Thursday, August 30, 2012

Coral Calypso - an Exhibition

A week ago, my local embroidery group held an exhibition. We only hold one once every five years so that there can be enough work to show off a really fabulous display. I personally had 10 pieces in this one, the most I have had in any exhibition I have been involved in. So here I will show you the ten, some you have seen before, some not, and some you have seen in progress.

Piece 1 - The above white table mat featuring reticella, measuring approx 50cm x 36cm, this piece is my pride & joy. It took five years from conception to completion, including designing, sampling and one failed attempt where at the last minute I changed the design, and didn't think it through before starting to stitch. The consequence was my reticella design wouln't fit the space. You can read about that story here and see the result here. Then there was the twelve months that the piece sat there waiting for me to cut into it. After one failed attempt already, I was scared it would happen again, even with all the extra counting & thread marking I did this time around. Luckilly all that counting paid off & the design worked, to the point that I am extremely proud of the end result.

Piece 2 - Is an experiment in combining pulled and drawn work as well as in design. I had come across a book showing how to create and use mandalas in patchwork, & thought I may be able to use the same concept as a base for some drawn work. The piece of fabric was a scrap that I had aquired from somewhere, and there was not much room for sampling stitches, that is if I wanted the end result to be square. The square also presented a problem with designing, as I found six sided shapes didn't sit well, they needed to be four sided. So I played with a drawing program I have, overlaid a number of four pointed star shapes, then set about eliminating lines until I was happy with the resultant design. Then came the fun of stitching. Pulled work is not something that I have done much of, so the stitching had to be simple. Satin stitch, eyelets & four sided stitch, it is amazing the effects these three simple stitches can have when combined together, used in differnt counts, or used where some threads have been removed. Over all I am happy with the result.

Piece 3 - This little bag is also a combination of pulled & drawn work. It bagan as a holiday project, one where I threw a piece of fabric, some threads, and mabe a book or two for inspiration, into a bag & see what I could come up with. As soon as I started stitching, I realized the fabric was open to pulled work, but I had only brought drawn books with me, so I started on drawn work which kept me busy for my holiday. The pulled work background came later, and the lining & twisted cord came two days before it had to be handed in for exhibiting. Nothing like leaving things to the last minute. Am I happy with it? Mmmmm,......... it's cute and functional and I intend to use it as a little work bag.

Well, the above pieces were all new, the rest have been seen here before, but I will show you them again anyway.

Piece 4 - A cream table mat also started when on another holiday.

Piece 5- My first piece of reticella, which has now been in a few different exhibitions. Might be time to retire this piece, even if I am still very proud of it.

Piece 6 - My Seahorse Sanctuary, which took pride of place by the front door. A piece of creative drawn thread work done a few years back for a course.

Piece 7- My first full piece of Tenneriffe lace. This piece was designed for, and given to a special friend for a special birthday. I so want to do another piece, one for me to keep. A slightly differnt design though.

Pieces 8 & 9 - Bookmarks, both of which are a form of drawn work. The one on the lft is filet, while the one on the right is an all over filling, something that I want to play more with.

Piece 10 - A bobbin lace fish that went to Japan for an OIDFA dispaly. A huge challenge for me to work as he is double sided

For those of you that made it to the exhibition, I hope you enjoyed what you saw. For those of you that didn't, you missed some stunning pieces, so I hope you enjoyed seeing what I had displayed. Anyone see a common theme happening here in my work?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Seasons of Sneezes

My creative stitching group, Stitchers Plus, is hosting a challenge. The challenge is "Changing of the Seasons" & works are limited to A4 size. Any member of the Embroiderers Guild can enter, & works will be exhibited at the City of Canada Bay Library, Concord Branch, in October 2012.

The above is just a snippet of my piece ( just to tease you all), the piece can been seen in full at the exhibition. It features Reticella lace work combined with modern creative black-work, and was inspired by my changing allergies that change with the seasons.

I do hope you can all come to see it in full. Otherwise you will all have to wait for some time before I post it in full here.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

A Baby Blanket UFO

There is nothing like a new baby in the family to spur on the finish of a UFO. This little baby blanket started life quite some years ago as a little baby matinee jacket. At the time it was earmaked for another little girl, but once I started it I felt that I wouldn't like the yarn up against a new born baby's skin, it wasn't soft enough. So I pulled it all undone & started this blanket instead. It is simple chains & blocks of trebles & I very soon got bored with it. Consequently it soon got put aside for more interesting things & so became a UFO. Then last Monday I got an early morning call to say a member of family had given birth to a little girl. Mmm..... time to pull it out & finish it. It was only about 1/3 done, so there was still lots to do, but I had it completely finished in three days & handed over to the proud parents. Congratulations go out to S & A on the birth of their beautiful daughter & I hope they find the blanket useful.