The Royal School of Needlework is the international centre of excellence for the art of hand embroidery.  Founded in 1872, specialist embroiderers at the RSN have worked on Coronation Regalia dating back to the 1902 Coronation of Edward VII and Alexandra and through all the Coronations to the present day.

Our Collection & Archive features an amazing 60,000 unique and priceless items, including several fascinating items from past Coronations.  You can visit a special Coronation display in the RSN Embroidery Studio at Hampton Court Palace, featuring pieces from our Collection. Called ‘The RSN & Five Coronations 1902 – 2023‘,  visitors will see a variety of pieces revisiting these iconic moments in British history, including designs, images and interesting souvenirs from fabrics to needle cleaners.  The display runs until May 2024.

Throughout the years, the Royal School of Needlework has had the honour and privilege of working on Coronation Regalia from Robes of Estate and a Coronation Mantle to thrones, canopies and an altar cloth. Embroideries are always worked on traditional wooden frames, which we still use today. For the larger pieces, our embroiderers stitch side by side, working the piece together. When we have a large project and a set deadline, the RSN approach of “Never a seat shall go cold” comes into play. All our stitchers are trained to stitch the hand embroidery techniques in the same way, so that means when one person gets up, another person can take over and the work will look the same as though done by the same person.
Dr Susan Kay-Williams, Chief Executive of the Royal School of Needlework

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