Kaiapoi Monograms has been in operation for more than 25 years from the Historical Old Mill Buildings. Penny & Trevor took over this business in 2004 and continue to offer a high level of customer service and outstanding detail to their customers.
The Kaiapoi Mill, established in 1873, originated as a woolen mill. One of the key services they provided was monogramming.
“I began to see life, however, when I viewed the making of monograms. The Kaiapoi Company specialises in this line, and will make any monogram for any design submitted. The first step is taken by the artist who draws the required picture, three times the necessary size. The colours are all inserted, and then comes the selection of the blue, gold, red or other materials needed. I had not realised that there were so many colours in thread. The next operation reaches the region of miracles; it has to be seen to be believed. By a device which is a translation of the artist’s pantograph into a tracery of steel, an incredible machine does six monograms at a time. The operator sits with a control needle, running it carefully over the centrally situated single pattern, and the machine takes care, six at a time, of the intricate weaving of curve, line and colour. There are three of these sextuple machines busy all the time.
Designs that require gold or other metallic threads or fine wire require special processes.
The Kaiapoi monogram pattern book is rather like one of those fascinating colour scrap books kept by our grandmothers; there are hundreds of designs from the familiar intertwined letters to the silver fern, the kiwi and elaborate multi-coloured crests. Some of them have the colour values of a painting.”
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