Tuesday, November 11, 2008

It's Done!

Using graph paper, I worked out a variation on the Cashmere stitch for the foundation. I altered the orientation of the stitch slightly for the orange and brown squares (okay, this may be too subtle to matter, but I liked it). The squares stitched up like a dream—2 ply of Impressions stitched using a laying tool.

The moon is stitched using 2 colors of Flair and a giant brick stitch. I carried that stitch throughout the background sky. For the 3 areas of clouds that stretch over the moon, I switched from Flair to a cotton floss in an exact matching blue and used 2 ply of the floss. I almost threaded Kreinik glow in the dark braid through the center of the yellow Flair for a custom Frosty Rays, but decided that the few minutes of enjoyment I would get from the effect when I turn out the lights didn’t justify the bad language that would accompany the process. But hey, don’t let me hold you back!

The remainder of the sky is stitched in 1 ply of cotton floss in a duskier blue and 1 ply of Splendor in a dull gray. Because this is similar to a darning stitch (you would see any additional threads from the back,), I was careful to begin and end the threads in nearby solid areas. Also, I made sure I anchored the threads well—since this will be a pillow, I don’t want any threads to get caught and pull free. I toyed with the idea of leaving the sky unstitched because the painting is so eerie and beautiful, but in the end, I couldn’t do it.

The fence was stitched using Wildflowers, an overdyed cotton from the Caron Collection (life’s too short for shading) and Grandeur for the dark brown areas. I chose 2 ply of Wildflowers and used the appropriate sections of color to match the weathered wood. The bats are stitched with Petite Very Velvet, making sure not to allow any loose threads from starting and stopping, as these would show through to the front. The tree branches are stitched in stem/outline stitch using Perle Cotton #5. I have to admit I was a snob about Perle Cotton, but I have come to appreciate its uses.

The leaves were stitched in combinations of Soy Luster, Weeks overdyed floss, and Splendor. I was careful about starting and stopping these areas, too. I played around with different free-form stitches. Some worked better than others, but I think each needlepoint project is a learning piece. (And my good friend Linda has pounded the phrase “What, are you nuts???” into my head when I say I am going to rip something out. Life is too short for negative work and I have learned to leave a stitch in and think about it before I take it out.

The spider web is a silver Kreinik #12 braid couched down with one ply pulled from a length of the same Braid. Using a portion of the same thread to couch means that they will match exactly and you don’t have to buy a matching filament. I thought about using a #8 braid, but I decided that I wanted the spider to stand out a little more. The spider is stitched using bullion knots for the legs and a drizzle stitch (couched down) for the body, using the black Perle Cotton.

Have fun stitching!


Cyn said...

Hi Michele,

Congratulations on finishing!

I've enjoyed following your stitching adventure. :-)

Windy Meadow

Edy said...

I adore this canvas and your stitching of it makes it almost ALIVE!
Edy in NYC