I haven't been around most of this year due to being overwhelmed with
too many deadlines, working on several projects at once, as well as
reconfiguring my latest Mac....upgraded to a G-5 iMac desk unit this
past April, my first one as I've been a laptop user from the very first
Mac 100 series laptop all the way to the G4 version.
It's a lot better reading off a large screen monitor than the constant
scrolling on laptop screens.
Through these months I've acquired quite a pile of new books including
some excellent needlework volumes.
I'd like to share one of the best ones I've seen.....
Title: Silken Threads - a history of Embroidery in China, Korea, Japan
Author: Young Yang Chung
Publisher: Harry N Abrams, NY 2005
This is one hefty, artistic volume filled with easy to read informative
text and many beautiful close up pictures of Asian embroideries from
the past to modern day including fine examples of the author's own
This beautifully done book is worth every penny (one can get this at
A copy of this book makes a perfect partner with the author's previous
volume, Painting with a Needle 2002 that showed the "how-to's" of Asian
Between these two books one can learn quite a lot about Asian design,
culture and needlework. Even for someone like myself who grew up
surrounded by Chinese needleworks has learned something about other
Asian cultures, the different clothing styles, types of needlework and
history behind it.
Having this book is similar to being given a private guided tour of
Asian arts & embroideries.....a real treat to see the pics many of
which have never been seen before along with a continuing commentary on
what one is seeing.
One picture shows the author standing with the director of the Chinese
Suzhou Embroidery Institute holding a side stretcher bar that's
probably almost as high as the first story of an average house!
I've been wondering why many of us in the US using frames stitch
upright with the needlework frame parallel to one's body compared to
the professional Asian stitchers that will stitch downwards into the
fabric stretched across the frame similar to a table.
I've also noticed the same way of stitching downwards in the Lessage
embroidery house where they make those famous beaded appliques and
From necessity. I've found stitching downwards like the Asian stitchersto be useful in laying flat stitches instead of the usual up in the air
stitching.....I stitch both ways depending what I'm doing.