Bulgaria in Embroidery by Iren Velichkova-Yamami

We just received Iren Yamami’s new book “Bulgaria in Embroidery” and WOW, it was so much more than we expected.

It has 144 traditional motifs that represents each region in Bulgaria.  The overall design is in the shape of a map which is fondly called a FLAG.

I can feel the labor of love that went into the creation of the book and charts, which is a work of art within itself.

The book tells us the history of Bulgaria and the struggles of war that finally led to independence as a country.  The flag represents peace and an expression of passing down traditional values to the children.  It has always been the women of every culture to tell the story of their people.  This one is an excellent example of how their stories are expressed… with the needle.


There are 144 motifs in this design.  The symbolic significance of each of these motifs are derived from ancient symbols and beliefs.

The book is in three languages.  Bulgarian, English and Japanese.  This is a page in English.


The main stitches are slant stitches, both with or without a leading thread.  These variations of the slant stitch (Leading, Mesal, Tron) make it interesting.  There are other traditional bulgarian stitches like Samokov backstitch, Straight stitch, Brick Stitch, Sokai Stitch, and a dense textured jepchej.  Cross stitches are the single stitches inside the form. 

These stitches are carefully illustrated in the book.

The charts are a work of art as well.  In three languages, it describes what region it came from and what it’s traditionally used for.   Superb color reference.




There is also a chart of the flag divided into 8 sheets  (10 squares to the inch) for those who would like to take on the challenge.





DMC colors are at the back of the book and printed in color on a cardboard grade sheet and printed on each chart sheet.  Very nice touch. 








A few close-ups of this magnificent design

Book can be purchased from the publisher…  Click here for HELIKON.BG to ORDER.

The site is only in Bulgarian.  I’ve translated below…

Bulgaria in embroidery

Author: Irene Velichkova-Jamami

A box with an attractive vision 32 x 21 cm

A book describing the embroidery, symbolism and description of the stitches
in 3 languages ​​- Bulgarian, English and Japanese. The cover presents an authentic embroidered logo of BULGARIA with 144 national Bulgarian embroidery located in ethnographic regions
Contents of the book
A Brief History of the KNOWLEDGE in dates
Bulgarian embroidery, motifs and symbolic
Materials, stitches and instructions
144 colorful traditional embroidery by region

8 wide-format patterns 70 x 100 cm , a colorful presentation of the ethnographic map of Bulgaria in traditional embroidery

Author of the book – Iren Velichkova – Jamami
A long time researcher in the field of embroidery and embroideries from all over the world with numerous awards from international competitions and exhibitions
Author of the book “Archaic symbols in embroidery”
Author of the idea of ​​Flag of Bulgaria in embroidery


“… But here is a flag , which is peaceful, vitalizing and colorful as the happy side of life … Standing before this painting, we are amazed and delighted by the remarkable variety of motifs and artistic techniques in the art of Bulgarian embroidery, testifying to the powerful creative entsial the Bulgarian people and especially of the Bulgarian who invented and made by hands that wealth … ”

Prof., DSc. Julia Valeva

“… This amazing book is an old-fashioned tale of human hands, mind, soul and heart told by a man with the ability to embroider, with a love for this skill and a conscious desire for knowledge on it … The
author is a true ambassador of the Bulgarian identity – valuable and valued!
Even if we do not learn our hands to create, we will teach our eyes to see, their souls rejoice and their minds to understand and appreciate the treasures we possess …. In the conditions of globalization and high technology, in the time of virtual museums and information banks on the Internet, this book accepts the challenges of time, keeping in mind the desire to find something new and authentic.
This book is yours … and you can pass it on to your children and grandchildren – as a “new covenant” as a “generic condo” as a wonderful message from the depths of Bulgarian times and as a banner for the

maid ” Galia Chohadjieva, ethnologist