Little Landscape (pre-stitched)
It’s not often you get a chance to transform something old into something new. But like a magician, I shall soon turn this old quilt (2005) into a snappy updated version. And all through the magic of hand embroidery.
Can you see it changing right before your eyes? Good, cause it’s taken me several hours and several TV shows to get it to this point. This is a small piece (9″ x 9″) so I’m using fine, size 12 threads on the rather small elements that make up the design.
I dye fabric with Procion MX fiber reactive dyes and rely upon consistent dye formulas made by the manufacturers. But if they no longer make a certain dye color or change the formula, then my colorways must change too.
The famous Spice Road.
That is what happened with a purple dye that I used for years dyeing such wonderful colorways as Avocado Squash, Black Orchid, and the famous Spice Road. The search for a replacement purple is on meaning that my threads and fabric colorways will change slightly. Stay tuned. I’ll try to update the colorways in the Artfabrik Store as soon as I can.
It’s the dog days of summer and I just can’t get anything done. Maybe it’s the heat or the humidity or …..here’s an idea….. babysitting two young rascals who are quite charming but need lots of attention.
My productivity level is at an all time low. About all I can get done is twisting and labeling thread. (Thread that was dyed well over a month ago.) Do you every find yourself with zero ambition? Is it a bad thing?
The head of my bird stitched on wool needed a little more emphasis so I added another row of Outline Stitches around the edges with a light green thread. We’ll use that same stitch to make a triangle for the beak and fill it in with rows of the Outline Stitch. This is a fancy bird so you may want to add three Bullion Knots with French Knots at the tip to make the bird’s crest.
Fill in the wool background fabric with easy stitchery like swirls of the Running Stitch. This give it that Starry Night kind of look. (Thank you Vincent Van Gogh!)
To complete your woolly bird, finish the fabric edges with a Blanket Stitch. Thank you for joining me during this tutorial and please send me images of what you’ve made. (firstname.lastname@example.org) Now sing a little birdsong of happiness!
Size 8 Pearl Cotton Thread (left) with 6 Stranded Floss (right)
Here’s a question: how many strands of floss thread would equal a specific size of pearl cotton thread? Floss thread comes with 6 strands of threads bundled together. You can separate the bundle and stitch with 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or all 6 threads together. Pearl cotton thread is not divisible. You use it as a “single”.
I don’t dye floss anymore but I’ve tried to compare my hand-dyed pearl cotton thread sizes with strands of floss. Following is a chart to help you compare the two types of threads. (This is just a guess, I have no real way of measuring the diameters of the threads.)
There are few ways to use a Size 3 pearl cotton thread, it being too bulky to draw through batting and fused fabrics. But Couch it down and distinct shapes like this spiraling sun appear in a desert scene.
A few last stitches complete my cactus landscape including this stretch of light purple desert land. The Lazy Daisy stitch topped with a French Knot allude to a scruffy plant holding out against that blasting sun. Hope to show you the final quilt soon.