Good morning, my friends! Welcome to the weekend, to the glorious luxury of Saturday mornings, and to a little bit of needlework news!
These are random bits of embroidery or needlework-related news, information, instruction, and inspiration pulled from hither and yon for your weekend browsing.
The way it works is this. I’ve fixed myself a nice cup of tea (it’s actually a fairly substantial mug) and I’ll end the list when one of three things happens: either my cup is empty, or my tea is cold, or I’ve run through my list of bits and bobs!
So pour a cup, pull up a chair, and let’s go for a little browse together, shall we?
Inspiration All Around – and Social Networking
So, I started actually doing Instagram with any regularity just last year. If you’re there, you can find me here: @needlenthreadmc.
For those who don’t know, Instagram is a kind of photo social networking site that allows you to post photos of your stuff, but it doesn’t involve a lot of out-linking to other sites. It’s a great place to connect with other embroiderers, needleworkers, artists, and whatnot.
I’m finding a lot of really inspirational embroidery on Instagram. It’s definitely worth exploring embroidery on Instagram, especially if you’re in a creative slump.
There are lots and lots of stitchers I enjoy following! Lately, I’ve been rather twitterpated with the three-dimensional goldwork of Georgina Bellamy (@thatembroiderygirl). She has this frog, you see…
If you’re on Instagram, look me up and let me know you’re there! I’d love to see what you’re up to!
Speaking of Goldwork…
The last couple weeks, I’ve had goldwork on the brain, because I’m tacking a couple pieces this year. And so I’ve been noting notable things to share with you.
For example, do you know about Garibaldi’s Needle Works here in the US? They stock an impressive array of goldwork threads, as well as kits by Alison Cole (for those who want to avoid overseas postal charges), and other goodies. I’ve not tried their hand-dyed (colorfast) linen yet, but I ordered some, because I want to do some landscape-y type stuff, and it looks like a good place to start.
Anyway, if you’re in the US, and you’re looking for goldwork threads, you might check them out!
Learning Goldwork – 17th Century Style!
And speaking of goldwork (I promise, it’s not the only thing I’m talking about today!), if 2018 is your year to learn something new…
…And if you love embroidery, history, deep learning (as opposed to skimming!), and you want to make a real investment in your pursuit of needlework and all of the above, have you thought about the Thistle Threads Goldwork Master Class?
There are a few spaces left in the class – which is an online class stretching over 18 months – and it is a really thorough class! It includes all the supplies, historical explanations, explorations, references, and techniques, all the instruction, and at the end, you have a truly magnificent sampler of techniques that you can use the rest of your life.
I’ve wanted to take this course for a while, and each time it comes up, I’m double-tempted! So I thought this time, I’d double-tempt you, too! I’ve heard great reports about it, so if this is your stitching Thing, check it out!
From thence to England…
…as Henry VI would say.
Big news came out this week about the Bayeux Tapestry going on display in the UK. This is big news, sharing that piece of cloth across the Channel.
I’m eager to watch this whole process unfold. I think it’ll be logistically interesting.
It will apparently be a good five years before it happens, which gives you plenty of time to plan your trip to Britain and your Tapestry visit.
Right now, a lot of stitchers are suffering from Winter Hands and asking for help.
I’ve written about my dry hand routine here, for those who have been asking of late.
Ever since eliminating pump soaps, I’ve not had as much of a problem with dry, chappy hands.
My sister recently suggested I try Corona Ointment, which is used on horses, but I haven’t done that yet, since what I do works. Anyone ever use Corona Ointment for winter hands? Might be something worth looking into – but like I said, I haven’t tried it.
Fit for a Queen
I love this article on The Crewel Work Company blog. It features details about Ardverikie House in Scotland, which is a location that shows up in the last episode of season two of The Crown.
Couple that location with scones and tea and stitching, and just who wouldn’t want to go?
Have you ever been to the Cloisters? It’s that “arm” of NYC’s Met, located north of the city, and housing all kinds of fabulous medieval stuff and other stuff. If you ever visit NYC, my two favorite museums that I’d recommend not missing are the Cloisters (and the Met, sure, but it takes a good couple days at the Met to really take any of it in) and the Frick. I love the Frick! And lots of people have never been there. If you’re into historical blackwork – go! The best Holbein portrait ever is there (even though there’s no blackwork on it…)
Another newsy bit that struck me recently was this article about a gal who reconstructed a butterfly wing so that a monarch butterfly that lost its wing could live out it’s short life and do what butterflies do.
Had the wing been embroidered, I suspect it would have been too heavy. But I thought it was pretty amazing that it flew!
The RSN opened up registration for their US summer school in Lexington, Kentucky, this summer.
I had initially thought about it, but when registration opened up, there wasn’t anything that really grabbed me enough to justify the expense of the tuition, plus travel, plus housing / meals.
That said, I think the experience will be great for those who can afford to do it, and who find a class that really interests them!
I’m a little disappointed that it forces class-goers into a 5-day experience, instead of a choice of taking just the three day or two day classes offered. I do think the limited number of class participants is a terrific thing, though!
On Local Soil
We have several places in the US that teach world-class embroidery, too.
There’s the San Francisco School of Needlework & Designs, where you can learn from RSN-trained tutors, on a regular schedule.
And there’s the Williamsburg School of Needlework, which often hosts tutors from Hand & Lock for workshops.
We also have regular Embroiderers’ Guild of America regional and national seminars with workshop that involve fully qualified teachers in all techniques. They also bring in tutors from around the world – like Jane Nicholas, Allison Cole, Tanja Berlin and many others. If you’re keen on taking classes and moving your skill set forward, it’s definitely worth getting on the EGA list, perhaps becoming a Member at Large, in order to keep up with the news.
Some Nice Online Needlework Books!
If you have time this weekend, explore these old needlework books! They’re online, they’re fun, and they’re free! And you an always download them to your computer or tablet to explore later.
An Embroidery Book by Ann Knox
A Dictionary of Needlework by Sophia Frances Anne Caulfeild and Blanche Saward
My Cup Ranneth Out
I hope you enjoy your weekend! May it be full of memorable moments – all in a good way, of course!
I’m finishing my second mitten this weekend. I’ll show them to you next week!