Here is the piece, all laced up on the frame. I work on a frame and not a hoop to maintain good strong tension on the silk organza fabric base. Here you see the pattern all drawn out onto the fabric. I used a soft white chalk dressmakers pencil that rubs off with a bit of water. As the piece progressed, I had to go back over it with the pattern underneath and pencil on top to retrace parts of the design because my arm rubs the lightweight chalk off. You can see the flower on the bottom right is buggered right now due to this and has not been blotted and retraced yet. I used a basketweave stitch technique (with the tambour hook) that I just learned last month for the inside of the curve. I love this stitch- it gives such dimension!
Just for show and tell, I ordered a bunch of skeins of silk from Japan to use in tambour embroidery. It is rather a crapshoot when receiving these orders-- some of the silk is too thick for using the hook but most of this was very fine and very usable. Isn't it gorgeous? They stitch up so beautifully and the sheen is amazing.
Another photo just for show and tell-- this is my wee work station. My husband built this folding frame stand for me and it works perfectly in this little bedroom corner where I keep all my supplies. The light is a clip-on Ott lamp and works extremely well in this dark corner. You can see I keep alot of things right on my frame! This is how I like to work. The only thing I try to keep off the frame is my scissors although sometimes I forget. Oops-- there they are on the fabric. :-/ So far-- no accidents! I worry more about my fabrics than myself, though! Looking at this photo-- I have an array of threads that I used for this project. On the upper left of the frame is a box of Sulky rayon threads and Sulky metallic threads. On the right are bags of very fine art silks- really a fake silk as they are Rayon but they look like silk and it is almost impossible to tell the difference on the finished piece. Some of the bags hold real silk, too. I use several tambour hooks but mostly I prefered to use a size 70 on this piece. And my pencils and pattern are there. I have a habit of having to have a pencil clamped in my mouth while I am working on something. Nerves, I guess! If I don't have one to chomp on, I end up biting the inside of my cheek. Weird, I know!
Ok, I am getting somewhere with this. The original pattern called for small stem petals and I drew them on but frogged them out after I finished one. It just looked weird, so they got rubbed out and just the larger stems remain. The green is Sulky 40 rayon thread. The pink is silk from Japan. The periwinkle blue in the basketweave is Sajou embroidery thread from France- one strand. And the bugle beads are a gorgeous blue/grey color I bought in Paris last year.
Basketweave in metallic thread on one flower. :-)
Heading down the home stretch, putting different colors of silk dupioni fabric underneath to see how the colors look against it. So much planning and pondering goes into every piece I make.
Our dog Buddy was captivated by the horses & carriage!
Home and back to work. The flowers are completed and I am using a point terre, or pulled stitch, to set the bugle beads in a 90 degree angle from the flower tops. Also added another top curved line of bugle beads underneath, above the pink silks.
Finito! Ta-da! Today I have my outer fabric, interfacings and silk lining all cut out and ready to sew up into a bag. Stay tuned for the finished bag! For all you Valentines out there, have a happy day of love! <3