Mary Corbet

writer and founder


I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Silk Embroidery Threads: A Recap


Amazon Books

Good morning, and Happy Monday!

When we started warming up for the Autumn Fire stitch-along (which launched last week with the design and which we start stitching on Wednesday), many questions about silk embroidery threads started rolling in. In most cases, these questions are from our fellow stitchers out there who haven’t had the opportunity to work with silk threads and who feel a little intimidated by the idea.

That’s why today, I want to offer you – especially if you’re new to Needle ‘n Thread – some previous articles on silk threads. If you’ve not embroidered with silk before and it seems like a mysterious and inaccessible thread to you, hopefully this will put your mind at ease and perhaps it may even open up a whole new world of fiber for you!

Silk Threads for Hand Embroidery
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Autumn Fire 1: Preliminaries & Design


At long last! Today, we start Autumn Fire, the project I wanted to begin with you at the end of August, and here we are, approaching the end of September.

On the bright side, we’re just getting a taste of autumn here in Kansas. Perhaps my Autumn Mood (which is usually pretty chipper!) will kick in and the project will progress even better because of it. Two days ago, it was still 100 degrees here, after all. It’s hard to be cheerful about autumn when summer won’t release its hot little hands…

So, let’s talk about what to expect, cover some preliminaries, and then I’ll hand off the tree design to you. We’ll also chat a bit about the transfer of the design to your fabric.

Autumn Fire 1: Preliminaries & Design
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Fine Whitework: Techniques, Projects & Pure Inspiration


I know what you’re thinking! And I don’t blame you!

After my article on Monday about my book dilemma, here I am, writing another book review.

Oh, ye hypocrite! you may well cry. But this is The Thing: This book is so beautifully thorough that I could pretty much eliminate every other book I own on this type of whitework embroidery, thereby saving quite a bit of shelf space!

Of course, I won’t do that. I have several books on whitework that I very much appreciate and use.

But wow! Jenny Adin-Christie’s new book, Fine Whitework, is a barn burner from cover to cover. I think we are super fortunate to have this book available, written by a master embroiderer who has such a profound artistic sense and such notable teaching skills. It seems to me that only Jenny Adin-Christie could have written this book and pulled off such a masterpiece that makes traditional fine whitework accessible to today’s embroiderer.

That’s just my opinion. But let’s look at the book up close. It’s hard to review, because there’s so much valuable content in it. How do I choose what to highlight?!

Fine Whitework by Jenny Adin-Christie
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The Bookshelf Dilemma: True Confessions


There is a slim chance that I have an obsession with needlework books.

I’ve always been a book lover. I like to read. I love holding a real book in my hands and reading it. And when my hands are occupied with work, I like to listen to audio books.

Throughout my reading life, I’ve sunk my teeth into many genres of literature with insatiable enthusiasm until eventually glutted. Then, I moved on to the next genre and became a devotee of it until duly gorged. Right now – and for about the past five years – I’ve been on a non-fiction binge. I’ve found, much to my extreme delight, that non-fiction is possibly the best genre I’ve ever wallowed in, despite my calculated aversion to it when I was younger. You know the kind: well-written, accurate, supported by meticulous research, and related in the best tradition of story-telling? I just can’t get enough non-fiction these days.

Needlework books don’t really fall into any of the categories of regular literature that I’m talking about above. They are the Other Category of book that I tend to over-indulge in. I love needlework books! And I have a great excuse for constantly acquiring them, after all.

This poses a question: can you ever have Too Many needlework books?

Recently, I’ve been evaluating this question. I think the answer could be yes.

Needlework Books on Shelves
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Friday, Fabric, Goldwork, and Cutting Things Up


Goodness gracious me oh my. What a week! Thank you all for your very enthusiastic interest in the new goods in the shop that I mentioned on Tuesday, and for your enthusiasm over Autumn Fire, our next Stitch Snippets stitch along that starts next week!

Let’s tie up some loose ends from this week’s launch first, and then we’ll talk about fabric and cutting up goldwork samples and such.

Goldwork Lettering on blue velvet
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Autumn Fire Materials Kits & More!


Good morning! It’s an exciting launch day here at Needle ‘n Thread! I love it when we can finally release a kit!

Autumn Fire is the third Stitch Snippet project for this year, and it is truly more snippet-ish than the Bee-Jeweled Pincushion and Cotton Quartet.

Autumn Fire is a small project. The embroidered autumn tree is just over two inches tall, and it fits in a custom-cut arched mat (supplied with the kit) for a 4″ square frame.

Here’s a little more information about the project and the materials kit, which you will find available here.

Autumn Fire Stitch Snippet
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Tool Talk: Sweet Threaders & Swell Scissors


Today, let’s chat about embroidery tools!

You’ve probably noticed that I’ve been building a small curated collection of retail goods in my online shop. When I add something to this collection, it’s always something I already have that I like for some good reason or another. And I try to offer goods that I believe solve a problem or serve to help embroiderers in some way.

Next week, when I add Autumn Fire to my shop (around 10:00 am central time next Tuesday, September 13), I’m also adding a few extra retail items that I plan to offer regularly. I’m posting it all at once instead of stringing out new additions, so that you have the opportunity to save a little bit on shipping if you want multiple items.

Among these new retail items that I find useful are the tools we’re going to talk about today: some sweet, functional, beautiful little needle threaders (oh, how I have learned to love the needle threader!) and some absolutely swell scissors that I’ve been using for several years now.

Needle Threaders for embroidery
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