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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Who is Mary Corbet?

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

I got into serious embroidery when studying art history in college, as a result of a growing interest in historical and ecclesiastical embroidery. I began reading a lot, collecting books and pieces of old embroidery, taking pictures and looking at pieces up close. I tried different techniques, until I figured out the one question that always nagged me when I saw a beautiful piece of embroidery: “How did they do that?” I couldn’t rest until I knew.

Back then (mid-1990’s and pre-internet), it was practically impossible to find supplies! In the US, surface embroidery was not nearly as popular as it is now.

When I finished my BA, I began teaching high school English. Eventually, I picked up my post graduate studies again. Once I finished post grad work, I became a college professor, teaching teachers how to teach.

After 18 years in the academic world, five of which were simultaneously spent building Needle ‘n Thread, it became clear that I could not give 100% to my professional career and to Needle ‘n Thread.

I took the plunge, stepped out of the academic world, and devoted myself full time to Needle ‘n Thread

Why couldn’t I give up Needle ‘n Thread?

Because I believe the world needs beauty, and embroidery is one of the most beautiful visual arts. To teach others to embroider, to inspire them to try new things with needle and thread – to me, these are worthwhile goals. I love teaching, and Needle ‘n Thread is my opportunity to teach a wider audience something that I’m really passionate about – the art of hand embroidery.

Thanks for joining me on my embroidery adventures!

Publications & Contributions

I’m always happy to contribute to publications, books, websites, and blogs that reflect the same interests as Needle ‘n Thread. If you’re interested in a written contribution, a project contribution or image use, please don’t hesitate to contact me.


Threads Magazine (published by Taunton Press). Issue 175, January, 2015. “Embellish with Beetle Wings.”
Inspirations Magazine (published by Inspirations Publications)
Stitch (published by the Embroiderers Guild of the UK). Issue 104, Dec / Jan 2016.


Mastering the Art of Embroidery by Sophie Long. Chronicle Books, 2013
BiblioCraft: The Modern Crafter’s Guide to Using Library Resources to Jumpstart Creative Projects by Jessica Pigza. Steward, Tabori, and Chang, 2014.
Beginner’s Guide to Goldwork by Ruth Chamberine, forward by Mary Corbet. Search Press, new edition reprint 2017
Mary Thomas’s Dictionary of Embroidery Stitches – 2019 edition published by Search Press (UK) & Trafalgar Square Books (US) – forward by Mary Corbet

Online Publications, Blogs, Websites

Commonthread by DMC
Homespun Magazine (digital publication by Universal Magazines) – May, 2013.

Needle ‘n Thread Terms of Use

You can find Terms of Use for Needle ‘n Thread here.


Q: Reviewing Products and Services

A: I am very happy to review your product or service for my readers, under the following conditions:

  1. Hand Embroidery: I review products or services that relate to needlework by hand and that I believe will be useful to my readers. Please note that the primary focus of Needle ‘n Thread is surface embroidery by hand. Machine embroidery products do not fit my niche and will not be considered for review.
  2. Samples: Reviews are written for products or services that I have experienced. I can’t purchase every needlework product or service available, though. If you have something unique you think my readers would be interested in, you are welcome to contact me. If I already own and like it, I will consider reviewing it. If I don’t own it, you are welcome to send me a sample.
  3. Pros / Cons: My reviews include pros and cons.
  4. Affiliation: Book reviews will always be accompanied by an affiliate link when one is available. (I have to make a living, too.)
  5. Expectations: Please do not expect an entirely positive review simply because you send me a sample (unless, of course, the product deserves one). I write reviews for the benefit of my readers and will not compromise their trust in me by giving slanted reviews.
  6. Returns: I will not return any samples.
  7. Timing: If I’m going to write a review, it will be written only after I have had time to test the product or service, or read the book carefully, and within the structure of my pre-planned publishing schedule.
  8. Reciprocation: I don’t do “sponsored” posts on Needle ‘n Thread, where I receive payment for writing an article. This keeps me free to write without inhibition, and it assures my readers that they’re getting an unbiased viewpoint. However, I do ask the courtesy of reciprocation, if you have requested some kind of coverage from me. If I write about your book, your kit, your blog, your product, and so forth, please extend the courtesy of reciprocating by telling your people (through your online platforms – blog, newsletter, Facebook & other social media, or however you reach your people) about the review and about Needle ‘n Thread, by linking to your review or the website. This creates what is called “synergy,” and it is good both of us and for the needlework market as a whole.
  9. Crowdfunding? If you’re writing to ask if I can circulate and promote your crowdfunding campaign, even if it is very closely related to textiles and embroidery and the worthiest of causes, I must unfortunately say no. I receive many requests for this type of thing on a monthly basis, and if I say yes to one, I must say yes to others, which would put it out of control (and drive my poor readers nuts). Also, I have promoted a few crowdfunding campaigns in the past that have not turned out well, forcing me to adopt a strict policy of no outside crowdfunding on Needle ‘n Thread.

Q: Can I advertise on your site?

A: If your product or service is compatible with my content, I would be happy to talk to you about advertising. Advertisers are accepted based on their relevance to the focus of Needle ‘n Thread and the interests of my readers.

Needle ‘n Thread is devoted solely to hand needlework and embroidery, and all accessories, books, fabrics, threads, and so forth that are involved in the art of hand embroidery and needlework. I do not advertise for companies or individuals that sell pre-made embroidered items, nor do I advertise for the machine embroidery industry.

Advertising on Needle ‘n Thread is affordable. Ads are billed at a monthly rate, for a minimum of three months. Current advertisers are always given the option to renew before their ad space is offered to another business.

Needle ‘n Thread is read by tens of thousands of subscribed readers and enjoys hundreds of thousands of visitors a month searching for information on hand embroidery and needlework.

If this is the audience you wish to reach, then this is the place to advertise!

To learn about advertising rates for Needle ‘n Thread, please contact me.