As a kid, my Mom did a fair amount of utilitarian embroidery for us. Every gym suit had my first name embroidered on the front and my last name on the back. She taught me how to do some simple stitches and I made a piece for my kitchen in my first place. Nowadays I see all kinds of fancy dancy sewing machines which can do embroidery like nobody's business! Let learn more, in fact let's learn 10 entertaining facts about embroidery.
1. Definition - According to this very reliable site, embroidery is "any textile foundation that is decorated with needle and thread" and I guess that makes sense. So, fabric that someone decorates using a floss and a needle, not joining fabric pieces together. Got it!
2. How old - If you read this fascinating article you will learn that is is old, really old. There is a fossil dating back to 30,000 BC which shows embroidery on the items the hunter had with him. Yeah, that's pretty old.
3. Why - I loved this post which explains why early humans used embroidery. People used embroidery for religion, to decorate clothing and to improve costumes. I think we still do it for those reasons and more.
4. Famous - Probably the most famous piece of embroidery is the Bayeux Tapestry for which there are many sites, this one included. I was lucky enough to visit it in northern France at the museum in Bretagne. There is lots of embroidery there!
5. Machines - Hand embroidery was done for over 30,000 years but eventually, machines became involved. It was a multi step process which began in the 1800's and it still continuing today. You can read more here.
6. Hand stitches - You can read here that there are five main hand stitches. They are outline, satin, lazy daisy, cross and French knot. I personally can do the first two and the last. I am sure I did more when I was really into it. But it's interesting that it's basically just five different kinds.
7. Designs - The largest supplier of embroidery designs is Dakota Collectible and if you don't believe it, you can read about here. While you are there, you can even download some designs.
8. Floss - The most widely used embroidery floss in the States seems to be DMC and their site has lots of different colors and weights to be seen.
9. Popular - I would have assumed a different answer than what I found. According to this site, the Brother SE 400 is the most highly rated embroidery sewing machine. I don't have one that does embroidery but every once in a while they really appeal to me.
10. Word meaning - In this post we have used the word embroider as the sewing but it has another mean. You can check here but if you say a person is embroidering it might mean they are embellishing the truth. They aren't lying, but everything is not necessary true. Unlike this post which is!
Learn - if you would like to learn how to embroider, check out this video. The music gets a bit annoying so I would turn the sound down.
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If you like to embroider you probably are familiar with Havel's Sewing. I blog for them once a month. Here's my latest post.
If you like fact posts, read my latest one on oilcloth.