The Timeless Charm of Weldon’s Practical Cross-Stitch

In 1887, Weldon’s Practical Needlework recognized the popularity of cross-stitch embroidery in Victorian England. In the introduction they wrote, “Cross-stitch work has now become so universal that we feel sure a book can well be devoted to this quickly executed and attractive decoration . . . .” Attractive indeed! Over a hundred years later, the timeless charm of cross-stitch has not waned.

Weldon’s states that cross-stitch originated in Russia and Germany. They go on to say that cross-stitch is an embellishment well suited for household linens as it withstood repeated washing and use. The extremely simple execution of cross-stitch and the minimal tools required are also keys to its continued beloved status.

Mantel Border in Cross-Stitch and Italian or Holbein Stitch.

Mantel Border in Cross-Stitch and Italian or Holbein Stitch.

PieceWork is proud to present a new eBook, Weldon’s Practical Cross-Stitch, Crewel Work, Smocking and Appliqué Work, which contains the cross-stitch, crewel work, smocking, and appliqué content from Volume 2. Each of the four series includes an overview of the technique and how to execute it, followed by detailed instructions, charts, and illustrations. There are numerous borders, centers, corners, and initials. Here are a couple of my favorite charts from the cross-stitch series: the Border Worked with Peacocks and Mantel Border in Cross-Stitch and Italian or Holbein Stitch. Lovely!

The fascination with cross-stitch has lasted for generations. I still remember stitching my first cross-stitch. As a child, I was captivated by the brightly colored floss thread through my needle. Crayons and markers had nothing on those long strands of mercerized cotton. I would draw out designs on graph paper and stitch for hours into the grid of a scrap of aida cloth. At the time, I had no idea that I was participating in such an enduring craft. Weldon’s Practical Cross-Stitch, Crewel Work, Smocking and Appliqué Work eBook is brimming with vintage needlework inspiration for today’s needleworkers. Enjoy!

Happy stitching,
Elizabeth


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