Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Skin Tones and Plunging Necklines

BEFORE-Darker Neck and Face
I have pulled out the dark skin areas on Luna's face and neck and restitched them with a slightly lighter thread.  Above is the before photo and below is the after one.  Do you think the lighter shade (which is a tad darker than the shading on her arms) is a better choice?  Many thanks to everyone who chimed in with ideas on how to fix this, by the way.  Everyone agreed that the shading was too dark, so I hope I have fixed this.

AFTER-Lighter Tones
I've also started work on Luna's long black gown.  I need to do it before I work her fingers and ring and hair and I also think I should work it before I start work on her long sleeves and cloak she wears. Stitching order is determined in part by what's less important.  I like to do the receding parts first.  The cloak and sleeves are more prominent than the long gown, so I'm doing the gown first.  Luna's plain long gown will set off the more decorative elements of her jewelry and cloak because of the contrast between fancy and plain.

As you can see, I am basketweaving the gown.  I think Luna is wearing a plain black velvet long dress that clings to her curves.  I don't want anything to detract from the image of smoothness, so basketweave is the way to go.  I also need a thread that will look velvety when stitched.  It doesn't look like it but the stitching above is my third attempt to get this right.  You know from yesterday's posting how hard it is to get a black thread that, combined with other threads, still looks velvety black.  It is also hard to get the velvet effect, even from a solid black thread.

My first attempt was to use Petite Very Velvet.  It does give a very smooth, velvet look but I decided that even though I was using Petive Very Velvet which is sized for 18 count canvas, the look was too heavy.  I think PVV in basketweave is too prominent to work well with the things I have planned for the rest of the dress.  So out it came.  Then I tried Pure Palette's Empress, the wool/cashmere/silk blend I used for the tree branches.  In my test stitching, it looked very velvety but when I tried it in tent stitches, there was some variation in the black color and the stitches didn't look as velvety as I wanted. I think it gives a more velvet-soft look in long stitches.  So I ripped that out, too.  My third attempt was using black Impressions, which is the silk/wool blend from Caron.  It is perfect.  It looks like velvet, is solid black in the deep way real velvet is, and will look wonderful when I do the next step on the gown.

But first I have a LOT of basketweave in my future.  Luna's a tall girl!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com Archived Yahoo 360 postings at http://profiles.yahoo.com/chillyhollow