Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Tudor Rose - Part 3

In third and final Tudor Rose lesson we stitched the three remaining leaves on each bunch of five leaves.

The first leaf in this lesson was the top leaf on each bunch. First we used #371 Gold Wire to make a Ceylon stitch foundation. This is an extended version of Ceylon stitch with only three rows of ‘chains’; one on each edge and one along the leaf stem. I recall that I had some difficulty maintaining an even tension while practising extended Ceylon stitch for the gold work sampler. I was also mindful of the problems I had with Ladder stitch on the gold work sampler so took care with the tension on the rungs between each ‘chain’. My Ceylon stitch foundation for the first leaf is not perfect but I was reasonably happy with it.

© Thistle Threads/Carol-Anne Conway

The second step for this leaf was to weave under and over the rungs created by the Ceylon stitch using Soie Perlee. Several rows of weaving are packed quite tightly into the available space. The trick was to weave sufficient rows to nicely fill the leaf but not so many that the gold was completely obscured by the silk. It is the hints of gold glinting from between the silk that make these combination stitches so attractive.

© Thistle Threads/Carol-Anne Conway

The fourth leaf on each bunch of leaves is outlined with reverse chain stitch Soie Perlee. The leaf is then filled with detached buttonhole with return stitch using #371 gold wire.

© Thistle Threads/Carol-Anne Conway

The fifth leaf is worked in exactly the same way as the third using a different shade of Soie Perlee.

© Thistle Threads/Carol-Anne Conway

I really enjoyed making these composite stitches and like the effect of the silk and metallic combinations. Silk and metallic individually are my favourite threads and I think they are even lovelier when combined – each complimenting and enhancing the other. Two of the stitch combinations were used twice on each bunch (four times in all). I would have preferred to used two different stitch combinations rather than repeating some of the stitches but I think the bunch of leaves looks very attractive.

Happy Stitching

Monday, 9 June 2014

My husband, me and 'the other woman'

My husband has a new love in his life!

It’s possibly my own fault. You see I have been rather preoccupied with my embroidery and spending more time away from home on courses or demonstrating at exhibitions. Perhaps I was rather naive to think that he would not look for other amusement in my absence.

It all began innocently enough with an occasional admiring glance at a passing stranger but then he started passing comment, "what a stunner!", "did you see that beauty?" He starting spending more and more time on the internet searching out particular models until he found ‘the one’. I could see how attracted he was; 'she' set his heart racing and he could hardly take his eyes of her. It was only a matter of time before he arranged to meet her.

From then on things moved very quickly and it was a matter of weeks before she came to live with us. I insisted that she live in the annex and tried to be understanding when he spent time with her. I tried not to be jealous as I watched him pampering her or went they went on outings together. I consoled myself with the thought that it allowed me more time for my embroidery.

Then he dropped his bombshell; he wanted me to get to know her; to love her the way he does; for the three of us to go on outings together! I wasn’t sure that I wanted to know her let alone come to love her. I was tempted to say that I would rather spend time with my embroidery than with ‘her’. But I told myself that I might lose my husband to her completely if I didn’t try to be a part of their lives.

We went on a few short excursions together; out to lunch; to a riverside pub one sunny evening; to a local festival full of more of her kind of people to see if I would 'fit in'! And to my surprise I found I quite liked her. From the beginning, I had to admit how beautiful she was and now I began to realise how much fun she could be. I’ve always liked that outdoors and that is where she is happiest; running free with the wind in her face. In the sunshine, her beauty shines out for all to see.

Yesterday we had our first full day out together. This time we went somewhere of my choosing, among my kind of people (a display from the collection of 18th century European church vestments at St Mary’s Church in Upper Froyle) but travelling there and back together was good fun and we enjoyed a nice lunch outside a country pub.

I will be quite content to sometimes stay home with my embroidery while Jon and his new Harley go off together but I am also looking forward to our next ride out together in the sunshine. Next time we may go to the sea-side. Oh! I do like to be beside the sea-side!

Happy Motorbiking!