My Embroidery Feed

Peace Embroidery No 3 March 2017

This design offered so much promise but I did it all wrong.  I think it would have been a lot better if I had just used a simple outline stitch instead of arguing with this #*% of a piece of embroidery.  (I might still do that just to see if it would work.)  Don't get me wrong, it isn't that bad, I just think it is worse.

Screen Shot 2017-03-11 at 1.31.34 pm

The other thing I am struggling with here is the light.  In my old home the light came at just the right direction, not so here.  I think that I am going to have to construct a light box for taking photos.  More research needed.

I took another photo of the piece hanging on the wall but the light was even worse.  That is really a fairly light coloured grey linen from Ikea backed with Amourweft interfacing to give it some body.  I used 2 stands of a DMC cotton.  And that is a whole other story! I used thread from my stash but didn't have enough.  Went to buy more, but, the colour has been discontinued.  So I had to use something close in colour. (The embroidery complained.)

Screen Shot 2017-03-11 at 1.31.21 pm

Still there have been some positives.  By the time I got to the final few leaves my satin stitch was smooth.  Now that has to be good news.  It has taken me a life time to get to this point.

Screen Shot 2017-03-11 at 1.53.01 pm

 

Save


Not keepings up

I am one of those people who likes to write.  Every piece of embroidery I design becomes an entry in a journal.  I used to keep a daily journal of my life but now it is down to 'notes'.

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 7.46.31 am

But I have kept some of those old journals.  When we moved I had nowhere to keep them so all except the most precious were consigned to the bin,

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 7.46.45 am

At one point I thought I would make covers for everyone but they took up too much space in the book case.

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 7.46.55 am

So the one I am working on at the moment has a tattty old cover.  It is a piece of wool that I was experimenting on regarding how to sew up the covers.

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 7.47.20 am

Actually this journal is about the book cover I have been working on and talked about in my WIPW post.  I think this is the most detailed account I have ever kept of a piece of work.  I have pasted lot of bits and pieces in the pages and I will need a rubber band soon to close it.

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 7.47.08 am

At the front of the book I write my musings about why I am stitching the piece.  Well it actually started as a bit of rhyming verse.  The question I asked myself was "when I look out my window what do I see?"  Kindergarten stuff.  I find the more I write the more images come into my mind.  (I think in pictures.)  This piece is beginning to feel that I haven't scratched the surface as yet.  I walk around the house looking out every window asking, "what am I seeing and how does it make me feel". 

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 7.47.31 am

Yesterday I started taking pictures.  Of the scene I have just finished stitching.

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 8.15.15 am

To some ideas about future stitching.

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 8.15.40 am

Doing this I managed to get photo bombed by a dragon fly.

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 8.16.02 am

From the back of the book I write the nitty gritty of what I am doing.  Threads, stitches, how I changed the stitch, what to expect when I use that stitch that way.  

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 7.47.45 am

I put a full copy of the stitching in there along with the drawings and then take each part and write how I stitched it.  That is great if I then teach a class about that piece.  I am able to assemble the notes easily and it is a great memory jogger when asked a question.

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 7.47.57 am

My friend said I should make a book out some of theses journals.  Now that is food for thought.

Save


Teaching

I had a beginners class on Saturday.  It was full of students who were quite accomplished embroiderers.  They though that because they were 'self taught' they were beginners. 

I often wonder why I put so much work into preparation of my lessons.  I revisited the small booklet that I give to students in this class, along with some of the samples I include.  Part of the revisiting included updating the web links that I include.  I check that the web addresses are active and in doing this I realised that there has been a shift,  from 'printed resources' to 'video resources'. ( I only give 4 links,  you could give a whole list but if you keep it simple I find people will visit the sites.)  It is interesting how we are slowly moving away from the printed word. 

The four sites I use are;

needlenthread.com  this has lots to look at in the Tips & Techniques section including some good 'how to' videos' at the bottom of the page.

Screen Shot 2017-02-18 at 8.17.46 pm

Pintangle's Stitch Dictionary. It you ever want to look up a stitch this is the place to go.  There are 100's of stitches and images of different variations.

Screen Shot 2017-02-18 at 8.21.00 pm

The Embroiderers' Guild of the U.K.  There are some nice videos with Nicola Jarvis demonstrating different techniques.  This site also has lots of interesting links.  One could waste a lot of time just exploring here.

Screen Shot 2017-02-18 at 8.32.48 pm

And finally, DMC U.K.  or DMC USA

Both sites are similar with the USA site having more video tutorials.

Screen Shot 2017-02-18 at 8.35.53 pm

With the samples I include in my kit I usually put a free pattern from Bronwyn Hayes of Red Brolly but her webpage and Facebook pages have been removed.  Bronwyn is fighting caner at the moment and her family want her to concentrate on that.  I really miss her breezy blog and all the lovely patterns she includes.

Screen Shot 2017-02-18 at 8.46.16 pm

So why do I put so much effort into preparing a class that is free for new members?  Well I love embroidery and I like to share that love with others.

Save


Peace Embroidery No 2 Februrary 2017

I have to say that I have not resolved my issues with the piece I was working on.  We are working towards a resolution, but who knows when this will happen.  A very sad situation having such a head-strong piece of embroidery who argues all the time!   So while negotiations continue there is a new piece for February.

Screen Shot 2017-02-05 at 3.15.04 pm
 

I found this design hidden in an old Quaker sampler.  It originally said "Peace to my friend" but I liked friends better.  My piece is worked on 28 count linen.  The thread I used was Danish Flower Thread No 226 and I worked the design over one (1) thread.

( This one already knew who it was and everything went smoothly.)

Screen Shot 2017-02-04 at 12.09.16 pm

Save


WIPW

I had a great day yesterday at the Children's Class. There were times when I got a bit wobberly but I got though alright.  Or I thought I did.  I haven't been too good today so am taking it very quietly and staying in the air-conditioning.  That is why I am late with my Work in Progress.

And there hasn't been a lot to report.  I have started on a new teaching piece because the one I had was too hard.  But I don't like the background linen.  I might bleach it or switch to a white linen but then that isn't very practical for a book cover.  I will have to see where this one goes.

Screen Shot 2017-01-18 at 2.34.23 pm

The February 'peace' embroidery doesn't have a voice at all.  I am outlining the design, slowly, and there isn't a peep from it.  I thought it would have told me what it wanted for the filling but not a word.

Peace

Save


Language difficulties

It is so difficult to view a Japanese site using Google and I have to use Google so that I can have them BADLY translated.  I came across a reference to a Kogin stitching competition that was held this month (I think).  From what I can gather it will be in the Amuse Museum in Toyoko.  All that aside, there was a reference to the work of a "Mr Kamata Hikariten" and some illustrations of his work.  Lots of curves.

Screen Shot 2017-01-09 at 4.46.20 pm

And the other images show some fantastic work.

Screen Shot 2017-01-09 at 5.20.36 pm

Screen Shot 2017-01-09 at 5.20.52 pm

It is so frustrating just getting glimpses of this work and not being about to find out more.  I suppose that's how the other 80% of net users who do not speak English feel as well.


The month of experiments

This month is turning into 'The Month of Experiments'.  I have lots of ideas that I want to test out. 

I haven't used any of the Hishi Sashi patterns in my work for a while and in another piece I am designing I thought the smallest, 11 count patterns, would work well.  The only draw back is that there are a limited number of designs in this count.   Because they are small it takes time to cover the fabric.  It has taken a day to finish this small swatch. 

Screen Shot 2017-01-07 at 12.05.17 pm

Then I had to deal with the limited number of designs. Queenie sent me a comment about my last post on swatching that got me thinking.  Maybe it would be alright if I 'adjusted' some of the designs I had to expand the range of designs available.  So I did.  Oh the guilt I felt!  Just shows how 'brainwashed' I am about following rules and regulations.  All those years as a school teacher had an effect.

Save


Straight lines & Curves

I have thought of a new design for my next Kogin project but I am finding it difficult to realise it.  The problem is that Kogin embroidery is all about straight lines.  All the designs are mainly based on a diamond pattern.  There are some patterns that are used as borders and again these have straight edges.  My pattern is about curves.

I have drawn out a template of the curve and then tried drawing this using my computer program.  It looked fine but experience has taught me that what might look fine on the screen might not translate to the fabric.  So I have been 'swatching' and I can see that the bottom edge of that curve needs some tweeking.  I may have to look at stitching through a thread.

Screen Shot 2017-01-04 at 5.01.27 pm

The other problem to be solved is that the design has to go across a seam.  I have drawn this so that when the seam is sewn the missing parts of the design on the left of the pattern will be stitched in.  This part of the pattern will appear on the far right of the printed design.

One of my goals for this year is to get the first draft of my book on Kogin Embroidery completed.  I have this project on track.  But the more I think about it I am understanding that my experience of this typed of embroidery is very coloured by my Western Culture.  My Embroidery looks like the traditional technique but the experience of stitching it is totally different.  Trying to use curves where there are usually straight lines just highlights this.

Save

Save

Save

Save


WIPW

It seems a long time ago that I last posted about my work in progress but it was only two weeks ago! 

Then I said that I was experimenting with some new Xmas decoration and two weeks later  I have stitched out 4 designs.

I decided to use perle 8 thread.  I wanted a look of 'embossing' so I made my tension just a little tighter. 

Screen Shot 2017-01-03 at 12.55.57 pm

Now that I have stitched out these designs I now have to decide just how I am going to make them up.

Screen Shot 2017-01-03 at 12.56.11 pm

Screen Shot 2017-01-03 at 12.56.23 pm

Screen Shot 2017-01-03 at 12.56.35 pm

Screen Shot 2017-01-03 at 12.57.06 pm

These were all stitched during the time that the children were here.  Lots of miss counting and unpicking.

Screen Shot 2017-01-03 at 12.57.19 pm

There are still another 8 patterns to be stitched but Xmas is 12 months away!

Save


Peace Embroidery No 1 January 2017

One of the tasks on my list for 2017 was a "Peace Embroidery" for each month of the year. Personal Peace is what this months saying concerns.  It comes from George Fox, one of the founders of the Quaker Movement and was written during the 1600's.  But the sentiments are true today.

"Carry around some quiet inside thee."

Having a quiet spirit is an enviable attribute.  In our world today, with it's many distractions it is sometimes hard to find.  In my classroom I had positive affirmations posted on the walls to encourage a positive learning environment.  I think the same approach, of having quotes that catch our attention and remind us of things that are important,  is applicable in our daily lives.

Screen Shot 2017-01-02 at 5.33.22 pm

I have to say I rushed this piece.  It was the noisiest embroidery I have every stitched  It was insistent that I keep stitching and get it finished.  It wasn't happy with the colours I had choosen and I found myself stitching with different colours altogether.  I told it that it would just have to put up with the frame I put it in as it was all I had to hand and I can see it has moved slightly..

Screen Shot 2017-01-02 at 5.33.07 pm

With all that pressure I made mistakes so the chart is slightly different from the finished embroidery. (Only at the corners of the border)  It is stitched on 32 count even weave linen and I used 2 strands of DMC embroidery cotton and a 26 Tapestry needle.  I'm not quite sure how many hours are in the stitching as I did so much 'reverse' stitching but I think it wouldn't take more than a day or so.  A quick easy project.

Download Peace 1

 

Save

Save

Save

Save