Progress on the Glittering Gentleman’s Nightcap

Progress So Far

Progress So Far

As you might have guessed, once I got started, I wanted to keep going!

However, detached buttonhole stitch is a very time consuming stitch, and I’ve been warned by comments in emails that the Gilt Sylke Twist, undeniably gorgeous though it is, can be a bit trying to stitch with. So I have been working quite hard to remind myself it is not a race, and that doing as much as I feel up to at any one time is perfectly acceptable!

I found myself struggling with the Millenium frame on my existing frame stand, which was too flimsy for the breadth and weight of the frame, so after some weeks I decide to invest in the Necessaire Floor Stand that goes with it. After only two stitching sessions, I love it. Sturdy and well made, it doesn’t sag under the weight of the frame, there is a place for my magnifier to attach, and there’s even a hook for a pair of scissors.

Detail of Month One stitching

Detail of Month One stitching

I haven’t yet finished Month One of the instructions, so what you are seeing is an intermediate stage. At the moment, as you will see from the “Progress So Far” it’s looking very spotty, because there are such acres of linen between the stitched motifs. It can be a little disheartening to slave for hours and find that the odd couple of leaves has made very little difference to the overall impression. This is a problem I had with the Piano Shawl, but in that case I was able to solve the problem very simply by stitching in the stems. I don’t want to do that here, because the silk thread would catch on the gold thread of the stems and be spoiled. So I will simply have to be patient and find some other way of highlighting my progress.

You will notice that there is some peculiarity about the right-hand leaf in the detail picture. I’m not quite sure what happened there – I think it was in the period of struggle before I bought my Necessaire – but I’m not going to take it out until Month One is complete. I want to have a clear sense of progress before I start snipping things out!


  1. Penny says:

    Lovely work as always. Leaves are never exactly the same in nature so perhaps you should leave any ‘imperfection’ that you see right where it is (just a thought).

  2. Anita says:

    Lovely! Are you stitching the leaves also with Gilt Sylke Twist?

  3. karen says:

    Rachel this is stunning!….absolutely beautiful. A month well spent I think.

  4. Lady Fi says:

    Lovely work! Love those leaves with the pink … flowers?

  5. Your work is beautiful!

  6. tanya says:

    thats looking good – who gets to wear it when its done?

  7. Carolyn says:

    That frame certainly holds your fabric well and the silk thread sits beautifully.

  8. Kimberly says:

    Your stitches look great! And you’re correct, it’s not a race. When I first started stitching I stitched in order to have the finished pieces. Now I stitch for the pure pleasure of stitching, and the finished piece is a by-product.
    Maybe it will help you to know that I took the nightcap class 3 or 4 years ago and I still haven’t finished it! I admire it, on the frame, when I walk by it.

    Happy Stitching!

  9. Janice says:

    It’s a very pretty design. Suddenly it will all just come together, and you will be able to see where all the hours of work went!

  10. Elmsley Rose says:

    Looking at the Necessaire floor stand, and having watched the video – I’m in love! A question – before you started using the stand, holding the frames in hand – did you have a problem with the 4-square frame going off-kilter? The pressure of being held in hand or propped against something meaning each angle of the frame didn’t stay at 90 degrees? As much as I love them, this is the problem I’m having with my Ever-tites and it means stripping it down to the separate bars and re-dressing the frame in order to fix the problem.

  11. I do like a good hands-free floor stand; makes this sort of thing so much easier. I have a little frame on a small stand that you kind of sit on to keep it stable, very handy. Your stitching is coming along beautifully. This will be very special.

  12. As ever, this looks quite exquisite to me! I do see what you mean about the leaf (only because you drew our attention to it) and I can see why a perfectionist would want to unpick it, but as you say, leave it for now and see how it looks when you’ve done more. By the way, thanks for the award and the kind words – I was struggling with what to post about tomorrow, so it is timely! xCathy

  13. coral-seas says:

    Apparent lack of progress at the start of a project can be a disheartening, especially with a large project. What you have completed looks great, despite the irregularity on the right-hand leaf. When you finally get to put in the stems and spangles what fun you will have seeing it all come together.

  14. Alex says:

    Looking lovely. The soft colours are gorgeous.

  15. Pam says:

    Your work is coming on fine! just enjoy the journey – the time it takes does not matter.

    I have all the materials for this class and will not have the time to start until next year!!!

    I use a Necessaire Floor Stand and Millenium frame. May I ask what width of top bars you are using with this project and whether you needed to lace the sides of the linen on to the adjustable side bars? I did not know whether I would need to get a slate frame for this piece.

  16. I love the idea of mixing up the threads in one needle – why have I never thought of doing that?! 🙂