Thursday, 3 July 2008

'Ornamental Pool' - the Great Leap Forward

Well, it feels like a great leap to me and it's a fitting expression for a stitching sinologist to use, isn't it? (If you don't get this one, do a web search for 'great leap forward' and you should soon see what I mean!!) Anyway, the rayons and metallics are now done and the rest is mostly good old stranded cotton and relatively simple embroidery instead of all this couching and messing with tricky threads. It feels good to be getting on with it though and I must say that my music lesson on Tuesady afternoon did me the world of good. Just doing something purely for me for an hour just scratched the self-nuture itch and I felt much more like doing stuff straight afterwards. So, the appearance of a picture of my viola at the top of my 'bits and bobs' sidebar is in grateful recognition of her contribution to keeping me the right side of insanity boundary!!!

Back to the 'Pool', I'm hoping I haven't made a goof in choosing to use rayons for the coloured sections of these elements as the contrast between their sheen and the ordinary cotton is quite stark. Still, they go well with the metallics, which may have looked out of place with cottons, had I used those instead. I wanted the fish etc to stand out, but I may have overdone it. We shall see when it's complete. Here are close-ups of the two recently completed bits. I just need to get the embroidery done by Saturday, I've decided, as it doesn't take too long to finish it up (less complec than COS was!) and I can even do that en route to Germany. Wouldn't be the first time as I distinctly remember finishing up a wedding bell-pull in the car on the way to the ceremony!!!

Well, it's mid-year and time for a stitching review. Actually, I really haven't accomplished much at all, but here's what there is:

*Finally got 'Child of Spring' finished up into a scatter cushion.
*Finished Derwentwater's 'Bluetits and Seedheads' cross stitch, which was started last July.
*Started and worked about 40-50% of Derwentwater's 'Goldfinches and Thistles' cross stitch, but that's now on hold whilst I get all the obligation stitching done, (so much for my 'learning year' without multiple events to stitch for!).
*Worked one small ribbon piece, 'Rose Arch' and mounted it in a card.
*Worked one small gold- and rayonwork dragonfly, but haven't used it for anything yet.
*Worked the 'Branches of Your Life' as a leaving card for my old boss.

So, not really that much in total. Come to think of it, there wasn't much movement in the six month period before that either, with 'bluetits' being started, some bedding made for one wedding and the waterlily and dragonfly pic being done for another, and that was it!

I finally delved into the murky depths of the laundry basket and dealt with all the 'special treatment' stuff in there - hand-washing and bleaching, so that's something, but all that ironing, yack!


Love to Stitch 99 said...

Wow, Elizabeth, you have certainly made a great leap forward and it looks fantastic.

Music is good for the soul :-) Maybe I should go back to it also.

Pierrette =^..^=

Emily said...

Wow, Elizabeth! Great description on the status of this piece!!

NCPat said...

This is lovely. I think that the rayon is the right fiber and as you progress you will like it better. It is a great asset to the gold.

Frontrange Stitcher said...

Oh my, you have made such progress. I love the little fishy and his air bubbles. Cudos for using rayon, I do not like to use it but it is effective if you want a lot of sheen. There's always a sacrifice isn't there? And the dark ground is perfect for this piece. Thanks for entertaining me this morning with your lively post. Oh, and all that ironing, put it in a large bag and off to the cleaners for pressing; treat yourself, you deserve it, afterall you're not feeling well and you've got better things to do than weild a 5 lb weapon at something wrinkled! Hope you're feeling better soon.

donnag said...

This took my breath away! It is so very beautiful! Great work.

I love to read your blog.

Vivien said...

Hello Elisabeth,

Many thanks for your nice comments on my C & G coursework, which I am taking, as a correspondence course with ‘Distant Stitch’ and tutored by Sian Martin. If you would like more information, do check Sian’s website: -

Taking this course has given me so much more confidence to try many methods of textile surface embellishment. Favorite needlework tools now include a heat gun and a soldering iron!

Your work is superb! I love the ‘Ornamental Pool’ - exquisite needlework!

I too will bookmark your blog – I shall enjoy seeing what other beauties you will create.
Happy stitching - Vivien

Chiasmata said...

Sorry to hear you're both feeling crook. I was going to say it's the time of year for sniffles, but you guys should be out frolicking in the sun! Mind you, Canberra is sunny 95% of the time... it just happens to be 5 degrees at the same time.

I quite like Patricia Ann designs. I've become quite interested in counted thread stuff. It is nice to have projects that progress a bit faster than cross stitch.

Ah, that's marketing for you! 'Body wash' sounds utilitarian, while 'bath soak' sounds like a luxury item. The way I look at it all that stuff is primarily water, which comes out of the tap (almost) free anyways. :P

Anonymous said...

It's beautiful . . . I don't think you overdid it on the fish; Goldfish/koi ARE flamboyant! How do you finish off the ends of the rayon thread? It's so slippery; I resorted to Fray-check the only time I've used it.


Vivien said...

Do let me know if you take a course; Stumpwork is such a beautiful embroidery medium and the skill should be preserved. I hope the $ comes through.

vEr0n!c@ said...

I love, love, love what you did with the goldfish and dragonfly. Your stitches look so neat... something I doubt I'll be able to complete with free style stitching.

Anonymous said...

I like your amazing and beautiful embroidery dear friend!!! also read the content of your blog. Really I enjoy it!!

A kiss

Maria del Valle