All Done

My quick embroidery project is done; stem stitch and French knots in thread several times thicker than buttonhole twist goes pretty fast, once you get the hang of it.  I don’t think I’ll bother sending it back to Shauna, though;  might as well just take it to Pennsic, since that’s its final destination anyway.  Of course I’ve got a full card of each of the three colors I bought, so I’ll have to try to get to the needlepoint place during some of the very limited business hours.

Picture to come, if I manage to get ambitious enough to pull out the camera.  In the meantime, I’ve gotten Boreas out again.  And of course there are socks, but there are always socks…

No More Projects!

Four Arts and Crafts style embroidered doilies, arranged verticallyI love the doilies in this picture (which links to the website I got it from, by the way).  My favorite is probably the blue and green one at the bottom, and I can’t decide between the white flowers at the top and the orange ones second down.  The little nosegays of white second from the bottom are kind of dull, in my opinion, but the other three are all fab in their own ways.

The thing is, I could totally duplicate these if I wanted to.  The patterns are fairly simple and stylized, and I could get myself some tan linen and some bobbin lace and draft things out.  It wouldn’t be an exact match, if for no other reason than that there’s absolutely no indication of size in the photo, but I can make some educated guesses–those green solid crescents, for example, are unlikely to be more than an inch thick lest the satin stitch start going funny.  It’d also be a pain to exactly match the lace, but an exact match wouldn’t be required to produce the correct effect.

But then what would I do with them?  I don’t have an embroidered-doily kind of house, sadly, and I find it unlikely that I’d be able to sell each one for the roughly $150 it would cost me in materials and effort¹.  Plus, really, I have enough crafts projects floating about as it is.

I think I’ll just have to keep the picture around and examine it longingly from time to time.

1: Actually, at the rock-bottom rate of $10 an hour it’d probably be more like $300, once all was said and done.  I’m looking at it thinking, hmm, that’d be maybe 10 hours of embroidering, which means it would probably be 25 to 30 once I got going.


I’ve got a project to work on for a friend; it’s a matching set of embroidery pieces, one a runner and the other a square tablecloth.  They’re both missing the same bit of embroidery; there’s an outer ring, then large elaborate leaves in the corners, then an inner ring, and on both the inner ring is missing, though printed on.

So if I’m going to complete this embroidery, I need to match the thread used.  Being a good little fiber geek, the first thing I did was burn test, from long ends that are knotted off on the back of one of the pieces.  The trouble is, the burn test is not giving me sensible results.

I got slow burning with an orange flame that self-extinguished after a few seconds, with a smell of burning paper, that left soft black ash and several seconds of ember; no melting.  The result that matches the most of that is wool or similar, but the smell is wrong and also this stuff is vastly too shiny to be wool.   The smell wants it to be rayon, but rayon is supposed to leave grey ash, not black; the ash wants it to be silk, but again it didn’t smell like burning hair.

I think I might just punt to matching looks and not caring about the actual fiber content, so there’s a trip to the needlepoint store in my future; JoAnn’s limited selection of DMC rayon floss has nothing of the right thickness or color.  Actually I fear matching all the colors may be impossible, as one is a very odd gold-olive kind of shade I’ve never encountered in embroidery floss.

If anyone has better Google skills than I do, the print on the thing is “Grayona Needlecraft Corp, No. 8186/11”.  I just need to know what kind of floss was in the original kit.

Needle Envy

It’s blogs like this that make me want to cover my entire house in embroidered stuff.  Handkerchiefs, wall hangings, pillowcases, tableclothes, you name it.

I doubt I would actually like the effect, but that doesn’t stop me wanting to make the stuff.