Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Stuart Plaid Lion: Padding and Paws

The next section of the Leigh British Dynasty Ornament to be stitched is the central figure of the lion.  The first step in stitching this is to make a color copy of the canvas itself.  I do this first thing, before I do any stitching of a painted canvas.  It's a good reference point if you cover areas that you will stitch on later.  I'll toss the copy after the piece is stitched but until I finish, it is what I refer to when I need to see where something goes I can't see on the real canvas.

Once the copy is made, I pull threads.  I choose a brown, a goldenrod, a bright yellow and a metallic gold for the lion itself.  All but the metallic gold are floss type threads since I plan to use random long and short stitches on the lion.  The mouth was already stitched.  I'll need black and white floss for the eye and nose when I get to it.

Then I pulled another thread to use for padding.  In the photo above you see that I used a medium light brown Burmilana doubled to pad the front rear leg and the mane around the lion's face.  I did two layers, one slanting one way and then topped with another layer slanting in another direction.  In the above photo I have not finished the mane's second layer so that you can see better how it was done.

The next step is to tent stitch the lion's face, eye and nose; then tent stitch his paws.  In the above photo this is mostly done and I've added a tiny bit of padding to his lower front paw.  Once the padding and tent stitches for detailed areas are finished, then the base for the random long and short stitches is done.  Now I can actually stitch the lion once I finish his eye and nose which you'll see done using black Splendor #S801 floss and white Impressions #0057 in the photo below.  I used tent stitches for the eye and nose.

The last thing I did before putting my threads away was to finish stitching the metallic hanger at the top of the ornament.  I'd already put rows of yellow beads (the same ones that make up the yellow lines in the Stuart plaid background) on the ornament hanger.  Now I stitched the remaining metallic gold, goldenrod and brown lines with threads I choose for the lion.  I used DMC cotton floss #3862 for the brown, Kreinik's new holographic gold #002L in size 8 braid for the metallic gold, and Soie d'Alger silk floss in #2244 for the goldenrod lines.  The metallic gold was done in extended tent stitches (over two threads high instead of just one thread intersection) to maximize the shine from this lovely thread. The goldenrod and brown areas were just tent stitches, done with four plies of each thread.

I hope to start work on the lion's body tonight.

On another topic entirely, here is a photo of the Barbara Bergsten Designs display at the Dallas trade show.  I love seeing how the designers present their work.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow Blogging at Archived Yahoo 360 postings at