Stage one: a pocket flap test piece!

Here is the first stage of the production process for the Cook Waistcoat! It is the pocket flap from the right front, which I have been using as a test piece to confirm the colours, threads and techniques.

The silver metallic thread is No. 2 Passing Thread, which Benton and Johnson have been good enough to make up for me specially. It's tamboured, which was an interesting exercise. It's quite brutal in a way: you need a firm push to get the tambour hook through two layers of fabric, then once you have hooked the thread, it needs a good pull to get it back through. It works best going left to right, for me at least. The green silk stitching between the silver tramlines is tamboured as well.

The rest of the embroidery is silk thread, using Silk Mills stranded silks, in chain stitch and long-and-short stitch. The colours are matched to the back of the original, where they were less faded, and it shows you just how bright the original must have been! The spangles are silver-plated, from Benton and Johnson again.

I've also got a feel for the stitching sequence. I think the tambouring work was done first, the green silk, then the silver. That included the silver scrolling. Then I think the silk stitching would be next, and finally the spangles stitched in place. I'll try that sequence with the other pocket flap.

Anyway, what do you think, Dear Reader? Is it close enough to the original? I've attached a picture of the finished flap and the original for comparison. Your feedback would be greatly appreciated.

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