Reviving the Grisons crossstitch — now and wow

Elly’s individual parts can be combined in many different ways. Photograph: © yuli

Anna Laura Klucker comes from the village of Tamins near Chur and graduated from Zurich University of the Arts this summer. Her creative work combines traditions and trends.


The family of a young student from the Grisons takes over an old house. The house belonged to a needlework teacher. In the new-old family house, the student finds lots of dusty sample books dedicated to the Grisons cross-stitch. She learned sewing from her mother, who is also a needlework teacher. Fascinated, she delves into the old books and discovers rich material for her Bachelor’s thesis at Zurich University of the Arts. She begins to break down and re-assemble the traditional patterns. She decides not to embroider the patterns, but to apply them with a cutting plotter and so-called flock foil to tulle dresses she has designed.

Tattoo-lace look is in

The student’s name is Anna Laura Klucker and her Bachelor’s thesis has grown into the clothes label “yuli.” One of her designs, “Elly,” is a collection of four pieces that can be combined to a festive dress, but may also be worn separately. Two of these pieces, the blouse and top, have a tattoo-lace look, the results of the process especially developed by Anna Laura. “This look is currently totally in,” says the young designer, who graduated from ZHdK with a BA in Art Education. Taken together, the four-part Elly dress is not only a monument to Elly Koch from Chur, known widely as the queen of embroidery. It is also reminiscent of the Grisons festive costume. The young fashion designer inherited one of these customes from her grandmother — she was amazed at how difficult wearing the multi-part costume is, but also how one feels dressed in the best sense. “Elly” makes it a little easier for the wearer, but dresses her just as well.

For weddings or with jeans

What occasions do customers shop for at Anna Laura Klucker’s studio in Tamins? “Recently, for example, for a visit to the opera in Paris. I haven’t been able to dress a bride yet, but I’d love to,” she says. She combines her chic tops with jeans and wears them for everyday occasions.

What’s next? The tradition-loving young designer doesn’t need long to answer: “My grandfather recently passed away. As we were clearing his house, we came across old sheets with elaborate lace inserts. I want to breathe fresh life into these sheets, which have been in the closet for so long.”

Isabelle Vloemans was a project manager at ZHdK University Communications. She doesn’t master cross-stitching, but cross-media storytelling.
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