World Embroidery Series: Shisha Mirrorwork Embroidery

A Virtual Class with Shahnaz Khan

Indian mirrorwork, known as Shisha, is the ancient Indian embroidery technique of attaching tiny mirrors onto fabric.  Developed during the 17th century, it is practiced widely throughout the Indian subcontinent, as well as the regions of Afghanistan, China, and Indonesia.

In this class, students will be introduced to the history of Shisha, while learning the traditional technique of creating a grid across the mirror which can then be stitched open creating a border. 

Students will be encouraged to reflect on the cultural significance of embroidery, and what it can teach us about the history and traditions of our own and other cultures.

Thursday, April 6th, 2023


12pm – 2:30pm EST

Zoom, a link will be send to participants the day before class

$60 for the individual class, $350 for the series

*This session will be recorded. A link to the recording will be emailed to all those who register following the live session. This link is live for one month for you to watch at your convenience.


  • 4” embroidery hoop
  • Piece of non-stretch fabric, preferably cotton or linen. 
  • Small mirror approx 3/4” diameter or coin approx the size of a nickel. 
  • Size 8 Perle cotton embroidery thread 
  • Size 5 embroidery needle 
  • Scissors or snips
  • Double stick tape

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Shahnaz Khan

Shahnaz is an embroidery artist and educator focused on the preservation of traditional techniques and their use in contemporary art. 

Connected through her cultural heritage to Pakistan and Greece, Shahnaz loves what can be gleaned about culture and history through the various adornments of cloth with a needle and thread.

Her embroidery practice has led her to work on a variety of projects including: visual art collaborations, couture fashion (Alexander McQueen & Burberry) and most recently a commission for HBO’s Gossip Girl. 

An interview with Shahnaz is included in Jen Hewett’s 2021 publication, “This Long Thread: Women of Color on Craft, Community, and Connection”. 

Shahnaz lives in New York City where she works as a costume tailor for Broadway, film, & television, while maintaining her embroidery practice. 

Shahnaz loves teaching and hopes to be able to inspire her students to incorporate traditional embroidery techniques into their contemporary work.

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