To Keep Them Sweet – finished

The whole thing. I need to make some backdrops for the light tent.
Chris got me the tent for a present, and it makes a HUGE difference in the quality of the light in close-up shots – but I’m still figuring out it.
two more photos

"To Keep Them Sweet": Progress, of a sort.

The ribbon is proceeding slowly onward. I encountered some serious problems (mostly tension, although a couple of missed turns also contributed) and had to start the ribbon over. It hurt, but it was truly for the best. At this point, I’ve gotten through most of page 7 out of 15 pages of chart (plus a moth on each end) – I had stopped the first one after four pages. It’s definitely taking on the feel that I’m aiming for – the lettering looks much more regular this time around, and the brocade looks a little more fully covered because of the changes in tension.


Found: US source for Pony needles!

The folks at Pony told me that Kirstin at Muench Yarns carries their needles. I checked the Muench Yarns website, and was only able to find their KNITTING needles… but after a couple of emails, I got in touch with Kirstin herself, and she does indeed have them! She has the 9, 10, 11, and 12 sizes, all in the gold eye.

From her email:

I do have the Embroidery Crewels in sizes 9,10,11,12 in stock. They are with
a gold eye. Funny, I do not remember anymore why I have them, I believe it
was a special order, but I thought to order 500 each extra at the time.

I am a wholesale distributor, and do not sell directly to the public, so I
would need to have any inquires go directly to where I
would set up a customer service person to handle the needle inquiries.

The prices are as follows :
Size 9- 16 needles per package $1.50 each pkg of 16 needles
Size 10-16 needles per package $1.50 each pkg of 16 needles
Size 11-12 needles per package $1.50 each pkg of 12 needles
Size 12-12 needles per package $1.50 each pkg of 12 needles

So! Anybody who wants to get the Pony crewel needles, she’s got them, and they’re inexpensive, and they’re in the US!

Needles in macro

The needle on the left is a Richard Hemming #10 crewel; the one on the right is the Pony Brand #10 crewel. It looks like it’s a little finer, and the head is significantly finer.

These are the three sizes – #10, #11, #12. I’ve put the pointy ends even, so you can see how much they differ in length.

The Geffe Ribbon: begun

I’m working on the Geffe ribbon; I’ve gotten through nearly four pages of chart (counting the moth, which ought to be more like 2 pages because the two-color brocade takes FOREVER on 73 tablets!)

I’m pleased with how the beads are working out. They’re strung on the main weft, which is a bit of a pain in the butt – I strung on about 20 of them, and they keep wanting to get in my way.

Close-up of the moth. It’s in two shades of ecru; I had planned originally on just one shade, but when I started fiddling around with two, I liked the look. I think it’s worth the trouble, although only just. This is my hand-reeled filament, made from 4 reel strands – or about 80 cocoons thick.

I’ve still got about 13 pages of chart, one of which is the moth on the other end – so there’s a long way to go! I’m working from the left-hand side of the graph below; I just finished the word “sweet” in the top line.

Needles: I LOVE getting packages from India

I’ve often heard of things being “nested like Chinese boxes” – but what I get, are these nested packages from India. I don’t think I’ve ever had anything so thoroughly packaged, as the things I get from India. This time, it’s needles. I wrote to the folks at Pony Needles in India, and asked if I could place a small order. I couldn’t find anyone here in the US who carries their amazingly fine crewel needles (see this post) – except for Lacis, who carry the #12 in the plain eye.

They explained that they don’t do small orders, only wholesale – but then a manager emailed me and told me that he was impressed with my silk site and my devotion to needle work, and he sent me a shipment of needles with his compliments. I was SO excited!

What I saw first, was this:

– the Express packaging.

click for what's inside

The Peony: finished, finally!

It’s finally done! I have to admit – the leaves have a little bit of experimentation going on, partly because I was trying to figure it out, partly because I was just tired of working on this piece. I glued it to the mat under tension with PVA bookbinder’s adhesive, and put mat on front and back to keep it under tension in the frame.