Sunday, June 20, 2010

Focus On: Vineyard Merino Wool

We recently started carrying the entire Vineyard Merino Wool line — all 150 colors! We've only had the wool on the wall for a few days, but customers are already raving about this wool.

Merino Wool comes from a breed of sheep prized for its wool, the finest and softest of any sheep. Vineyard Merino Wool is 100 percent wool, sells in hanks of 30 yards and is best for 13 to 18 mesh counts. Its texture is similar to pearl cotton, yet it retains its softness; strong but not scratchy. It is not strandable, so is very easy to work with -- just cut it and go. Vineyard Merino Wool is ideal for Bargello stitching on 18 mesh because it will cover that smaller mesh well on straight stitches, and its colors and numbers match much of the Vineyard silk.

You can use Vineyard Merino Wool on just about any stitch, but keep in mind that this covers best on 14 and 16 mesh; if you use it on 13 you may want to double it on vertical and horizontal stitches, and it may be too think for small stitches on 18 mesh.

Below are some stitch samples using Vineyard Merino Wool. We also want to point out that this has some nice shades of purple — very rich — that are not always available in other lines of fiber. The stitches used, in order are:

Cashmere: A nice box stitch that is easy to compensate and works well on architectural designs

Double Stitch: Stitched with wool, perfect for fur trim on a coat. It also works well for shrubbery.

Horizontal Parisian: Works well in small areas and easy to compensate. Also good for large animals, bird wings and backgrounds. I used two strands on the sample, as it's on 13 mesh and needs a little more coverage than one strand offers

Diagonal Mosaic: Very versatile, good for backgrounds, sky, water, clothing, fields, angel or butterfly wings.
Kalem (Knitting): Looks like knitting, so great for scarves, sweaters, mittens or any other article of clothing you want to have a knitted look.

Oblique Slav: Wonderful texture for horizontal straight lines, wall or ceiling molding, and decorative bands on clothing. I've stitched it using one strand and two strands so you can see the difference.