Learn about the main types of embroidery and become an expert

Embroidery is an art with needles and threads, which requires a lot of patience, since it has lots of details to solve so that it can look perfect when finished. Among the types of embroidery are: ribbon embroidery; thread embroidery and wool embroidery. In this article, we will take a tour of the types of wool and thread embroidery services; there is much to know and techniques to apply…

What is wool embroidery?

  • Wool embroidery is one of the popular types of embroidery of embroidered surfaces, for a number of reasons, not least of which a wide variety of stitches are employed.
  • Now then let’s talk a bit about wool embroidery, the materials used in embroidery wool work and the types of stitches common to this popular form of hand embroidery.
  • The -crewel- or wool embroidery has been around for centuries. In 17th-century England, woolen embroidery was in great favor as a form of embellishment on household items such as bed curtains and sheets.
  • Jacobean-style designs from the 17th century were particularly suitable for crewel embroidery, and they were so popular that they are used for all sorts of sewing interpretations today. Because the wool used in crewel embroidery is so robust, it remains a great choice for embroidery on upholstered items. Think: chair cushions, sofa beds, accent pillows and the like.

What does wool do for embroidery?

Nowadays, the embroidered name “wool for embroidery” tends to evoke a particular style of design, and we can see embroidery called “wool for embroidery” emerging in the sewing market that is not exactly crewel. The key element for crewel is not design style. It’s actually the thread. The wool work for crewel is because it was made in wool for embroidery, which is a strong, long-fiber yarn spun from wool.

Modern wool embroidery designs may, in fact, use the involvement of fibers other than wool (or no wool at all). But these aren’t technically embroidery flosses – they’re surface embroidery. They can be worked into stitches that are reminiscent of crewel, and in designs that are reminiscent of designs used in wobbler embroidery, but which actually fall into the more general category of surface, freestyle stitching. 

Thus, wool embroidery, precisely speaking, can be of any style of design. It is usually worked with certain families of stitches (although the sky really is the limit, when it comes to putting the variety together), but the real work of embroidery wool – to be accurately called crewel – is worked with threads of wool. Of course, this leads us to another question: what wool yarns, wool blends, other fibers that look like wool? In modern embroidery and modern interpretations of wool embroidery, it is not uncommon to see a blend of fibers.

Wool threads for embroidery

Today, you can find an incredible variety of embroidery threads suitable for embroidery wool work available on the market, from traditional Appleton wool, to exceptionally soft merino wools that are a delight to sew with wools, Hand-spun dyed with natural vegetable dyes, to blends of wool mixed with other fibers such as silk, alpaca, mohair, and the like. One of my favorites for crewel embroidery is a slightly old-fashioned fine thread; wool yarn produced in France. It is a delight to sew, it is softer than other similar wools, it is available in an ever-widening range of colors, the colors correspond to the silk lines (which make it a good option for mixing wool and silk in the same piece) and it’s affordable.

The importance of many shades of color

When selecting wool threads for crewel embroidery, you have to keep in mind that many of the embroidery wool pieces are based on the range of thread shades available, in order to achieve a good mix within the color families and a full, rich, shaded finish. Appleton yarns are favored by traditional wool processing, not only because of their long-standing reputation (they’ve been around for almost 200 years!), but also because their yarns are available in over 420 shades!

Fabric for crewel embroidery

Traditionally, crewel embroidery was worked on linen, or from a twill or plain weave. In modern wool work, fabrics such as wool, jute, silk, cotton, and blends (and synthetics) can sometimes even be used as ground cloths. If you’re trying to achieve historical accuracy with wool work for embroidery, linen twill is considered the fabric of choice.

The dots in crewel embroidery

Certain families of stitches have been part of the repertoire of some types of embroidery singapore, especially wool, for centuries. These are the common stitches used in wool embroidery, but if you’re looking for modern interpretations of wool embroidery, you shouldn’t feel limited to the stitches below. Within each family of stitches, you’ll find many variations that are perfectly adaptable to the crewel.

Line stitches

Line stitches such as stem stitch, outline stitch, chain stitch, or split stitch are often a part of embroidery floss. By filling in stitches along the lines of these types of wool embroidery, the importance of a variety shades within a color family is evident.

Solid fill stitches

The two solid fill stitches used predominantly in crewel embroidery are satin stitch, long stitch and short stitch.

Satin stitch

In crewel embroidery, satin stitch is used to cover small gaps that require a solid fill. When working with plain satin stitch on these types of embroidery, it is important that the space covered is not too great, because the stitches can loosen over time.

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