This month at my Embroiderers Guild meeting Travelling Sketchbooks were launched. I only became aware of the concept of a Travelling Sketchbook a few months ago when I (rather rashly!!) volunteered to take part in one organised by artist Anne Lawson. The idea is that the sketchbook is passed around and each person puts an entry in. Anne’s is an international one starting in Australia and New Zealand, travelling to America before reaching Europe, I think it’s in Greece at the moment, I think there’s another three or four people before I get it, quite scary as they all look such talented people!
Our Guild one is only slightly less intimidating! We are in groups of six and we could all choose our own theme, mine is mountains, so everyone will embroider something about mountains when it’s their turn to have my book. We have each book for one month before it’s time to pass it on.
We’ve all started with the same A5 sketchbook from Pink Pig, our homework this month was to make a cover for it, however we wanted, do a title page and a bit of an introduction about why we chose our theme, our inspiration. I think the idea then is to put the first piece of work in.
I decided to make an applique of Catbells, my favourite fell. I played about with some batik quilting fabrics and eventually chose three, a background which could be sky or water, a darker tonal fabric for Catbells and a lighter one for the reflection. I used bondaweb and blanket-stitched round the mountain.
With the reflection I didn’t want to make such a definite edge as blanket-stitch so I used rows of intermittent back-stitch to look like ripples on the water. Hopefully it will be treated gently and this will suffice! I’m really pleased how Catbells has come out.
I used a gorgeous teal batik for my main fabric, it’s got lots of crosses on it which I thought was apt for an embroidery sketchbook! When I was playing about with the fabrics I rather liked the silvery grey strip on the left of Catbells. Once I had stitched it all together I wasn’t so sure… I added a length of silk ribbon and stitched it on with cross-stitches in variegated thread, it did improve the balance of the fabrics.
It still needed something extra so I embroidered the title on some evenweave linen, trimmed and frayed it and spray basted it on with 505.I decided to stitch it on with an embroidery stitch on my machine, it’s a bit like feather stitch. I used a blue and green quilting thread which would have looked better if I’d managed to space it properly…it’s the rustic look!!!
I lined the bookcover with a plain, soft green cotton, it went together really well, top-stitched round the edge, I’ve just got to put something inside now, I found some photographs to include as inspirations…just the words and the stitches to add now!