Thursday, March 11, 2010

Choosing the Right Angle for the Paper Pattern

Making an ornament out of Dr. Who's Tardis police box was a logical choice for me.  It is all straight angles.  That will translate into NP nicely.  An image search was my next step.  If you do a Google or Bing search on Tardis, then click on "images" to limit the search results, you will see photos of the Tardis, mostly ones like this which shows two sides of the exterior.

Occasionally you'll see images like this--a head on view of the front only.  When it comes to translating things like police boxes or houses to NP, it is easier to do a front view instead of a three-quarters angle.

But since I am insane enjoy a challenge, I picked a clear image of a 3/4 view (above) and printed it out on my printer.  I knew from working on the Candy Cane Dog stocking that I wanted an ornament that was roughly six inches high by three inches wide, so I enlarged my image on the printer until I got roughly the right size.  Then I printed out a black and white copy so I could see the angles clearly, and cut it out like a paper doll.  My paper copy is on the right.

Ordinarily my next step would be to trace around the outside of the shape onto my canvas, then fold the paper model along angles like the center line between the two front doors and trace these other lines.

However, because I am insane wanted to use a black canvas with green and yellow sparkles woven in, I had to baste lines on the canvas since no marker would show well against that background.  The principle is the same except instead of drawing lines with a marker, you draw them with thread.  Below is my outlined Tardis.  Note that I haven't drawn in the roof side angles, just put in the long horizontal lines. I'll add the side angles when I stitch this.  The light on the top of the police box is also missing.  I will add it in later, using my reference photos.

The long lines are in #8 perle cotton from DMC.  It didn't matter what color I used for the outlining as long as it would stand out against the background, but I choose blue because the Tardis is blue and I had this in my stash.

You will see in my photo that I am doing one of the doors separately. I thought it would be nice for the right side door of the Tardis to open.  I am not sure I can make this work, but I am going to try.  If I can't get it working, I can always stitch a door panel on the main piece.

You also see that I have started stitching the base of the Tardis.  I am using my thread lines as padding for the base.  I plan to remove some of the lines (like the door panel window lines) once I stitch something inside them but others will raise the corner of the Tardis, or pad the roof line in the right place.

Last night I pulled out the royal blue thread I was using in the photo above and substituted DMC cotton floss in medium blue 798.  It more closely matches the blue of the real Tardis from the tv program.  I bought three skeins of this yesterday and also picked up a skein of DMC satin floss in color 30798 which matches the regular 798 blue shade.  I've not used stain floss before but since Judy Harper likes how it adds highlights to her ornaments, I thought I'd use it for details like the windows on this fake Tardis.

I've deducted four points from my Stash Credits because of this purchase.  I am somewhat astonished as to how many threads I've used from my stash, actually, especially considering I have worked on only five projects since I started counting my thread usage in August:  Leigh's South Seas Dynasty Fiji ornament, Brenda Stofft's Rabbit Geisha, the Leigh O'jishi Japanese Noh Theatre Mask, the SharonG camouflage bra and tap pants set, and Tony Minieri's Stars of the New Millennium.  Of course Stars isn't done but since I know what threads I will use there, I've counted them already.

A few times I was able to add 5 points because I used up all the thread from a skein, and occasionally I've used the same black silk or gold Kreinik here and there on many pieces, but in general I have used many, many types and colors of threads.  I'm a threadaholic, after all!  This isn't typical, though, and one can certainly be a great stitcher using a limited palette of threads.  I just love thread and love showing the various types to you.  Each is wonderful in just the right place, after all!

Wonder if I'll hit 200 stash credits before the summer?

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
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