Archive for January, 2016


That’s me on the left, and Tori on the right, rocking some of my garb. Photo by Eric Tetreult.

Way back in 2010, the Connecticut Renaissance Faire decided, for the first time, to do a show in the spring.  It was early days for Storied Threads. We were still selling out of an EZ-Up style tent, and hadn’t yet upgraded to a proper medieval pavillion.  I didn’t yet have an embroidery machine. Kate was not yet my fabulous assistant. And my sister Tori, who’s not really a ren faire kind of person, decided to come up one weekend and be my minion.


Photo by Eric Tetreult.

I was looking for pictures for some Etsy listings the other day, and I came across these photos from that weekend.  They made me smile to see, and since I’d been struggling for a Flashback Friday topic for this week — decided to share them here! I love this second picture because it LOOKS like Tori is being all kind of sexy and posing for the camera…when in fact, she is LITERALLY holding our tent down on the ground. The wind was so bad at this show that it was the one that made me decide the time had come to ditch the EZ-Up and get a real tent. But the circumstances made for a great picture!

I had a great time working with Tori that weekend, depiste the weather trying to tear us down, both literally and metaphorically, and I’m really glad to have stumbled across these pictures.


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Tricky Designs….

I’ve written before about how designs can be tricky, and today’s post is another example of this particular conundrum. This week, in fact, gave me two different manners of designs proving difficult.

2016-01-26 13.41.46The first was a bookmark I want to make that displays the first few bars of Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata”.  I’ve had people ask me for a music themed patch before, and this particular piece holds a special place for me as the only piece of piano music I ever came close to mastering back when I played.

However, while the music itself stitched beautifully, you can see that the sharp signs at the beginning look, instead, like little black blobs.  And nothing I have thought to do has been able to fix them. So, for the moment, the idea of a music patch has been shelved, while I think of how to re-design it.

TripodMy other troublesome design is one inspired by H.G. Wells’ War of the Worlds.  I drew and digitized a Martian tripod, and I think he looks pretty awesome. But beyond the tripod itself — I’ve found myself stumped. My initial idea was to make him quite large, with some small people running away. You can see my initial sketch here, and rendering it in embroidery did not improve it any. My little people simply looked awful and amateurish, and they lacked any real life.

MartianTripodSo, I let it sit on the back burner for a while, waiting for some other inspiration to come to me. Eventually, I had the idea to play with the notion of the tripods being defeated not by any human ingenuity, but instead by their lack of resistance to the native germs here on Earth. I attemped to make a joke of it, depicting the tripod sneezing.

But, as before, it lacked life. And additionally, it lacked any true storytelling, and I doubted that somebody looking at it would think, “Oh! War of the Worlds, of course!”  So, I showed it to Mike, explained all of my concerns and asked him to give it some thought in case he was inspired.

Mike is awesome. And inspired. And he drew me this sketch which will be refined in the coming week or two to become and actual awesome design.


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Don't Panic 1There’s just one rule for successfully travelling through space – Don’t Panic. This messenger bag is made of black cotton canvas and is embroidered in bold red and gold thread.

Our small messenger bags are the perfect size for carrying just what you need — wallet, keys, phone, and even a book. This bag is available on our website.

Click here to buy one!

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I Want To BelieveDid you catch the return of The X-Files last night?

Okay, to be fair, we did not. We don’t actually have cable, and so chose to go out for drinks with friends and listen to a little live music instead. But we are looking forward like crazy to watching it on Hulu tonight after we’re done working in the studio!  Here’s hoping that the revival is as good as the early, awesome episodes of the show were.

I want to believe.

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Tiny-Hippo1When I still worked a day job in an office, I devoted one wall of my space to things that either inspired me, or made me laugh. There were comic strips, photographs with inspirational quotes, and things that helped keep me on task when it seemed like my own business would never quite get off the ground.

This comic is one of those things. Tiny Hippo and the Tiny Train was oringinally published on the website Poorly Drawn Lines, but it seems to not be in their archive anymore. It made its way onto my wall for two reasons — the first is that it makes me laugh EVERY TIME I read it. And sometimes, when you’re in a job that makes you unhappy, that sort of thing is invaluable. And the second is that sometimes I felt like I needed to think like Tiny Hippo, and let nothing get in the way of my happiness.

I hope you like it as much as I do.

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Marauders Map JeffWinter has finally arrived here in New England, and that has us wanting to bundle up in as many layers as we can. With that in mind, it seemed like a good time to show off some of our more ambitious scarf designs. While many of our scarves feature a single embroidery at the end, there are a few that are a bit more complex.

Marauder’s Map Scarf

This scarf, for instance, is embroidered at one end with the words that activate the Marauder’s Map – “I solemly swear I am up to no good” – and at the other end, the words that close it – “Mischief Managed”. Between the two, the scarf is embroidered for its entire length with footsteps showing the troublemaker’s path through the halls of Hogwarts.

DrNameInfinityDoctor’s Name Infinity Scarf

Most of our scarves are done in the standard style, a long lenght of flannel that one can wrap around their neck with the ends hanging down.  Occasionally, though, a design works well in another style — the infinity scarf. Sewn into a loop of fabric, the infinity scarf can be worn in a variety of ways both for warmth, or as a fashion accessory.

WinterSoldier1The Winter Scarf

This scarf, made in honor of cryogenically frozen soldiers-turned-assassins everywhere is embroidered at one end with a red star. Once it has been assembled, it is embroidred down its entire length with the kind of black geometric lines found on the Winter Soldier’s arm, so that they show on both sides of the scarf.

Harley Quinn Scarf

Finally, we come to our Harley Quinn Scarf. Not only is it stitched on both ends with a trio of diamonds, but unlike our other scarves, it’s constructed of two colors of flannel, giving it a unique red and black color scheme unlike any of our other designs.

Harley QuinnOf course, this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to scarves that we make. Visit our website to see the whole selection!


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