Friday, 6 January 2012

Small Flowers, 12

The space between the large motifs, the small flowers and the twigs and leaves is filled with silver beads using a technique called Tataki-ume. I have used this method on both Calm Flow and Poppy Pouch. On both of those pieces the beads are tightly packed to completely cover the fabric. On Floral Melody the beads are slightly spaced to allow the background fabric to show through. The spaces should be consistent so it is more difficult to do than the variation taught in the earlier phases. (n.b. Usually slight variations of technique have a different name but I don’t if that is the case here. I tried to research Tataki-ume on the internet but could only find references to food so I may have the name completely wrong!)

I discussed how the thread colour could affect the appearance of the beads in an earlier post and wondered if the silver beads would look better stitched with white thread. I did some stitch samples on the edge of the fabric using four different coloured threads; white, cream, pale blue and pale grey. I thought that there was a barely noticeable difference between the samples with the white and pale blue threads giving the brightest, most silvery effect. The pale grey thread gave the beads a darker, steelier appearance and the cream thread gave the beads a softer creamy look. In the end decided to stick with the cream thread that I had used throughout because it is the least noticeable against the back ground fabric.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

As I started to fill the background, I was amazed at how the whole appearance of the design was altered.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

All of the elements became unified.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

Some of the small flowers that I had thought were strong accents, simply melted into the background.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

And this is how Floral Melody looked when the entire background done!

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

As I said at the beginning of this series of posts, these small flowers, twigs, leaves and the back ground have taken several weeks to stitch. I certainly have not done them during the Twelve days of Christmas that these posts were sent to you! Even the posts were done in advance (mostly on Christmas Eve) and scheduled to be delivered one at a time while I was busy with Christmas celebrations and away visiting family in Amsterdam. When I returned, I was delight to see the lovely comments that had been left and thank you all for your kind words.

Floral Melody, when finished, will be a handbag with both sides beaded with the same design. Although one side is now finished, I still have some beading to do on the second side.

Speaking of the Twelve Days of Christmas, you probably know by now that Mary Corbet is running a TDoC give-away with some wonderful prizes on offer. If you did not know, do not despair, you have until January 9th, 2012, at 5:00 am Central Standard Time to visit Needle’n’Thread and leave a comment on the posts to have a chance to win.

Happy Stitching


Elizabeth Braun said...

What an impressive piece of beading and I can really see how you put the public holidays to good use!=)

Looking forward to seeing it made up now.

Carol said...

I'm relatively new to your blog, though I have occasionally wandered over here from Susan's before I started following.

Your talent is amazing.

I looked back through your posts to get the drift of the random beading you do that transformed this piece which was perfect into mucho perfect.

I'm going to try your approach, finding my own version of your river vision.

Thanks for all you share with us.

The Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure said...

This is lovely! I've enjoyed watching the beading very much as I have started adding beads to my needlepoint. I am being quite restrained in my own stitching but watching you, I can see just what the possibilities are. Thank you!

Elmsley Rose said...

The word "WOW" just doesn't seem adequate.

Rachel said...

Fab-u-lous! And yet another example how how sometimes that old saw about "less is more" turns out to be wrong1

Connie said...

Oh my goodness. Your work is incredible. I don't bead, but I really enjoy seeing what you're doing.

Susan Elliott said...

Those silver beads really pulled it all together. Isn't it fascinating how backgrounds can tone down colors and motifs that you had originally thought too strong. I notice this happens alot...We often forget about the importance of contrast.