The next diamond to embroidery has a lot of stumpwork, which does take longer than silk ribbon embroidery, luckily I had a day at Skipton Embroiderers Guild when I could sit and concentrate on it for a few hours. We even had a TV crew there filming for a series, we’ve been sworn to secrecy but you never know, my flower lattice might just appear (albeit briefly!) on the TV…or then again it could end up on the cutting room floor!
First to be tackled were the pansies. I stitched the leaves on the panel first, it got me back in the swing of long and short stitch and gave me chance to test the colours out. The petals and two of the leaves are all stitched separately on a spare piece of white cotton. I used one thread of variegated and one plain thread to get the subtle variation round the edges. The petals were edged with a long and short buttonhole first, which does give a nice firm edge. The leaves were edged with stem stitch which was then covered by the long and short stitch.
Next came the nerve-wracking bit! I had to cut each petal and leaf out as close as possible to the stitching. I’m beginning to wonder why they always recommend white rather than say a soft green or grey, the only advantage I can see is when you try to trace it. The disadvantage with white, in my opinion, is that when the shapes are cut out it’s almost impossible to get it so close to the stitching that all the white is cut off. If it was embroidered on a softer shade, it wouldn’t show up half as much! I might try it another time!
Stitching the shapes onto the panel was actually fairly easy, they’re just attached at the base so I keep the 3D effect. The centre was fiddly, three bullion bars in two different colours and a french knot in the middle in yet another colour!
The tulips were interesting to do, they get their 3D effect by being stitched over little oval beads. I had some pearl ones in my stash that were just the right size. I used 7mm rose pink ribbon which I had in my box, it’s just several basic ribbon stitches overlapping to cover the bead.
The final part of this diamond is the butterfly. The wings are embroidered on organza over wire. The wire is couched to the organza and then a little embroidery added. I actually stitched the wings a few weeks ago at the same time as I made the dragonfly wings. I realised when I got them out of my workbox that in the process of tracing I had some how got confused and both wings were actually back to front! I decided to just got with it, there was no way I was going to start embroidering another set! I cut them out rather gingerly as I do worry that the organza will fray and the wings will disintegrate!…they didn’t!
The wires from the wings were poked through the fabric to the back and then stitched down. The body is stitched with a stem stitch outline and then lots of french knots in a soft grey/brown thread. The tail and legs were stitched with a green/blue thread to add a bit of colour.
So I’ve just got one more diamond and then the lattice framework to highlight…my feet are starting to twitch for a happy dance!
Why not have a look what everyone else is stitching, just follow the links to see some stunning projects;
Everyone is in different time scales, so if there isn’t a post when you first look, check later in the day. If you fancy joining us for the SAL, just send a message to Avis.