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Posts Tagged ‘Brigg Allsorts’

I first had the idea for putting a pamphlet stitched booklet inside the cuff of a shirt or jacket about 6 years ago and although I’ve since seen images on the internet, I’m proud to say it was it was an idea I had all by myself!

Denim cuff books

It’s a great method for making notebooks to carry around in a bag or pocket as the button (or snap) on the cuff holds the pages closed and you have the length of the cuff to decorate.

Leaves book cover 1

So I was delighted to be asked to teach it as a workshop for Brigg Allsorts group last week.  Men’s shirts, my main source of cuffs, often are patterned in stripes or checks and the patterns are a great set of guidelines for keeping your stitches straight, so I chose a checked one and decided to have a go at some chicken scratch embroidery with cross stitch and rice stitch.

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I also replaced the boring button with one covered in scarlet silk. It’s fascinating how adding even simple stitches can alter your perception of the background design so much.

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One of the early projects on the seven week crazy patchwork course I’m running for North Lincolnshire Adult Education at Ashby Link was to piece three tiny scraps of fabric together with feather stitch and enhance them with stitches to make a crazy patchwork brooch. This is my example. Black and gold silk covered with lace on either side of a scrap of printed Japanese style cotton with a gold coloured metal motif stitched onto it.

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Kantha stitch knocks back the brightness of the print in the middle. Whipped back stitch and threaded chain stitch to the left and bullion roses with stem stitch stems and nested lazy daisy leaves on the right.

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I went for a very closely worked blanket stitch edging as the pieces of silk fabric were fraying very badly. It took a lot longer to finish, but I think the neat effect is worth it.

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One thing about teaching these courses, I have to get things finished to keep up with the learners!

 

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I’ve always kept a folder on my computer of images of things that I’ve come across on blogs and other lovely places across the internet that have piqued my interest. My own private Pinterest, I suppose. As the lovely group of ladies at Brigg Allsorts, (I taught a felted spiral brooches workshop there last September), have asked me to work with them on a regular basis, it is proving a treasure trove of ideas for things to teach.

My first workshop of 2019 with them was earlier in the month and from a selection of my treasure trove ideas they chose Kamal Kadai work. This is a type of needle weaving, sometimes beaded, which I believe originates in India and it was a real pleasure after the intensity of panto costume to get down to some sample pieces.

My first sample was a piece of beaded Kamal Kadai. My first attempt at guidelines was based on four diamonds which meet in the middle.  I also drew my lines by eye, but measuring accurately would help improve the result!

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The beads are added during the initial phase when the warp threads are being laid down. I found the single stranded thread such as perle and coton a broder worked best for this.

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Then, one section at a time, you fill the diamonds with needle weaving. Once you reach the first pair of beads you stop weaving on those warp threads and carry on on the ones left until you reach the final three threads.  It’s quite a challenge to get it even!

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I also found some examples of Kamal Kadai worked over buttons which I was keen to experiment with. I used the button as the basis for the guidelines.

dav

First with five threads per section:

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They look quite attractive even before you add the needle weaving.

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Then seven threads:

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And completed in the centre.

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It was a nice quiet relatively easy post-Christmas and New Year stitching workshop.

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The actual basics are relatively simple – straight stitches for the warp and then needle weaving, but as with a lot of fundamentally straightforward stitching, it’s the care and precision of working that gives the best results and we certainly had some lovely work from the group. I’ve added Kamal Kadai work to my range of workshops, so if you are interested please see the workshops page for further details and contact me (details in the side bar) for prices and further information.

After being extremely careful to keep the tension even on all my samples, I did wonder what would happen if I pulled the weaving up tight on each row. This is definitely something to explore.

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