Teal and Purple

Late last month I was lucky enough to have the chance to take a class with Lorene Salt, a very talented canvaswork designer. The class was offered through the Toronto guild of the Embroiderer’s Association of Canada. I’m not a member of that guild (just the online one), but the ladies were nice enough to let me take part.

Corners and Curves, designed by Lorene Salt

The piece is called Corners and Curves and is just stunning in person. The picture, as always, doesn’t do any justice. The fibres range from silk/wool blends, to perle cotton, to Kreinik metallics, and all the colours go together so well.

In January I will be taking another class from Lorene, this time online through the guild I belong too. It is called Santa Fe, and as charted it is stitched in corals and teals. Coral, though, is one of my least favourite colours, so I will be substituting out all the fibres. If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen some of the fibres I’ve chosen as replacements. I can’t wait to get started!

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Florentine Fancy Finished

I’m so happy! I put the final stitches into Florentine Fancy just about an hour ago. It feels great to have it finished.

Florentine Fancy, designed by Carolyn Mitchell

Florentine Fancy, designed by Carolyn Mitchell

Florentine Fancy was designed by Carolyn Mitchell, and is currently offered as a correspondence course through The Embroiderers’ Guide of Canada (EAC). The pattern was very detailed (nearly 30 pages!), but I had to choose my own colours.

Florentine Fancy, designed by Carolyn Mitchell (detail)

Florentine Fancy, designed by Carolyn Mitchell (detail)

It is stitched on white mono canvas. I used a wide variety of threads:

  • DMC Perle Cotton #3
  • DMC Perle Cotton #5
  • Watercolours
  • Soie Cristale
  • Neon Rays
  • Flair

I also made a couple of choices with regards to filling stitches for the background around the centre flower and the outer border. I also chose to have the corner motifs face each other, rather than all point in the same direction.

Florentine Fancy, designed by Carolyn Mitchell (detail)

Florentine Fancy, designed by Carolyn Mitchell (detail)

It didn’t turn out exactly as I had envisioned. I had planned to do the background around the centre flower in the same shade as the background as the outer border. Unfortunately, my dye lot disaster meant I had to look for another solution. With the help of some ladies at one of my monthly stitch nights, I decided to go with a very pale grey. And, I think it looks pretty nice. Overall, I’m really happy with how this design turned out.

I’m going to take a break from EAC correspondence classes for the time being because I just have too many projects that need to get done! But I do plan on signing up for Shockwave by Lorene Salt sometime in the near-ish future. I can’t wait!

The Horror of Dye Lots

Yesterday I share with you my progress on Florentine Fancy, a bargello piece designed by Carolyn Mitchell for the EAC. As I mentioned, I’ve gone through a lot more thread than what I thought I would need. Thankfully, it has only been DMC perle cotton that I’ve run out of. Many, many skeins of perle cotton. But, with them there is very little worry about dye lots not matching.

This is not the case with some threads.

The Same Colour?!

The Same Colour?!

These are two different dye lots of Caron Watercolours in shade Cotton Candy. The small skein is what I’ve been using to do the “neutral” coloured background on Florentine Fancy. I’ve nearly run out of it, but I would like to use it to cover the background in the centre as well. The larger skein just arrived in the mail for that purpose, and it doesn’t even look remotely like the same colour. It is mainly salmon pink, while the original skein is more of a light pinkish-white with some blue and green mixed in.

Different Dye Lots

Different Dye Lots

I know there are changes between dye lots, but this is much more than I ever expected. These are two totally different colours. I’m going to have to find a plan B, because this new skein won’t work at all. :/

Have you every experienced such a huge difference in dye lots? I’d love to hear about it, and see some pictures if possible. Comment below and link to your blog post about it, or tag me on Twitter (@silverlotus152) or Instagram (@stitchinglotus).

EAC Seminar Shopping Trip

The annual EAC Seminar is taking place in Toronto this week. Seminar is gathering of stitchers, teachers, and designers where lots of great classes are offered. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to take any classes this year (bad timing), but I was able to head over to the Merchant Night.

Seminar 2016 Stash

Seminar 2016 Stash

I was so happy to be able to look at the designs and other offerings from so many talented people. I tried to be restrained since, as I’m sure you know, my stash is already far too large. So, I picked up a stumpwork book from Alison Cole, the Sweet Treats kit from Kathryn Drummond (3-d cupcakes embellished with Casalguidi-style embroidery), and First Snow kit from Carolyn Mitchell. All of these are things that I have wanted to buy for months. I also picked up some needles and some red thread for an upcoming project

DMC Coloris Floss

DMC Coloris Floss

My one impulse purchase was a small set of the newish DMC Coloris thread. They are so pretty, and I couldn’t really help myself.

Quaker Accessories Scissor Case (back)

Quaker Accessories Scissor Case (back)

I also took a quick peek at the Members Show and was delighted to discover that my scissor case was on display with other (fabulous!) pieces from the guild I belong too. I had no idea it would be there, and I think it is lovely that the lady I sent it to decide it was nice enough to be in the show.

I also got to meet up with a few stitchers I rarely get to see, like Dima of D1D2. (She is absolutely lovely and super friendly!)

Seminar takes place in Newfoundland next year, also just before Victoria Day weekend. Hopefully, though, I’ll be able to go and take some of the wonderful courses that are sure to be offered. It is so nice to be somewhere where everyone loves needlework as much as you do and wants to talk seriously about it.

Creative Persuasion

Thank you so very, very much for all the kind words about my Punto Antico finish the other day. Both pieces are just lovely, and I definitely need to get a nicer pair of scissor to go with the fob. (I am not a scissor collector like some of you are. I’ve only got a couple of pairs, and I have a hard time justifying buying more. Although, there are some very pretty pairs I’d love to have…)

Anyway, I’ve finished another lovely piece.

Creative Persuasion, designed by Carolyn Mitchell

Creative Persuasion, designed by Carolyn Mitchell

This is Creative Persuasion, designed by Carolyn Mitchell. No, not the movie actress! The very talented Canadian designer. She taught this piece at the fall 2012 Creativ Festival, and I let it languish until about two weeks ago. How awful of me, given how pretty it is and how quick it ultimately worked up.

Creative Persuasion, designed by Carolyn Mitchell - closeup

Creative Persuasion, designed by Carolyn Mitchell – closeup

Creative Persuasion is canvaswork, which is a type of needlework done on canvas (a heavier fabric than the evenweave or linen that most other forms of needlework on done on). Canvaswork often makes use of many different counted embroidery stitches and all kinds of beautiful and interesting fibres. This piece uses Neon Rays, Perle Cotton (#5 and #8), Impressions, ThreadWorx floss, Pebbly Perle, Flair, and some Kreinik braid. A little bit of extra sparkle comes from silver beads and Swarovski crystals. Believe me, it is stunning in person.

This isn’t the first design of Carolyn’s that I’ve stitched. A few years ago I stitched up the Gourmandies Gems ornaments that were published inĀ  A Needle Pulling Thread. I’ve also stitched another little holly ornament that was meant as a learning piece of a larger Christmas design also published in ANPT. (I plan to stitch that design shortly.)

Gourmandise Gems Collection, designed by Carolyn Mitchell

Gourmandise Gems Collection, designed by Carolyn Mitchell

My next canvaswork project is also a Carolyn Mitchell design. It is called Florentine Fancy, and is a class offered through the Embroidery Association of Canada. If you follow me on Instagram (@stitchinglotus), you may have seen the threads I picked out and read about my little mishap. I haven’t picked out the offending stitches yet, but I plan to do so this weekend.

So, tell me, do you do canvaswork? Who is your favourite designer, or what is your favourite piece? I’d love to know.