I was working on a lilac and light cappuccino shot silk fabric and so I chose a light gold thread to stand out well against the mid-toned background. I tried a few metallic shades against it, but this was the one that really stood out - Kreinik Very Fine Braid in 102C couched down with coordinating Kreinik Cord in 102.
This third photo really shows the sheen on the flowers and also the good contrast of the pale gold.
I had originally planned to work the letters and numbers in a sort of solid method, probably by couching in rows, but owing to time limitations and, if I'm totally honest, complete lack of confidence in being able to pull off my first idea (and no time to trial it), made me think that outlining would be best. I owe that idea to Amber of Ambrosia Stitches who, when I asked for ideas on Instagram, asked me if I was going to outline or fill the shapes, thus planting the idea of simplifying in my mind.
Here's the completed embroidery in the hoop before I removed and trimmed it for finishing. As you can see, there were two lots of different light when I took these photos as they were done at different times of day and also in two opposite windows. I've yet to work out the best lighting in our new home!!
Below you can see the completed pillow. Sadly, I didn't get a very good full frontal shot of it as there was too much light bleaching out one side (as you can see a little here too), and I couldn't wait for a better time as I was about to hand it over!!
The finishing process was fairly simple. After pressing the backing fabric and as much of the piece as I could (I was most disappointed to see I'd failed to avoid puckering....), I trimmed the surplus fabric away from the work and placed a line of tacking style stitches along the line I'd marked on the front when first transferring the design. Then I placed the right sides together with a small piece of cotton based fabric (a reject square from one of the baby quilts!!) in between and tacked to the backing to protect both the stitching and the cream backing silk from getting scuffed on the metal work stitches. They were tacked just next to the marking stitches, leaving the bottom open except for a centimetre or so each side of the corners. I machine stitched just inside the marking stitches, trimmed off the corner excess and pressed back the edges of the open side. After removing the tacking and marking stitches and putting some toy stuffing in to make a proper little cushion shape, I slip stitched the bottom edge closed. Done!
You can also get some idea of the size from this shot too. It's only a 7"/18cm sided square, so only a souvenir size.
Glad to have a big project done and so it's on to anniversary things for Sir and also making things for the two or three shows I hope to enter this summer. More on all of those soon.
Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2016