Thursday, 29 September 2011

Back to Normal

I’m never down for long. A full hour of beading yesterday morning and again this morning put me back on schedule and restored my good humour.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

Happy Stitching

Monday, 26 September 2011

All Work and No Play ....

I’m feeling rather grumpy today.

I took Thursday and Friday off work to celebrate my birthday. I have had a lovely weekend and am not ready for it to end but I had to return to work this morning. :-(

On top of that, many of my Japanese embroidery friends are in Bournemouth this week for the September Japanese Embroidery UK class. I never attend the September class but I always long to be there with them. :-( :-(

But the main reason for my grumpiness is that I over slept and did not have any time to bead before work today. This is the first morning that I have not been able to squeeze in even a few minutes. :-( :-( :-(

To give myself a quick beading fix and hopefully lift the glums, here are a couple of pictures of some of the beading I did yesterday. :-)

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway



© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway


Happy Stitching

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

How Do You Eat an Elephant?

When I had removed the previously beaded motif and looked at the bare canvas I was completely overwhelmed by the amount of work required. Floral Melody is approximately 12 inches wide by 6 inches high. Both sides are heavily beaded. All I could see was the hours and hours and hours of beading.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

I reminded myself that I like beading and could happily spend hours and hours and hours doing it. I looked again at the design and noticed that it is made up of individual motifs, a few larger ones and lots of smaller ones. I decided not to focus on the whole but rather to concentrate on just one motif at a time.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

In Japanese embroidery (beading included) you work the foreground motifs first. On Floral Melody the motifs don’t actually overlap so I chose to treat the larger motifs as being in the foreground. Even the largest motif has several components; the flower, the stem, a few leaves and some bracts. I decided to work on this flower first.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

Now that I have got going, I am really enjoying the beading this piece. It is true that I enjoy whatever I am working on but this one is pure JOY! The previous Phases have been somewhat repetitive, although that is not necessarily a bad thing in my book - I like that kind of work and find it very relaxing. The dynamic of this phase is completely different. It uses a greater variety beads and techniques, and each motif works up relatively quickly. It is fascinating to see the fanciful flowers and foliage emerging from the lines printed on fabric.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

As with the Japanese Embroidery, each phase introduces a new technique. The new technique on Floral Melody is moriage which gives a 3 dimensional effect without the aid of padding beads. I am finding it a challenge to obtain an even, consistent look to the raised areas and have reworked them several times before I have something I’m satisfied with. As with most tricky techniques, the results are worth the effort.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

Happy Stitching

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Progress Report - September

I am really pleased with the progress I made in August. I have been getting up earlier so that I can do some stitching before I leave for work. I haven’t managed a hour every day but I’ve done slightly more on others, especially at the weekends. Even though I had a week with virtually no stitching (when I scratched my eye) I’ve put in over 40 hours on Floral Melody this month.

I estimated 130 hours stitching time for this design. Looking at how much I have done in 40+ hours, I think it is going to take even longer (I always underestimate the time required to do something!) but if I average 40 hours per month, I should be able to finish it by Christmas.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

I managed to finish Floral Glove before the end of the month, but only just! I am pleased to have it finished and pleased with the finished article but I am far more pleased to have started my next project. I’ve been itching to do this for the last 5 months. When I was struggling with the long and short stitch on Camellia’s I thought that Trish Burr had launched her thread painting correspondence course solely for my benefit. I’ve only stitched one small element so far but this is now my evening project.

© Trish Burr/Carol-Anne Conway

I have also stitched the last three Round Robin Travelling Pages. Some of these are starting to find their way home so I will soon be able to show pictures of my contribution. I have one more Travelling Page on a different subject and a couple of postcards still to do.

Happy Stitching