Want to experiment with real metal threads?

If you've ever wanted to learn how to use real metal threads, find an expert to show you, like teacher/designer/shopowner Meredith Willet

This beautiful charted needlepoint design features Silk Mori, Silk Serica, Tapestry (#12) Braid, and Kreinik's real metal threads. Almost 18 ago, we asked designer/teacher/shop owner Meredith (Barnhill) Willett to create a special project using silk and real metal threads for the Freebies section on our new website. We had no idea something this stunning was coming. This beautiful project stands the test of time. We want to share it here for a new audience to enjoy and use to learn about silk and metal threads. Link to the design is below.

Do you know Meredith?

Nearly two decades later, we can't imagine the needlework industry without Meredith. Her contributions as a teacher, designer and shop owner have reached thousands. She continues to inspire us today—and is often the source for many of our new thread ideas. Learn more about her here: http://mbellishment.com/ and http://themeredithcollection.com/

Are silk and metal threads a rarity?

These materials have been used in needlework for centuries. Kreinik has a line of silk threads and distributes real metals in gold, silver, and some colors. The silks are perfect for the soft leaves in this Southern Grace design, while the dragonfly just wouldn't look real without the metallics. However it's the use of real silver thread that raises this design to one of the most beautiful projects you will ever stitch.

Real metal threads have been used in embroidery for centuries. Gold metal decoration was first used in primitive cultures to show an association with the magical sun. It represented the gods, then kings, then ecclesiastical figures. Today, real metal threads are available in different sizes and types. However, manufacturing is limited, so periodically a size may not be available—in fact, that's the reason why the Kreinik family created synthetic metallics back in the 1970s, as a more readily available as-close-as-you-can-get substitute. Be ready to substitute similar threads or a slight size change if needed. 

Today real metal threads are available in three grades. Military (gilt) grade consists of a heavy copper core covered with sterling silver and plated with a thin layer of gold. This is the least expensive and tarnishes easily. Arabic is the highest and most expensive grade, being a thin copper core covered with alight sleeve of pure silver and overlaid with a very heavy layer of gold. Ecclesiastical grade falls between these, and will remain bright for 10-20 years depending upon pollution and the amount of handling. Kreinik's real metal threads are ecclesiastical grade, and have been processed with an additional tarnish-proof coating which extends the length of time the thread will remain bright.

Real metal threads are couched to the surface of a fabric or canvas. In this design, you will use Jaceron, which is coiled to give a bead-like appearance and is used for outlining (you'll love how she's worked the Serica with the silver metal). You will also use Frieze for the center of the flower. This real metal is crisp and angular to give a more faceted look.

Southern Grace by Meredith Willett

Materials Needed:
  • Kreinik Silk Mori® in 7124, 3045, 1105, 4206, 4204, 4203
  • Kreinik Silk Serica® in 7124, 3045
  • Kreinik Tapestry (#12) Braid™ in 085, 032
  • Kreinik Cable™ in 001P, 002P
  • #5 Jaceron in silver (real metal thread)
  • #8 Jaceron in silver (real metal thread) — currently out of stock, so substitute #5 Jaceron in silver
  • #12 Frieze Brilliant in silver (real metal thread) — currently unavailable, so substitute Frieze/Bullion Combo in silver
  • Kreinik silver Couching Thread
  • White Congress Cloth


Get the original pattern and instruction sheet for Southern Grace here: http://www.kreinik.com/PDF/SgracePDF.pdf Note the product substitutions required listed above.

For more information:


Save the indie needlearts stores!

Independent needlework stores—cross stitch, needlepoint, knitting, crafts, or hybrid stores covering all techniques—offer the best selection of needleart supplies, the most personalized customer service, and the largest group of experts to help you have more fun with your favorite hobby. They are needleworkers' jewels, the pots of gold at the START of your stitching rainbow, the Oprahs of your creative soul. Now more than ever, in the age of the Internet, we all need to support local needlework stores.

Independent-shop love propelled a passionate group* of knitters to organize a Local Yarn Store Day. It's now a national day: April 21, 2018. While one day may seem insignificant in a year of 365 days, the goal is to raise awareness for local stores that will carry on throughout the year. (We are hoping that needlepoint and cross stitch communities can organize similar events for those shops too.)

*Side note about that passionate group: they include Kris and Oz of Cambria Yarns, owners of the store Ball & Skein & More in Paso Robles, California (photo at right). They're lovely people, full of creativity, incredibly kind and wholeheartedly dedicated to all things fiber—and they're adding Kreinik threads to their store. The local needlepoint shop retired/closed, and people have been coming to them asking for needlepoint supplies. Check their store often for the new stock as it arrives: http://cambriayarn.com/bswp/

Here's what you need to know:


Visit Pittsburgh in April for this fiber festival

The Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival is happening again, and Kreinik will be there. This annual festival offers something for everyone interested in making things with fiber: embroidery, knitting, crochet, quilting, sewing. Does it get any better than a spring road trip with your friends to shop, explore, and learn about your favorite hobbies?!

This year's event is April 6 through 8, 2018, at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Details on classes, floorplan, exhibitor list, and tickets can be found here: http://pghknitandcrochet.com/ Show organizers are planning a maker space, a "spa" night on Saturday, and an "Inchies" quilt challenge (we're thinking Kreinik threads would make your Inchie really stand out...). It all sounds like a wonderful weekend of treating yourself and nurturing your creative side.

The hot spot: booth 1008

Kreinik will be a vendor at the festival, booth 1008, bringing our factory outlet store and the fabulous Doug Kreinik. Here's your chance to meet the thread maker (bring pictures of your projects made with Kreinik threads; we love seeing them!). Doug will be hosting demonstrations and make-it-take-its for those wanting to play with Kreinik threads, so check the show schedule and Kreinik booth for details. Kreinik is also a sponsor of several classes. Check the list—and get a discount code—below.

As a special opportunity, you will be able to have custom pairs of Kreinik CAKS shoelaces made for you at the show. Pick colors to match your favorite teams, your school colors, or simply your favorite shades, then have Doug Kreinik cut just the size you need (for boots, sneakers, anything). The fun, colorful laces benefit suicide prevention programs.

"I am looking forward to meeting new people, new fans, and being able to talk about my threads to a very appreciative audience. It's fun to teach people about thread and all of the ways that you can creatively use them." — Doug Kreinik


Get $5 off the class price with this code (can be used online or mail in): TRE5OFF
  1. Chain stitch variations with Raven Fagelson. The simple chain stitch is one of the most important stitches in embroidery. This creative class will explore possibilities for fun variations. Sign up here: http://pghknitandcrochet.com/product/chain-stitch-variations-raven-fagelson/
  2. Four embroidery stitches in 1 with Raven Fagelson. This basic class will help you master four basic stitches you can use in embroidery—plus offer a few variations for a creative twist. Sign up here: http://pghknitandcrochet.com/product/4-embroidery-stitches-1-raven-fagelson/

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News direct from thread maker Kreinik Mfg. Co., Inc., located in Parkersburg, West Virginia. Visit our factory outlet store when you are in the area; call for hours 1-800-537-2166.

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