Saturday, 1 November 2014

Needlequest November - Stumpwork

Here we are at the beginning of a new month for the Needlequest - the second to last one.  This month's theme is stumpwork.  A few years ago I wrote an introductory article to stumpwork (and ribbon embroidery) with some suggestions on how to get going etc, so some readers may like to (re)view that.

Stumpwork is terrific and is a favourite with many stitchers - just to look at and admire, if not to have a go at themselves.  However, this month's challenge is try it out for yourself.  How?  Well, why not have a go at one or two of the tutorials for stumpwork elements on Sew in Love?  I've tried to keep the materials needed just to things you'll already own - cotton threads, a bit of felt and maybe some beads in most cases, so they may be a good place to start.  You can, no doubt find some elsewhere too, if you have a good poke around on-line, in magazines and in books.  Your local library may be able to come up with something that will help you as well.

As with most styles, I suggest starting small and, if at all possible, with a entry level kit.  The advantages of a kit are manifold, but just take supplies as one.  Many keen stitchers have a good supply of fabrics, needles and cotton threads, but not necessary much in the way of beads, metallics, wires and so on.  A kit can solve this problem by providing you with everything you need for that design without you needing to go out and buy a whole pack of something you may never use again.  Also, kits often have good, clear instructions.  I learned a few good techniques using five of the old DMC kits, now long since deleted.  (If you're reading this, 'Emma Brodery' the DMC threads' blogger, suggest some new ones!  People want to learn raised work and, whilst they won't fly off the shelves like cross stitch kits would, I'm certain there is a market for them.)  Ditto (including the bits in brackets, just aimed elsewhere) for the old RSN kits, where the dog rose you can see above came from, and from which I learned the technique for my needlelace strawberry tutorial.

Originally, I had planned to work the Colleshill Collection butterfly and sunflower kit I have in stock for this month's NQ, but I really don't want three fair sized projects on the go at once.  It just gets too much, esp. when one other project is time sensitive.

So, in order to keep thins simpler, these oranges are the sort of thing I plan to do this month.  I've done a fair amount of wiring things before, but I want to have a go at using my paper/cotton moulds to make oranges etc.  I've had the things in stock for a long time, but have never got around to trying them out.  I don't think I'll do as many as five and probably not all the same size, (as I have three different sizes of paper/cotton balls on hand), but we'll see how it goes and how quick they are to work.  I have some ideas that I may want to use them for later on.  Kits/designs-for-sale sorts of ideas.

BTW, this is from Kay Dennis' "Beginners' Guide to Stumpwork"

I hope I can use some of these lovely coton à broder #16 shades that came this morning for my sample.  I got them on e-bay UK and was thrilled to find these 11 shades that I hadn't come across in this gauge before.  The two orange shades, and maybe the greens and even the yellow, may just come in handy this month.

What wonderful retail therapy stash shopping is!  20 days to the Harrogate show.....

November is also 'Art Every Day Month' as hosted by Leah Piken Kolidas, the lady who also hosts the 'Creative Every Day' challenge.  I'd forgotten all about it until I saw her post in my feedly earlier on.  Last year I was all gung-ho to join in and found it went like a complete damp squib for me, so I hope I can do better this year.  My first day's participation will be to relax with a little on my cross stitch later on, but I hope that I can revitalise my art blog during this month too and get some paper-based work done too.  I'll let you know if and when there's anything to see over there.

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2014


Magpie's Mumblings said...

Stumpwork is definitely on my to-learn list...maybe it will happen in 2015 (I hope!).

Queeniepatch said...

Of all the beautiful things you create, I think I like the stumpwork the best. I am looking forward to seeing your oranges grow and ripen.

Pamela said...

I'm joining in this month and this is the project I will be working on -
I plan to post my progress on Sundays (here's hoping there is progress!)

jackiescrafts said...

Your stump work looks lovely and I look forward to seeing your oranges take shape.
Jackie x

Rachel said...

Looking forward to seeing those oranges grow!

zenuwpees said...

Magnifique creations bonne journée Marie-Claire