Medusa Ornament

Evocative of the gorgon that lies at the very heart of the Museum, this ornament of Medusa with her serpentine locks is said to have the power to ward off evil (and will surely not turn you into stone).

St. Nicolas specializes in bespoke handmade hanging decorations. For over 25 years, they worked with a small charity in Thailand that helps disadvantaged rural women find work in their community, rather than having to leave home. Today, some 200 skilled women work at home hand sewing the decorations and many have been doing so for more than ten years! 

As their business grew, more innovative designs were needed, so they began working with a partner in India. The Indian-made ornaments use the traditional method of zardozi embroidery, an intricate sewing technique that was developed to embellish courtly robes with gold wires and jewels. Zardozi work is rare, but because of the skill that is needed to create the ornaments, it continues to be handed down from generation to generation.