Friday 12 April 2019

Paisley Circle

Embroidered Paisley Finished
Here is another piece that I completed for the design course. The point was to design a colour scheme and then use it in a piece of embroidery. This circle is 8 inches I thought about making the circle smaller the design seemed to be a bit too crowded then. I think it needs some decoration around the edge not just a blanket stitch. It doesn't really look like it's finished yet.

I did the darker green outline first to put an edge around the area to be filled in. Then I could follow the line around when doing the border. The outline and the center are filled with long and short stitch. As I worked in each line of stitches I drew the curl on top of the threads.

Filling in the paisleyGreen Outline for PaisleyIn the original drawing I had a scalloped edge. A scalloped edge that size would take a long time to sew if I tried to fill them in. Instead I used the Portuguese knotted stem stitch. The round knots make a bumpy edge and it works up really quick. Being a knotted stitch it uses much more thread by the end I used two skeins of the purple thread.

The flower petals are done in padded satin stitch. The center of the flower is edged in stem stitch with french knots inside. It worked better to sew in the petals and add the center afterwards. I tried it both ways and the one where I did the center first didn't look as nice. All the curls were done in stem stitch with french knots for the small dots inside. The large dots are done in the padded satin stitch.

Thursday 14 March 2019

Embroidered Brooch

Blue Brooch Embroidery
This started off as an experiment to see how whipped running stitch would look as a filling stitch. In the rectangle it gave the design a woven look. These pieces looked best when viewed from a few feet away so the colours blend together. When viewed up close the running stitch base stands out more. I made the brooch as an after thought and finished it is 1’’ by 1 3/4’’.
I worked the running stitches for the whole rectangle first because I wanted to get the rows of stitches to line up. For the top three rectangles I used blue running stitches. In the bottom one I used the rainbow variegated thread to see which would look more like a bright sunset.
Running Stitch base

The whipping was done afterwards. I used the same blue as the background for the top. I used variegated threads for the rest. When I was done I took a look at the four pieces together. I was most interested in the blue variegated rectangle. I thought it was a nice scene and would be a good size for a brooch.
Whipped running stitch rectangles
To make the brooch I had to cut the pieces up to cut out the rectangle but decided that it was worth it. I snipped the corners off to reduce bulk and cut out a cardboard and a felt rectangle the same size as the embroidery. The fabric is strung over the cardboard as described in my post Goldwork Ornament and a brooch pin is attached on the back.
Brooch BackBrooch Construction
Whipped Running Stitch base for sunI made the sun at the end after trying out the rectangles. I wanted to see how it would work filling in another shape since running stitch curves around so nicely. I worked from the outside in and started a new row each round rather than making a swirl.  I used yellow for the running stitch base and a variegated yellow-orange thread for whipping over top.
Embroidered Sun

Tuesday 26 February 2019

Window View Corrections

Window View with Corrections

I have finished all the tree stems and all the large branches that need to be completed before the rest of background. I’ve gotten to the point where some problems are starting to show up. The building, the tree tops and the fence post all look a little crooked. The door and the hill stick out too much. I can see a few little fixes I could easily make. I'm not sure which one is affecting the piece the most. 

Map of Problem Areas
 I went back and looked at the scan of the drawing I made the pattern from. I circled all the areas of the picture that stuck out and made a few notes on how I could improve the look. I went through and made the changes shown below. Overall it did make the design look a lot better.
door removed
original door
Door new fillingThe most obvious thing that did not fit in well was the door. I removed the stitching from the door so that it could be completely redone. I filled the door back in using the same colors as the fence post and the shovel handle. The door still sticks out a little more than I wanted it to but looks better than before.
Hill with green stitching
Plain yellow hill
The yellow ochre hill is way to bright. First I tried to tone it down with white thinking it would look like patches of snow. That made the hill look even brighter. Using the same green as the trash can I made straight stitches on the hill. These look like trees growing on the hill. This toned it down a bit and added some texture instead of being a large block of color. 
fence post close upfence post corrections

The light brown fence post looks a little crooked. The light colors on top of the post don't blend in. I took these light lines out. Widened the post at the top and finished it off so the stitching at the top was straight.

Roof edge correction
Roof edge close up
The fix that changed the piece the most was straightening the edge of the lower roof. Even though it was just a few stitches and was the fastest of the changes to make. It is near the focal point and the vanishing point of the picture. This little fix changed the perspective of the whole building. 

Tree top removed
Tree top slanted
Tree top correctionThe right tree was not straight at the top. It was slanted at the top making it look like it stopped just before the top edge. It would be even harder to keep the top straight with a crooked tree top. 
I have the piece almost finished now and will write one more post showing the final piece. 

Wednesday 6 February 2019

Window View 2 Fences and Walls

Adding Color to the Fence and Wall
This is the second post about this piece. In the first post I got the piece started up to where the black outlines were done. Today I will continue on filling in the foreground. Starting with the fences and moving back to fill in the side of the house. Both fences and the house are filled in by blending two colours of threads together. This is also referred to as tweeding. 

Brown FenceFence Shading
The brown fence was done in a satin stitch. Blending the colours gives the fence a multi-coloured look. The brown fence is filled in with satin stitch through the spaces between boards the grey fence showed. I used a darker grey here and the same grey along the bottom of the horizontal board. I used a split stitch to fill in the horizontal board to make it stand out from the boards behind it. The colours didn't blend quite as nicely in the grey fence as the brown fence.

Fence close upGrey Fence
Door and Window Frames
Next, I filled in the tools and details on the wall. It made the wall easier to fill in with the edges clearly defined. The edges are mostly outlined with split stitch. The finer lines are done with straight stitch. I used a stem stitch for the garbage can to give it a rounded appearance. 
Coloring the Wall
The building was the most fun to fill in. I used many different shades of brown blended together. Switching back and forth between one pair and another making the side of the building many combinations of colours.

In the next post I will be filling in the roof and starting on the trees and branches surrounding the building.

Saturday 19 January 2019

Italian Corded Quilting

Italian Corded Quilting Octagon Design
 This piece is done in Italian corded quilting. A decorative form of quilting commonly used to for Celtic knot work. Two pieces of cloth are quilted together and a raised design is made by threading cords between the lines of quilting. I sewed this piece for the design for embroidery course that I am taking from the Embroidery Association of Canada. The piece measures 6 inches from one side to the other. It is made with natural linen cloth for the front and white cotton for the back. The quilting was done with DMC flower thread and candle wicking cotton used for the cording. I was a little disappointed how plain the piece looked when I was finished with it.  I still think that it would make a nice hot pad in the kitchen.
Hand drawn patternOctagon Design Traced

This type of work is sewed on the backside so the pattern is copied on the back piece of fabric. In this design it makes no difference but the design will be reversed on the front side.  I tried to copy the pattern using my water-soluble pen. It finally ran out of ink after having it forever. I use it so often. I need to replace it as soon as possible. I settled for a pencil to draw the picture on the piece of cloth. This is not a good practice especially with such light color fabric and thread. The color can rub off on the thread most of it washes out easily afterwards. 

BastingQuilting outer edge

quilting trianglesQuilting center

The two pieces of cloth are basted together to hold them in place while the stitching is done. Running stitch is sewn along all the lines. It’s important to make sure the line stay as straight as possible and an even width apart so that the cord fits evenly.  The pictures above show the order that I quilted the lines in. The picture below is the finished quilting.

Finished quilting

Below shows the candle wicking cotton being threaded between the two lines of quilting. I started with 6 strands which barely showed on the surface and kept increasing them until I was using 10 strands. It is important when turning the corners to leave a little extra thread to keep the corners from losing their shape. The finished piece is shown at the top.

Threading in the cord