It’s been a long time since we’ve taken a little browse together through bits of needlework information, inspiration, and instruction populating the online world.
This weekend, there’s quite a line-up of Interesting Stuff for you.
Before we get started, though…
A Website Notice
This coming week, from Sunday, July 8 – through Sunday, July 15, I will not be able to answer emails.
I have a few articles scheduled for you, but I will have comments turned off on those just for the week. I’ll turn them back on when I return. I’ll be completely unplugged while away. I’ll explain more at the end of today’s article, for the curious.
In the meantime, grab your favorite beverage – this summer, ice water sounds pretty good! – and let’s go for a stroll!
Needlework Tours & Cruises
Ever dream of going on a needlework-centered vacation, where you can kick back in luxurious surroundings with some of the world’s best tutors, learn new techniques, explore new places, eat good food, make new friends, and enjoy the company of other enthusiastic stitchers?
Sounds pretty dreamy, doesn’t it?
Well, Needlework Tours out of Australia (but catering to people worldwide) conducts luxury needlework tours all over the world.
Right now, they’re taking expressions of interest for an India tour in 2020! If you’re keen to go to India and see the textile world there, accompanied by knowledgeable tutors and attentive hosts, use the contact form on their website to express interest and receive more information.
They’ve also got spaces still available on their more immediate tours in the UK, in France, and in Italy. If you’re pining for a luxurious get-away, this would be a great way to do it!
Maureen and Simon Laughlin have been conducting needlework tours and cruises for over a decade, and I’ve heard really good reports about travel experiences with them, from tourists and tutors alike. They’re extremely attentive to their guests and arrange everything with your utmost comfort and enjoyment in mind.
If you’re planning your dream vacation and it involves stitching, visit their website and see what they’re all about! And thank you for supporting the small needlework businesses that advertise here on Needle ‘n Thread!
The Shaggy Dog – a Fantastic Stitching Tutorial
Over on her blog at Di Craft, Di Van Niekerk has shared the most adorable Shaggy Dog Tutorial, if you’re interested in stitching a shaggy dog. It’s too cute!
A New Floss – and Kits
Looks like The French Needle is introducing a new embroidery floss to the market – one with a little sparkle to it! You can read about Tonkin floss here.
And for Bayeux Tapestry fans, they’ve added a slew of Bayeux Tapestry embroidery kits to the site, too!
Free Embroidery Books Online
I just love browsing through all the public domain embroidery books that are available for download (for free) in various places online. Two of my favorite spots to browse are Antique Pattern Library and Internet Archive.
Here are a couple gems I’ve come across lately:
Embroidery Hints from 1910 – you’ll find some neat pattern ideas in there, especially if you like early 1900’s embroidery.
This Dictionary of Needlework from the early 19th – early 20th centuries is packed with information and illustrations.
And for those of us who are kind of needlework-history-geeky, I think this history and description of needle making is pretty fun!
New Frostings Club for Thread Lovers
I mentioned this yesterday in my goldwork article, but for those who might have missed it, Thistle Threads has announced their latest edition of the Frostings Club, Frostings #3.
It’s a box of 46 limited-run, beautiful specialty threads in usable lengths. Once it’s gone, it’s gone, so if you’re keen to get in on the collection, best to sign up now! They offer several payment options.
Beadwork & Embroidery on Printed Fabric
I really enjoy Margaret Cobleigh’s blog, The Sharp Needler. Lately, she’s been working on some bead embroidery and regular embroidery on printed fabric. It’s well thought-out, full of color, and fun!
For some great inspiration and tips, check out her latest post on the bead embroidery project she’s working on!
Crewel Kits with Great Color
For those looking for crewel embroidery kits that are small, manageable, colorful, modern, and traditional – yes, I know, that’s a lot of options! – you might check out Anna Scott’s Etsy shop, called Fine Stitch Studio.
Her kit Scarlet Glory caught my eye recently – I just love the colors! It’s a modern interpretation of a fairly traditional type of design.
Multi-Language Dictionary of Embroidery Stitches
Over on My Aunt’s Attic, the Dutch blog of embroiderer Lilian Kok, you can find a wonderful multi-language dictionary of embroidery stitch names. You can download the document and use it as a great resource when you’re exploring embroidery in a language other than your own.
The dictionary features a picture of the stitch, with the name of the stitch in Italian, Dutch, English, French, German, and Spanish.
Lilian has also put together a dictionary of other embroidery terminology, too, definitely worth downloading!
You can download both files from her blog here. If you’re English-speaking, scroll down to the second half of the page to read about the dictionaries.
They’re very handy to have and a wonderful resource! Thanks, Lilian!
Speaking of Crewel: Talliaferro
Speaking of crewel, Talliaferro is back to work, with a new pattern (and kit) out called “Oaks of Woodlawn,” featuring intricate oak leaves for every season, entwined. The design can even be broken down into smaller individual leaves. It’s quite an exuberant piece! It’s available through Wooly Thread.
Needle Lace Video
For those who like needle lace and are on Facebook, I came across this needle lace video on Facebook recently. Fascinating to watch this kind of stuff!
Speaking of Lace: Carrickmacross
For a little more lacy information and inspiration, here’s a nice article on Carickmacross lace!
Heads Up! A Book by Famous People!
Hazel Blomkamp and Di Van Niekerk have joined forces on a book that involves embroidered “mandalas” (yes, it’s the kaleidoscope concept again!), and it promises to be a colorful one, full of exciting stitch combinations!
It’s called Freestyle Embroidered Mandalas, and you’ll find it available for pre-order now, right here on my Amazon Recommendations page.
If you like the coloring book approach to embroidery patterns (similar to my Kaleidoscope Patterns e-book), you will probably enjoy this one! I’m excited about it!
Old French Book on Goldwork
Back in February, I wrote an article about this exquisite piece of goldwork and silk embroidery.
If this style of goldwork interests you, you might enjoy browsing through this French book on embroidery.
Go to thumbnail view to look for images, and you’ll find lots of patterns. Click on the thumbnails to see the patterns in closer detail.
And I’m Off!
So, I’m going away for a week. I’m heading down the road about five hours to a retreat center. It’s not a retreat of the stitching sort, though – it’s more of the spiritual sort.
Those who have been hanging around Needle ‘n Thread for a while might remember I did this last year, too. I used to do it more frequently many years ago, but until last year, it had been some 12 years since I went on a retreat. After my recent bout with cancer and whatnot, I decided I would make a better effort to keep my life prioritized.
A retreat like this is a time to re-order priorities, pray and meditate in total silence, and completely disconnect from the rest of the world for a bit. So I won’t have a computer or phone or anything. For me, it’s the best way to keep Life (and what’s most important in it) in order, and to recharge at the same time.
Incidentally, the youth embroidery classes I’m hosting locally start on Monday, the 16th… so I’m recharging just in time!
Hope you enjoy the articles I’ve lined up for you this coming week!