Sunday, 6 April 2014

Let the Needle Do the Work

Free form embroidery, or 'Let the Needle Do the Work' is a wonderful activity. You don't need to plan anything, follow any pattern, rip out any stitches or feel frustrated. It is the ultimate relaxation!

Last year I took Sharon Boggon's Sumptuous Surface Embroidery online class and enjoyed it immensely. It was the season of cherry blossoming and the petals 'fell onto the fabric':
Now while I went 'off-line' and had to leave TAST and WIPW projects at home, I packed a small bag of even weave fabric, a set of Oliver Twist pink and green various threads, a skein of Silky from  De Haviland Embroidery and a variegated #5 perle from Steff Francis, and decided to just play.
The result was this piece of abstract art, and I just HAD to add a few dancing cherry petals!
I had no TAST, or other stitch dictionary, just the list in my head and I simply piled the stitches on, layer after layer - a tonic for the mind!


28 comments:

  1. this is such a wonderful creative piece love how it all flows and then th delicate stitchery below amazing. The first photo is not her though to see. Like you I am a fan of Oliver Twist threads, also have some De Haviland ones but only use those when the work will not need washing as the colours ran badly. Not had many of Steff Francis`s since Jean started to do her threads. Wonder where you get the de Haviland ones from as I rarely see her at the shows

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    1. Thank you for your kind words and letting me know the first picture did not show. I have rectified this and hope it is now visible.
      Last summer at FOQ the lady at De Haviland's stand said she would start selling online. You could phone and ask; the number on the skein says: 020 7289 2123

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  2. Hello, hello, where-ever you are - I hope you enjoy it and are well. Your embroidery makes my mouth water - I signed up for this class and it will start in May. Your first photo doe not show up..... a pity.

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    1. Hello, hello! I am now back home enjoying playing with my computer and complete thread stash!
      Thank you for pointing out that the first photo did not show up. I have fixed the problem (I hope).
      The Sumptuous Surface Embroidery course is very thorough and there is much to learn and get inspiration from. Have fun!

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  3. That is one big pile of thread. Did you have any left over?

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    1. I do have some thread from that set left, but a lot was used up in the tangle. I wanted the threads to just grow, and grow, out of proportion...

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  4. Hi Queenie, are we on the same wavelength or what ? I've just started my 'freedom stitching'
    Thank you for visiting my blog ! Your freeform stitching is incredible.....I cannot tell you how much I love this ! You are soooooo inspiring too.....I could look at your stitching all day, its phenominal ! ! Wish I could do Sharons sumptuous course...maybe one day,
    hugs
    Chris Richards
    xxxx

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    1. I am glad you like my knot of threads.
      Sometimes it is so nice to work without any plan and here I got fully satisfied, just adding and adding to the tangle, still the trained eye would be able to identify many of the stitches.
      As for Sharon's course, this year is the last time she will hold the classes and the Sumptuous Surface Embroidery course is now open for booking for the last time. If you want to join, hurry to enrol!

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  5. Your sumptuous surface is wonderful.

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    1. Thank you. I would almost call it thread meditation; it was so relaxing to do!

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  6. What great pieces of work! Beautiful :) I am looking forward to the Sumptuous Surface Embroidery class in May. Your work is such an inspiration that I am glad that I took the plunge and booked the class.

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    1. Oh, I am so glad to hear that! I think the class gives you lots of inspiration to look at embroidery in a new way. For example, the 'drawn' work at the bottom of my picture is mainly ordinary stitches drawn too tight so that holes form. That was something I learned from Sharon's class.

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  7. So many gorgeous stitches, love the herringbone on top of them!

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    1. I have been looking at many of Sharon's samples of SSE and she often piles the stitches. For this piece I wanted some lines to cross the mass of knots and detached stitches and the 'crossed' stitch family (herringbone, cretan and so) were perfect to add movement.
      I just wish I had remembered many more TAST stitches, after all we HAVE learned over one hundred!

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  8. The word scrumptious comes to my mind.

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    1. Thank you! I got the idea of layering stitches from Sharon, and of course from you, you being the Queen of Layering, Linda!

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  9. I also enjoyed that class. Almost like a free train of thought. Love your work.

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    1. The course was intensive and I think I have learned a lot 'afterwards', I guess I needed time to digest it all. I often leaf through all the pages that I printed out and find new things I want to try or try again.

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  10. good to see the first photo now Queenie, and thanks for the tel no will look into it. Are you planning on the FOQ again this year? I must find a cheap hotel before they are all booked

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    1. Good to know the photo can now be seen (I never understand why Blogger preview show a perfect blog post and then there are problems with the published site).
      I want to go to the FOQ but will wait and see a bit what the future might hold.

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  11. Wow! what beautiful work you have created, you are so tallented at mixing stitches.

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    1. Oh, you flatterer! The stitches are simply piled on, and on, and on, and on... I just wished I had remembered more of the TAST stitches. Time to start studying again!

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  12. Queenie, your art in stitches is wonderful and so inspiring. I'm enjoying seeing what you have done with the fallen petals.

    I sympathise with your Blogger 'perfect post/poorly published' as I have the same problem with Wordpress.

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    1. I don't know why but embroidery made in spring 'requires' a few cherry petals... It must be the result from living in a country where everything suddenly has patterns of cherry blossoms or are pink. I mean yesterday I bought a simple sushi lunch - the box had cherry petals printed on it, I passed a confectionary shop and there were pink cherry petals in nylon in the display case and in pink marzipan on the cream cakes, I sat next to a lady who wore a scarf with cherry flowers... so my stitching gets lots of inspiration wherever I look!
      I wonder if I am too old to learn and get to grips with 'perfect blogging'; I'd rather stitch than perfect my blog posts, but when pictures don't show up the way they should it just has to be rectified.

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  13. Doodling with a needle and thread, how therapeutic and what a great result. I sympathise with the Blogger issues, recently "they" have been changing my font. While what appears when I write the blog and in the preview looks as I want it, when it's published it's in a different font and usually smaller text size. Grr but not the end of the world (as long as readers appreciate it's not me doing it!!) Carry on stitching :-)

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    1. I just read someone who can't blog successfully from her iPad. What is it that makes us feel so small and beaten by the 'IT system'. Why is it that they can't make the blogging procedure as smooth and foolproof as possible? Or am I just being a nagging old lady?
      Better pick up the needle and do some therapeutic work instead!

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  14. You sure got some beautiful artwork made while you were on sabbatical! All the different stitches are fascinating to look at!

    I'm still not blogging from iPad... Hesitant to download another IT product that will probably make me tear my hair out somewhere down the line...

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    1. It was relaxing and a great 'pain killer' to just 'let the needle do the work'. I would have gone crazy trying to follow a complicated cross stitch pattern or something.

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