[HNW] Embroidering garments

Chris Laning claning at igc.org
Mon Oct 6 11:08:39 PDT 2003

About using or not using hoops:

I tend to always use a hoop or frame. I have good friends who _never_ use one and get just as good results -- so I agree that there's No One True Way. I tend to advise beginners to try one, because they have had less practice in controlling the tension of the thread and the fabric, and if one of the two (i.e. the fabric) is controlled, they only have to concentrate on the other -- and IMHO, controlling tension is one of the main keys to good embroidery.

And then there's the story of my friend Valerie, who spent eight months embroidering a round collar strip in Opus Anglicanum, based on the collar of the robe of the Holy Roman Emperor, only to find that it was too big for her -- because she had marked the design on the fabric *before* stretching it, and the density of the stitching meant that the fabric stayed at its larger, "stretched" size after the embroidery was done.

(She wears it anyway because it's So Cool, mounted on a hand-dyed indigo silk tunic, but it doesn't sit as close to her neck as the original was designed to...)

The moral of the story being, I guess, to think hard before stitching... :)

0  Chris Laning
|  <claning at igc.org>
+  Davis, California

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