Minnesota is cold in the winter. It breaks my heart to have to put away my dresses at the end of the fall. At least my cardigans get to hang around and my sweaters come out of hiding. I love vintage clothing. I've definitely shared that before. Over the years I have accumulated a number of great embroidered sweaters and worn the love right out of them. I'm the girl who keeps on wearing a sweater even though it has no more elbows and an aged coffee stain on the front hidden behind a brooch. When vintage picking I always keep my eyes peeled for that next great sweater.....even on the sweatiest of summer days I've been known to add a piece to the ole stash.
The exact inception of embroidery is hard to pin point (pun intended). Let's just say that for as long as humans have been wearing clothes, they have been adorning them....with embroidery. (Embroidery refers to decorating fabric with needle and a thread-or yarn etc.) Many different cultures, spanning many centuries, have incorporated embroidery into their garments. Some of the earliest known examples have been dated to 3000 BC. This article at Needlepointers.com outlines embroidery through history and region. It would take many books to truly cover embroiderys impact over time.
If you're looking to hear more of embroidery's past, check out some of these books; "Art of Embroidery: History of Style and Technique," or "Early American Embroidery Designs: An 1815 Manuscript Album With Over 190 Patterns." There is also the hard to find "Royal School of Needlework-Book of Needlework and Embroidery." Plus don't miss the dense (over 300 pages!) Reproduction of the early 1923 gem "Embroidery And Lace: Their Manufacture History From The Remotest Antiquity To The Present Day. A Handbook For Armatures, Collectors, And General Readers..." It's always a good idea to ask your librarian if they have any suggestions too!
It's important to care for and preserve those pieces we really love. Though don't abandon them in your closet because of life's risks. If that's the case, pop that baby in a frame and call it "Art." Because it is.
Some helpful hints for cleaning your embroidered garments
- Wash in mild detergent
- Machine was in cold
- Delicate wash cycle
- Remove promptly after wash is completed
- Never leave soaking in water, or in a wet pile
- Never wring out anything with embroidery
- Never rub out a stain
- If you are unsure, hand wash
- Lay Flat to Dry
The lovely embroidered sweaters you see here are all available for purchase on Etsy. The woods are lovely dark and deep, lets wrap up in warm embroidered sweaters.