Happy New Year!

Hi everyone

Wishing you all a Happy New Year.

As a treat for the start of the New Year here’s an update of the following galleries for you.

Blackwork

Canvaswork

Contemporary Creative Embroidery

Crewel & Surface Stitchery

Cross Stitch

Fibre & Yarn

Hardanger

Samplers

Seasonal

Enjoy!

Carmen

Embellished Cross Stitch

Hi everyone

I hope all your Christmas preparations are going well. I think I’m in denial about how much I still have to do!

Given that this is the season for lots of glitz I’m going to share an exquisite and complex cross stitched piece that includes some lovely embellishment. It’s called Autumn Lady and has been stitched by Sharon Burrell. It’s a Mirabilia design by Nora Corbett.

Here’s some great eye candy for you to enjoy:

Detail 1 of Autumn Queen x-stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 2 of Autumn Queen x-stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 3 of Autumn Queen x-stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 4 of Autumn Queen x-stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 5 of Autumn Queen x-stitched by Sharon Burrell

and here’s a detail that’s just so cool:

Detail 6 of Autumn Queen x-stitched by Sharon Burrell

I’m in awe of the consistency, precision and control in Sharon’s stitching.

Bye for now!

Carmen

 

Counting Threads

Hi everyone

I hope you’re having a great weekend. In this post I’m going to share two works that use different counted thread techniques.

Blackwork

The first uses Blackwork which is an embroidery technique that dates back to at least the 16th century. It’s also called Spanish Blackwork because it’s thought that it was first brought to England by Catherine of Aragon. It became very popular during the reigns of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I as a decorative element on clothing but gradually lost ground in the 17th century.

If you’ve read The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer you might recall that he describes the clothing of the miller’s wife in this way:

“Of white, too, was the dainty smock she wore, embroidered at the collar all about with coal-black silk, alike within and out.”

The stitches that are characteristic of this geometric technique are Double Running Stitch (also called Holbein Stitch) and Back Stitch. It’s usually stitched on an evenweave fabric.

Flight of a Butterfly

Flight of a Butterfly  is a beautiful Blackwork and Goldwork design stitched by Sharon Burrell. Sharon began this piece as part of a class with Tanja Berlin at the 2013 Koala Conventions. She says that it was the first time she’d done any Blackwork and she absolutely loved the experience because Tanja was such a fantastic teacher. Sharon also found Tanja’s class notes really helpful for finishing the embroidery after the class.

Here’s some awesome eye candy of Sharon’s lovely stitching:

Flight of a Butterfly stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 1 of Flight of a Butterfly stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 2 of Flight of a Butterfly stitched by Sharon Burrell

Exquisite!

Now to the  second counted thread technique……

Wessex Stitching 

When I first came across this technique I thought it looked a bit medieval and assumed it must be very old. The ‘Wessex’ name also adds to the aura of history because during the Anglo Saxon period it was a centre for embroidery and illuminating.

But no it’s actually a more recent style that was created by Mrs Margaret Foster (1843-1936) who lived in Bath, England. Very little is known about her life but her technique, Wessex Stitching, has endured because after her death her sister donated all her notes and the 300 pieces she developed for an exhibition to Gawthorpe Hall.

Gawthorpe Hall has an awesome collection of lace, embroidery and other textiles. It is absolutely on my bucket list. You can read more here.

Wessex Stitching combines a limited number of stitches in a wide variety of patterns and colours to create a decorative effect. It’s also usually stitched on evenweave fabric.

The Broken Window

We’ve been progressively sharing with you the postcards made for 2014 Creative Challenge  Stitching Love and Hope. The postcard we’re sharing in the post is a wonderful modern re-interpretation of the WW1 Silks.

It was created by Catherine Fetherston and is called  The Broken Window. It was inspired by photos of church ruins in France in WW1. The embroidery technique used is Wessex Stitching.

I find this postcard very moving and profound in its understated elegance. The colours and design Catherine has chosen are very evocative of a stained glass window fragmented and yet still splendid in its beauty.

Here are some photos:

2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Catherine Fetherston

Detail 1 of 2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Catherine Fetherston

Detail 2 of 2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Catherine Fetherston

What do you think?

Enjoy!

Carmen

Lest We Forget

Hi everyone

In honour of Remembrance Day I’m going to share four more awesome postcards from our Stitching Love and Hope Creative Challenge to re-interpret WW1 Silk Postcards. All four postcards feature poppies.

The first is a beautiful Needlelace and Stumpwork postcard by Sharon Burrell:

2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Sharon Burrell

Detail 1 of 2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Sharon Burrell

Detail 2 of 2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Sharon Burrell

This next lovely postcard is by Jenny Clayton:

2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Jenny Clayton

Detail 1 of 2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Jenny Clayton

Margaret Roberts has stitched two delicate and vivid poppies on her beautiful postcard:

2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Margaret Roberts

Detail 1 of 2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Margaret RobertsWhile the message in Luba Tomaska’s evocative field of poppies sums up the solemn purpose of today:

Detail 1 of 2014 Creative Challenge postcard by Luba Tomaska

2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Luba Tomaska

 

If you want to see all the Stitching Love and Hope postcards that we’ve shared to date then go to the Challenges Gallery here.

Bye for now

Carmen

Brazilian Beauty

Hello again

I hope you’re having a relaxing weekend and finding time to do some stitching.

This post features a beautiful piece of Brazilian embroidery stitched by Sharon Burrell. The design is by Delma Moore for Blackberry Lane and is called Shades of Autumn.

Brazilian Embroidery

This technique is characterised by the use of rayon threads which have a sheen and a special z twist to them.

While the motifs are usually flowers the stitches used create a very textured and dimensional surface. If you love doing Bullion Knots, French Knots, Cast-on Stitch and Drizzle Stitch then you’ll love doing Brazilian embroidery. I can’t say that Bullion Knots are my favourite stitch but I do find them easier to do with rayon threads – somehow they’re more forgiving and it’s easier to control the tension and shape the knot after you’ve pulled the needle through.

The backgrounds which are flatter use stitches like Stem Stitch, Fly Stitch, Fishbone Stitch etc.

If you’d like to watch videos of how to do these stitches then head over here to Mary Corbet’s website.

Sharon’s Shades of Autumn

Here’s some awesome eye candy for you to enjoy:

Shades of Autumn Brazilian Embroidery by Sharon Burrell

Detail 1 of Shades of Autumn Brazilian Embroidery stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 2 of Shades of Autumn Brazilian Embroidery stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 3 of Shades of Autumn Brazilian Embroidery stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 4 of Shades of Autumn Brazilian Embroidery stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 5 of Shades of Autumn Brazilian Embroidery stitched by Sharon Burrell

A big thank you Sharon for sharing this beauty and to Stewart (Bath) for the great photos.

NSW Embroiderers Guild – Exhibition

If you’re in Sydney next weekend you might like to head over to this exhibition:

Surprise Exhibition copy

Bye for now!

Carmen

If You Love Threadpainting……….

Hi everyone

This post is specially for those of you who love threadpainting.

First up I’m going to share two birds exquisitely embroidered by Sharon Burrell.

Here’s an awesome Eastern Bluebird from a needle painting workshop with Tanja Berlin that Sharon took at the 2013 Koala Conventions (this is an event held in Brisbane & showcasing a range of embroidery workshops – you can find the 2015 Program here).

Eastern Bluebird stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 1 of Eastern Bluebird stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 2 of Eastern Bluebird stitched by Sharon Burrell

Doesn’t Sharon just rock this design?

The next piece is called Summer Jewel and is technically a crewel kit from Elsa Williams but it’s all done in long and short stitch so I’ve included it here.

Summer Jewel stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 1 of Summer Jewel stitched by Sharon Burrell

Detail 2 of Summer Jewel stitched by Sharon Burrell

Thank you so much Sharon for sharing your beautiful work & Stewart (Bath) for the great photos.

2014 Stitching Love and Hope Postcard by Marjorie Gilby

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while you’ll be familiar with Marjorie’s stitching as we’ve featured it a number of times. For the 2014 Creative Challenge she has created a postcard using the thread painting technique.

It’s a breathtaking dog rose in the most glorious shades of red……

2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Marjorie Gilby

Detail 1 of 2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Gilby Marjorie

Detail 2 of 2014 Creative Challenge Postcard by Marjorie Gilby

 

Enjoy!

Carmen