About Weldon's Practical Needlework

From Interweave Press:

About 1885, Weldon’s began publishing a series of fourteen-page monthly newsletters, available by subscription, each title featuring patterns and instructions for projects using a single technique.

About 1888, the company began to publish Weldon’s Practical Needlework, each volume of which consisted of twelve issues (one year) of several newsletters bound together with a cloth cover.

Each volume contains hundreds of projects, illustrations, information on little-known techniques, glimpses of fashion as it was at the turn of the twentieth century, and brief histories of needlework. Other techniques treated include making objects from crinkled paper, tatting, netting, beading, patchwork, crewelwork, appliqué, cross-stitch, canvaswork, ivory embroidery, torchon lace, and much more.

From 1999 through 2005, Interweave published facsimiles of the first twelve volumes of Weldon’s Practical Needlework.

Monday, January 9, 2012

What Yarn to Choose?

Figuring out the appropriate yarn to use for a Victorian era knitting project can be a real challenge.  Gauge is seldom given, and pattern books tend to use names like "Berlin", "Fleecy", "Pyrenee" and others that were known and readily available at the time but not familiar to modern knitters.

Robin Stokes has provided some valuable information on her blog, with descriptions from period pattern books.  Piecework Magazine often has articles about textiles and yarns of the Victorian Era.

Needle size is a clue to yarn weight, too.  These patterns use the "Old UK" system of sizing needles and here is a link to Yarn and Fiber Co.'s handy conversion chart.

I'll be experimenting through the year with various yarns to try to match the ones used in Weldon's patterns.  Natural fibers (wool, cotton, cashmere, angora) will be the ones I'll use, no acrylics in the 1890s!

Here's another link to a list of equivalent yarns: String or Nothing Vintage Yarns.


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