All righty, then.

Remember that thing I said about being distracted easily? It’s so true. Case in point:

sampler. whole frame by you.

That there is tambour embroidery, which I spent a little over an hour working on last night at Project  Night. A while back, I’d made a valiant but frustrating effort to do chain stitch embroidery using a regular needle. It worked, but was immensely time-consuming. In the end, I plan on embroidering enough fabric to make a ghagra out of, and so the time I was looking at in my future for the embroidery seemed to  stretch into the future of the Earth, when the sun becomes a red giant and we’re all gone and the planet is a cinder. I was not enthusiastic.

However, Lea, who is fairly awesome, had a tambour needle in her cache of supplies, and so I was handed a frame, the needle, and some thread to play with. It’s really fiddly. There’s a trick to it, and to not getting your needle caught in the fabric (which happened to me a lot). Apparently you get fast when you get the hang of it, and I sort of got there, where I was doing six stitches every five seconds or so. I think that if I practice some more, I can get to be fairly speedy.

These are my favorite parts of the freeform thing I was making:

sample, curve detail by you.

sampler, the neatest bit by you.

You can see where I’ve caught the thread on itself and where the stitches are kind of loose. Hopefully I’ll do that less and less as I get better. Next I’m going to try a smaller needle and the gold thread (which I plan on using for the zari work of the ghagra) and see how that goes. I’m very stubborn. I will be like this guy someday soon:

Actually, if I can be even half that fast, I’ll be happy.

(I think, in review of this video, my fabric needs to be MUCH tighter than I’ve got it. The tension seems to help the smooth progress of the needle through the fabric.)

In other words, no knitting happened, yet again. But this is like crochet, which is like knitting! So I’m not that far off.

About HappyGoth

By day, I'm a graphic designer. By night, I'm a knitter. I'm doing my part to keep Hotlanta stylish. I imagine that if you don't already understand the title of the blog, you're probably confused and perhaps slightly annoyed, but never fear - I do have a reason (and it's a good one). Having gone to hear Stephanie Pearl McPhee, and then having been inspired to blog about knitting, I found myself wondering what to call the blog. I recalled a conversation I had with Mouse and the Chicken Goddess about why it is a Bad Idea to anger knitters - this conversation was following SPM, aka the Yarn Harlot telling the assembled throng about Those Who Do Not Understand Knitting and Therefore Belittle It Much to the Chagrin of Others, or TWDNUKTBMCO, which is not the acronym she used but is the one I'm using because I forgot hers - that is, we are numerous and we all have very pointy sticks, easily transforming into an angry mob. Therefore, knitters = angry mob.
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8 Responses to All righty, then.

  1. Lea says:

    Janice, I was looking at punch needle supplies in a craft store last week. The punch needle has thread carried on top of the fabric and the loop is pushed to the back of the fabric but it isn’t being secured. They look the same/similiar, but the structure is different. Tambour work is sturdy enough for washable clothing, I only ever see punch needle embroidery in frames. I don’t think it would hold up to abrasion and use very well at all.

  2. Janice in GA says:

    Is that the same as punch needle embroidery?

    • HappyGoth says:

      I am not certain. It appears to be very similar, but not the same. The tambour embroidery is a speed solution to conventional chain-stitch embroidery (which takes eleventy billion times longer than tambour). It’s possible that punch needle grew out of tambour, though.

  3. Greet says:

    I am insanely jealous at how much faster this would be than European embroidery. Which reminds me, there’s probably design I could be doing.

  4. Lea says:

    Look how he’s rotating the needle with his thumb. I think that’s what’s pulling the needle at the right angle. I can’t wait to try this again, borrowing your learning curve!

    • HappyGoth says:

      I think I was sort of getting that when I was doing it. I seriously think, though, that fabric tension is a HUGE factor. I have some thumbtacks at home; I’m going to try later to see if that helps.

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