The absolute want of any comprehensive book on needlework—such an one as contains both verbal and pictorial descriptions of everything included under the name of needlework — has led author to put into the serviceable form of an Encyclopedia, all the knowledge and experience, which years of unceasing study and practice have enabled author to accumulate on the subject, with the hope that diligent female workers of all ages, may be able, by its means to instruct themselves in every branch of plain and fancy needlework.
All the patterns given, even the most insignificant, were worked afresh for the purpose, and thus, not merely faithful representations, but also lucid and intelligible explanations of the same, are secured.
In order that the readers may have something besides the dull theory, the work is enlivened by a number of useful patterns, some derived from the artistic productions of such countries and epochs as have become famous by special excellence in the domain of needlework.
Though, at first sight, the reproduction of many of these patterns may seem to present insuperable difficulties, they will, after a careful study of the text, and exact attention to the directions given, prove easy to carry out.
Many of these interesting designs are drawn from private collections, whose owners, with great kindness, placed their treasures at my disposal, to copy and borrow from at discretion, for which author desires to take the present opportunity.
The choice of colours and material—a difficult matter to many—my readers will find rendered comparatively easy to them by the notes affixed to the illustrations; and author may point out, that most of the patterns were worked with D.M.C cottons, which enjoy the well-earned reputation of being, the very best of their kind, in the market of the world.
Experience has convinced author that, in many instances, these cottons may with advantage take the place of wool, linen thread, and even silk.
Thérèse de Dillmont
Thérèse de Dillmont (10 October 1846 – 22 May 1890) was an Austrian needleworker and writer, “one of the most important pioneers in the international and multicultural enterprise of hobby needlework in the late nineteenth century”. Dillmont’s Encyclopedia of Needlework (1886) has been translated into 17 languages.