Retail Therapy in Birmingham

September 5, 2009 at 2:15 pm | Posted in Embroidery | 3 Comments

I promised I’d write a bit more about the shopping that happened while at the Festival of Quilts. Although this is a quilt festival, I did spent more  on embroidery stuff.

First and foremost I fell in love with this beauty from Needle Needs:

Floor Stand

I wanted to have a floor stand for embroidery for a long time, and when I saw the care and engineering ingenuity that has gone into the development of this stand and the accompanying frames, I just couldn’t resist. It’s someting I expect to use for decades, so it’s an investment worth making. The Millenium Frame that goes with the stand works much like a traditional roller frame, but you don’t have to sew your fabric to the rollers, which honestly is a pain and one reason why I didn’t really like working with my roller frame before. Added advantage: I just checked that my round hand-quilting frame will also fit on the stand, so that’s a bonus. This frame is a winner, and you can see my first project already mounted. Here’s a close-up:

Pomegranate Crewel Embroidery Pattern

It’s a crewel embroidery kit from Sue Hawkins, which I also bought in Birmingham. I have always wanted to try crewel embroidery, but I don’t think you can actually get crewel wool around here, so I’d have to order online, and I wouldn’t really have known where to start anyway. This nice traditional pattern came with all the materials I needed, and it’s a joy to stitch, as you can see by my progress:

Pomegranate Crewel Embroidery

I’m enjoying myself and learning something new! The amount of crewel wool supplied with the pattern is way more than enough, so even if I made a mistake and had to throw a bit away,there’d still be plenty left to finish the design. One thing I’m absolutely amazed about is how fine the crewel wool actually is. The only wool I have any experience with is rough tapestry wool, so this was quite a surprise at first. The thread is fluffy, but really thin once it’s laid down, so I have to make my stitches denser than expected. I’m still not 100% successful, as you can see from the few spots of the background fabric peeking through here and there.

This was not all my shopping, but I’ll save the rest for another day. 🙂



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  1. It really is a beautiful frame. I haven’t done much embroidery in years but I’d be tempted to do more just to have an excuse to buy one of those.

  2. I love crewel embroidery and Sue Hawkins does some beautiful designs. Looks like you will have fun

  3. […] strip of it up in the smaller one of my Millenium frames (picture with other project mounted in this post), and got to […]

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