I've received a very special postcard through postcrossing. On the back it says: "Appenzeller Stickerei (Heimarbeit)". This means it is a piece stitched in Appenzell by homeworkers. After all I've told you about Appenzell embroidery, the piece might somewhat surprise you...
The postcard was issued for the 1939 national exhibition in Zürich, Switzerland. This exhibition was commonly known as the Landi. It took place from the 6th of May until the 29th of October 1939. With 10 million tickets sold, it was a huge success, despite the outbreak of the Second World War.
True to the Zeitgeist, the exhibition was a mixture of backwards conservatism and modern design and ideas. For instance, it was partly a rural village with replica buildings from all over the country. On the other hand, do google Landi-Stuhl and you'll find a world famous modern aluminium chair designed by Hans Coray. There was also a pavilion staffed by women organisations drawing attention to the inequality between men and women in Switzerland.
Now to the embroidery. It is either worked in untwisted flat silk or some sort of synthetic equivalent on a gauze. Again silk or synthetic. The embroidery is closely cut out and glued to the pre-printed postcard. The whole embroidery is worked in satin stitches or simple back stitches. Spaced out more for the waters of Lake Zürich and the Alps in the distance. Whereas the buildings in the foreground, left the Große Münster and right the Fraumünster, are worked more solidly with hardly fabric showing.
Apart from the two churches, the Quaibrücke is depicted as well as the Pendelbahn over Lake Zürich. On the left is the flag of Zürich, whereas on the right side the flag of Switzerland is flying. Do have a look at google street view to see how well everything can be identified. I am truly amazed by the amount of detail in this simple piece of embroidery!
Jessica M. Grimm
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