It is teacher’s brag time. I am always delighted to have an opportunity to work with gold threads and to teach another generation of stitchers how to handle these specialized threads. This was an intermediate class in that all had learned the basics earlier this year. Many of the projects are unfinished but I thought that it would be nice for you to see some of the creativity of this class. These are a few only; hopefully, there will be more later.
First, Janet Sunderani did a practice/experimental piece to try out some threads and techniques to see what they would do and to gain some experience. You will remember Janet from the postings titled From Clogs to Education and Silk, Stocking and Clogs.
Look how well Janet has couched the dull gold thread in the lower right corner and how well she has stitched the pointed turns. You can see them clearly when they are stitched with a coloured thread, a specific technique included in the class. Look to the left and note the evenness in the Detached Buttonhole stitching. Close by is sequin waste placed in a double layer forming ovals. In the top left quadrant she has been practising circles. Note the perfectly mitred corners. The top right corner is unfinished but she thought she would place chippits in that area. Chippits are small pieces of leftover gilts and pearl purl stitched in the same manner as beads.
The first two pieces pictured here do not use the traditional gold work threads though they are using the techniques. Yes, one can do that. Why not? Be creative in your own way with what is available.
Janet writes, “I really enjoyed playing with these cheap threads because I was less concerned about doing it right and just freer to experiment and see how the threads behaved. Obviously many are not designed for this work and are quite gaudy. The cores of some were elastic and you cannot plunge them easily so mostly I did not do this. The braids tend to unravel so I sealed the ends with clear nail polish.”
That is a good tip. When your design includes loose ends of Japanese gold thread left on the surface of the fabric, dip the ends in clear nail polish to stop them from unravelling.
Meet Wellington, the Cat with Pizzazz and Blue Suede Shoes
Connie Dorion wanted to stitch a gift for her daughter who has recently lost her husband. She chose a pale mauve silk for the background. The first decision after that was that Wellington should have blue suede shoes. From there, she chose ribbons and trims to create a memorable cat. His face is gold leather and his smug smile is all Connie’s doing. He makes me smile, too whenever I see him and I love his blue whiskers. Connie is hoping that Wellington will be a therapeutic addition to her family. Wellington is completed but there are still some back basting stitches to be removed.
Barbara Lee Johnson is not only in a leaf phase of her life but this is her second piece of Or Nué. You will know Barbara Lee as a regular contributor to stitchinfingers. This is the lower quarter of a new piece. The photo segment is small so that you can see the detail. Or Nué is a difficult technique. Not only that but each line takes time and concentration and progress is slow, really slow. Note the evenness of the green and the gold stitching. Look at her pencilled guide lines and the straightness of her stitching in conjunction to the guide lines. The Japanese Gold thread is laid down in pairs which is the traditional way of stitching Or Nué. The ends will be left on the surface and covered with a matt board. If they were sunk through to the back, they would in effect, tear the fabric. This is a safe way to handle this problem. Barbara Lee is an experienced Gold Work stitcher, this being at least the sixth piece she has undertaken.
There are other, interesting pieces stitched by members of this class but they are not sufficiently complete at this time to show them to you though I am hoping there will soon be an opportunity to share them.
It is a teacher’s delight to be able to post a blog such as this. Thank you, stitchers.