Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Embroidered Caskets and Boxes

 I've always wanted one of these.  

 And when I saw an on-line course offered by Thistle Threads to make a reproduction of one of these I was very tempted.  So I read all the details and looked at the cost and thought about it.  But the more I thought about it the more I wanted to make my own rather than a reproduction, however lovely it would be.  So I decided to give it a miss, but it did ignite the idea of an embroidered box so I decided I'd make a start on my own.

I'd just ordered some koma so my first attempts were to start by making a simple box to keep them in. 

I''ve never made boxes before but I do have a number of books on the subject.  I also did a whole load of research on-line and found lots of helpful information and tips.  I didn't want to make the box from scratch so searched around, found a supplier of plain wooden boxes and sent off for some samples.

Kimono silk was used to cover them.  I used heat & bond to glue tissue paper to the back of the silk to make my own book cloth.  This makes the silk easier to handle, you can get a really sharp edge.   There were one or two glitches on the early ones.  Different silk appears to be more or less porous, the brown silk above soaks up the glue at the edges however careful I was and appears as a stain.  I'm keeping this box to keep my stock of koma in.  Another section of fabric was spoiled when I messed up the process for making it into book cloth, but each box I made was better than the last. 

I had a tan of sample silk which had turned out not to be suitable for embroidering onto but the sections were just the right size to use for koma. This blue one is another of the early ones, the corners aren't quite right, so I've kept this one to keep my own koma in.  It holds about 10 pair. 

I took some of the completed boxes to my Bournemouth class earlier this year and sold some of them.  I have a few left and will be offering them on my Etsy shop soon. 


 They are lined with hand made paper.


When I started looking for ideas for something different to do with the JE challenge we did on stitchin fingers I thought I might use the finished piece for a box.

The kimono silk I used for this piece is also from a sample tan, so there was a limited amount to work with, I also wanted to match up the colour change in it as much as I could.  Once the embroidery was complete and off the frame I measured up all the sections I would need to cover the box and realised I'd need to have a couple of extra joins to achieve the colour match.  Slightly annoying but unavoidable given the restrictions of the silk, and I was able to cut the pieces so the joins are at the back. 

The box measures 12"x7" and is 4.5" deep.  My plan was to sell this in the Gallery but it's turned out so nicely I'm tempted to keep it.

I'm not sure what I'd use it for though and I don't have anywhere to display it so I'll enjoy it for a while until I take it to the gallery.

The embroidery on this piece took about 25 hours, and then another day to make up the box.


Rachel said...

The boxes are lovely - well done!

Anonymous said...

Lovely boxes! Could you let us know the books and sites you referred to?

elmsley rose said...

Oh my, oh wow!
I'm lucky enough to be doing the casket course....but in great admiration of the research you've done, rather than being spoon fed it.
The boxes look fantastic, especially the one topped with the Japanese Embroidery piece.

خياطة وتفصيل said...

very nice thank you so much :)

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