Blended Leg

Just a general needlework and cross stitch blog

Friday, May 05, 2006

SBQ: Overdyes

Do you or have you stitched with over-dyed threads? (Weeks Dye Works, The Gentle Art Sampler Threads, Six Strand Sweets, etc.) If so, what is your opinion concerning them? If not, why not?

I am on the fence on over-dyed threads. I've bought a number of them over the years, but I've only dabbled in actually using them. I've used Caron's Waterlilies and Watercolors and Gentle Art's Sampler Threads predominantly. I've also bought Silk N Colors and a few others.

I love the muted colors. I'm an old-fashioned girl and I like the antiquey feel to most over-dyes. And I love the imagination and creativity that goes into the naming of some thread lines. Silk N Colors had a series based on the London Tube stops. Gentle Art has their Simply Shaker, not to be outdone by Olde Willow's Quaker Colors. Amy Mitten's Fibers to Dye For are delightfully ghoulish and mysterious.

On the other hand, I don't love the upkeep. The price you pay for hand dyed anything is that they are usually unable to be washed. I consider myself fairly clumsy, especially involving drink or chocolate or tomato sauce. White sweaters have given their lives in my name. Some would tell you unspeakable tales... So telling me something can't be washed or might bleed makes me skittish.

Reading the responses so far, I've noticed a number of people aren't wowed or convinced. They want more variegation for their buck. And they are expensive threads so I understand completely. For small pieces, it's a nice effect, but I'm not sure I'd want a full wall hanging in it. I don't necessarily like the wide variations in color, but that's me.

I include this small piece of work using Caron Threads:


This appeared in New Stitches #122 "Ackworth School Samplers", stitched on Aida using Caron's "Alpine Moss" Waterlilies thread. The motifs appear to be the same as the one shown in the center of the "Elizabeth Shephard" 1820 sampler. I just needed a small project to work on one weekend, hoping that it might encourage me to pick up the bigger projects I've let languish.

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