Sunday, 23 September 2012

Four days in September

In my last post I'd completed White Blossoms and, for the first time since I started on my Japanese embroidery journey, I had nothing on a frame to stitch.  Well, the empty frames lasted four days. 

I have a number of JEC pieces in my stash, but they are quite large pieces and after White Blossoms and Autumn Shell Box I didn't want to start another large piece.  So I spent the four days reviewing the smaller designs and ideas which ready to go and ended up with two small pieces on frames. 

This is the blue iris design I embroidered last year for my Godmother.  At the time I did think about stitching more in other colour variations.  In fact, I'd got some fabric from my tutor precisely with this design in mind.  It's a creamy white kimono fabric with a gold thread, this give flecks of gold on the surface, it's a bit like the fabric JEC use for their fractal pieces or the Hoitsu scroll pieces.
So I dug out the fabric and transferred the design using chaco paper. 
 My original idea was to embroider it as I did the blue version, flat silk in one colour.  I started this using self padding under the main petal but decided that the contrast wasn't enough. So I decided to go for a white a gold version, following the same idea as for Black Heart, using the same colours for the flower as in the fabric. I used JEC #341 and #1 soft gold.  The standard #1 gold was too harsh. 
The main technique is random realistic, going from 2F, 1.5F+#1G, 1F+2G, 2G.  Most of the flower was embroidered while I was at the Stitching Show in Manchester.  And it has worked very well. 
My first working of the bud used four strands of #1G for the final layer but it was too thick and started too far up the bud, so the following day I took it out and re-worked it. The bud on the right is the final version.
The smaller petals were embroidered with #1G HH, some of them were padded with 2F.  
This colour combination has produced a very elegant design.  Sadly there is only a limited amount of this fabric, my tutor has only one bolt.  I feel a phone call coming on to reserve another piece to do another chrysanthemum - Gold Heart!
Yet again I've run out of one of the colours before I finished, so am waiting for the green silk to arrive to finish the leaves. 
The other design is a small fan with orchids. For some reason I didn't take many pictures of this one in progress so only have one to share with you.  This is the most beautiful colour of fabric (from my stash this time).  It doesn't come out on the photo, if you have the JEC colour chart it's like #637/638. It came from Ichiroya,  it's for making a raincoat, so has a very, very smooth and shiny surface which makes it shower proof. The water just rolls off. It's very closely woven but very soft, so ok to embroider onto, but it wouldn't support too much weight.  
It has been embroidered with either 2F or 1.5F and one section of twisted thread for a flower calyx.  I've used JEC #674 for the orchids.  This is a very bright pink but it works well on the dark plum background. 

Next up a black and red iris on the same fabric at Black Heart.


Rachel said...

Looking good! That dark plum is a gorgeous background colour!

coral-seas said...

Very nice, Jane. The cream/gold iris is very elegant and the plum fabric is so rich. I love them both.

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