Green and Gold Braid

Today has been “a lining things up” type of day. Nothing much got done in the way of specific, actual, or measurable progress on any one of Ecclesiastical Sewing or Ecclesiastical Embroidery project. Some days that is disappointing. But on other days, that can be a good thing.

Let me explain. Today could be summed up as a day that felt like nothing got done. There was no time to stitch, no time to sew, no time to draw any new Ecclesiastical Embroidery Designs, or hand embroidery designs. There was no time to get the camera out and take photos. The question lingers, what exactly was accomplished today?

Fridays are usually a day off work, but I had to go in to work for a short time this week. While I was there, I received a phone call letting me know the package I was waiting for from England had arrived! That was great news. That package that came all the way from across the pond had something very special in it that I was waiting for. GOLD! Yes, dazzling, sparkling and glittering GOLD! And I could hardly wait to see it!


First out of the box came the gold in a roll. It sparkled and glittered, despite the plastic packaging. This was luscious, and oh, so rich looking. The oakleaf design trim had all of the delicate details that an expert goldsmith would add to a special piece.


 Then out came another roll, only slightly narrower, and just as lovely as the first.  This was good.

The object most desired was still not visible. But, there was more in the large box. Would it be as wonderful as anticipated?  Would it be the gold I was looking for?


What was next? Boxes. Four, count them; four little white boxes.  Could it be? Were these really it? There was only one way to find out: continue pulling items out of the box.  As each of the four boxes came out, they were all stacked.  This was good.  Reading the labels on the front of each box was at first a little confusing. Low and behold, there is was! A familiar mark of identification that I was hoping to see.  K3.  That little mark brought a sigh of relief.  This might be it!

With fingers crossed and a whispered prayer, the boxes were slowly opened and peered into.


My gaze met a lustrous simmer and shine. It was beautiful, and it was good. These were the goldwork threads I was hoping to find. They were here, in four little boxes! They were neatly wound on little white bobbins. Ah. A sigh of relief! This was the long-awaited Imitation Japanese Threads. These were the goldwork threads for use in couching the IHS Design that will be on the Altar Frontal of the Rose Vestment Set.  They came all the way from England.

I have purchased these threads in the past from various suppliers. And they have been wonderful. This time, however, I knew that there were multiple projects requiring a great deal of yardage. I was hoping to find a supplier that had larger quantities available to help with the overall cost.  I am please to say, this worked out well.  The little bit of confusion and anxiety in ordering these goldwork threads came from the fact that the vendor used the identification of the numbers: 13, 12, 9 and 8. Those were not numbers I was familiar with from past orders from various suppliers. But that one little note of K3 was a size of goldwork thread that was familiar.  And as each box was opened and looked at, the other numbers of K1, K2, and K4 were all there.  While I am not exactly sure how much thread is on each spool, there is enough there to know that it was a good value when one has a great deal of goldwork stitching to do.

You can read about the IHS design here:

and the Rose Vestment Set here:



Putting this all together, here is the plan.  The IHS Ecclesiastical Embroidery Design will be stitched in the goldwork threads on this Olive green Silk Dupioni.  The Soie Paris Embroidery floss will be some of the colors used to couch the goldwork threads.  I’m playing around with using Or ‘Nue techniques for the cross, but we shall see.  The deadline for this project is the third week in Advent, and so the stitching must move along rather fast.  The design will then be cut out and applied to the Rose Florence Brocade.  This motif will be the central design on the altar frontal.  Now, some may ask the question, why use the green as the background on the rose brocade.  The answer is that the Rose is a beautiful fabric, but the color can go flat very quickly.  It needs a little life. The Rose will have a tapestry  fabric used as the orphrey trims. The green color comes from the orphreys and tends to bring a little life to the Rose Brocade.  The colors are complimentary colors, and so should work well together.


Here is the collection of everything pulled together to start the IHS design for the Rose set of vestments. Oh, but wait, I still have to finish the laundry.  Well, not the regular laundry, but the linen laundry.  More on that later. For now, thanks for reading and please leave a comment on your experiences with goldwork thread!

Solo Dei Gloria

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Filed under: Advent, Ecclesiastical Embroidery, Ecclesiastical Sewing, Gaudete Sunday, Hand embroidery, Rose Vestments, Silk Dupioni, Soie Paris Tagged: Advent, Ecclesiastical Embroidery, Ecclesiastical Sewing, Gaudete Sunday, gold braid, goldwork embroidery, Hand embroidery, I H S Ecclesiastical Embroidery Design, IHS Ecclesiastical Embroidery Design, Imitation Japanese Threads, Immitation Japanese Threads, Lent, Orphrey Trims, Rose Florence Brocade, Rose Vestments, Silk Dupioni, Soie Paris


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