Friday, 10 April 2009

Venerable Friends, Finished

Last weekend was mostly spent gardening in the lovely spring sunshine but I did couch the remaining pages of the last book with tight twist karayori. I love this thread, its tight overtwist creates a smooth firm thread, similar to gimp in appearance. Sunday evening I twisted a white and gold kinkarami no katayori, another thread that I particularly like. The gold twisted with the silk appears as random flecks throughout the thread.

All that remaind was sinking the ends of the couched pages and couching the book binding in place, I thought that I would complete that easily with my 30 minutes stitching plan.

On Monday, I sank the page ends. I always underestimate the amount of time this process takes. On Tuesday I only had time to twist a 2-1 white couching thread. On Wednesday, no stitching as I had an early dentist appointment. Thursday, a full 30 minutes for stitching, threads made and ready to go, surely I would finish today!

I have been working on Venerable Friends, on and off since February 2007. I think the last few stitches should be savoured, not rushed. After 30 minutes I was tantalisingly close to finishing but I had to leave for work. It took great strength of will to pack up with only 10-15 minutes work remaining.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

This is a long bank holiday weekend, our intention is to begin decorating the hall, landing and stairs, but recognising the significance of finishing this particular journey, J suggested that I do that before the decorating (he swore it was not an avoidance tactic on his behalf). It took a mere 20 minutes to couch the last length of thread in place and sink the ends. After 2 years and 44 days I have finished my Phase III.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

But wait! I've missed a bit. I still have to couch the outline of the top right-hand corner of the book.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

Another 40 minutes twisting threads, couching and sinking and this time the stitching is finally finished.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

This design has truly become my friend. I liked the design when I saw Jane stitching it on my very first Japanese Embroidery course, but to begin with I was unsure about the colours selected for me. They were a little dark for my taste but they have grown on me and now I would not change any of them. The green for the gold leaf cloud, which was the colour I was most at odds with, looks stunning twisted with the gold and the blue background of the shippo cloud, which I also strongly disliked, is, I think, the perfect foil for the red, white and yellow used for the shippo.

This has been very happy stitching.


Pollydo2003 said...

What a wonderful project, congratulations Carol-anne. You have done a wonderful job, love to see some closeups, maybe when I come to visit you later this year.


Jackie said...

Well done, it looks truly beautiful you must be very proud of it.


mbroider said...

Beautiful piece of work.

Jane said...

Yayyyyy. Well done, great job. Looking very nice, I'm so pleased you've got in finished and are pleased with it.
Enjoy the decorating.

Anonymous said...

Well done I knew you could do it and it looks amazing, I love your plums ;-) Sue XX

Anonymous said...

Congratulations Carol-Anne.
It is an amazing and skillfully worked piece of embroidery.


Anonymous said...

congratulations on a great finish! This is absolutely stunning.

Elmsley Rose said...

Congratulations - wow!

alsokaizen said...

Wonderful work, congrats!

Elizabeth Braun said...

Beautiful, well done! I think my first instinct would have been to change most of the block colours as well, but at least the gold shows up beautifully against them and it's what you like that matters. Keep up the great work!=)

coral-seas said...

Thank you all for your kind comments. I am very pleased with it - and pleased to have it finished at last :-)


Plays with Needles said...

**trumpet blast***

SOOO Happy for you and your FINISH!

It's absolutely a stunner. And I understand what you mean about not rushing the ending...just lovely, my dear.