Annette's Acre

Stitching, knitting, reading, life…whatever catches my eye
February 25th, 2009 by Annette

Fabrics

Thanks everyone for the great encouragement on my little house 🙂

I will share the chart/designer (as requested), but I want to be clear – I’ve stitched other things by this same designer with no problems at all.  This is an artwork adaptation and I’m sure we all can appreciate the challenge of recreating the intricacies achieved with pen and ink into little squares.

It’s Twas Twilight on Main Street.  I bought the chart in Louisville last October particularly for the RR.

Now, let’s all welcome a new reader:  Craft-i-Leigh 🙂

Welcome Leigh!

Leigh, thank you for a great question that has become today’s blog post!

…If you would answer my question… What type of fabric or fabrics do you prefer and why? Brands and counts?

Every fabric has its use.  For me, my “go to” fabric is Belfast (32-count) linen by Zweigart.  It has a nice soft hand, a consistent texture (very few slubs) and comes in a lovely array of colors.  I tend to grab for Platinum or White most often.  Cashel is the 28-ct version and I do use it as well if I am looking for a specific finished size or if I don’t have the 32-ct handy.

That said, I’m using more 36- and 40-ct linen, lately.  I collect Loose Feathers designs and my LNS packages them with fabric in that count.  (Note, I say “collect” – this would be due to the fact I’ve stitched all of 2 of the 15-ish that I own).  I like these counts for more expensive hand-dyed fabrics as I can get more usage in a fat quarter 😉  Lakeside Linens (hand-dyed) are lovely in this count and for solid colors, I look for Edinburgh (36) and Newcastle (40) – both Zweigart.

Pearl Linen (also Zweigart, 35-ct) has made an appearance in the stash recently. I have Desiderata started on it and it may one day replace all my white and antique white Belfast 🙂

Now, if I have something that is solidly stitched or stitched over-1, I’m going to reach for an evenweave.

Jobelan (32-ct) is the leader for the dense stitched pieces.  I just find it holds up well under the weight of fiber and fabric.  It’s a cotton/rayon blend and has lovely drape and soft sheen.  It also comes in some *great* colors, so again, if I can’t find anything suitable in Belfast and don’t want to use a hand-dyed fabric, Jobelan usually comes thru.

For over-1, I *really* like Jubilee or Monaco.  These are both 28-ct and 100% cotton with thick threads and a tight weave.  I usually stitch in hand, but for over-1, I will use a Q-snap and the cotton fabric holds a tighter tension.  In a pinch, I’ll use Lugana in 25- or 28-ct, depending on my desired finished size (or what I have handy in the stash).

The exception to this is hand-dyed fabrics.  In most cases, linens take dyes much darker than evenweave blends.  If I want a lighter version of a hand-dyed fabric, I’ll try to get Jazlyn or Jobelan, depending on where the cut is coming from.  I’ve included some links below for perusing purposes.

Granted, this is what I like.  I’m sure you can ask this same question to any number of stitchers and we’ll all come up with a different list and widely different reasoning.  Anyone care to add their favorites in the comments?

The best thing is to try a variety and see what you like 🙂   If you use stretcher bars or Qsnap regularly, you may have other preferences.  I stitch in hand, so the feel of the fabric is important – if I am uncomfortable holding it, I won’t be working on the project very long.

A few handy links…

Wichelt Imports – Distributor of Zweigart and Wichelt fabrics.  While I’m not a fan of Wichelt linens, this is a very handy site to see colors (with DMC numbers) and what is available in each fabric count and type.

Silkweaver – Amazingly wonderful purveyor of hand-dyed fabrics 🙂

Picture this Plus – Another hand-dyed fabric site with some gorgeous colors.  DaVinci is probably my all time favorite hand-dyed color – it made a perfect backdrop for Emerald Mermaid.

Lakeside Linen – Beautiful neutrals.  My LNS focuses mainly on reproduction samplers and carry a large selection of Lakeside.

The Stitchers’ Village – A brand new online community of stitchers!  Come by for classes, shops and forums to chat about all kinds of stitch-y topics .

Hope this helps!

Comments

6 Responses to “Fabrics”
  1. My favourite fabrics have always been Zweigart linens. I have stitched on Aida but didn’t like it because it was so stiff, and I have stitched on other types of evenweave but I have always come back to Zweigart. I normally stitch on Belfast or Edinburgh and have now bought a piece of Newcastle.
    Thanks for sharing the designer of the cute little house in your last post.

  2. Wow, that was a great summary Annette! I like the Belfast for linen and Joblean the best for evenweave myself, so it seems we are rather like-minded. 🙂

  3. Lots of great information! You’ve given me fodder for a blog entry of my own one day soon. 🙂 We share taste in linen, but I prefer lugana to jobelan. But, I need to know more about this pearl linen. As a fellow in-hand stitcher, this reads to be something I need to investigate….

  4. Craft-i-leigh says

    Getting some really good input from some very good people & experienced stitchers! Thanks again for posting this. 🙂

  5. Consider yourself added to my blogroll =) Oh and we’m already be friends on FB, see my email addy for a clue 😉

  6. Back again because it’s been pointed out (in a roundabout way) that I didn’t answer the question *lol*

    Zweigarts are my favourites, and I most commonly use 28 count Brittney (Lugana), however I’ll happily stitch on 28 or 32 count Lugana or Linen. I am also currently stitching a HAED on 45 count silk gauze, but that’s a special project.