Huzzah! A progress report on my sampler again.=)
As you can see from the photo above, I got the bottom ribbon section completed. It was harder to get even than the top one and I'm quite sure that there are several more departures from the pattern than even the ones I know about!LOL! Anyway, I remembered that I'd tried to do the filling part first on the top ribbon, then unpicked it and did it outline first instead. With this lower one, I persevered with the filling first method. I think the top one came out better.
The next challenge was to finalise the colours for the remaining surface work sections, namely the tall lupins you can see the gaps for and the girl. I did consider leaving the girl out completely, but, after some consideration of the very green with touches of purple colour scheme, I felt that my planned change of dress colour from chambray-denim blues to cool yellows would add a nice accent colour to the whole piece. These aren't quite the final shades I've settled on for either pinks or yellows (I've changed one in each group), but near enough to get the feel for them in the piece.
Below is how far I've got with stitching the girl, i.e. the lighter shades of her dress skirt. I'll be replacing that darker line with a lighter, more yellow, less brown one and just using that darker shade mixed in for the real shadow areas on the dress. Hopefully, that should be ready to see in next week's WIPW showcase.
Below is the full piece in the frame at the moment, so you can't really see all of the top section. There's really just the girl to finish, the lupins to add (I did start them in French knots, but I'd used 3 strands and 3 wraps and wasn't pleased with the effect, so will come back to those) and the beading on the lower section and the surface work is complete. Actually, the beads won't go in until the cutwork is done on the header area as I won't be able to use the snap frame properly with beads in the way. It's a close enough call with the bullion knots in the top area as it is!
Speaking of cutwork, I've blunted and can't seem to sharpen my tiny petit point scissors I use for hardanger.=( In fact, every time I try, I seem to make them worse! I'm planning on asking Sir to have a go at them, but I've also ordered a new pair of those bent shape ones that are sold as hardanger scissors. They may arrive today. The last thing I needed to cut I ended up having to do with my goldwork scissors, which, whilst it won't hurt them, I'd rather not.
I've also discovered something interesting which is that we do have fairs and shows here in the UK where you can enter arts and crafts to compete for prizes and, in some cases (Leeds - my home town), even trophies! There are four within reasonable distance of here and, as I've missed three of them already and the deadline for entries for the fourth (which takes place this coming weekend) is today, it's too late for this year, but I don't mind. I've already begun putting together ideas and materials for pieces to enter into next year's shows (Leeds, Penistone, Rotherham and Sheffield). The local one is a little disappointing in the categories offered - really only knitting, crochet and cross stitch. Having said that, there's cross stitch and there's cross stitch! And do I have a great piece in mind to enter for next year's 'Cross Stitch - non kit' category! It has metallics, rayon threads, beading, a charm, small satin stitch motifs, fine details in petit point.... This sampler might just qualify as well and I can enter three pieces in each category at this show. There is a general crafts section too, so I might see if I can put the stumpwork rabbit in for that. Unlike many others, our city show allows exhibits up to 3 years old. Most mandate that it must have been made within the last year.
I've also contacted the Sheffield Fayre organisers to request a more general 'Embroidery' category for adults as there is one for children and one for teens, but I don't consider our needle arts as something only for kids! I've been reading about North American and Australian ladies entering their pieces etc in their local shows, but had never heard of anything like that here before. I posted a question about it on our city forum and found out that they're part of local agricultural and horticultural shows. So, look out for projects with that shows mind and, I hope, one day a blog page dedicated to 'Awards' won at there.
Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2013