Monday, January 11, 2010

Another embroidery piece

Last summer, I embroidered a piece I called Petri Dish Promenade. It was done on a piece of white fabric I had batiked with soy wax, and then dyed. I still have not decided what to do with it, but I’m leaning toward making a simply-quilted background and stitching it to that, rather than trimming it in any way (after some of my fiber art friends who saw it were aghast at the thought).

A few months ago, I decided to start another similar piece, this time using a piece of clamp-dyed shibori fabric I dyed last year. The black-and-white background gives quite a different effect, much starker. It is 18" x 20". And this time, I’m working with squares, diamonds and angles – quite different from the circles in Petri. It’s still in progress; I’m working now on the red patch at the bottom right.

I’m using all different weights of threads and flosses by many different manufacturers. The stringy bits are actually the threads that came out of my dryer after I washed quilting fabric (mostly hand-dyeds) for the first time. And a bit of hand-dyed silk hankie here and there.

I just love the simple hand stitching and French knots.

When I’m not working on a needleturn appliqué project, this is what I take to my kid’s soccer practice, piano lesson, dentist’s appointments, etc., to keep me busy. In between, it lives here (on top of this adorable child’s toy dresser) in this beautiful African basket:

I made the liner using a pattern by Clothesline Quilts. Inside is a little quilted bag with all my shreddy fabric bits:

… and below that, some of my embroidery threads:


  1. Susan, that embroidery, holy cow!! The work on your new black and white piece is stunning, but I think (I hope) you must know that! The contrast of the brightly-colored, nubbly, soft fibers against that very strict background of black and white diamonds and triangles (GORGEOUS fabric, you dyed that yourself?)... I'm just blown away. It's visually so stimulating and exciting!! What size is it?

  2. Wonderful work! Could you add dimensions or an object that would suggest size to us??? Are you using a stabilizer on the reverse??

  3. Sure, sorry about that! The whole piece is 18" x 20". I just went back and added the dimensions in the post.

  4. And, no, there's no stabilizer on the reverse. Just the cotton fabric. And I don't use a hoop, either.

  5. That is gorgeous needlework. I really need to practice my hand and machine stitching to use in my pieces.



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