Aemilia Ars

Aemilia Ars Needle Lace and how to make it, its specific stitches and working methods. All skill levels.

Members: 91
Latest Activity: Apr 11

Books Websites and Resources for Aemilia Ars

Margaret Stephens GEOMETRICAL NEEDLELACE IN THE STYLE OF AEMILIA ARS, self published, 2016. Clear instructions about basics, like putting in a new thread, exactly how to make a leaf shape. She uses colored threads so it is easy to see just exactly where the threads go. Clear photographs. Once past the basics she shows where to set the tacking stitches and the sequence of motions. Available from the author.

Bellamo, D'Allessandro, Montevento  BASIC COURSE (Aemilia ars) has been translated into English by Jeanine Robertson. 3 volumes. available here:

L'AEMILIA ARS DI ANTONILLA CANTELLI - this book not only has pictures of the exceptional work of her studio, it has the design diagrams on facing pages that you can copy for the toile. I do not speak or read Italian, but with a dictionary I can usually decode the one or two sentences that describe each step. Also, since the sentences are short, sometimes I can type them into Google Translate, which can help.  Her facebook page:

Barbara Cantelli's book, "L' Aemilia Ars di Antonilla Cantelli". It is excellent for following the patterns & then there are two others, Bordi & Fiori which have very good illustrations & steps for how to do the lace. All in Italian but the pics are very clear.

from Silvia The group "I merletti di Antonilla Cantelli" has just launched this website. In the future it will be expanded and perhaps translated into English.

One of our members, Patricia Girolami, recommends this:
"The following books about Aemila Ars, written in Italian with English translations, would not be a bad start.
Un Bordo, Aemilia Ars. (A Border in aemilia ars.) Edition Il Punto Antico."
A lovely geometrical border, a good point to begin in aemilia ars. This border can easily be broken up and used in smaller units. There are explanations in photographs.

Aemilia Ars, Designs and Lace. An anastatic copy of an antique book, with a second book of explanations of the old designs. Also has explanations in photgraphs and an English translation. (Two small books in a slip case).

You can found two beautiful articles about Aemilia Ars in this new blog:
Aemila Ars, Dai vecchi disegni ai nuovi merletti. An exhibition catalogue with a little more. There are also original designs and explanations of the working.
(Aemili Ars, From old designs to new lace)

All books by Il Punto Antico, Bologna, Italy.

Refer to Pia Breviglieri who speaks english.


Quaderni di Aemilia Ars : Fiori. It is written in italian and wonderfully illustrated. (Recommended by Virginie Cornaglia.)

Quaderni Di Aemilia Ars: Corso Base by Bianca Rosa Bellomo, Carla D'Alessandro, Luisa Monteventi. 

Look at Patricia's series of images showing stages in working aemilia ars: 


Silvia has a tutorial on her blog for a simple reticella design worked in the aemilia ars method: 

Her aemilia ars picot ;

aemilia ars picots = bullion picots

Discussion Forum

What thread count for linen fabric? 7 Replies

What thread count should I be looking for in linen fabric for Aemilia Ars drawn thread work?  And what weight?  I would guess that shadow work linen (almost like a batiste) is too thin, correct?  Do…Continue

Started by Trinity. Last reply by Trinity Apr 7.

Which Aemilia Ars book(s) would you recommend FIRST for a beginner? 6 Replies

1.  Geometrical Needlelace in the Style of Aemilia Ars by Margaret Stephens2.  The three-volume Basic Course (English version) by Bianca Rosa Bellomo, Carla D’Alessandro, and Luisa Monteventi3. …Continue

Started by Trinity. Last reply by Carolyn Wetzel Mar 13.

Ergonomics of Lace Making 11 Replies

I am interested in trying Aemilia Ars/Punto in Aria. I found a little "taster' piece online (…Continue

Started by Eve Zelinsky. Last reply by Lorelei Halley Sep 15, 2020.

Amelia Ars 14 Replies

Should Amelia Ars always be white or should we be trying colour?

Tags: Anne

Started by Anne Weston. Last reply by Elizabeth Ligeti. Mar 18, 2015.

Comment Wall


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Comment by Elizabeth Ligeti. on June 11, 2016 at 11:10pm

Many thanks, Kathleen.  I will pass that on to my friend.  I have not worked on a stiff background like that. Hmm!  I might give it a try, one day!

Cereal packets/boxes are very good for all sorts of things!!!!!!! :) I hope they Always leave the insides plain, though!!!  :)

Comment by Kathleen Minniti on June 11, 2016 at 9:14pm

Here's a link to a Wikipedia article describing what "Bristol Board" is:   

The key points are that it is a thick, stiff, smooth paper - think about the stuff used to make file folders and cereal packages.   It's not the cardboard used to ship stuff, but is like the box on the store shelf.  It needs to be flexible, yet thin and smooth with at least one unmarked side.  I actually use the inside surface of American breakfast cereal and cracker boxes for bobbin lace prickings, but they may actually be a little too stiff for needle lace.

Comment by Elizabeth Ligeti. on June 11, 2016 at 8:30pm

A friend who is just giving A. Ars a go, has instructions to use 2 layers of Bristol Board - which she presumes is cardboard - under the pattern, and prick through it ready to lay the holding stitches.

Do you all use a cardboard backing?"  I only use 4 layers of calico(Muslin)  as I do for all my needlelace.  If you use the cardboard, - how thick is it?  We have not heard of Bristol Board.

I checked my Italian books - Fiori etc. - and Google Translated 'Cartoncino' to get 'cardboard'.  Any help would be appreciated, as she will be going to a class in a few weeks time, and wanted to give A/Ars ago beforehand!! Not sure what pattern and instructions she has got, - from a Library book, I think.

Comment by Maxine on May 6, 2015 at 4:33pm

Hi Regina,

I looked on their web site and could not find it. Do you have a link for it?

Thank you.

Comment by Maxine on March 16, 2015 at 10:38pm

Thank you Regina. I will look for that in the books. I will let you know if I don't find it.

Comment by Regina Martinez on March 16, 2015 at 3:47pm
Hi Maxine,
I purchased mine at Lacis. . .the price was $64, but it was worth it for me. I only have first one, and it came with a border pattern for a handkerchief, and a rose pattern. Both patterns are taught in the DVD. They also go over what materials you will need (like threads, needle, pattern transfer). It also has a section that goes over the all the stitches used, and how to change your thread. If you go the lacis website, it is under the heading books, then needlework techniques, then needle and battenburg. It is the first listing. Please let me know if you don't find it, and I will post a direct link to it. :)
Comment by Maxine on March 16, 2015 at 1:18pm

Hi Regina. I am interested in the DVD you are talking about and where you can purchase it. I an a beginner too and would like to know how to get started.

Thank you,


Comment by Regina Martinez on March 16, 2015 at 12:11pm
Carolyn - I have the first Aemilia Ars DVD. I had ordered the Corso Base book, but could not figure out how to even get started so I bought the DVD, and it did help a lot. I am a visual learner, so seeing the process of how it is made was priceless information for me. I do wish they would go into a little bit more detail as far as tackling beginner mistakes and finishing techniques, but if I had to choose again whether to purchase it or not, I most certainly would! I could not have gotten started without it. And I learned enough to be able to follow the patterns in the book that I have. :)
Comment by Margaret Stephens on January 24, 2015 at 4:27am


The thread we used for the geometrical Aemilia Ars was DMC Perle No. 12

The thread used for the floral Aemilia Ars was DMC Cordonnet Special No. 50.

The thread for the support stitches both times was No. 50 sewing cotton.

We think that lace should be fine but Italians always make lace to be used and it is usually for household linen which has to be sturdy and so hence the thicker threads. I have used a lot of DMC Coton A Broder No.30 and 35 which works well.

Comment by Lorelei Halley on January 24, 2015 at 12:25am

Margaret, Christina, Loretta, Maria -- a fascinating discussion.


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