Sunday, 18 September 2011

Sending someone a mix tape...

Some of you will know that I got into running an ATC swap group on the Hand Embroidery Network at the beginning of the year and we do swaps that run over 2 a two month period. For those of you who don't know an ATC is usually 2 and a half inches by 3and a half, and for our group has stitching involved.   The September/October swap theme is 'music' and after much deliberating I was reminded of my teens when I used to make mix tapes for my friends. I've also been a bit nostalgic for cassette tapes lately so this design was a perfect fit for me.
I like using blackwork in my ATC's because I can set myself up on the sofa at night and stitch away... and I find the stitching of the patterns really theraputic! A bit of me time, if you like. I like this design so much that I'm thinking of turning it into a kit for others to have a go...

If you'd like to see more ATC's from our group you can see the gallery here.

Saturday, 3 September 2011


Last week i started working on my entry for the Nowa Nowa Nude exhibition (Bein held in Nowa Nowa, victoria, Melbourne Cup weekend). Now, I've always been interested in tattoo designs, and love all the embroidered ones being done out there. Thread Wizard does some brilliant work as does katiekutthroat. But I've always wanted to mix my traditional techniques with these contemporary designs and it just so happens this exhibition allows me to do just that.
The idea behind fine whitework is that it's a mix of technique, stitched white on white, with different layers of fabric. My design will feature stitching on the original layer of linen, embroidered net and a second layer of linen. This will create some interesting depth to the piece.
So the first thing to do is the embroidered net. I didn't manage to get a picture of that, but once it was embroidered I tacked it onto the reverse of the work, leveling it up with the circle behind the pin up. Next up is the stitching on the first layer of linen because this is what will hold the net in place when I cut some of the linen away at the end.
I started on the peacock feathers first, using trailing for the edges.
The feathers were then filled with a mix of satin stitch, chain stitch, and stem stitch to give them some interest. The edge of the circle was stitched with ladder stitch which makes a nice edge to cut away to (this will make sense at a later date).
Now considering I've got a lot going on at the moment I am still managing to see her grow pretty quickly.
For the chair i wanted to do something a little different with my trailing, giving it a little texture so that it appears different from the trailing on the feathers. I also chose to split stitch the chair first and do the trailing over that, which does make the trailing go in faster as I can use both hands to stitch. (the orange thread is helping to hold the net in place underneath until the stitching on the body can be done.)

I'm really pleased with how it's going so far and all the bits that come next.