Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Ribbons and Lace

Nearly every project I choose to do is because I want to do the embroidery rather than actually wanting the finished item. Once the embroidery is complete, my attention is drawn to the next project. I have a lot of UFO’s. For the most part, I am completely content with this. There are a few items that I occasionally think "I must get around to finishing that someday" but it is highly unlikely that I ever will. There are too many things to be embroidered and too many techniques to be learnt.

Given the time and effort I put into my Japanese Embroideries, I do finish those and recently I have taken part in a few swaps, so I am compelled to finish those. When I started Floral Glove, I resolved that I would 'finish' it but as soon as the embroidery was done, my interest wavered and I have found it very difficult to find the motivation to do the finishing work. As an incentive (more a stick than a carrot) I have banned myself from starting anything new until it is done. This has succeeded mainly in preventing me from doing any stitching and that makes me miserable!

Another sticking point for me is that the directions call for many of the component parts to be glued. Even though finishing Japanese embroidery involves pasting the back of the embroidery with glue made from wheat powder, I am still very adverse to gluing textiles. Once I had resolved to stitch, rather than glue, where possible, I felt more inclined to get on with it.

Before beginning the actual construction of the scissor case, there were a couple of trims to add to the embroidered linen. Gold lace is used to outline the gauntlet.

© Thistle Threads/Carol-Anne Conway

The bottom of the gauntlet is trimmed with a bright red, double faced satin ribbon. Elizabethan twist is first stitched to one edge together with spangles stitched at intervals along the same edge. The ribbon is then gathered along the opposite edge and slip-stitched in place.

© Thistle Threads/Carol-Anne Conway

I attached both the lace and ribbon before removing the linen from the frame.

© Thistle Threads/Carol-Anne Conway

The kit comes with many of the finishing materials already die cut. Some of these pieces have to be cut in half or trimmed to a smaller size but having the basic shape pre-cut is a big bonus point in my view. The embroidered linen is applied to one of the pieces of die cut mount board with a layer of wadding between them. The instructions said to glue the wadding to the board and then fold the edges of the linen over the board and glue down on the back. I could see no alternative to gluing the wadding to the board but I laced the linen on the reverse of the board instead of gluing it.

Silk brocade is supplied for the inside of the scissor case. One piece is used to cover a die-cut piece of skirting. Again the instructions said attach the silk by folding the edges over and gluing them to the back; again I stitched the two layers together but this time with tacking stitches that I later removed. A needle felt is attached to the lining with a small stitch in each corner; I used some of the remaining spangles rather than plain stitches. The embroidered front and silk lining are then joined, wrong sides together, with ladder stitch.

Happy Stitching


Elizabeth Braun said...

Yes, I like the embroidery part better than the finishing up bit too! Still, the finishing means an imminent sense of accomplishment and something to post about, so it has its up side!

Keep up the good work.

Moonsilk Stitches said...

I generally stitch instead of glue when I can, too. I just think it looks nicer and I feel better about it overall. And the glueing in Japanese embroidery just isn't the same as using glue to mount fabric onto a backing. Your piece looks gorgeous.

Rachel said...

I like the idea of spangles to attach the needlefelt - I wish I'd thought of it!

Cynthia Gilbreth said...

It certainly looks great! I don't like using glue, either, and prefer stitching whenever I can. I also try to use plastic mesh or something similar instead of board so it can be dry cleaned properly. I chat with my dry cleaner fairly often - they really know how to handle my embroideries. It's a beautiful project.

Anonymous said...

I completely agree with you about the finishing but it's only recently that I've 'allowed' myself not to complete everything on the grounds that the making of the project was the goal. That certainly helped lift the guilt to having so many unfinished pieces which can only be a good thing!!

Susan Elliott said...

This is a drop dead gorgeous bit of stitching my dear CA!!! I love love love the entire thing. What fun...I'm just bummed I didn't take it but when would I have had the time. You are a master embroiderer my dear. It's gorgeous!