Tuesday, 29 June 2010


This year the Oxford Branch of the Embroiderers' Guild hosted the South East West Regional Show. Because the date coincided with my Sister-in-law's 25th Anniversary, I was not able to attend the show but I determined to enter something in the competition. The theme for the competition was Rags or Riches and almost from the outset I had an idea of what I intended to do. I had been enjoying stitching 'Loving Couple' so much that I was reluctant to put it aside but at the beginning of May I realised that I would have to make a start on my entry if it was not going to end the same way as 'Girl with a Pearl Earring' (which I still intent to finish one day).

I started on 9 May, 7 weeks before the show. Doing a little each morning and evening, by the following weekend I had completed the stitch transfer and was ready to start work in earnest.

I selected my threads; 4 shades of silk (I only used 3 in the end) and #1 real gold.

I began with the real gold section of the cord. I'm glad that I did as this proved to be the slowest part of the whole design. Then something disastrous happened; good weather. For the last 2 years we have had a couple of nice weeks in spring, followed by a very disappointing summer. When the sun came out this spring, we decided to make the most of it just in case this summer went the same way. 4 weeks later, I had very little done and my schedule was looking much less comfortable.

At the beginning of June, J went away for a week. I spent every spare minute stitching and one week before the show I had finished the cords were finished but I had to deliver my finished entry to a friend before we left for Amsterdam mid week. That meant I had only 4 days to complete the stitching, do the finishing and mount it.

I stitched from dawn to dusk all weekend and, unbelievable managed to finish it in time.

When I came to mount it on Tuesday evening, I realised that there was not enough fabric to cover the artist frame I had intended to use. I had to come up with a back up plan, which I was not satisfied with but it was all that I could do in the time.

Happy Stitching


Gail said...

What a fabulous example of exquisite goldwork embroidery! They way you applied the gold thread is so interesting. And, completed in such a short time! So, what did you use for mounting? Thank you for sharing your work with us!

Christa Evans said...

Congratulations on finishing this amazing piece in time. It is GORGEOUS. I especially like the gold values in silk that you used.

Front Range Stitcher said...

Exquisite! I'd love to see this one in "person" to catch the real sheen of the goldwork.

Rachel said...

This is really lovely, very delicate and full of light. Well done indeed!

Jackie said...

This piece is really lovely and beautifully stitched. Well done

Jane said...

Glad you got it finished in time. Well done you. Looks lovely

Plays with Needles said...

Riches is RIGHT!! I absolutely loved the gold silks you chose for this piece. Stunning!!!

You are becoming quite the master stitcher my dear! And I'm so proud of you that you just keep making your own JE designs and stitching away. You go girl!

P.S. due to life challenges and technical difficulties...your prodigal present is going out today...xoxo

Anonymous said...

Its beautiful and more beautiful than I remember. You stitching and design are amazing LOL Sue N XX