About Us




Bargello Arts specializes in hand stitched bargello needlework, designed and created for inspiration, beauty and longevity.

Its owner and designer Joyce Petschek is known as a multi-faceted needlework designer. Today her talents create wall textiles which have spiritual content emanating from their chosen colours and design. Inspired by William Morris and his Arts & Crafts movement, and as a member of the Art Workers Guild which he founded, she is dedicated to exploring the medium in new directions.

Bargello Arts specializes in unique works of needlework art for exhibition and purchase, as well as public and private commissions for furniture coverings. It provides inspirational, contemporary designs of the highest quality, finished to exceptional standards.



To date our largest wall textile measures one metre high by two metres wide, taking five months to complete the design and stitching. All our stitched textiles have 90% silk threads, with as many as 40 thread tonalities. Bargello Arts retains each original piece for exhibition purposes, followed by one unique piece for purchase. Other designs are available in a limited edition of nine, also stitched by hand with 90% silk threads. Finished pieces are blocked and velvet backed with metal hanging poles. Other framing options are possible, prices on request.


Furniture commissions address our client’s requirements, each design complementing one's environment. By appointment only, our finished designs and stitched pieces can be seen. After initial agreement of the commissioned design, a sample with selected threads is stitched before final terms of contract. Upon completion, Bargello Arts can arrange to have upholstered pieces finisheda separate price available.



Bargello Arts selects the finest quality materials available for needlework. All designs are stitched on deluxe canvas which blend with the chosen threads, assuring that the canvas is not seen on the final stitched piece. Our threads come from all over the world, new ones constantly being added to our collection.

These threads include silk, silk & wool, silk & mohair, six stranded cotton, merlino wool, lambs wool, camel wool, mohair, linen, metallic, viscose (a natural fibre made from trees). All threads come in multiple textures and tones, available in solid colours or over dyed tones, the latter resulting from multi-colours being hand dyed over the base colour.

Formerly available only in solid colours, today our silk collection includes boucle, ribbon, silk & mohair, silk & wool - all hand dyed to create luxurious colour combinations. Finding the sheen of silk irresistible, Bargello Arts now specializes in using 90% silk threads in our designs.The remaining 10% threads are carefully selected for the dramatic effects that come from their textures.





Joyce Petschek's reputation as a bargello path-finder is well known. After experimenting with many needlework styles, her life-long passion became bargello, a technique dependent upon bold patterns and subtle colour combinations for its heightened effect.

Joyce’s awareness of colour and its symbols began with academic studies at Vassar College , completing her Bachelor of Arts in Art History, later her Masters in Fine Arts at Harvard University. After her initial visual arts training, Joyce explored the dream world through researching paintings by surreal artists and fairy-tale illustrations. This study culminated in her first illustrated book, The Silver Bird, published in 1991 by Celestial Arts, USA, followed by a Dream Lecture series held at the Groucho Club, London.

Her extensive art slide collection became innovative lectures, including dream explanations and the symbolism of colour. This knowledge of colour formed her needlework book Beautiful Bargello published in 1997 by Collins and Brown, UK and the Book of the Month Club, USA, followed by a French edition. 


Besides her passion for bargello, of paramount importance to Joyce Petschek are the Tibetan teachings she has received since 1975 from Dzogchen masters, including meditation practises which further developed her intuitive gifts. However, It was through bargello stitching that she realized its unique rhythm of repetitive patterns resonated closely with meditation. Today, through combining stitching and silence, she integrates her spiritual meditation practises and esoteric knowledge, receiving personal visions of patterns, colour and designs from her sixth sense.

For Joyce bargello is more than a sophisticated tradition of subtle geometrics and abstract designs. Rather it is about unseen vibrations that emanate from her colour palette and thread combinations - enhancing our environment and stimulating our unconscious to develop creative ideas.

Today her passion is expressed in two directions. Through Bargello Arts she creates elaborate and innovative designs for wall textiles and furniture coverings, concentrating on public and private commissions. Through Bargello Breaks she offers Stitching Retreats in her Tuscan home in Italy, dedicated to guiding participants to experiment and expand their personal creativity.




The complex designs from Bargello Arts are artistically inspired, never computer generated. 100% hand stitched with the finest threads available, many textiles are in silk threads only. Joyce Petschek's unique artistic imagination, highly developed colour sense and personal philosophy bring forefront textile designs to the 21st century.

Her reputation is one of excellence, originality and inventiveness. To commission a design from Bargello Arts is an exciting experience, as Joyce and the client work closely together, aware that her designs intentionally affect one's visual pleasure and enhances one's environment.

The wisdom behind each design concept is unique. Whereas traditional bargello favours repetitive patterns, Joyce Petschek strongly believes in altering such repetitive patterns. Thus her present textile series called Breaking the Pattern is dedicated to changing patterns - patterns in designs, in our personal lives, our environment , our relationship to others. Conscious that her designs are aesthetically beautiful and meaningful in content, she also aspires that they be thought provoking.


When did bargello begin?
Steeped in tradition and creative expression bargello began as a 16th century needlework technique. in Florence, called Florentine Flame (punto fiamma), combined with Hungarian Point (punto ungero). By the late 17th century examples of Florentine Flame patterns, stitched by the Italian nobility in silks and wools, enriched Italian Palazzi, later seen in stately homes of England and private mansions in the United States. Today world-wide museums exhibit antique bargello patterns in wall hangings, carpets, four poster beds, wing chairs etc.

What is bargello today?
Since its popularity in the USA1960's bargello became more than a stitching technique. It expanded into extensive patterns resulting from the various lengths of its upright stitches. Through the influence of Joyce Petschek, an American living in Italy and England, it exploded into a world of colour and new design concepts. Her book Beautiful Bargello influenced many people to view this traditional technique differently. Today, in the field of bargello textile art, she is considered the most talented colourist at work with thread and canvas in our present age.

Why is Bargello Arts unique?
As the designer for Bargello Arts, Joyce Petschek’s reputation as a bargello path-finder is well known. Her colour patterns have their own language, evoking visual and emotional responses. Using silks, metallics and overdyed threads from all over the world, she creates new bargello textures with distinctive and unique rhythms. Her designs are about symbolic colours and abstract designs, reflecting intuition and the unexpected.