French goodies

Would you guess, from the photo below, that it’s a shop that sells embroidery supplies? No? Neither did I! But it is and therein lies a huge difference between shops in the UK and the USA and France. I found two stitching shops in the area and both of them sold thread, fabric, beads, books and lingerie. Yes, you read it right…lingerie. In the window on the other side was a gorgeous display of the prettiest lingerie I’ve ever seen. When I first walked up to the shop front I was disappointed, since I thought I’d gotten the shop address wrong or something…

Sophie Passion

Inside Sophie Passion, however, I found a collection of books and magazines on stitching. I found threads and fabric and needles and all kinds of goodies.

It really was a shop for embroiderers like me! (I also found lingerie…)

Inside sophie

So what did I find to bring home? A pair of wonderfully sharp scissors, curved needles – which I’ve been looking for everywhere without success – and a book of Medieval patterns. Similar to, but not exactly like, the border designs in the Bayeux Tapestry. I like books that provide small designs that can be combined to make something larger if you want or something small for a quick project.


Here are some pictures of what I found inside. I really love this pair of birds


I like the dragon(?) eating his tail. It’s interesting and could be great in different greens.


In the book there are also some photos of the designs worked up in threads so you can see what kinds of color combinations would work.



Even though the text is in French, when it’s a book with patterns I don’t find my minimal French to be a stumbling block. I took time to look at some of the other embroidery books and found that I could understand instructions quite easily from the illustrations even though my French is rather basic. I like getting things from other countries since the design style can be quite different from that of the UK or the USA.

Today, you may have noticed that there is a new advertisement on the site. The French Needle is now one of our two (and only two) selected advertisers on the site. For those of you who can’t get to France, there are some really lovely “French style” things in her shop.

You will find Bayeux Tapestry kits, Rouge du Rhin kits which are my favourites with the natural linen and red threads…and a beautiful selection of Canevas Folies designs from Switzerland that can be purchased with or without the thread. For those of you who love scissors – and I mean love them – take a few minutes to look at the scissors page! Although The French Needle doesn’t carry lingerie, they do carry scarves! It’s a good thing Sophie Passion didn’t – those I find much harder to resist!

I think it’s always fun to look at things – I call it “internet window shopping” .

Do  you indulge in Internet window shopping?

5 thoughts on “French goodies

  1. The birds look pleasantly grumpy, maybe the fruit is sour?

    I would guess that the dragon is chasing his misbehaving tail. 🙂

    Do I “window shop” online? Sometimes, mostly with books though. Not just embroidery books, all types of books that I like to read. 🙂 You can do my share of “window shopping” for embroidery notions and supplies, I prefer to do that in person. I have also been unable to find curved needles. I remember seeing some in my granmas sewing box as a kid, but I have not seen them in eons.

    I like to find embroidery “gems” at museum stores or locally run craft stores when I am not near home. Like small town embroidery stores instead of the chain stores that (3) are all that I have near home.

    My THICK! brass thimbles came from a 19th century home museum (1$ each) and they had no specific sizes. They were sold in a basket so you flopped through the register basket and found one that fit the finger you need it for. :-). My snips and scissors came from a museum that used to be a general store in the 19th century. Much of my embroidery tool box I acquired that way. I even have an old brass lipstick (?) tube that I hold looong (or thick) homeless needles in. The large needles I believe were for hat-making or upholstery, but I keep them for making straight lines when I need to make them in tiny areas. 🙂

  2. You mean you *didn’t* treat yourself to a nice bra and knicker set??=)

    I’m fascinated by the fact that there are tables and chairs outside the shop too!

    Oh YES, I do a lot of internet window shopping – accumulating ideas for when I have some pocket money to blow.=)

    • Hi Elizabeth,
      Sadly I didn’t buy any undies…I spent my money on embroidery things. As for the tables and chairs I think there was a coffee shop nearby. the whole “shopping center” was a bit unusual with a lot of the store fronts empty. Still, a good place to get French goodies!
      Liebe Grüße,

  3. Dear Kathy, I have enjoyed your blog so much over the past year or so and especially those recent blogs that you have written about your travels to the embroidery icons of the UK, France and Germany.
    I love to travel, but living in Western Australia makes it a little harder and expensive to get to those places and it is impossible to see everything in one trip. They are all on my ‘bucket list’ now!
    Your descriptions and photographs are a delight and I have enjoyed looking over your shoulder and feel as if I was almost there with you. How wonderful is the Internet to bring these things into our laps!
    Please keep writing and stitching, you are an inspiration.
    Best wishes, Isabel

    • Dear Isabel,
      Thank you so very much. The internet is a wonderful to share our experiences. My intent is always to “bring you along” on my travels and I’m so glad I’ve succeeded! You can’t imagine how much all the readers of The Unbroken Thread mean to me; you are all part of my life and my community of stitchers without whom my world would be a poorer place.
      Liebe Grüße,,

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