Sunday, 18 February 2007

Novel Effects

One aspect of stitching Suehiro that I particularly enjoyed was learning the novel effects on three of the veins. Each effect is created in two or three stages. For each, the first stage is to stitch a weft foundation.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

Flax-leaf effect (asanoha- gake) has a foundation of twisted silk. A single strand of flat silk in the same colouras the foundation is then used to mark out a grid of equilateral triangles. These serve as a guide to stitch the star like design of the flax-leaf. These are predominately stitched with a single strand of green flat silk, but a few are stitched with a pair of gold threads.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

Sayagata is a geometric design. Actually, I don’t think this is true Sayagata, I believe it has been adjusted to remove the ‘swastika’ shape that is formed by Sayagata. Although the swastika is a controversial symbol in the western world since WWII, that is not so in many parts of Asia and both left-handed and right-handed swastikas are seen. The design is stitched with a pair of twisted silver threads over a lovely soft mauve flat silk foundation. The silver is couched with the same mauve silk, twisted into a fine thread.

© JEC/Carol-Anne Conway

The third effect is call tie-die (hitta- gake). The foundation is white flat silk. You sometimes find that different colours of the same thread hand differently. I think this may have something to do with the properties of the dye used. I have found this to be particularly true with silk. Some colours are soft and supple; others have a degree of stiffness about them. The white used for this foundation was the softest silk I have come across and, during stitching it spread beautifully to give an even, glossy foundation. I was really pleased with the result. When the tutor showed me the design that I would stitch into it, I could hardly bear to ‘mess up’ my beautiful foundation. First a lattice pattern is created with twisted silk, then the same twisted silk is used to tie the intersection with three straight stitches. The stitches separate the foundation threads and create gaps. Still with the same twisted thread, two short stitches are made into the center of each lattice again, separating the silk foundation. This design is particularly effective when stitched on a coloured background that shows through the tiny spaces created by the stitching. Although I had not wanted to mess up my foundation, it was very pleasing to watch the pattern reveal itself with each subsequent step. It is stitching a even foundation that allows the pattern to form, if the stitches had not been parallel, the gaps created by the tying stitches would be hickledee pickledee.

Happy Stitching


Hideko Ishida said...

I am realy impressed by your stunning technics.

coral-seas said...

Thank you, Hideko, I really enjoyed learning them. I am now looking forward to know what new techniques I will learn in Phase III.