This week has all been about developing some of the starter pieces I wove for the Cloth-to-Cloth workshop … this piece was the one I liked ‘least’ – it was overly pastel-pretty for my taste, but the regularity of the strips and construction meant it was perfect for experimenting with some of the different techniques, so that it evolved into a kind of sampler, with a little bit of everything going on. In its cut and unstitched state, it looked fragmented and forlorn, so I started putting a few stitches into it – partly to hold it together, and partly to see where the process would take me.
The idea of a sampler translated itself into a lot of stitching … some of it quiet & simple – single thread backstitching or double-thread split-stitches, but then there’s some detailed embroidery going on as well. It was such fun letting it evolve without overplanning – other than to keep my stitch ‘palette’ down to a handful of different ones 😉 – cross stitch, trellis stitch, fly stitch, chevron stitch and tete-de-boef where the mainstays, and an exuberance of French knots. I love a French knot, me.
What interested me was that as I was thinking about directions and applications of the technique, a pair of compasses emerged from the shifted circles.
It’s a little bit more ‘busy’ than I would normally stitch, but overall I’m pleased with result … I feel that the stitching has, in a way, healed the fragmented pieces of cloth and made it a single, coherent whole. It’s not a process that could be rushed, or skimped … it simply took as long as it needed, and I just kept stitching until it was time to stop. It’s slow, it’s absorbing, and it’s totally satisfying.
It’s such a shame that I can’t share the texture of the cloth with you … it’s *just* amazing 🙂
I’ve put more photos of this piece on my Flickr photostream if anyone’s interested in details: http://www.flickr.com/photos/magpieslaundry/sets/72157624960235109