Sunday, January 31, 2016

SAL Sunday

The lower left corner is complete. For now. I never know if I might add or change something.

And the left hand side of the embroidery is nearing completion.
I love borders of multi-color chain stitch.
As you can see perfect symmetry in color placement is not a goal of mine. I find it much more interesting to have color changes along the way that keep the eye following along. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Moving Along

First a row of chain stitch along an edge of one tulip. Then a row of detached buttonhole stitches in the chain row.

And the repeat.

It was interesting to do. Not something I'm in love with.

Now the striped tulip in front of the bird was fun. Those are rows of stem stitch. 

I've never stitched underground before. This is all fun. I'm playing with color, stitch combinations.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

SAL Details

Thank you for the wonderful response to my SAL!
I hope I can answer some of the questions and concerns I have heard in comments and emails.


This isn't as hard as I thought it might be. Here is what worked for me. 
Right click on the pattern drawing. You can use either the image in the blog post or the image on the SAL page. Click on "save image as". Save to the file of your choice. I opened and printed my image using Open Office. 
If you do not get the 'save image as' option you can also right click and "open image in new tab". Then go to your new tab and save the image (right click) to the file of your choice.


The pattern was designed to fit and print out on a standard 8 1/2 x 11" or A4 size paper. 


I do surface embroidery. There are no counted thread techniques here. This makes your fabric choice much easier. This is a linen look fabric, (80 cotton/20 linen). This pattern would work on linen, a silk matka, or a medium weight cotton quilting fabric. If you print out the design on 'Transfer-Eze' you could also stitch on wool.


Chain, stem and herringbone stitches are my go-to stitches for surface embroidery. From there I build texture with satin, blanket/buttonhole and wrapped chain stitches. And of course french knots, bullion stitches and speckle stitches. If any of these are unfamiliar to you please visit Mary Corbet's site 'Needle 'n Thread'.
Her instructions and videos can't be beat.

This will not be a step-by-step SAL. Please feel free to interpret the design with your colors and with your stitch choices.


I have been having fun already. The chain stitches most often form my base. From there I had more stitches on top. Like the birdie's wing. 
That will be my next post.

Monday, January 25, 2016

A SAL Janet Style

 Welcome to my first SAL or Stitch Along if this is new to you. (*Please let me now if you are having trouble downloading the image. Leave a comment and I can email a PDF to you.)

Here is the drawing in its original form still in my notebook. 
And here is the drawing ready for you to copy and stitch along with me. Another copy is available on a new page I have added to my blog : "SAL". It is where I will be posting my progress and YOURS if you choose to share your work. I hope you will.

Here is how I got my pattern started. I am using a prewashed cotton/linen blend fabric. The pieces are TORN to 14" x 11", then pressed. I work in hand and I don't finish the edges. I drew the design with a fine point Uni-ball pen. It is my favorite for pattern drawing.

Here is my palette. I am stitching with 2 strands of DMC cotton floss. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Getting Close

Claire's dolly workshop is close to being done.
Traditional 17th century casket usually have a dog running through a scene somewhere so I had to include a doggie friend on my casket too.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Signing My Work

One of the delights of all the beautiful caskets we viewed in Scotland and England last fall was discovering the occasional signature, note or trinket left behind by the creator of the piece.
One of the ways I have decided  to sign my casket is with a bundle of letters on the front. Eventually they will be tucked into a pile of thread spools and needles and pins.
But how do you make tiny silk letters?

I created my 'letters' in Photoshop, printed them out on silk printer ready fabric, then coated them with a gloss varnish. I hope the varnish will keep the silk from fraying. 

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Claire's New Dress

Claire may only have one leg to stand on at the moment but she loves her new dress!

The underskirt is embroidered silk, the same silk I am using to line many little areas inside the casket.

The apron, sleeves and bodice are all needlelace.

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