DMC Library

April 11, 2010

Most every embroiderer recognizes the needlework products that bear the initials DMC. What might not be so well-known is the extensive library of books published by the company. It was with great pride that DMC introduced its publications stating that “with a view to developing the taste for fancy needlework and to making better known the uses of the numerous articles which it manufactures especially for sewing, embroidery, knitting, crochet, etc. the firm DOLLFUS-MIEG & Cie SOCIETE ANONYME has had published a series of works which, taken as a whole, forms a complete library dealing with every known kind of needlework.”

In addition to Therese de Dillmont’s Encyclopedia of Needlework DMC also published a collection of the “ABCs” of needlework with volumes devoted to sewing, knitting and crochet. What I found absolutely fascinating, however, is a series of embroidery booklets (topics of which range from embroidery motifs to a variety of ethnic embroideries)! It appears that these booklets were published anywhere from the early 1900s through the mid 1970s. Each booklet was printed in French, English, Italian and German. I own the French version of the Cross Stitch, 8th series pictured here but have found 13 other booklets on-line in PDF format at http://www.cs.arizona.edu/patterns/weaving/topic_embroidery.html. Each booklet includes designs in either black and white or color and, in certain ones, explanatory text. 

Again with great pride, the company noted that “although these publications–by their artistic value, the choice of designs, and the care devoted to their production–surpass everything hitherto done in this way, they are sold at prices well below their market value; it has only been possible to publish them under such favorable conditions owing to the large numbers printed and the aim in view.”

I hope you take the time to look at these booklets because they are truly a piece of needlework history. The Embroiderer’s Alphabet in particular is wonderful with both the French and English versions available. I have already decided that my next stitching project will come from one of these booklets!

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