Let's talk about silk! Silk embroidery is some of the most beautiful art you will every find, needle or otherwise! We all owe the Chinese a great debt for their innovation and skill with needle and thread as it was the domestication of the silk worm that gave them the ability to invent this ancient art.
Lets try to get to know the original 'silk inventor' though. The Silkworm holds the distinct honor of being the single most important bug to textiles. They can form colonies that are nearly uncountable in number, as can be seen below, which is a good thing, because for centuries, the only way to collect the silk was terminal to the forming pupa within the cocoon! There are a few companies today that collect silk from hatched cocoons, but the process is far more arduous on an already labor intensive industry. A single sari can take up to 50,000 cocoons to create. To gather the silk, cocoons are boiled and then slowly the thread is unwound in a single strand that can be 1,600 yards long! Multiple cocoons are unwound at once, so that individual strands from each can be twisted together to form thread. Isn't that amazing? So today, we honor the silk worm.