All through the first Cottage Garden Collectors Club Sampler I promised myself I would complete the mini project included with the 4 threads and motif patterns I received each month. Hmmm didn’t quite work out that way, I really liked some of them too. Such an incredible range of colour to work with.
So earlier this year, I decided I really didn’t have enough to do and started all over again with the second Collectors Club Sampler and instead of mini projects every month, we have an embroidery design that uses 12 threads over 2 months. So check this first 2 months out.
I am rather pleased with it so far, but it has added far to much to what I have to do each month. So here we are 4 months behind and tomorrow I have to look at stocks for our next order to come out with month 9.
Jane Nicholas OAM, has released her latest book and it is lovely. Shakespeare’s Flowers in Stumpwork takes Jane’s followers further along the path they explored with her in Stumpwork Medieval Flora (2009).
There are projects exploring surface embroidery, stumpwork featuring many of the flowers found in the gardens, fields and hedgerows at the time of Shakespeare and Elizabeth I. The instructions are beautifully illustrated, so those newish to embroidery can figure out what to do next although prior experience with embroidery will definately be a help.
We are really loving 2 important features of the designs and instructions, firstly that they can easily be applied as a small individual design for a small enhancement or used as part of a larger piece with the instructions provided to do so. The second aspect is the selection of threads has the more more lavish silk thread option if you are feeling flush but includes a more budget friendly DMC stranded thread althernative.
I am particularly fond of the border of flowers for the mirror, but lacking time with have to shelve this for a little while. What a lovely, lovely book to add to your selection.
Introducing, from Cottage Garden Threads latest product release, the Stitchers Palettes. These ladies are so responsive to market forces. The demand for hand dyed tonal solids to accent their stunning multi-colour threads have resulted in a range of 27 colourways for you to choose from.
The 4 “pack” on a ring, has one of their stunning hand-dyed multicoloured threads and 3 tonal solids. We stock all of them but due to my crazy workload at the moment, they will only be available in store or over the phone until our new website goes live. I am also a grateful recipient of Katie Dawsons photography and photoshop skills, for their gorgeous product, thus reducing my workload just a smidge.
The new Solids with a Twist are all shown here, a 6 “pack”also on a ring, they are a hand dyed solid colour with a slight twist that only a hand dyed thread can showcase so well in a graduation of colour. All 13 colour ways are shown here. Hmmm, think I might use a thread painting design to really give them a test drive.
I have been putting this off, I really don’t like this stitch at all, it always looks messy and scrappy, or perhaps that is just me. I was never happy with the finished article as a child, not sure whether it is the fact that it is so imprecise, or maybe I was just always in a hurry. My father’s nickname for me as a child was “Hasty Little Bear” … yes after the Little Golden Book.
The other thing I always have to worry about is the loops or the straight bits of thread between the exit and insertion points of the stitch. I was always such a mucky pup that I would inevitably snag it on something. Was a little nervous when pulling threads out with the batiste. And a couple of times it pulled but it has all worked out ok. My heart sank when I saw the stitching instructions read pistol stitch for this design. Am more aware than ever why I probably am more prolific with tapestry, counted cross stitch and knitting. They are more mathematical and I know where every stitch is going to go. It is the “chaos factor” of embroidery that worries me. I do it, but I don’t always feel it is done correctly.
Thank god for back stitch and lazy daisy, this was a relative doddle.
Nothing that we have introduced since buying Victoria House Needlecraft has been as popular as the Australian hand dyed thread brands, Mogear, Cottage Garden Threads and our increasing range of Gumnut Yarns. We have been slowly introducing them since January 2012. They have grabbed customers attention in store and are being snapped up online too as word of mouth spreads. So thank you all of you innovators for getting out there and telling your friends.
I think their popularity has been due to a combination of many things but the main reason is they are really great products that are a pleasure to stitch with and deep down I think we are all just a little bit proud that our fellow Aussies have created some really beautiful products that compete with the best stitching products available in the world. Just for your information we have also sent these threads to overseas customers who clearly know a damn good thing when they see it.
While these beautiful hand dyed Australian stitching threads are a great addition for enhancing any of your projects, we are finding most people are using them more for embroidery and crewel work rather than cross stitch or tapestry and needlepoint. The only limit you have is your imagination. It is so great for us to have them in store and I find it really gratifying to hear the oooh and aaaah reaction from customers who see them for the very first time.
Needlecraft stuff we talk about
- Black Parrot Art Room
- CustomFit by Amy Herzog Designs
- Debi Birkin Designs
- High Maintinence Sewing Machine Services
- Jane Nicholas
- Liverpool Picture Framing
- Mimosa Embroidery
- Regal Craft Cards
- The Stitchery
- Thread Colour Converter