Plimoth Jacket Project Lecture

Date: 6/22/2008
Time: 1:30-4:00
Type: Meeting
Location: Wheaton Community Center
Teacher: Tricia Wilson Nguyen

We hope you didn’t miss Tricia Wilson Nyugen’s workshop and presentation at our June meeting. Her presentation about the Plimoth Jacket project was outstanding. Check out the announcements and pictures of the meeting.

Join us for a lecture given by Tricia Wilson Nguyen on June 22th at 1:30 on the Plimoth Jacket Project. The lecture will be held at the Wheaton Community Center.


We held our June meeting at a new location, the Wheaton Community Center. Feedback on both the Saturday workshop location and today’s meeting location was very positive. Our presenter was Tricia Wilson Nguyen of Thistle Threads. Tricia brought many completed pieces that we admired before and after her presentation. She also had kits and threads available for purchase.

Katie Simmer, our president, began by welcoming guests and several out-of-town members. Several announcements were made:

  • The next meeting will be our annual picnic on July 13th at Susan’s house. The guild will provide burgers, brats and hot dogs. There is no sign up, just bring a dish to pass. Don’t forget to bring your Stitcher’s Challenge piece so that you can share your progress!
  • Our field trip to the Scarlet Letter is on July 19th. Contact Elaine Hoagland to sign up. Cost for the trip which includes lunch, is $10.
  • September is our garage sale, so start collecting the items you want to sell.
  • Catherine Theron’s workshop is in October – deadline for signup and kit fee is the August 10th meeting. Pictures showing a part of the project are now available. As soon as we get a picture of the completed project, we’ll add it to the website.

We had several items for show and tell. Click on the link for a description and picture. 

Our program was presented by Tricia Wilson Nguyen  of Thistle Threads. Tricia began by saying that emboidery is her hobby, but metal threads are her “real job”.  The Plimoth Plantation is planning an exhibit in 2009 on Adornments. They wanted to have a 17th Century embroidered English jacket as one of the focal points of their exhibit. They determed that they could not borrow one, so they decided to make one and contacted Tricia because of her expertise. 

Tricia explained that these type of jackets became fashionable in the first decade of the 17th century and that they were bought ready made from professional embroiderers. The first step in the project was to locate the right jacket. They wanted a jacket with a variety of stitches, colors and varied motifs. We heard about the hunt for the perfect jacket and how the winner was selected.

Then the planning began to make the jacket. Tricia described how the jacket was studied and how the pattern for the copy was made. A source for the 55 count linen was selected. The silk cloth for the jacket lining is being hand dyed and woven specifically for this project. A tool was created to punch out the spangles for the jacket. The stitches and bobbin lace were analyzed  Threads were especially designed and manufactured for this project. The threads are now commercially available and are called “Sylke Gilt Twist”. They are made of gilt wrapped around a silk core.

Tricia explained that they are keeping very detailed records on the time and amount of materials used to construct the jacket. The initial estimate was 2500 hours, but it appears that this figure may be closer to 3500 hours. She is very excited about the research that is being done in association with this project and how much it has increased awareness of the art of embroidery. If you want more information, the progress is being tracked through a blog on Plimoth Plantation’s website. at:

We hope that you will be able to join us for the picnic next month.  Don’t forget to bring your Stitcher’s Challenge project. We guarantee that you won’t go away hungry!