I have a nice, but modest, collection of needlework books. I mean, I have more needlework books than the average bear, but not as many as some lucky people I know. Many of these books, if not most, were given to me (thanks mom and friends) and it would have taken me so much longer to come across them on my own.
One day, I came across this old copy (2nd edition 1901) of Lewis F. Day's classic, Art In Needle Work and I splurged on it. The preface begins...(Imagine a gentleman at a carved, wood lectern in a victorian parlor about to pronounce a discourse on embroidery to a small salon of needleworkers of the day. At least, that's what I what I imagine.):
Embroidery may be looked at from more points of view than it would be possible in a book like this to take up seriously. Merely to hoverround the subject and glance casually at it would serve no useful purpose. It may be as well, therefore, to define our standpoint: we look at the art from its practical side not of course, neglecting the artistic, for the practical use of embroidery is to be beautiful.