Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Travelling Books - Introduction

The Oxford Branch of the Embroiderer's Guild has embarked on a new venture this year, Travelling Books. It is in effect a 'round robin' but the 'robin' in this case is an A5 sketch book. For now we are working in groups of six, each member of the group has two books, a Travelling Book and a Home Book. You have one month to create a page for each book; at the end of the month, you pass the travelling book to the next person in your group. The first month both pages go into your own books; in subsequent months, one page is for your home book, the other for the travelling book currently lodging with you. When your travelling book has done the round and returns home, you will have six pages by six different artists.

The phrases 'Japanese Embroidery' and 'rush job' are rarely found in the same sentence but ... with so many things vying for my attention, I did not begin working on my first pages until last Friday. Although I had decided on a small design, I had put myself under considerable presure time wise, especially as I was demonstrating Japanese Embroidery at the Stitching and Creative Crafts show all weekend.

I don't do my best work under pressure, and the stitching is not terribly good but I certainly did not have time to redo it. I finished stitching late on Tuesday night; I began making up the page in the Travelling Book on Wednesday morning.

I finished it after work on Wednesday before going directly to our branch meeting and exchanging books 30 minutes later. I have a tendancy to leave things to the last minute but that was too close for comfort, even for me.

Although the stitching is less than perfect, the page is as I envisaged and I am reasonably happy with it. I am trying to keep in mind the ethos behind this project; the intention is not to create perfect works of art but rather to stimulate our own, and each others, creative juices.

I only had time to complete the travelling book ready to pass on, I hope to complete the home book this weekend so that it does not fall behind. My travelling book has now begun its journey and I will not see it again until it has completed the round. How exciting is that. Unfortunately, the lady who passes books to me was unable to attend this evening's meeting, she will post her book to me, but I intend to give myself more time to work on the next pages.

Happy Stitching


Anonymous said...

You did it, even if some friends did try and get you to stitch on Sunday evening :-)) Look forward to seeing what you stitch next month and to see the finished book. Sue XX

Miss 376 said...

This will be so exciting to see when it comes back, sounds like a great idea

Plays with Needles said...

CA -- You've got a bad case of the "too hard on yourself" disease...

This is a beautiful journal entry and captures your spirit and the essence of your love for Japanese embroidery. I love that you decided to take a glimpse of a butterfly which, I'm assuming, is one of your favorite's one of my favorites of yours.

I think this sounds like a stimulating project and I would love to see what's next. I think you have done a good job of doing a quick representation of the real thing...I am tackling a similar idea in my February BJP -- different from yours, of course, but I'm trying to "represent" Japanese embroidery without actually doing silk on silk -- I've decided to use a cherry blossom as my best attempt. We'll see how it turns out. Enjoyed your post and hope your biking without incident...xo Susan

sharonb said...

This is a great idea and sounds like a fantastic project I will look forward to seeing what appears