Needlepoint Bedspread - inv. 3178

Northern Italy, early 17th century

Needlepoint Bedspread
17th century, early
embroidered linen  
204 x 104 cm
1871 bequest Gian Giacomo Poldi Pezzoli
Inv. 3178

Lace Room

This needlepoint bedspread used to cover the bed of Gian Giacomo Poldi Pezzoli. Made of fine linen cloth, it is decorated with applied squares, large and small, embroidered with punto tela; smaller squares are laid directly into the fabric using the technique called punto tagliato and repeat different motifs arranged in pairs. The execution is exceptional for the refinement of the stitching and the decorative pattern, which recalls the drawings in the pattern book for lace and embroidery published by Federico Vinciolo in 1587. Bed linen and clothing with such a decoration were fashionable in the late sixteenth century and the early seventeenth. They are often mentioned in inventories of women’s trousseaus of the period.