In my post of 18 August 2013 “Linen: Embroidery Fabric from Flax Fibers”, I explained the importance of using the appropriate materials when working Schwalm embroidery, and discussed the differences in linens. I have mentioned many times on my website that Weddigen linen is the best linen for Schwalm embroidery. However, I know that many of you have found it difficult to find Weddigen linen in your part of the world. One reason for this is that once Weddigen linen leaves Germany, the purchasing distributor (Weberei Weddigen does not sell directly to the public) can re-name it. This means that an internet search for “Weddigen linen” will not produce satisfactory results for the embroiderer looking for embroidery linen to buy.
Some days ago one of my customers emailed me with important news that I wish to share with you. Through her research and after corresponding with Weberei Weddigen, Access Commodities in the U.S., and Threadneedle Street store (also in the U.S.), she was able to ascertain that Weddigen linen is sold in North America under the Legacy linen line distributed by Access Commodities. She also learned that the most suitable linen in the Legacy line for Schwalm embroidery is “Alba Maxima” (approx. 40 tpi) which is sold at Threadneedle Street in Washington state and other fine needlework stores. Please note not all Legacy linens are suitable for Schwalm embroidery.
It is interesting to note that on Threadneedle Street’s website, the Legacy Alba Maxima is listed as a “Non-Evenweave Linen”, but it is indeed the Weddigen linen used for fine Schwalm embroidery.
If one is new to Schwalm embroidery, I suggest using a linen with approximately 34 tpi (13.5/cm). However, a suitable linen with this thread count is not easily found. For beginners who enjoy a little bit of a challenge, the Alba Maxima is perfect. And for those who have some experience and who love very fine embroidery Legacy’s Napery Ivory has approximately 50 tpi.
I would like to clarify some other points regarding the Weddigen linen used in Schwalm embroidery.
In most of my books I have stated “14/cm thread count linen”, but in my blog I have described this linen as “13.5/cm thread count linen”. The linen is described by Weddigen as “13.5”; I did not realize this when I started working on my books. I had simply carefully counted the linen threads on the piece of linen in front of me and found there were consistently 14 threads per cm, and so I described the linen as such in my books. I want to mention this because some time ago a lady visited me; she had bought Weddigen linen 14/cm thread count and, unfortunately, it was not the correct linen because it was not densely woven.
So, please be aware that you can work Schwalm embroidery on linens that have more or less threads per centimeter or inch (keeping in mind the scale of the motifs to be embroidered on the linen), but you will want to look for linen with plump threads that make the linen sufficiently dense. The linen should be as close to evenweave as possible, but some slight variation is permissible.
I hope this information will help you to find beautiful linen worthy of many hours of Schwalm embroidery.
Just Mary Corbet left a comment providing the following information: “The Alba Maxima linen by Legacy is indeed perfect for Schwalm …..It can be found through several stores in the US online – Threadneedle Street (as mentioned), Needle in a Haystack, Hedgehog Handworks, Wyndham Needleworks……..”
Dione van Beynum told me, that she has all Weddigen fabrics in stock in her needleart shop in Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada. One can order online at http://thestitchersmuse.com
Hi, Luzine! The Alba Maxima linen by Legacy is indeed perfect for Schwalm – it’s a lovely linen. It’s also pretty much perfect as an all-around, general purpose surface embroidery fabric. It can be found through several stores in the US online – Threadneedle Street (as mentioned), Needle in a Haystack, Hedgehog Handworks, Wyndham Needleworks. They all also carry the Napery Ivory, another good all-purpose linen with a slightly higher thread count. Lovely stuff! My favorite linens!
Love reading your blog!
Thank you for your comment, Mary.
I added a sentence with the provided information to my post, so that all readers can see it at once. I do not like to mention only one store, but for me it is difficult to find them all!
I admire you blog and I wonder, how you can manage to make so many postings.
Thank you for sharing this with us and thank you Mary Corbet, who is such a wonderful resource for us. The 40 tpi is pretty scary but I’m willing to give it a try. I love your Schwalm works.
Thank you for sharing where I can find the linens for Schwalm Embroidery. It has been very difficult to find the densly woven linen. I enjoy your beautiful Schwalm works. Your books are invaluable to me. Thank you again for this. Regards, Ana-Maria
I really enjoy reading your blog posts they are interesting and informative. I wondered if you knew of a supplier of suitable linen for Schwalm embroidery in the UK?
Unfortunately no, Pam. I will try to find something out.
I have a quick question. I want to work with the Weddigen linen for simple embroidery but what is the difference between Siebleinen and Stickereileinen? On the Weddigen website both are shown for embroidery, and both look lovely, but the Siebleinen is cheaper (per thread count).
I’m in Bielefeld and am finding all my information via websites.
Also, I’m sorry to inquire in English. I can read and speak German much better than I can write it.
Siebleinen is for counted embroidery like Cross stitch. The threads are thinner and so the the spaces between the threads are wider.
For Schwalm Whitework wide spaces are not good. For Schwalm whitework the Weddigen articles 160 ( 13.5/cm thread count) and 925 (16/cm thread count) are right.
If you need more information, please email me.
you could find legacy linen at http://www.traditionalstitches.com/c_Legacy+Access+by+Brand.html
and the same at better price : http://search.cartserver.com/search/search.cgi?cartid=s-2841&category=fabric&bool=AND&keywords=legacy+linen+access&pg=4 ( needle in a Haystack )
We have been notified this week that the mill who made what we call Alba Maxima and it’s sister Old White, is longer longer milling the fabric. Our supplies are gone of both colors and I suspect most shops will run out very soon. So fi you can find some, grab it as it is close to well and truly gone.
Cathe – Needle In A Haystack
There is a stock of this linen quality here. So, if it is needed, please email me.