Thursday, May 21, 2009

Golden Rabbit Without Makeup, With Beads

In between sessions of backetweave marathoning, I removed the black thread outlining the Golden Rabbit's eye and replaced it with a dark brown bullion in the same DMC cotton floss as her face. I decided the black was too harsh. The bullion is made of three plies of the floss and it is couched in the middle to bend it to arch over her eye. What do you think?

I also added three bullions to her paw to give it dimension. These are in the same thread and same number of plies as the eye bullion, but I started with the longest bullion on the right and did around 20 wraps, the middle bullion only had 15 wraps and the short bullion on the left only 12. I tried to do "fingers" to give depth to the area, inspired by Joan Thomasson and Amy Bunger.

I first saw this technique on Joan Thomasson's Nativity figures. Here are her Three Kings. The hands clearly have bullion fingers.

Amy Bunger does the same thing in her stitching class on the Kelly Clark Nativity. Look at Joseph's hands.

One needs to practice bullions and they are easier to do with a one stranded thread, but I think the bullions I added look good. What do you think? Will you consider doing this on one of your next pieces?

The other thing I've done is scatter beads above the halo. This is a test to see how many and which color looks best, or even if I should do this at all. Starting at the rabbit's nose and arcing upward, you see two of the pale copper Toho beads, then a single gold Mill Hill Petite bead, then a cluster of three gold Mill Hill beads, and finally a single pale copper Toho bead. I think a mix of both types might work but I've run out of time to test that. What do you think?

The reason I've run out of time is that I have to take the laptop in for repair today and I don't know when it will be ready. Apple won't even tell me if they have the repair parts in stock (that's "propriatary" information? !?!??!!). Anyway, I won't be blogging for 2-3 days until the computer comes back but I'll work on the basketweave and once that is done, I'll decide about whether beads above the halo look good or not.

Y'all behave while I'm gone!

Jane/Chilly Hollow
Main blog at


NCPat said...

The bullions are great! This is an idea to remember for sure. You may think I am crazy, but I like the bead mixture above the halo and would continue as such. Light would refract differently on the halo and therefore the bead mix is appropriate!

The Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure said...

Thanks, Pat. I am currently thinking I might dot clusters of 4-5 beads (mostly the gold ones but one pale copper for contrast) around the halo, not touching it. That extends the halo so it doesn't look askew but also makes it more interesting. But we'll see. Have a ton of basketweave to do and I'll think about it as I get that knocked out.

And of course I need to think about my next project....

Love to Stitch 99 said...

Interesting! I had never noticed that before about the bullions but that is certainly a good idea.

Pierrette =^..^=

Anonymous said...

I love your bullions! Any tips on how to get them to lay flat? I've been practicing them for one of my current projects, but I always get an extra strand underneath that twists the bullion. Any suggestions?

The Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure said...

Mick, hold on to the wraps tightly and slide them off the needle, then pull on the loose Tail of thread and smooth the underside of the wraps with your needle. I think the extra strand is coming loose....