Needlework, Miscellaneous

Atlantia A&S Criteria

Includes styles such as couching, trapunto, applique, smocking, quilting, beadwork. Approved SCA heraldic devices will be  considered period if heraldry was used in the period of the embroidered piece.

Information also available as PDF.

DOCUMENTATION (0-30 points. SCORE 0-10 then MULTIPLY BY 3):

Must have at least “EZ Doc” information. More is  acceptable, although one or two pages (not counting visuals and bibliography) should be more than enough. If your  documentation is more than three pages for exceptionally detailed and in-depth work, you should provide an executive  summary. The best documentation will cover what they did in period, what the creator did in the project, and why the  difference (if any). It will explain any conscious compromises made, and provide footnotes, illustrations, and references, as  well as any original research or experimentation as it applies to the project. Score based on the following considerations:

  • A minimum of: what it is, where is it from, when is it from, and references;
  • Materials used in the project;
  • Techniques and tools used during the process;
  • Research (country, period of origin, typical characteristics, use in period) visual references (books, portraits, etc.) from  reliable sources;
  • Artistic design, intended purpose of item, and rationale for layout of motifs and stitches used.

AUTHENTICITY (0-20 points) [SCORE 0-10 and then DOUBLE THE SCORE]:

  • 0: Non-period item OR other blatant modernity such as machine embroidery or clearly modern materials;
  • 1: Out of period but shows some knowledge of period techniques;
  • 2: Generally period but with obvious non-period elements: Ex: an SCA-specific piece (ribbon favor, etc.), questionable  design, stitches, etc.; OR obvious mixture of elements from different periods or cultures;
  • 3: Gives appearance of period piece even with major flaws in execution and inconsistencies in stitches or design;
  • 4: Overall period effect with minor inconsistencies; materials period (linen, silk, wool) or reasonable equivalent;
  • 5-6: Period effect achieved, minor flaws and inconsistencies but with knowledge of correct methods demonstrated;
  • 7-8: Period piece; no inconsistencies or flaws;
  • 9-10: Special effort to achieve completely period effect by using period design, materials, tools, techniques, etc.; elements consistent to each other.

COMPLEXITY (1-10 points):

Rank the ambition of the entry, not the workmanship, scale of 1-10 considering the following:

  • Pattern (single geometric to more complex);
  • Difficulty of motifs (Ex: geometric pattern is easier than human figure);
  • Variety ( one color, one stitch type, single motif to more of the above) and variety of elements/motifs/stitches/techniques  Difficulty of materials used (Ex: cotton easiest, then silks, wools, linen, velvet, metallics, are hardest);
  • Scope ( single row of garb trim – easiest, to more complex project; size in relation to detail);
  • Design (how are motifs combined);
  • Difficulty of stitches and techniques used (suggested order of complexity, easy to hard: beadwork, quilting, smocking, applique, trapunto, couched gold).

WORKMANSHIP (3-30 points. SCORE 1-10 then MULTIPLY BY 3):

Rank the quality of execution and success of the entry on a scale 1-10, considering the following:

  • Evenness (especially on geometric designs) and neatness;
  • Starts and ends, and tension;
  • Uniformity (in density, stitch length, etc.) ;
  • Finishing of piece (hemming, applique, etc.).


Evaluate the work as a whole, rating the complete effect and appeal beyond the mere  technical proficiency. Consider how you react to the entry (intuitive response) and other items not previously addressed.  Planning of basic design concept? Are design and type of stitches appropriate to purpose of item?  Cohesion among design, colors, and materials? Does the whole project hang together well and give feeling of being difficult to improve upon?