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* * * PUBLISHED * * * My work has been included in Pauline Brown's 'Encyclopedia of Embroidery Techniques' 2nd Edition, Search Press Classics UK
* * * PUBLISHED * * * Artist Review #3 of a 4 part series in the new issue of A Needle Pulling Thread magazine, Canada
* * * PUBLISHED * * * Stitch (UK) feature article, 'From Sketch to Stitch' Issue #105

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Wednesday, 22 February 2017

New Year, New Commission

I got this commission last year, and just finally got to working on it.  Thanks so much for your patience P.!  :)  She sent me her image of Bog Orchids.  It's quite beautiful, and I could totally envision it in thread.  It would be fairly straightforward, though it certainly involves a LOT of stitching and a good handful of greens as well.  I start as always with the photo up on my monitor and a blank piece of coloured fabric in front of me.


I build back to front generally, using self-guided (free motion) machine stitching.  The ground cover was solid jump stitches, going back and forth.  There were layers and layers of different greens.  It was very repetitive and a smart thing to avoid blinking while doing it. : )  I spent a few afternoons on it before I started adding the flowers themselves.  I go slow and take lots of breaks.  That's how I do my best work.


I always enjoy going through the image with a fine tooth comb.  As I'm looking back and forth stitching it, I notice details that failed to catch my eye when I first looked over the picture.  As it turns out, there's lots of black, yellow-green, and even pinks.  The white Blog Orchid petals themseves were stitched out in a couple of hues.  You might not be able to see, but they weren't all perfect, pure white.

I'm sure there's things I don't always notice.  It's surprising how much we take for granted.  It always drives me batty when people make trees a milk chocolate brown (so very rare) and the shadows on the snow are made grey or black (never happens).  It kind of irks me, but I bite my tongue.  However, next time you are out, look around for chocolate brown trees and you'll see what I mean.  Also, look at the shadows on the snow to see that they indeed have a particular colour. Things are often so much more interesting than you thought they were! :)

So, after a bit more tweaking on the embroidery, my last step will be to trim the piece and finish the edges.  The plan is for this piece to be mounted as an artifact, in a shadow box style frame.  The edges will be exposed and so I'll stitch them up nice and tight like I would on the edges of a postcard.
This is the first piece in 8 years that I have not been asked to frame a commission.  I have my own framing style but they want to match it up to their own space.  I can't wait to see how their framer finished it up!

Happy February,


4 comments:

PrairiePeasant said...

Beautiful! I wasn't familiar with bog orchids before--from a distance they look like lupins.

Janet said...

You make it sound so easy! But I know that it is not... Beautiful work!

Lin said...

Beautiful Monika - it will be interesting to see it framed. xx

What Comes Next? said...

So beautiful. I love all the details

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