Today I will hopefully be bringing my travelling sketchbook home from my Embroiderer’s Guild meeting, I haven’t seen it for about six months so it’s pretty exciting waiting to see what everyone has been embroidering for me.
This is the sketchbook that we’re sharing at Skipton Embroiderers Guild, we are all in groups of six and we had to choose a theme for our book. Each month we swopped books so we’ve each done an entry for everyone in the group. I thought I’d do a quick post today about my entries for the sketchbooks before I hopefully show you mine tomorrow! Click on the photo to see the original post.
I’ve learnt alot doing this project and also gained alot of confidence in designing an embroidery from scratch. I’d always followed patterns or used kits before so it was well out of my comfort zone to be told here’s a topic, embroider something! I admit I usually turned to Pinterest for ideas and inspiration, but I do feel I found my own style of embroidery.
We were given our sketchbooks in January and our first task was to choose a theme, decorate our book and create the first entry. I chose mountains, I covered the book with an applique image of Catbells on the front. My entry was really a practise for the Sisterhood of the Travelling Sketchbook which I knew would be arriving on my doorstep late spring. I’d bought some textiles and fancy threads from Stef Francis at the Harrogate show but realised I really didn’t know what to do with them, I sort of made it up as I went a long and I was pretty pleased with the result.
We took our books to the February meeting and passed it on to the next person in our group. My next entry was to be on birds. The lady who always passed to me always did some exquisite entries, which was somewhat overwhelming for me at first. I’m still very new to the group and to this type of embroidery and I really didn’t know what would be expected.
I stitched a wren, I chose a wren as it has a pretty recognisable shape so hopefully people would know what it was! I used simple embroidery stitches in variegated threads and added a few beads for extra interest. It came out really well which did give me a bit of a confidence boost…I can do this!
The theme of the book the following month was trees, my original plan was to do a little cherry tree. All the trees were in blossom when I was stitching this so it seemed pretty apt. I decided in the end to just stitch a branch, a whole tree would either be very small or take too long as it would have so many french knots in it!
For the sketchbook on Walls I chose to do a dry stone wall with flowers in front. I think this was a lesson in less is sometimes more. Having outlined the stones I decided to fill them with different stitches, nice idea but I think it became too cluttered. I stitched the flowers in fairly bright colours so they would stand out from the wall. The finished embroidery turned out OK, but not my favourite.
Astronomy was a bit of a tricky topic, I spent ages on Pinterest, I saw lots that I liked but invariably they would have been too complex and taken too long. In the end I hit on the idea of using shisha mirrors and stitching round them like a mandala. I added a few squigglies and beads to fill in and bring it all together.
The final sketchbook was on tiles. I stitched this just last week, I decided to do a slightly more tongue in cheek entry and made Scrabble tiles. I like this one, makes me smile!
We’ve got the option of carrying on with the travelling sketchbooks, they’ll put us in a different group of six and we can fill our book up! I’m very tempted to volunteer for this as it has pushed me out of my comfort zone and sometimes that’s what I need to do. I think we have a month with our books before we continue, so there maybe a few more of these little embroideries in the next few months.
Tomorrow I will hopefully reveal my Sketchbook with lots of embroideries about mountains.