Hello Dear Friends!
Yes, lately my crafting time has been consumed with my weaving loom... but punch needle ~ needlepunch (whichever you prefer to call it!)... is still a passion of mine.
I am on Facebook a lot (maybe too much!) and I have joined several punch groups. I find it so impressive that there are so many newbies wanting to learn about the craft! And even more impressive, that so many members of the groups are always happy to share their knowledge.
Some of the groups for needlepunch are ~ Punchneedle (Primitive) 101, Punch Needle Place, Needle Punch, and Punch Needle Embroidery. (And hey... don't forget about the new magazine coming very soon ~ Punch Needle & Primitive Stitcher Magazine!)
To see the First Punches... or second or third... is always a TREAT! Newbies are delighted to share their finishes in the groups... and always get great follow up and praise!
Members share links for different video How~Twos, blog posts, or websites with wonderful information.
One thing that I haven't seen shared yet... and might be helpful... is the way different threads work with the needle.
That is what I would like to share with you. Bare with me and my challenged computer/photo know~how... I will do my best to explain my sample...
I marked off some squares on my stretched Weaver's Cloth and punched with assorted threads...
Weaver's Cloth is my preferred foundation. It can be found many places online... or at your local fabric store (usually) near what is referred to the 'Bottom Weight' Fabrics... I see mattress ticking, muslin, and duct cloth in this area. Weaver's Cloth is a Cotton/Poly fabric. I assume ~ and I've never had a class on it ~ that this is the preferred fabric because it will not stretch too much to distort your work and does not tear easily.
My favorite needle to use is the Cameo Ultra Punch. My most common setting is #3 with the medium needle. There are 12 settings available for this needle ~ short to long. The higher the number = the higher the loops. Also, the higher the loops means the more thread that will be used. My second common setting to use is #2... if you are curious. Also, the Cameo Ultra Punch has Small and Large needles available. The needles screw/unscrew into the blue plastic pen~like tube. I have only used the Medium needle.
Let me go back to the first photo for a moment. Maybe you can click on it to enlarge it? For this sample photo, I used six different threads that all fit comfortably in my Cameo Ultra Punch Medium needle. My samples are to show how different thread loops/texture looks. Some of the samples show color variations with the threads, but the main point I wanted to share with you is how the different texture of the threads themselves look.
Sample #1 is DMC Cotton Embroidery Floss. This is from my stash that has been over~dyed with Tan Rit Dye. My friend, Ginger, has several great tutorials on her blog. Her tutorial for over~dyeing is worth checking out!
Punching with the floss as it comes from the store is great too. But if you wish to have some color variation, try changing it up a little. Over~dye it first with commercial dye and/or coffee. Or, go ahead and punch your project and then over~dye the entire piece with coffee/tea/or walnut dye to make it a little spotted in parts. The DMC flosses I have used (and I have used A LOT!) haven't ever bleed on me. They are color fast.
If you are punching with Weeks Dye Works or Gentle Art Threads embroidery flosses, keep in mind, they may bleed. However, these threads are so beautiful as they are... over~dyeing them wouldn't be a necessity.
Sample #2 is Valdani #12 Pearl Cotton
On the left I punched with a single strand... and on the right I punched with two strands at the same time. Why? Well, this floss is much thinner than I am use to. The flosses from this company are beautiful... and come in many different floss groups... or can be purchased as single balls. I haven't used it much and am still getting use to it. Punching with a single strand gives a 'bumpier' or 'hairier' look. When using two strands at the same time threaded through the needle, the finished texture is much more like punching with cotton embroidery floss.
Do you see what I mean about 'bumpier' or 'hairier'? Perhaps if I had a Small needle for my Cameo Ultra Punch the texture would be more even? Really though, either way is interesting and nice.
Sample #3 is Hand~Dyed Wool Floss/Thread that my friend, Ginger, offers. You can find it in her Etsy Shoppe or her website, Prairie Moon Primitives. (She has a great selection of patterns and other supplies too!) This thread is so awesome to use! I love it! Ginger has some great colors available... but I love it because of the ease of punching with it. The thread is just the right size and fills the design quickly. The threads glide with ease through the needle! I recommend you give it a try!
Sample #4 is Cotton Crochet Thread. This is Size 3, but thinner crochet thread will work too. There aren't a lot of colors available with this thread, but it can be over~dyed if you are so talented. I have used it to make sheep and punched with it unchanged. I have also over~dyed it with coffee... but normally only after I have punched with it. Click Here to see a pattern of mine that I have used crochet thread with.
Sample #5 is sock weight yarn that I found at a local Wool Fest a few months back. This thread works much like Ginger's thread. If you ever find yourself at a wool show or yarn shop... check out the sock weight yarns. Again, this post isn't so much about color... but the color of this yarn would make a fun background!
And finally, Sample #6. This is some yarn that I purchase from a local boy. He raises Angora Goats for 4H. When the goats are sheered, he sends the wool to a spinner... and the result is this wonderful finger~weight yarn. I have dyed some black and have hopes to dye more colors... but, as you know I suffer from time~management skills. This yarn has a nice texture to it as~is, and the finished punched area using this yarn is very interesting and eye~catching... don't ya think? It is very soft looking... and feeling.
I hope you find this information... or at least some of it... interesting. If you have any questions, I am always happy to share what I know... or can try to lead you to the information. On Facebook, I am Primitivebettys. Have you visited my page? Have you liked it?
Wishing you all warm smiles...