I’ve heard of tambour embroidery and always liked the idea of an easier-to-do and not-so-time-consuming method of doing chain stitch. I was at the JoAnn sale this Friday and saw an embroidery frame that clamps to the table, and since there was a discount coupon in the sale flyer, I bought one. The next day I was driving home from IKEA and stopped at Lacis in Berkeley where I found the tambour hook.
A faint memory told me that there are instructions in the old Th. de Dillmont Encyclopedia of Needlework book with pictures of the old method of doing this embroidery, and this resulted in a long search for the book. There was a time when I knew where all my books were, but I guess the number of books in my library has gotten too big over the years. Finally I found the book right where it was supposed to be, and I also remembered a recent purchase from the used-book store on Tambour Crochet.
The Enclylopedia of Needlework is available online, but those copies must be different from mine because they don’t seem to have the section on Tambour work. Maybe the popularity this embroidery waned and that section was removed from the book in later editions. Here are the diagrams that are in my copy:
The hook style hasn’t changed at all in 120 years, though you could also use a regular crochet hook or other types of latch hooks.
I’m definitely going to give this a try because I love chain stitch embroidery on a garment. In other news, I was surprised to find that IKEA is not selling single sheets anymore, and only sheet sets are offered that include a top and bottom sheet and two pillow cases. I used to get the Dvala sheets in a queen size for about $7 but the sheet set is closer to $25. This makes them not cost effective for sewing purposes, alas, unless you want to make pillowcase dresses or need more pillow cases. However, there was a pink sheet set (Oleby, 100% cotton) that I have long admired because the slightly tan pink color is very pretty, but it was previously too expensive. Now they are closing it out for only $19.99 for a king set with two sheets plus pillow cases and these are 300 threadcount sheets. That is a good price for so much yardage. Using my rusty math skills, that would be the equivalent of about 17 yards of fabric not counting the pillow cases. I see some pink aprons and bag linings in the future.