I think it’s fairly safe to say that I’ve discovered the main reason why I shouldn’t be using cotton threads for opus anglicanum work: the thickness of the thread makes the repetitive action of stitching much more intensive a strain and the result…again…is tendinitis.
When I finished Herr Niune, I ended up unable to sew at all for two weeks due to this problem. This time, I spotted the warning signs early enough to put Hestor aside before things got too bad, thinking that if I were to avoid sewing for a week that this would do the trick. Unfortunately, once the tendon is inflamed and angry, even simple tasks like opening a door or unscrewing the lid from a jar can exacerbate the issue. Thus I find that after a whole week of no sewing, I’m still where I was at the start.
It’s a bit sobering, not to mention annoying. I really really want to progress with Hestor. It’s like going on a diet when you know that the fridge is full of donuts: temptation is sadly very much within reach but the results of giving in to it would be fairly hefty.
So, after a brief discussion with my husband concerning our budget, I’ve ordered sufficient silk to complete a similar style picture in 100% silk thread. It will be, as they say in the UK, ‘swings and roundabouts’ as to whether this helps me avoid repetitive strain injury, but it should help as I’ll not need to exert anything like the force I currently do while gripping the needle. It will however then take me longer to stitch a piece (the coverage from the silk will be much less than that of the cotton I’ve been using) so there will be more repetitive movements over a longer period of time.
I’ll just have to get stuck in and see. Not yet though. Another week of rest ahead. Ho hum! I guess I should see if I can get any weaving done without my finger giving me the finger. If not, well…I was just complaining that I never have enough time to make the knotwork appliqué cushion covers that I’ve intended to make for our ‘new’ house ever since we moved in last December, so maybe now is the time!