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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Embroidery Stitch Tip: Changing Needle Sizes



Here on Needle ‘n Thread, we’ve chatted quite a bit about hand embroidery needles. If you’re new to the website or the newsletter and you’ve missed those articles and you want to know more about needles used for hand embroidery, I’ll provide some links at the end of this article.

But today, I want to talk about needle sizes and stitching, about changing needle sizes for two different stitching scenarios.

I’m going to ask the wider Needle ‘n Thread community to pitch in their suggestions, too, at the end of the article, so make sure you revisit this article in the next day or so on Needle ‘n Thread to see what other stitchers have added to the topic!

Embroidery Needles: Changing Needle Sizes
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Documenting the Development of an Embroidery Project


Have you ever completed an embroidery project and looked at it a year later – or maybe even just months or weeks later – and wondered, “What color number is that?” or “Gosh, how many strands of floss did I actually use?” or “Did I stitch that first or this first?”

This morning’s embroidery bit isn’t so much a how-to tip as far as stitching goes. Rather, it’s a kind of organizational tip.

If you’re a prolific embroiderer, especially if you plan to do something in the long run with your embroidery – maybe you want to be a designer, maybe you want to teach classes, maybe you want to start a blog to document your needlework journey, maybe you’ll want to reproduce the same project again down the road, or maybe you just want to be able to remember what you did when – this tip is for you!

Silk Embroidery Project and Project Documentation
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Needlework News Snips – February, 2018


Good morning and a Happy Saturday all around!

Wherever you are this morning, I hope you’re having a lovely weekend! I’ve compiled a bit of a meander for your weekend reading – a little bit of needlework news, stirred up with some inspiration and instruction, some embroidery history, a good cause, and other bits and bobs!

So, you know the drill. Grab your favorite cup of something comforting, and lets go for a little stroll together! Tea this morning for me – and when it’s gone, so am I!

Needlework News Snips February 2018
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Party in Provence: Embroidering Outer Elements


The last time we visited Party in Provence, this embroidered kaleidoscope that I’m covering in a step-by-step series, we concentrated on stitching all the little green swirls on the kaleidoscope.

The swirls are the structure that tie the outer elements on the design to the bold central pattern. Once they’re done, it’s time to add more color to the outside edge of the kaleidoscope.

So, today, we’re going to concentrate on adding the main components of the outside edge – they’re the fiery bits that add flare to the outer part of the design.

There’s a reason I chose the color scheme I did for this outer edge, and we’ll talk about that below, too!

Embroidered Kaleidoscope: Party in Provence Outside Elements
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Silk Roses & Goldwork…and Something Else?


Good morning, sweeties! Happy Valentine’s Day!

I really wanted to send everyone a big bunch of exuberant roses for Valentine’s Day today!

But since it’s also Ash Wednesday, I was thinking maybe it was a good opportunity to share some ecclesiastical embroidery with you.

Wonder of wonders! It just so happened to work out that I could do both.

So here are your roses and your ecclesiastical embroidery, all rolled into one neat package!

Silk Roses and Goldwork: Ecclesiastical Embroidery on chasuble
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Good Lighting for Needlework – Your Eyes Deserve It!


Lately, I’ve been working on some relative small embroidery. Not miniature embroidery, but rather little things that require fine threads in order to get a balanced look to the finished embroidery.

And while I’m embroidering these little things, often with only one strand of floss, I’m constantly reminded of the necessity of good lighting for needlework.

Couple this with the fact that I’ve had a lot of requests for recommendations for good lighting recently, and I figure it’s a topic that we should revisit, especially for those who are in the market for a good stitching light and for those who don’t realize just yet that their lighting might not be adequate.

So, today, let’s have a little chat about lights! I’ll recap some lighting options that I’ve reviewed here on Needle ‘n Thread (and that still work great for me), and I really hope everyone else will chime in down in the comment section and let folks know what light you use and why you like it! Together, we can help fellow stitchers make informed decisions on lighting solutions for needlework.

And…shhhhhhhh! Just between you and me and the lamp post, I’ve also include a good coupon code exclusive to Needle ‘n Thread readers for one of the lights. The code is from last year, but it still works!

Lighting solutions for needlework
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Blooming Hearts – Free Hand Embroidery Pattern & Stitch Ideas


With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, you’re probably thinking you don’t have time to stitch up something festive for your sweetie.

And, to tell you the truth, you could be right, if you were planning to go All Out in a Big-Hearted Way.

But, if you just want to go small, there’s plenty of time between now and next Wednesday, right?

Here’s a free hand embroidery pattern to get the juices flowing and get you motivated to give it a go! I’ll even give you some stitching ideas to go along with it – because I love you, of course!

Blooming Hearts hand embroidery pattern
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