Spirograph I – finished the first spiral

The first spiral is finished, and here it is: I’ll have to try and take some photos in sunlight, assuming we ever get any, as it really does look better in real life – the fabric looks grey here, and it isn’t, it’s a sandy colour. Anyway, that’s the smallest of the spirals in this…

Spirograph I – the first spiral

With the design transferred to the lining fabric and everything set up on my big frame, I’m all ready to go! Starting with the smallest, and fiddliest, of the spirals first, I went over the first part of the design in small running stitches in a terracotta sewing thread. Spirograph patterns look as though they’re…

Linen vs. silk

So, damp-stretched and mounted on boards, here are the two contenders (linen on the left, silk matka on the right): On the face of it, they look much the same, but I need to make a decision on which one to use. Looking at the pros and cons of each:- Linen pros: Easier – doesn’t…

Fabric test: silk matka

Following the linen test, I also needed to try the same design on my other proposed fabric, so I could compare the two. The second test is on a raw silk fabric called matka; this is what I used recently for Kate’s Crow, though in this case I’m back to the parchment/sandy colour I used…

Fabric test: linen

With the transfer ironed onto the right side of the natural linen, I can get straight on with couching the gold thread. I put the linen into a hoop to work; I generally prefer frames, but this is quite a small piece and a hoop is more convenient. One gold passing thread is couched down…

Stories from the Arabian Nights – slip case

While I’m working on Kate’s Crow, I thought I show you something else I’ve done that uses the same technique, at least in part. This is a slip case for Stories from the Arabian Nights, by Laurence Housman and illustrated by Edmund Dulac. The book itself still has its original dust jacket, which includes the…

The Turquoise Serpent is finished!

Here’s Xiuhcoatl, the Turquoise Serpent, in all his glory: To form the final panel, the completed embroidery needed to be stretched onto a piece of board. Depending on the size of the final item I might use mount board for this, but I felt this was just too large for that, so I used a…

Turquoise Serpent – the embroidery’s finished

Just a quick post to say that all the embroidery on the Turquoise Serpent is now finished. I’ve edged the body in two strands of couched Jap silver passing thread, to emphasise the coils; I could go for quite a distance without needing to finish off, so far fewer ends to deal with this time!…

Turquoise Serpent – silver infill

Firstly, an apology: posts have been very infrequent of late, and I’m sorry about that, and very grateful to those readers who keep coming back anyway. It’s much appreciated! With upheaval at work, a house full of decorators, and my birthday in there somewhere, I haven’t managed to get nearly as much sewing done as…

Couched silver infill

I’m currently adding the silver infill between the appliquéd turquoise suede ‘mosaic’ pieces. This is couched silver thread, using a single silver passing thread, and worked as I described in my ‘Goldwork – basic couching‘ post. One big difference to the goldwork piece I described before is in the amount of starting and finishing there…