Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Studying the Eye Candy

I like to bookmark wonderful stitching for inspiration later.  I thought you'd like to see some fabulous stitching that is full of ideas if you have a similar item in your To Do pile of needlepoint canvases.  Do you have buildings or straw on a canvas?  Then you must look at Amy Bunger's Nativity stable in the June newsletter from her shop.  It is an amazing piece of work.  (The whole newsletter is fun and includes photos of many of the styles of the new Sundance sequins but not the black ones.  Trust me, the black ones are FABULOUS-O!  You know, those purple ones look pretty durn good, too....)  The newsletter also shows the brand new Fairy Tale Witch series from Melissa Shirley which Amy has promised to write stitch guides for.

Peggi's stitching a Day of the Dead character that she took to a Tony Minieri embellishment class.  You may not have a skeleton in your stitching future but you've got to see this hat!

Do you need a large heart on your canvas?  ANG's Stitch of the Month released today is a Fleur De Lis heart that is beautifully charted.  (This is for my counted canvaswork friends who must be bored silly by all this talk of painted canvases.)

Want to see a spectacular glitzy canvas mixed with a light coverage background?  MaryLu Leger is teaching this in a class.  Man, wish I was there to see it in person as this is the most beautiful interpretation of Klimt on NP canvas I've ever seen.

Do you love birds? Then you will want to see this trio of small Shorebirds canvases which are beautifully stitched and framed together.

Are you a fan of all tent stitched pieces?  Check out this Tapestry Tent stocking topped by mink!

So much to see, so much to learn!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com

How Ruth Brought Tulle Into My Life

Cat Topiary Garden with Aqua Tulle Fabric
Yesterday we bought tulle for the cat topiary garden.  Today I'm going to explain why Ruth Made Me Do It.

I keep a careful eye on what Ruth Schmuff does with her mystery classes.  They are always inventive and fun, and give me lots of ideas.  Last year Ruth stitched a geometric painted canvas that she ended up finishing as the front of a tote bag.  Ruth put a protective layer of black tulle on top of the canvas to minimize snags.  You can read about it here and compare a photo of the finished canvas to one of the canvas covered in black tulle and attached to the bag.

I thought that was a great idea!  So when I stitched Red Geisha to go on the front of a Stirling leather purse, I covered her in tulle, too. It's Tulle with a Twist but you'll have to wait until Red Geisha debuts at Columbus or buy the Red Geisha stitch guide to see what the twist is.  I have to have some secrets, you know!

I learned later from Melissa Shirley that Cynthia Thomas used tulle on one of Melissa's bracelet canvases but I haven't seen a photo.  It's probably one of these canvases but the photo isn't clear enough to tell which one.

If you want to keep up with the Mad Scientist that is Ruth, here is her blog.  She is always doing something different and fun and she shares the chapters of her mystery classes freely so that all stitchers can benefit from her inventive ways.  Thanks, Ruth!

Tulle Pinned and Basted in Place
With the experience I gained adding tulle to Red Geisha, I knew that I could minimize the problem of my background stitch trying to take over the world by adding a layer of tulle on top of those stitches.  (The problem is still there but less prominent, which I can live with.  Anything's better that ripping out all that background!)

Once I picked the color, I cut out a piece of tulle roughly 13 1/2 and 11 1/4 inches, then laid the aqua tulle on top of my cat topiary garden.  I pinned it in place, starting at the top, stretching it taut and pinning at the bottom, then pinning the sides.  Above is a photo of the tulle on top of the needlepoint canvas with both the pins and the basting stitches.  In person the background stitches have become less prominent.  I will not add short horizontal metallic stitches to the middle of the Woven Diamonds as I once planned, however.  I can't risk making the background come forward again and metallics definitely will made the background prominent again.

Another View of Pins and Basting Stitches
If you squint you can see the straight pins that held the tulle in place, and then two rows of basting that secure the tulle on top of the needlepoint canvas.  I used some left over yellow floss to baste until I ran out and then used up some left over dark green floss.  It doesn't matter what thread you use.  I just picked something loud so you could see it in the photographs.

 Blue Illusion Added
Here's a closeup.  On the left you can clearly see the illusion of blue that the aqua tulle adds to the canvas.   It is like adding watercolor on top of the canvas.

I'm going to pull out the straight pins so I don't stab myself and then put the stitches back on the left spruce tree, stitching right through the layer of tulle.  I'll talk about the stitch I used next Monday so that everyone has time to finish stitching their background, shop for tulle, and then attach the tulle on top of their canvas.

Here are the threads I'm going to use next so you can pick out something similar for the right and left big spruce trees:  For the left tree, the one behind the fish topiary bush, I choose Au Ver A Soie #1826, which is a deep spruce green similar to DMC 3847.  I may use Soie Crystale #8092 for the right spruce, the one behind the mouse topiary, which is similar to DMC #3851.  I haven't stitched that spruce yet so I am not sure that's the right shade but we'll see.  I hope to have both trees stitched by Monday and the stitch diagrammed so you can replicate what I've done.

By the way, I'll use the same tapestry needle to stitch the spruces that I used to stitch the background.  The tulle is so fine that I don't need a sharp needle to pierce it.  Just pretend it's not there and stitch!

Any questions?  Ask away in the comments section or email me at chilly hollow at hotmail dot com, whether you are stitching the cat topiary garden or not.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com