Wednesday, September 09, 2009
Last Saturday I had the opportunity to take a short class on darning samplers. My local Sampler Guild has members do a brief class for some of the programs. This time the lady talked about her time in school, in Germany, and learning needlework as part of her school curriculum. She also talked about pattern darning and referenced my article from the West Kingdom Needleworkers Guild Website - http://wkneedle.bayrose.org/index.html. She even made me stand and talk for a couple minutes (grin).
The speaker and another lady brought darning samplers to show. One was from the 1800's and a couple from early 1900's. It was very interesting to see the stitching up close. The objective, of course, was to mimic the various weaves of fabric that they would encounter and need to fix. What was of key interest was the way slack was added both historically and on the more modern pieces - strategically placed pins at each end to go over. It was an "aha" moment.
Then we proceeded to do a straight darning piece (on right in picture). For learning purposes we had 25 count and flower thread. I finished the sample when I came home and of course my curiosity had been aroused about other patterns. I went searching through my library. You would think that with all the books I own, much less the web at my finger tips I could find instructions on mending darning. 1 book - The DMC Complete Encyclopedia of Needlework - had information. From it I saw how to do the twill darning - on the left of the picture. It also has various patterns for other weaves that I may try.
Purchased The DMC Complete Encyclopedia of Needlework a number of years ago - so the prior version of the large size one. This one is truly reprints of all the articles that DMC put out in various forms over the years; and not very good prints due to the age of the pieces. However, I have never not found information on a technique in this book. It may not be the easiest to understand, but it is truly complete and has a key place in a well rounded library.