Thursday, 9 April 2009

Lost treasures - re-discovered

Well it's been a while since I've worked on treasure ship, life and treasure ship itself got in the way. This is a big piece with lots of repetition and lots of layers so it takes a great deal of time just to work one small motif. It seemed to stick at one point and none of the work seemed to make it look any different. In preparation for my phase 10 class later this year I had to produce a list of all the pieces I've done and also give a date for the completion of this one. So now I have to buckle down and get it done. So, after a self imposed break I finally sat down at the frame last weekend and started to stitch. I thought the best way to progress with this is just to concentrate on one section at a time and not look at the thing as a whole, I'm not even going to un-cover the whole thing to take photos. I decided to work on the shippo on the sail and the treasures which looked like this when I started.

I've now completed all the blue, red, and white shippo (well apart form a couple because I've run out of red silk, opps!). Next job - the treasures. The magic mallet needed a gold edging. I decided to use gold couching thread for this and it gives a very different effect to the gold. I've decided I quite like this, it's a much more subtle effect than red couching thread.

The magic cloak needed it's top edge finishing in #3 gold. You can just see the gold under the tracing paper. It then needed some decoration around the top. The scalloped edge was worked using one strand of #3 gold. The little angular design was stitched using twisted gold.

So here we are with some re-discovered treasures. The cloak still needs its fastenings and the hat needs a top and ties, but I need to finish the centres of the shippo design before I do those. Something for the Easter Weekend perhaps?

If anyone is counting we're up to 244 hours.

Happy stitching.

9 comments:

coral-seas said...

Hooray, I knew you would get your Treasure Ship mojo back. Taking a break was a good idea. Those shippo look extremely difficult, you have done an amazing job, they are beautiful.

Hope you getting your red silk in time for easter.

Happy Easter and Happy Stitching

Mary Corbet said...

Wow - really beautiful! I love this whole piece!

Hope you get a chance to work on it this weekend!

Elmsley Rose said...

Why did you use tissue paper when putting the gold over the cloak?

Can you tell me the details of the couching you did at the end of the mallet? Is it just 3 (some type of metal thread) couched with gold thread? The middle line looks almost herringbone in texture.

It's looking very special.

(I've hit "Follow Up Comments" for your reply if that helps)

Jackie said...

Treasure Ship is looking absolutely wonderful - excellent stitching hope you get to work on it over the weekend.

Jackie

Jane said...

Well in answer to Elmsley Rose, the tissue paper serves two purposes. In the top photo it is just for protection so I don't rub the flat silk when working round it. For the fancy pattern in photo 3 it's basically working as a transfer. We use this method with a couple of variations a lot in JE because of all the layering.

The metallic thread is Japanese real gold thread. This is made from very narrow strips of paper coated with gold leaf and then wound round a fine silk core. It comes in different weights. 1 is the finest, this is a number 3.
I couched it in pairs round and round but when I got to the middle there was only space for one strand of thread. So instead of couching a single strand I couched it as a pair with the strands on either side. Which is what has given it this herrigbone look. It's very obvious on the photo because of the macro shot, but looking at it from more than a foot away you don't see this.

Hope this answers the question.

I've done a couple of posts on gold thread on the other blog. I'll post the links in another comment.

Jane said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jane said...

Two posts about gold thread.

http://japanese-embroidery.blogspot.com/2007/09/how-japanese-gold-threads-are-made.html

http://japanese-embroidery.blogspot.com/2007/08/metallic-thread-without-core.html

Anonymous said...

Hi,
Stumbled across your blog when trying to find some tips on cherry blossom design, and think its great.

I am not trained at all but I am working on a small piece which I started years back but never finished.

I would love to know where you get the silk thread from, at present I use basic threads but they dont have the same lusture.

Thanks
Michelle Kumar

Jane said...

Hi Michelle, thank you for the nice comments. The silk I've used here, and for all my pieces, is flat silk from the Japanese Embroidery center in Atlanta. It's beautiful stuff to work with but a tad expensive. Although there is a lot on a reel so it's not too bad. You can get cheaper versions that that from JEC, but you can really tell the difference in the quality.
Not sure where you are based so check out www.japaneseembroidery.com and see their shop for details of threads.
Let me know if I can help you with anything else.
jane

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