Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Dreaded Purple Flowers ...

Work on my Butterfly Forest project had slowed significantly over the last few months because I was dreading the copious amounts of backstitch that needed to be done. In particular, the intricate purple flower bunches were not a section of the project that I was looking forward to. But the good news is that they are finally finished!!

Now all I have to do is stitch the leaves, do a few french knots, complete the gold border, and then the piece is finished. A final update is close at hand!!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

AAN Tree - Finished but not framed yet

I finished the tree ... finally! It feels like I've been working on it for a long time, but in reality it took me just over a month to stitch it. I'm a little impressed with myself.

I think it looks stunning. Not quite how I'd pictured it in my head before I started, but I love how it turned out.

I will admit that I am now totally hooked on stitching with Vikki Clayton's hand-dyed silks. They are so lovely to work with and they add a whole new dimension to the project.

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Tree ...

I was so hoping to finish this tree before I had to leave for the weekend, but alas, it is not to be. (I'm headed to my brother's place for his 40th birthday party, so I can't take it with me.) I am very close though!! The tree itself and all of its leaves are complete, and I'm over halfway done the wind. I think it looks magnificent! I'm very proud of it. (And I'm contemplating stitching an autumn coloured variation of it sometime next year.)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Butterflies, Blackwork, & Birthday Cards

I have lots of updates!!

First of all, my third go at making a card. I even splurged and got sparkly letters. (It was for my mom, so it was worth it!)

Next, it's an update on the Butterfly Forest. The full and half cross stitches are all done, and about 2/3 of the backstitching is complete. All that's left is the last of the backstitch and the couched border. Then it's off for a wash, an iron, and framing!! It's nice to see this one be so close to done, but the last little bit is a real struggle to do. The motivation is hard to come by. Knowing how much my mom will love it is all that keeps me going.

And finally, I've joined a blackwork stitch-along (SAL) at my LNS. It's a ton of fun! It's just a pleasure to sit around and stitch with others who love stitching like I do. The fact that we are all working on the same pattern but with a dozen variations in colour, fabric, and size just makes it more exciting. The design is called Interlocking Wheel by Elizabeth Almond. It's found on her site Blackwork Journey. This is what it will look like when finished:

Mine is going to be quite small. I'm stitching it 1 over 1 on 25 ct antique white lugana evenweave using Vivki Clayton's Hand-dyed silk in Ocean Breeze. It is one of the most amazing blues I've ever seen. To date I've finished the cross stitch border, but have yet to attempt any actual blackwork. (Blackwork embroidery is a counted-thread embroidery technique traditionally done in either black or gold. The simplest of all the embroidery stitches, the straight stitch, is used to make up the complex and intricate designs that can often be seen. When these straight stitches are sewn in a combination, they make lines or geometric patterns. These geometric patterns are the main basis for the Blackwork embroidery technique.)

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Butterfly Update 9

I was enjoying working on the tree a lot, and I was dreading working on this piece again. There is SO MUCH backstitching left to do, plus a good chunk of background. I think I'm simply tired of the design. It's tough because it's a gift and I feel the pressure of the looming deadline.

It is coming along though. It's kind of amazing how much I have done already. I so want it finished and framed. I can't wait to see the look on my Mom's face. :)