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Embroidery Vintage Instructions

All care has been given to present these instructions in the original form. KnitHeaven is not responsible for errors.


The art of embroidering with cotton on linen, muslin, cambric, piqué, &c.c., is very easy to learn by strictly attending to the following instructions.

The size of the thread and needle must correspond to that of the material on which you embroider; the needle must not be too long, and the cotton must be soft. Messrs. Walter Evans and Co.'s embroidery cotton is the best. Skilful embroiderers never work over anything, because when you tack the material on paper or cloth each stitch shows, and if the material is very fine, leaves small holes; but for those that are learning we should advise them to tack the material to be embroidered upon a piece of toile cirée. If you work without this, place the material straight over the forefinger of the left hand; the material must never be held slantways. The three other fingers of the left hand hold the work; the thumb remains free to give the right position to each stitch. The work must always, if possible, lie so that the outline of the pattern is turned towards the person who works. For the sake of greater clearness one part of the following illustrations is given in larger size than nature. Preparing the patterns is one of the most important things in embroidery, for the shape of the patterns is often spoiled merely because they have not been prepared with sufficient care.

1858.  Embroidery

Embroidery, properly speaking, includes every sort of ornamental work done with a sewing needle of any kind; but in its popular acceptation, it applies only to the ornamentation of any article by the eye, or from drawn or marked patterns—whatever may be the material, or combination of materials employed; Berlin or canvas work, on the contrary, is the usual designation of all kinds of embroidery on canvas, done by counting threads, and frequently by the aid of a painting on checked paper.

1859.  Distinction in Embroidered Work

Although these two different sorts of work are really equally entitled to the designation of embroidery, yet for the sake of making our hints as intelligible as possible, we will adopt the popular terms, and confine our present remarks to that sort of embroidery which is not executed by the stitch.

1860. Materials

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