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Design Thoughts

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27 May 2008

Design Thoughts

Working Up The Scrolling Vine Design

This is the scrolling vine design that I want to use for my sampler. (from Davenport's Embroidered Books book)

I wanted to remove all the roses and rosebuds before showing this image here, but Photoshop wants to do a 'background eraser' instead of a normal 'eraser' so just pretend they are empty spots for a number of *different* flowers. (Although I'd like to do this original design as well one day)

I plan to take the top half of the cover

and size it to the size of my scroll frame on paper.

I will then draw in more minor vines, expanding the design to fit the scroll frame and be in proportion to the elements I'm going to add, while at the same time adding more opportunities for more flowers.

At the centre of the base, I want to put in a fairly large slip. I'm thinking of this one :

but there are so many lovely ones!


I plan to use slips as sources quite a lot in this sampler. Mostly because you can get the high resolution images from the Victoria and Albert museum and the colours, and colour design can be clearly seen. I'll just do a leaf, or a flower, from various ones I like.

I'm having a good look at the colours used at the same time.

Some I'll do as appliques, and some I will translate into embroidery.
I will experiment with raising (stuffing) some as I will also be doing stumpwork.

The Border

I want to do a goldwork border around the outside. I think. I have no idea of which design to use. Something not too wide, or I'll be there forever. Also, it might be in silver, since I plan to use both silver and gold on the actual piece.

Deciding Flower Placement

I've been thinking a lot about whether to decide (and draw into my paper version) where each different flower will go (leaves are generally interchangeable enough not to worry about them), or just to add them in in different spots as I go along.

I think a balance of both approaches. Perhaps placing particuarily distinctive flowers (and any insects I want to use) in the paper design, and adding other flowers ad hoc as I go along.

I know that I've read that with Stumpwork, part of the charm was the ad-hocness of the placing of the elements, but I don't want to bugger up and end up with a bunch of beaded flowers all in one corner, and goldwork ones in some strange pattern or whatever....

Where the Flowers and other elements are coming from

I mentioned the following in my post about My Notes the other day. I've been collecting images of flowers, leaves and insects (and birds - I think I want a bird in there somewhere). V&A is definitely the best source.

I'm using Photoshop to pull out individual elements from the images and group them all together in a file. (All the flowers together, all the 'all purl' elements together, all the birds together etc).

Then I'll decide which of them I want to use.

The Actual Embroidering

Then the paper designing and then the embroidering!

I plan to document the embroidering of each element as I go along here in the blog.

Appliques are relatively easy

I've decided that I want to do some applique work (ie bits of slips, in tent stitch, to be applied to the background) because I will go completely nutty if *everything* I do is in detached buttonhole, trellis stitch etc. I can do some beautiful elements in silk and wool in tent stitch and add them in.

They will be a lot easier to sew. Having a bad brain day? Sew an applique. Having a good day - do a needlelace rose.

And then doing it all again??

When I've completed the top half, I will then decide if I am going to do the bottom half of the design. This will involve doing a second scroll frame's worth of work. I don't want to commit myself to doing it until I know how much work one scroll frame is going to be.

I'm thinking that underneath the slip in the bottom centre, I might use one of these slips, upside down

They kind of look like root balls, don't they? I'd do some design adjustment so the design doesn't look upsidedown, but would still fit with being underneath the pansy and looking like it's root ball at first glance. I'm not really into those 'hillocks' that are generally used at the base.

Or I may drop that whole idea all together. We'll see.

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