Nicole Kipar
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Silk filament shading: Ren Kah'Nath embroidery

In honour of the brilliant fantasy web-series Ren: the girl with the mark (episode 1 available from 1st March 2016, and for which I was lucky enough to make a costume), I created this embroidery. It was a gift for Kate, the director, and depicts the Kah'Nath symbol. The designs inside it were taken from a Bronze Age metal artefact found in Scotland.

It was meant to be subtle and thus mostly monochrome black with two additional grey shades, and was worked with filament silks (from Piper silks) on silk backed with linen, embroidered in silk shading technique. I added a black metallic outline to the designs and gold for the shape.

Ren Ren Ren Ren
Ren Ren Ren Ren
© Nic Kipar

Mixed methods: Lord of the Rings

This embroidery - to be hung as a tapestry, and depicting Gandalf at the Bridge of Khazad-dum - took 3 years to make.
The imagery is based on the famous illustration by the artist John Howe. The embroidery resides in France now.

It was worked on a base of machine-dyed red cotton, with a thin layer of cotton basting underneath. The first layer consists of machine-appliqued fabric, which I had heat-printed via a transfer painting technique. The embroidery was made with mixed materials, including cotton, rayon, and silk floss, as well as coloured metallic yarns ranging from black over browns to reds. A wide variety of gold and silver metallic yarn was used, including machine embroidery threads, different hand embroidery types, and passing thread. Stitches used are many stem stitch and split stitch, as well as shading and surface couching.

the embroidery and its colours and techniques were designed for low-level lighting, with a particular room in mind, which is why the colours and the entire flame-and-fire effect works less well on photographs taken elsewhere. I will add photos of the final display when they become available in 2015.

© Nic Kipar


Classic goldwork embroidery using mixed materials and techniques. The embroidery resides in Germany now.
© Nic Kipar


Anglo-Saxon embroidery, wool in split stitch, stem stitch, and gold surface couching, as found on the Maaseik embroidery fragment.
Designs taken from Vendel and Valsgarde helmet plates. The embroidery is unfinished and resides in Scotland.
© Nic Kipar


Freeform embroidery incorporating heat-printed painted fabric, gold paint, jewellery findings, braids, stamps, beads, and pearls.
The embroidery resides in Scotland.
© Nic Kipar
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