Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Winter and Wool Stitching

The Comox Valley typically has mild winters, but we're just coming through the third cold snap of the season, with snow staying on the ground, the sound of plows clearing it in the wee hours of the morning and the crunch of it underfoot, and are dealing with the ice that results when it freezes again, making everyone a little less confident than usual in leaving the warmth of their homes for the great outdoors. No better time methinks, to settle down and do a little more wool stitching.
I finished stitching the ivy leaf I showed you last week, using blanket stitch, chain stitch and back stitch, and then moved on to a leaf coming from a shrub in our front yard. I will have to find out the name of it when next I go to the nursery. I was thinking of spring while I was stitching - yes, I know it was a little premature - and ended up adding a few daisy stitches down at the bottom. I also tried out fly stitch for the first time, down the centre vein of each leaf, and am pleased with the result. 
Another terrific source of suggestions as to what stitches to use is Sally Mavor's book "A Pocketful of Posies". It's not a how-to book, but a good visual reference, and would make a wonderful gift for a little person in your life (and perhaps for yourself). She created the illustrations for the entire book with her hand-stitched scenes - an incredible accomplishment.
Here's just one page to show you what I mean. Sally creates all of her figures and leaves first, and only attaches them to the background when the stitching is completed. What an imagination, and what patience! I admire such work, but for now am content continuing with my little collection of
wool leaves. It is noticeable that many people are travelling down this "Slow Stitching" road at the moment, at least I get that impression from various blogs and Facebook postings I've seen recently. Maybe we're getting tired of the quick and easy, and beginning to realize what we lose when we abandon handwork. Maybe the comfort of seeing what we can do with just our hands and some thread and some fabric is what we need right now.

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