Mstera Embroidery

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Mstera Embroidery


a type of Russian folk needlework that developed in the settlement of Mstera. It is characterized by two types of stitches: white satin stitch and Vladimir stitch. White satin stitch embroidery, which is distinguished by close stitches on both sides of the fabric, appeared in Mstera in the mid-19th century. The Vladimir stitch, a satin stitch on only one side of the fabric, has been popular primarily in Soviet times.

Mstera embroidery done with a fine white satin stitch on cambric consists of small elegant designs (flower buds, garlands of flowers), often on a transparent lined background. Embroidery using a colored Vladimir stitch has large foliage designs, often with depictions of birds; reddish tones predominate in this type of needlework.

In Soviet times, Mstera embroidery has been produced at the N. K. Krupskaia Embroidery Factory (satin-stitch embroidered linen, blouses, tablecloths, and napkins; Vladimir-stitch embroidered dresses and sofa cushions). Sometimes both the white satin stitch and the colored Vladimir stitch are used to create a contrast. Masters of Mstera embroidery include T. M. Dmitrieva-Shul’pina and V. N. Noskova.


[Voronova, L. I.] Msterskaia belaia glad’. Moscow, 1954.
Vladimirskie shvy. Moscow, 1962.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.