Travelling Sketchbook Time

Our travelling sketchbooks are on the rounds again at my Embroiderers Guild, we have each book for a month so we can have a think and stitch a little embroidery on the chosen theme. The theme of the book I have for this month is ‘Down the Microscope’…

I pondered for a long time about this one, trust me, there’s not a lot on Pinterest if you try a search on there! Someone at Guild suggested I did something from work, I work part-time in a Cardiac Catheter Lab, so we’re putting stents in peoples hearts when they have heart attacks, pacemakers and defibs, babies with heart problems and electrical studies too. I pointed out that it was actually all done under X-ray, not a microscope, she felt it was near enough!!

The next day I was working in the electro-physiology lab, looking after people with problems with the electrics of their heart, usually resulting in it going too fast or in the wrong rhythm. One nifty piece of kit we use is called Carto, it maps how the impulse travels across the heart making in the process some very colourful images. It’s quite amazing to watch, this is a photo of what we’re looking at.

Ooh, I thought, that could make an embroidery! After the case I asked the consultant if he happened to have any pictures of Carto I could have, he asked what for…an embroidery, I replied with a smile! His face was a picture!! He sort of glazed over when I started talking about sequins and french knots! The next day he sorted out a picture for me, it was quite amusing as he was flicking through images trying to find a perfect image, despite me explaining that it wasn’t going to be an anatomically correct embroidery, just a general impression.

As usual I’ve left it til pretty much the eleventh hour. Initially I tried silk painting the main colours, but they actually looked too drab. I started looking through my scrap box, silks first but they were the wrong shades. I then spotted scraps left over from my Kaffe Fassett quilt, red and blue, I found another scrap of green and purple and a square of dappled black and I was sorted.

I used bondaweb to fix the shapes, on the whole I cut out the individual shapes rather than layering them so the piece didn’t get too thick to stitch. I started the embroidery with the yellow line, using buttonhole and then chain stitch. The bright blue line is a length of woven tape in a mixed embroidery thread bag, I stitched it on with herringbone stitch. Some shiny purple thread joined the blue and the purple using feather stitch and fly stitch.

The pink sequins represent the areas we have ablated (treated with a small burn) and the french knots are the measuring points used to construct the 3D image.

I took it into work today to show the consultant, I think he liked it as he said he needs a set of twelve in A4 size!!! My colleague diagnosed it as a focal tachycardia!Carto embroidery

It’s not my usual style at all, but it was fun to stitch, let’s hope next month’s sketchbook is an easier topic πŸ™‚

About craftycreeky

I live in a busy market town in Yorkshire with my husband, kids, dogs and chickens. I love trying new crafts, rediscovering old ones, gardening, walking...anything creative really I started this blog after my New Year resolution worked so well. My resolution (the first one I've ever kept!) was to post a photograph of my garden on Facebook every day. My hope was that I would then see what was good in the garden and not just weeds and work, which was my tendency. The unexpected side-effect was that I have enjoyed many more hours in the garden. I am hoping that 'The Crafty Creek' will have the same effect. Happy creating!
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30 Responses to Travelling Sketchbook Time

  1. katechiconi says:

    Oooh, I wonder what my sinus tachycardia looks like! Clever and pretty πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  2. claire93 says:

    absolutely brilliant!
    Both the embroidery and the story behind how it came about.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Very creative – a source of inspiration I would not have imagined πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  4. MrsCraft says:

    What fun inspiration, it’s very pretty too!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Prue Batten says:

    Such a clever interpretation!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Very interesting post as my husband had a severe case of Afib Monday, 911, paddles, still not in rhythm, hospital stay to say….11 hours later he was back in rhythm and on his way home. I love your embroidered panel! Sharon

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Catherine says:

    Very clever and creative! I love it, and it’s great that the sketchbooks are challenging at times!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. tialys says:

    What a great story behind this and you can be sure nobody else will have an entry quite like this one.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. nanacathy2 says:

    That was a tricky one, but well done, its lovely.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Clare Hutchinson says:

    Oh my goodness Margaret – it’s stunning – and you go out to work as well? I am now convinced that you never actually go to sleep.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. It’s lovely 😍 Both…the embroidery and the story 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  12. sunnydelaney says:

    I love this! I saw the headline and immediately thought “virus portraits” — makes me want to do a little embroidery doodling of my own!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. kathyreeves says:

    When I saw the headline I was thinking organic chemistry models! I love how these sketchbooks really push you guys!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Emma says:

    This is just so much fun! What an awesome idea!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. rosejasm says:

    This is great! I can’t wait to tell my other half he’s a critical care outreach nurse! His face too would be awesome if I told him I was to embroidery an image from a scan!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. This is lovely! The colours are so vibrant. I love the idea behind it too – straight from the heart! πŸ™‚


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