In the new seasonal catalog from Fire Mountain Gems, I cam upon many items that are useful for needlepointers.
Canvas Scissors: Fiskars make a line of scissors called Amplify that are made specifically to cut through thick items. The larger size (10″) would be perfect for cutting canvas. Because canvas is rough on scissors, you should have a special pair for this job. These are about $40.
Threads: I saw several interesting threads, designed for jewelry making, that could also be used for needlepoint. Hemptique makes hemp threads in two sizes , 1.0mm and .5mm. 1.0 mm is about the width of #3 pearl and .5 is about the size of # 8 pearl. They come in solid, natural, tweeded natural, and variegated colors. The packages have various amounts on them.
Much thinner is Purely Silk thread with the thickest size slightly thinner than a strand of floss. There are 23 colors. They come wound on cards or in spools.
If you are looking for soutache braid, they carry 7 colors and two metallics. These are 6-yard spools.
Embellishments: You may have tried Hot-fix crystals as a form of embellishment for your needlepoint. They are popular enough with jewelry makers that the styles have exploded. You can get brass or silver studs in several shapes including two sizes of stars. Crystals can be found in a new size that’s bigger than 6 mm. You can also get new tools for activating the back of these items.
If you are into glitz and need something to make a tassel or non-stitched fringe, look at Mylar Motion Strips. They are 1/32′ wide and 14 inches long (think very thin tinsel). They come in six colors.
If you want to add feathers to your project and don’t mind a metallic fastener, you can use fold-over bails. You would attach them to the canvas at the center, place the top of the feather on one end and fold over to secure. I suspect these could be used for other items as well.
They also have three different assortments of leather scraps. While appliqueing leather to needlepoint isn’t common, it can be hard to find small pieces when you want them. Here’s a source that sold in 1/2 pound packages.
Finishing: If you use inexpensive or thrift shop frames often they are not in colors that work for you. For years I used Rub & Buff, but it has become hard to find. Gilders Paste is a colored wax-based medium that can be used on wood, metal, ceramic, and more. Apply it with your fingers, a brush, sponge or cloth. They carry 17 shades, both metallics and colors.
They also have an on-line tutorial available.
I’m ordering some next week and will review it here.
Use up that Stash: I always see in craft blogs clever bangles that have wrapped thread or yarn on them. But I never can find suitable bases at my local thrift shops. Fire Mountain now has unfinished wood bangles and cuffs in several styles.
These are great ways to use up uncut skeins of thread.
DIY Tools: If you want to make some magnetic needle minders for yourself but don’t want to make a ton, the best glue for it, ES-6000 now comes in single-use tubes. Use them for one session and throw out.
I love all the ideas I can get for out of the box needlepoint from this source!