Sunday, 28 March 2010


I haven't felt like stitching, and it's not very often you will hear me say that!

Last Sunday I broke a tooth. I saw the dentist on Monday afternoon and he repaired it but I was feeling a little less than happy for a couple of days. Then on Wednesday I awoke with a sore throat, pounding head and aching from head to toe. Since then I have had a ghastly cold that has sapped all my energy and desire to do anything. I think that I am over the worst of it now and am beginning to return to normal.

I did some stitching last weekend and a little today but I'm not really enjoying this project. I'm not sure if that is just the way that I have been feeling, or genuine displeasure in what I am doing.

I am doing the embroidery on the gold leaf design and I have some 'issues' with it.

Firstly, I am stitching to a deadline and that is a big turn off for me. I have to get the finished piece to Midori-san by the end of April so it can go to Japan for finishing. If I don't make the deadline, it can go with another batch but that may not be for some months. There are other things that I would rather be stitching now and there is a strong arguement for putting this aside and working on those instead. There are two reasons I don't want to do that. One is that if I don't complete this now, I suspect that I will never return to it and that would be a great shame, it is very pretty and I think I will like it when finished. The second is that I want the frame for another project I want to get started.

In addition to the deadline, I'm not enjoying the stitching. The flowers are tiny and I am struggling to stitch them as well as I would like. Midori-san made them look so easy. She said to concentrate on each individual petal. To make them symmetrical with a rounded shape and clear points on the petals. She also said that we should not leave a one-point open space between the petals.

The blossom on the left is stitched by Midori-san, the other poor specimens are mine. If you click on the picture then click again to zoom in, you can clearly see the differences between her stitching and mine!

People often say that I must have a lot of patience to do Japanese embroidery. I don't usually see it as requiring patience, I just love to do it, but these tiny cherry blossoms are testing my patience and I am having to dig deep to find enough to keep going with them. I'm not sure if I am not enjoying stitching them because I am doing them so poorly, or I am doing them so poorly because I am not enjoying stitching them. Little by little I am getting through them and am on target to meet my deadline. One thing in my favour is I can be very persistant.

Happy Stitching


Rachel said...

I'm sorry to hear you're so poorly, Carol - Get well soon.
Looking at the zoomed in picture I'd say your tension is tighter than your teacher's, which is maybe because you aren't enjoying it very much!

Plays with Needles said...

My dearest Carol, methinks you have had your nose stuck to the grindstone...I mean, cherry blossom on this one. When you get too close to something, you can be hypercritical. Tomorrow morning, wake up with your cup of tea/coffee and place your frame standing on its end where you can see your work...lean it against a cabinet and sit in a chair and gaze at it. You will be amazed at how beautiful it is...

And my guess is that you are getting better and better with each cherry blossom you stitch...go take a walk and look at the cherry blossoms...and if you don't have any blooming right now, go to Flickr and look at some...breathe and keep stitching...make yourself smile...this too will pass and the end result will be gorgeous. Just like you.

Tina said...

I think your cherry blossoms are beautiful! Stitching to a deadline and not feeling well will all contribute to you not believing that you work is good-it is WONDERFUL!

Keep plugging away!

Jane said...

Poor you, hope you feel better soon. My advice, don't rush this. Susan is right I think you are being hypercritical, deep breath, cup of tea, stand back from it. I know you are up against the deadline, but take a break for a couple of days and then take another look. Have to say it's looking pretty good to me.

Elmsley Rose said...

My dear lady,
It can get so hard towards the end of a project. I remember a 6 month long, long & short stitch piece I was doing for a friend, and I had to really force myself to do a single more stitch, and finish the damned thing.
But it was beautiful, and your piece is far more beautiful. Stay with it. It'll get done, stitch by stitch, and then you will be so proud! (and onto the excitement of a different project!)

charlotte2 said...


Hope your cold is a bit better.
I know what you mean by deadlines I hate them. I have not started to stitch this piece yet. I want to get on with my fans. So have a cup or two of tea, relax then do some more stitching.
Take care

Deepa said...

I hope by this time you would've completed a little more of cherry blossoms. You've said it right,the only way to meet your deadline is with persistence.The fear of losing interest was what made do different flower blocks in my latest stitching. May be you can try this method - couple of cherry blossoms,then a little green or some other part of the pattern,cherry blossoms again and so on.
Happy Easter to you and your loved ones!!!,

Front Range Stitcher said...

Hi Carol, So sorry you're having a difficult time of it. It will pass and for now just do what you can. I know we've all felt the same way, it's just the nature of what we do. A new and brighter day is just ahead. Promise!