A Summer Parterre

Hi everyone

Hope you all had a great weekend.

Before we look at some wonderful stitching here are a couple of photos of our big move last Thursday:

Hackett Community Centre

Through that glass door is the Guild’s new home at Hackett Community Centre

Leaders truck arriving

Here’s the first truckload arriving

Christine in cupboard

Look who we found in one of the cupboards!

At the moment our new home at Hackett is just a sea of boxes, furniture etc and it’s going to take a huge effort to get everything sorted. So to help the settling in process go smoothly the morning and evening meetings that would have happened today have been cancelled – they start again next Monday 12 May.

The May meetings for Hardanger, Creative and Paper Arts and Young Stitchers have also been cancelled – we’re really sorry about this and looking forward to things getting back to normal in June.

A Summer Parterre

This is another exquisite piece from Marjorie Gilby. She created the design for a class with Pamela Watts in a technique called ‘scribble canvas’ in 1998. Just click on the photos if you want to look more closely.

Here’s the finished work framed

Canvaswork Summer Parterre by Marjorie Gilby

and some closer views

Unframed Canvaswork Summer Parterre Marjorie Gilby

Central Square of Summer Parterre by  Marjorie Gilby

This is specially for those of you who like to look closely at the stitching

Detail 4 from Summer Parterre by Marjorie Gilby

The green plant in the pot is done in needlelace. The pot is constructed of two metal rings each of which has been sewn over with Buttonhole stitch. These two rings were then laid on top of each other and stitched together.

The grey/beige ‘pebbles’ around the pot are French knots while the terracotta pavement is Cushion Stitch.

Detail of Summer Parterre by Marjorie Gilby

The flat blue and pink flowers are Rice Stitch. To create the waterlillies in the bottom left hand corner Marjorie first made needlelace leaves and then she used Cup Stitch to give dimensionality to the lily flowers.

Now you might remember Velvet Stitch (also called Turkey Stitch or Ghiordes Knot) from the blog post about Audrey’s extraordinary Aran style Canvaswork pillow here. It’s used to create a plush pile and here Marjorie has stitched it in green wool to create a box hedge for the parterre.


Here’s a tip that Pamela Watts passed on to Marjorie for creating a thick and even pile – use an eyebrow brush to shape and fluff up the pile after you’ve cut off the top of the loops.

Detail 3 of Summer Parterre by Marjorie Gilby

The other feature flower that’s repeated in the geometric design of this piece is made with Bullions and then set off with needlelace leaves. The surrounding triangle in mauves and pinks is done in Algerian eyelets. The small mauve and yellow ground cover flowers within the box hedges are French Knots.

Detail 2 from Summer Parterre by Marjorie Gilby

To create the shaped Cumquat trees Marjorie first made pompoms and then clipped them into a ball shape and added beads for fruit.

The texture, geometry and dimensionality created by all these different stitches is just awesome. My favourite feature is the terracotta pot and plant in the centre of the piece. Do you have a favourite feature?

Marjorie – a heartfelt thanks again for sharing your wonderful pieces with us.

Take care



Pat’s Stumpwork Box – Flowers, Funghi and Insects

Are you ready for another of Pat B’s amazing ornamental boxes?

Well here’s an octagonal box which has multiple themes – Pat says her inspiration was exploring the stumpwork and embroidery techniques in the Jane Nicholas book Stumpwork Embroidery: A Collection of Fruits, Flowers and Insects 1995

This post is mainly eye candy with some notes on the stitches and techniques used. If you want a closer look at any photo then just click on it to enlarge.

Box Lid

Here’s the box lid where the main picture is an evocative view of trees and sea:

Hexagonal Box with Trees and sea by Pat Bootland

Around the main embroidery there is a theme of flowers, fruit and insects – some embroidered, some beaded and some stumpwork. Here’s a closer look at them:

Blue Flower and Insect

Blue Flower from Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

The petals of the flower are done in needleweaving – each one has been stitched and then twisted into a shape. The wings of the insect are made from loops of buttonhole stitch.

Soldier Fly

Gold Beetle from Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

This little fellow is mainly satin stitch and straight stitch with beads for the eyes. Pat tells me that each wing was made by vliesofixing two pieces of transparent ribbon together and then stitching around the edges and on the wings to create a pattern.


Three Pink Bell Flowers on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

These are created with satin stitch with a wired edge and seed beads.


Bee on Hexagonal Box by Pat BootlandThe body of the bee is turkey stitch (also called Turkey rug knot or Ghiordes knot – see Stitch Dictionary) while each wing is two layers of sheer ribbon vliesofixed together.


Pomegrate on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

These luscious fruits are in padded satin stitch.


Snail by Pat Bootland

The shell is twisted and whipped fabric while the body is padded satin stitch.


Cream Flower on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

Pat has again used button hole loops – this time to create the flower petals.

Ant & Clover

Three Clover Flowers by Pat Bootland

Ant on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

Pink Flower

Dusty Pink Flower on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

I was curious about the stitch used for the petals and Pat explained that it’s Whipped spider web stitch used straight rather than in a wheel. She likes the ridges it creates to give form not only to flowers but also to fish fins, shells etc.


Blue Dragonfly on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland


Berries and Leaf on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

It turns out that these berries are beads that have been stitched over to create a sense of full ripeness.

Teeny Weeny Spider

Spider and Web on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland

Close Up Black Bead Spider by Pat Bootland

The web and spider are really minute – no bigger than a centimeter (just under half an inch) – it’s a great example of using simple materials to great effect. The spider is just 2 tiny seed beads with some wool thread.


Purple Flower on Hexagonal Box by Pat Bootland This is another example of how you can use Turkey stitch very effectively – here to create the thick fluffiness of the thistle flower.

I hope you’ve enjoyed looking at Pat’s work in this post. If you have any questions about the stitches or techniques used then just leave a comment and we’ll try to answer them.

Tomorrow I’ll show you the stumpwork on the vertical sides of the box.