on her dress.

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The Original Pixels

Pages 36-39

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Every Woman Has a Story

This issue, Ardis introduces you to Irina Stepanova. Irina's Mishutka Design Studio offers embroidery designs based on Victorian scraps imagery as well as faithful reproductions of 19th century patterns from her collection of antique Berlin-work charts and lithographs from ladies' fashion magazines. In addition to patterns, one can find die­cut Victorian envelopes and placecards on her ever-growing website. Among her customers are needlework enthusiasts, crafters, collectors from all around the world, and anyone who enjoys romantic, shabby chic, or modern Victorian styles in her home.

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Berlin Wool: Fine Fiber from an Innovative Age

The nineteenth century was a century of innovation. The arts, manufacturing, and trade flourished; dazzling new machines, inventions, and curiosities seemed to appear on the market every month. It was a time of fascination with science and technology, and the Victorians in particular tirelessly designed, improved, and experimented with devices that could make in a day what previously had taken months to complete by hand. It was inevitable that they would turn their unbridled energy, ingenuity, and talent to modernizing handmade needlecrafts.

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Berlin Work: An Exuberance of Color

The early Victorian household was not the romantic abode that we may imagine today. The Industrial Revolution propelled Britain’s manufacturing to new heights, but it also created large cities, unsightly slums, and heavy smog. The prosperous upper-class aristocracy might escape to country estates, but the new middle class lived, for the most part, in the cities, where the streets were dirty, transportation was mainly on foot or by stagecoach, and the lighting outside and inside homes was dim. Heavy drapes at the windows and around the beds kept out cold and drafts to some degree but blocked natural light. Central heating did not exist. Instead, rooms had open fireplaces that burned coal, which produced enormous amounts of soot that settled on the rooms’ bulky furniture and innumerable trinkets.

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