Gold Work Brag Time

Teachers have a tendency to be very proud of their students’ work and I am no exception. The pieces included here were stitched in the spring of this year. This was an Intermediate class. In a previous class students had learned the basics of handling metal threads and stitched two small set pieces. Some made time to create an extra piece of their own choosing. These new examples were all designed and interpreted by the stitchers while I provided supplies and technical support and advice.

Sun Dance by Sandra Ackerley

Sandra started with the circular body of the bird. Creating a perfect circle using couched gold thread is a challenge; deciding just how to continue the thread lines into the head is another. The perfect circular surround with the evenly spaced decorative line – more challenges. Having evenly spaced and balanced wing feathers and lower decorations are also difficult. Look at this closely and note how evenly perfect every part is.

Summer Breeze by Barbara Lee Johnson

Barbara Lee has attended several gold work classes and is an experienced stitcher of these threads. She has combined applique with metal thread embroidery and beading. The leaves are all edged with fine pearl purl. The stalks and veins are beading using a different method on each main stalk.

Christmas Ornament by Marsha Fontes

This piece by Marsha is unfinished but gives you an idea of the diversity of the designs. Couching with a coloured thread is difficult but at least one can see what one is doing. Bottom left corner is part of her practice at stitching right angled corners.

Petals of Gold by Marsha Fontes

Marsha is becoming a teacher and this was the design she chose to teach the basics to another class. Note the shapes of the petals are all the same but the shape altering insertions are all different and complementary. The class learned a lot in this piece including attaching leather almost invisibly. I will be including the instructions for that in another blog.

Untangled by Gail Bailey

Gail’s design is a small piece of a Zentangle created by her daughter. In a symmetrical design such as this, discrepancies become glaringly obvious. Can you spot any? I am unable to do so. The balance between the blue background, the centre and the light green surround is delightful. Gail also attached the gold leather almost invisibly. The detail on the central ends of the leather arcs adds interest and breaks the geometry. The centre is heavily beaded which Gail learned in a subsequent class.

Serviceberry Leaves by Barbara Lee Johnson

The lines in this piece of Or Nué are straight. It is the photographer who did not get it straight. I wish that I could show these pieces with better clarity and detail. Barbara Lee couched the leaves using a gold metallic thread which adds to the gleam of the gold. She uses a different green thread for each section. It is helpful when stitching Or Nué to add lines on the background fabric to help keep the stitching lines straight. She painted the green background to help maintain the purity of the green colour. This is one of Barbara Lee’s series of leaves all stitched in different techniques, threads and fabrics.

There will be another group of photos from this class shortly when I am able to take the necessary pictures.

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