Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Christmas ornament

Well, Hello!!

It's been so long since I've done anything "medieval" that I haven't had anything to post to the blog. That doesn't mean I've not been reading all of your blogs and staying interested. Also I am still making stuff.

This year we decided to get a really little Christmas tree, only 3 feet tall. It is small enough that I was able to decorate it entirely with handmade (not all by me) ornaments. It's a little more sparsely decorated than I would like, though, so...

Here's a little trinket I made the other day, partially inspired by my desire to work some tiny brick stitch on 40 count linen (because it looks great, or because I am a masochist?). It is a single motif, using 2 strands of Eterna silk on 40 count linen, appliqued to a piece of white wool. The wool is lightly quilted. The edges of the motif are finished with couching. The edges of the ornament are finished with a 4 ply kumi himo braid woven with 4 strands of Eterna thread per ply. There is also a faceted crystal bead just above the tassel.

I bought the Eterna years ago but never used it for some reason; maybe because many of the colors looked like modern dyes? I had forgotten it was filament silk so I was pleased with the sheen. I was not pleased with the way the thread kept catching on my work roughened hands. Using a magnifier lamp made using the fine linen pretty easy, although the magnifier did also magnify previously unnoticed flaws in my manicure. That was rather distressing!

This was a fun little project, and great to have a finished object produced in under 24 hours.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

First side of brick stitch purse finished

In a natural setting in all its glory, here is the finished side of a new purse. As usual (since I am still using up a large back stock) it is 3 strands of Soie d'Alger silk thread over 32 count linen. The size of the purse was dictated by the size of linen fabric I had handy in my stash, and I am going to make the other side in a completely different pattern. The colors will be the same and the source of the pattern will also be a Burgundian medieval tile roof. My reason for deciding to do a different pattern on the other side is that I wanted to be able to make an example of another pattern without having to wait until I finished an entire project. I am really not as patient as people sometimes think I am. : )

I'm so glad it is getting to be springlike! These flowers were really cheap at Trader Joe's and I couldn't resist buying them.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Progress on the new pattern

I have been working industriously on the new pattern. As those of you with busy, demanding lives know, finding time for embroidery isn't always easy. I peck away at this a little bit at a time and I am getting much done although not as fast as I would like. I decided to finish the designs first without the background in order to post this photograph. It allows me, and hopefully those of you viewing it, to imagine different color combinations other than the yellow I chose for the background.

I am excited and looking forward to seeing this complete; it motivates me to continue. I am also trying to think ahead and decide how I am going to finish the edges.

Materials: Three strands of Soie d' Alger silk thread on 28 count linen. I'm still trying to use up my backstock of silk thread so I can change manufacturers, although I do like this thread. I just have something else in mind and wish I hadn't purchased so much of it back when I had more disposable income.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Pattern #21

Here it is, the preliminary version of Pattern #21. Although larger than many other designs, it is a repeat. Once the first repeat is stitched, it is fairly easy to continue stitching the pattern.
The inspiration for this pattern is the tiled roof of the Hôtel-Dieu in Beaune, France (part of Burgundy). The building was built as a charitable almshouse in 1443 by Nicholas Rolin, chancellor to Duke Philip the Good of Burgundy. The current tiles were recreated from 1902-7 in the original style.

While not actually German, the pattern and colors are very similar to those of German origin. I tried to stay close to the original colors in my recreation, but it would look beautiful in a variety of color combinations.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

New! Pattern #21 in progress

Has it really been two years since I last published a pattern? I guess so! Well, here it is: Pattern #21 in brick stitch. The pattern is based on a medieval tile roof from Burgundy as shown in the book I featured in my last post. It is technically not document-ably German in origin, but it is in the same style and it is a beautiful pattern. I tried to replicate the original colors, but I think it would look beautiful in a number of color combinations.

I am using three strands of Au Ver au Soie silk on 30 count (?I think) linen even weave. My plan is to make a purse that will have one side with this pattern and the other side with a different pattern (the planned Pattern #22), both from the same book of Burgundian roofs. There are extant examples of purses with different patterns on the two sides, although not to my knowledge are there purses with two geometric patterns; the examples I know of are pictorial. However, since the pattern based on roof tiles is purely speculative I don't believe it is too much of a stretch to make a purse with two different patterns. Plausibly it could be a purse made of two older embroideries cut down/repurposed as is demonstrated in other examples.

In this photo I show the embroidery completed in stages: the blue outline that defines the shapes, the patterns within the blue borders, and the completely finished areas of embroidery. I purposely did the embroidery this way in order to photograph it to show you the progress of my work process. Also hopefully it will stimulate your imagination for other suitable color combinations.

Look for the charted pattern at a later time when I have finished more of the embroidery. Thanks to all of you who follow my blog; I realize I have been remiss in publishing for some time and hope to be more active in the future.