Needle and ThREAD

Collectors’ Bookmarks

Stitching for Literacy, via Bibliobuffet, Lauren's mittens bookmarkI like the title “Collectors’ Bookmarks” oh-so-much better than last week’s “Old Bookmarks,” don’t you?

This week’s bookmark is kindly shared by Lauren Roberts, Editor-in-Chief of BiblioBuffet, an extensive website on Writing Worth Reading, Reading Worth Writing About®. I love that tag line. I recommend making a cup of tea before visiting that link because it’s easy and fun to spend some time there.

I love this bookmark! It’s a brilliant design idea: the pair of mittens connected by a string. Did any of you have your mittens connected by a string threaded through the sleeves of your winter coat? I think the purpose was to keep the wearer from losing them. I didn’t have mittens on a string, but I’ve always thought it a great idea, and the design translates beautifully and creatively into a thong bookmark.

Another thing I especially like is the easy, elegant finishing. I’ve peppered Lauren with questions to work out how it was done. The mittens are made of two layers of silk, wrong sides together. The layers are not adhered together. The flowers on the front are painted, and then the edges of the fabric are blanket stitched with a pearl fiber, possibly silk. The fabric edges are not turned under and hemmed; those are raw edges beneath the blanket stitch. I would guess that the cord that connects the two mittens is twisted cord.

Stitching for Literacy, via Bibliobuffet, Lauren's mittens bookmark, close

Here are some more details from Lauren:

The mittens are 1 1/4 inches across at the “wrist” end, and not quite two inches across at the widest point (including the thumb). They are 2 1/2 inches from top to bottom. The flower designs are painted on. The string connecting them (and that goes around the outside of each glove) appears to be and feels like silk too.

Stitching for Literacy, via Bibliobuffet, Lauren's mittens bookmark, backI believe it to be a nineteenth-century piece work. I had originally guessed that someone made these who was learning the yarn arts, but who really knows? They are simply beautiful. I bought this bookmark off eBay, where it was being marketed as a bookmark. I think I may have been the only bidder, but cannot be sure. If there were others, I certainly outbid them because I fell in love with them and was determined to pay whatever it took to win. I don’t remember what I did end up paying, but it was a very reasonable price. Obviously, they are one of a kind.

I think I like it so much because it is beautiful, because it is unique, and because it is a fabulous take on a “bookmark.” Who would think of a pair of mittens as a design for a bookmark? And the workmanship is exquisite. Someone with a lot of talent designed and made this, and I find that bookmarks of this kind are more interesting than mass-produced ones, even antique mass-produced ones. I’d never sell it!

Who else is inspired by this? Does it give you any ideas you care to share?

Now you know why I so enjoy the Bookmark Collectors’ Virtual Convention! Lauren is one of the organizers. The 2012 Convention is being planned now. I think those of us Stitching for Literacy should take pics of the bookmarks we’re stitching for the Bookmark Challenge to share at the 2012 Convention. Or maybe we should all stitch one-of-a-kind bookmarks for an embroidered-bookmark exhibit.

5 replies »

  1. Jen, thank you for your interest. I am always delighted to share my bookmarks with those who share my passion for their uniqueness.

    Like you, I encourage stitchers and other yarn people to consider making bookmarks and joining the Convention in 2012. Do please contact me (lauren . roberts [at] bibliobuffet . com) for any information. We would welcome attendees but especially those who’d like to share their designs and creations either with a paper or via a presentation.

    Thank you!

  2. beautiful uniqueness. I remember growing up and my mmim would make these so I would keep them intact.

    Bye and happy stitching

  3. Yay! Someone who had mittens like this. Very cool, Bea.

    @Lauren and @Shelly – I wouldn’t want to bid against either of you on eBay!