Saturday, 25 July 2015

Sycamore key

Some people aren't happy to have these in their garden but I love them. I used some lovely subtle shades from Weeks Dye Works for this piece, the small changes in shade are perfect for something that was always going to be tricky !! I am still trying to work out how to put veining into stumpwork without it looking heavy so I tried to suggest it with colour and technique. The wings of this seedpod I made in single strand corded brussels stitch so that it was very fine. To give a hint of veining I freestyled a bit with the rows as I went, sometimes starting mid row and then again in mid row so to fan the rows out.

This technique meant that I avoided stripes in the colour of the thread as it moved from one shade to the next and instead gave it natural patches of colour. 
   For the seed pod section I tried hanging the stitches off a pre-buttonholed strand so as to retain a ridge for the vein. It sort of worked!!!

I had to take the work off the cordonnet pad to flip it over and make the pod cases . I used the same stitch but built 'up' and around to make a small cavity for a real seed to fit into ! (this is to scale )

Before I sewed the last row I put the seed in ...

For the second pod I wanted it to look as if the seed had already fired out. I did some tiny ghiordes knots inside and then furred them out with a pin...

and then built up the open pod case as before.

Sunday, 12 July 2015

Moth assembly kit

How to make a moth.......

 You will need: 1 undercarriage with wings in needlelace,
                          1 small wing in needlelace,
                          1 furry body in ghiordes knot stitch
                                      ( with feather antennae)
                          6 furry legs.

 Make the furry body with very dense stitches and learn how to tie flies.......

 Spend weeks making a wired segmented undercarriage with patterned wings,

                       Attach everything together and teach him to walk.....

One tame moth.

Release him to join his friends...

'feel pleased with yourself !

This is the last moth (and the largest at 6cm long) for this piece entitled 'Lachrimae Rerum ' ( The Tears of Things) . I'm nearly finished, only  a couple more things to make and add. Every time I think it's done I realise there is some more I can do.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Reeds, beeswax and steel

My next course at West Dean is about the different construction techniques used in making corsets. It will cover hand stitched boning channels for 17th C. corsets, how to wax and insert reeds for stiffening plus steel boning, making eyelets and lacing all the way to 1890!
The stitching will begin on the 17th of July and booking will close soon as there are limited places on this course.

p.s. website all sorted out !


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