Monday, 20 December 2010

Threads, Linen and Sampler News


And so, I finally have my threads ready to begin my coif. I am using a mixture of Gilt Sylke Twist and Soie de Perle. I have tried to choose a palette that is appropriate to the era as well as to my own sensibilities. Some of the colours will only be used once in the design. Examples are the Azure GST, for butterfly wings, and the soft grey, for the snail. I have been thinking about using the new kit from Thistle Threads for my snail, instead of my own design, but have not made a decision yet. That kit uses some really interesting threads and techniques, and I may use it just because it is so cute.

linen kingston 55 I am torn about the linen. Somehow my Kingston crème 55 ct. linen managed to get misplaced during my cross-country move, so I had to replace it. I purchased some Kingston white 55 ct. from a friend who has closed her needle arts shop, and am fairly happy with it.

linen antique

My other option is an antique piece of fine white linen. They are comparable in quality, from what I can tell, but the antique piece is somewhat finer, and has less slubs. Not sure if that really matters or not, but am trying to decide which to use.

I have made some fairly good progress on the sampler for my Thistle Threads Elizabethan and Stuart Gold Work Master Course. I have found that I have run out of two of the threads though, and am not sure why. I am using only one strand, per the directions, and am using every bit of the thread that I am able to. I try to have the mindset that they are very rare and precious, and that I have to use every small bit that I can, in order to mimic the 16th and 17th century stitcher as closely as possible.

I am well pleased with my work so far, and with the exception of a place where I cut the thread too close, feel that I have done a passable job with it. I am going to have to go back into the large honeycomb in the top left of the sampler and re-do a small bit, in order to fix that tail end that worked its way loose, but it should not be too painful to deal with.

Here are some photos of my work so far. I am really keen on starting the gold soon!!!

sampler top left honeysuckle small honeysuckle and lower left motif pinke and top center motif pansy flame stitch


  1. How fantastic! (the sampler). I bet you are looking forward to the gold.

    Use the kit in the new piece - why not?? And it'll put that new interesting thread on it.

  2. I've been practising the goldwork stitches separately, especially since at the moment my favourite natural-light stitching corner is way too cold for sewing!

  3. I got a natural light lamp that has a magnifier, and I love it. Definitely not the same as real natural light, but I live in Washington State, near Seattle, and we do not often get good daylight at this time of year.

  4. Somebody asked me about the colour of my linen, as the photos show it to be a rich cream, almost tan. The colour of both is white, not ivory even. The problem is with my poor photo editing, not the cloth. Even the 400+ year old coifs that I saw in the V&A had white linen, not natural, so I would not think of using anything but white, maybe off white, for this project.