[oh-puh n-wurk]
See more synonyms for openwork on
  1. any kind of work, especially ornamental, as of embroidery, lace, metal, stone, or wood, having a latticelike nature or showing openings through its substance.

Origin of openwork

First recorded in 1590–1600; open + work Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for openwork

Historical Examples of openwork

  • Openwork in relief, when elaborated and minute in all its parts.

  • There is an openwork balustrade which surrounds the platform of the bell tower.

  • His trousers were gray rayon, and his footgear was openwork sandals.

    The Golden Skull

    John Blaine

  • Her openwork stockings were drawn so tight that the skin there also gleamed white.

    A Bed of Roses

    W. L. George

  • It is surmounted by a crown wrought in openwork and of a fine effect.

British Dictionary definitions for openwork


  1. ornamental work, as of metal or embroidery, having a pattern of openings or holes
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012