Thursday, 7 August 2014

Four Seasons - Spring Doodle Flower

Spring Doodle Flower
Spring of the four seasons challenge was your choice - I had already planned that this would be soutache - given the time involved in the medium - a brooch it was.

One of my first soutache designs - Soutache in Bloom - a beginners pattern - was inspired by flowers.  Soutache in bloom was created on one layer - so Spring Doodle Flower is a step up - created on two layers.  

The design was inspired by the dagger beads - I was struggling to see these within the flower focal - so they became the leaf at the base of the flower.  Do doodles of flowers have one leaf or two?  The doodle shaped the use of the lilac facets - individually enclosed in two warps of cord.  These petals were placed irregularly around the focal to depict a quick sketch.  

The secret to the design is two layers of ultrasuede - behind the focal.  First layer added the decorative edging around the chessboard focal.  The brooch back and doodle petals were then stitched/glued to this first layer.  The decorative edge was then used to attach a second layer of ultrasuede behind the focal.  With irregular structures it is best to cut the ultrasuede to the correct shape as you edge the design - this accommodates the curvature and thickness created at the back from the warps.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Four Seasons - Autumn Fall Cuff

Autumn Fall Cuff

The four seasons challenge run by Stitchncraft was definitely that ...........not one initial idea became a final piece.  I initially signed up for beady mojo - but presented with a few crystals and a professional entry category - it was a little bit daunting.  For once I was out of ideas......summer was a collar that I started during the Christmas holiday and still wasn't sure about until it was backed - the night before I had to post.

The Autumn Cuff was initially a free form design around a peyote bezel triangle - but after a day of experimenting with bead counts - I suspect my tension was too tight - I had half a peyote bezel that was a touch too small. So I increased the bead size and produced a bezel that looked like a crumpled leaf - embroidery it was!  Thankfully I have tiny wrists - so my first bead embroidery cuff is 6 inches - taking around 35 hours to stitch.  The design had developed and grown over the day I had struggled with a peyote bezel - I wanted the cuff to depict the colour changes of my commute into Durham during the autumn months.  On the left - leafs start of all shades of green.......

Autumn Fall Cuff

 As autumn progresses - the rich vibrant red - gives away to a golden fall........

Autumn Fall Cuff

The fill was created using stop stitch to capture the texture of the woods.  Given I'm new to embroidery I wanted to demonstrate I could create a piece using traditional stitches - with my own spin!  The seed bead size varied from size 15 to 8 - the subtle change in colour was created using size 15 stop beads that moved from green to red to brown.  Bronze charlottes were used as stop beads throughout the design to bring cohesion,

Autumn Fall Cuff