Saturday, September 17, 2016

Breaking the Silence

My blog has been silent for much too long, but it has been silent because I've had to choose between stitching and writing time, and I chose to stitch. Unfortunately, some of my stitching time was interrupted by sore shoulders and other minor illnesses, but I have been making progress on many fronts.

At home in Rhode Island with my sewing machine, I made my husband a padded envelope for his new (bigger) iPad. Unfortunately, it took two tries to get one to fit correctly and then I accidentally stitched a seam twice, making it rather lopsided. As a result, I am not showing a photo. But even if it isn't perfect, my husband is using it. It makes me happy to know his tablet is safe from accidental drops and scratches, even if I need to practice more to perfect the art of sewing what should be an easy little project.

But all is not lost. I can sew a straight line, because I also sewed new curtains for our newly painted guest room, using some commercial valences in another room as a pattern. I wanted a light airy feel, so the toppers are cream colored and airy and the sheer is a silk/linen panel. I was told over and over that I should not use it for a curtain because silk rots in the light, but it is just what I wanted, and the guest room blinds are lowered unless we have guests, so I think they will be ok. Additionally, the linen will help hold it together.

The reason I wanted a nice fabric is because I want to stitch shadow work butterflies on the sheers. I saw the pattern in Inspirations, and have been dying to work it ever since. I have only experimented with shadow work once and in a much cruder format that will be needed on these sheers, so I worked up a practice piece to see how best to manipulate curves in the pattern and to determine which colors to use. I tried two variegated threads and white. I think I will use all of them in the curtains. I learned a lot in my practice piece, but it took several nights of work. In the end, I liked it so much, that I added a floral garland and framed it against a piece of tie dyed blue fabric. It is a nice little addition to the guest room while I stitch the sheers, which will, I think, take quite awhile to finish!

This is not all that I've been working on, but I'll save more for later blogs so I don't go silent for such a long time again.

New valences and sheers in our guest room.
Here is the sheer with my practice piece pinned to it to see how it will look when I begin embroidering the sheers.
A close up of the practice piece.
My practice piece framed as an accent for our antique dresser. It is nice to find a use for the hours that it too to stitch the piece! And doesn't it go well with the antique dresser scarf I found that was already embroidered with butterflies?!