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Posts Tagged ‘cushion cover’

A silver Victorian brooch arrived as part of a job lot of jewellery I bought online last week. It was perfect – apart from the central dome, which was badly dented and damaged. I gently tried to smooth it out with a doming tool but the metal was too far gone and I ended up resorting to carefully removing it with a jeweller’s saw.

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After some filing and finishing this left me with a tempting little space to fill and I was soon stitching a minute silk ribbon rose onto some ironed out silk carrier rod.

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The completed rose (with a french knot cluster in the centre and lazy daisy leaves round the outside)  is about 6mm in diameter.

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The brooch is only an inch in diameter but the rose makes it look huge!

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The completed ‘Blush Rose’ brooch is in my Etsy shop here.

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I’ve also started work on another embroidered locket piece – this time a little larger but not much!! My idea for this one was a climbing rose on a trellis. Trellis first. This locket was a bit distressed inside so I lined it with some more of the silk carrier rod which you can see through the hole in the front.

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Next I started on the stems of the rose and because I couldn’t resist, have already put in some vivid scarlet roses (french knots of course) in a shade of hand dyed silk called ‘Tart’s Knickers’!!!

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The colours have turned out a bit dodgy on this photo in spite of going outside to make use of a rare bit of February sun!

If you follow me on Instagram you will also have seen the cushion cover which I made this week…

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… a good antidote to working in miniature! The crewel work embroidery is not mine but came from a ubiquitous suitcase of embroidered household linens which friends recently cleared from the house of an elderly relative.

The embroidery on this piece was finished but it hadn’t been made up into anything so there had been no wear or light damage to the linen and I was asked to make it up into a cushion cover, which having had a well-earned rest from the sewing machine and panto costumes, I was finally ready to do.

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I found some fantastic toning batiks to edge the front and create the back. That pop of turquoise makes the soft green of my beloved suite look completely washed out!

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It’s good to think that all the hard work put in by whoever stitched the original embroidery will finally be on show and admired after probably at least half a century.

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One of my jobs back in August was to tidy out a cupboard where I keep my creative stuff. One of the first things that came out was a baby blue wool jumper that I had picked up at a jumble sale for 10p earlier in the year. It had obviously been through too hot or too robust a wash and had felted slightly. One of the many things on my list of stuff to try is making things from a felted garment so I decided to put the tidying on one side and see what I could make out of the jumper.

I really liked the idea of making a cushion cover from the main body, with the rib at the back, button holes cut through it and big chunky vintage buttons as closures. I’d also come across some variegated roving which went well with the blue and ideas started to happen…

I cut the body into two rectangles and stitched them together across the middle. Then I cut the roving into smaller lengths, wound them loosely into rings and then needlefelted them to the middle area which I had marked out to be the front of the cushion. These were photographed in the evening and have turned out a bit too blue!

Upcycled felted cushion 1

Stabbing the roving repeatedly with a very sharp needle was very therapeutic!!

Upcycled felted cushion 2

A couple of evenings completed the rings…

Upcycled felted cushion 3

…and I was then able to sew up the sides. This is a much closer idea of the true colour.

Upcycled felted cushion 4

And the back.

Upcycled felted cushion 5

Next job is to trawl my button box for some suitable chunky buttons for the back.

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As well as doing the costume for our panto last week, I was also the dame’s ‘dresser’. Those elaborate costumes can be difficult to put on, especially with hoops underneath some of the full-skirted frocks, and constant changes of wigs, shoes, jewellery etc. so we always have someone whose specific job is to help. This, naturally, means being at the theatre for every performance.

Spending every evening backstage for a week is a bit of a long haul after a full day’s work, but there are advantages. Firstly, I was on hand for all the last minute costume tweaks and any mends that became apparent over the course of the run and secondly, in between costume changes and when there was no mending, I could actually get on with some of my own work.

First of all, I finished off the second strip of James’ patchwork cushion. Here it is, alongside the first.

Blue crazy patchwork strips 1 and 2

And then I started the feather stitching on the third strip:

Blue crazy patchwork strip 3

Blue crazy patchwork strip 3 close up

Blue crazy patchwork strip 3 butterfly end

I also finally finished off the second denim cuff book (the one with lazy daisy flowers) with a beaded spine.

Denim cuff book 2

Denim cuff books

Denim cuff book beaded spine

Denim cuff book 2 open

More to come, including a birthday card I can’t unveil until the weekend!

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And that’s not easy to say after a couple of drinks! In the summer I finished this:

Fused fabric cushion

a cushion cover featuring a panel of fused fabric embroidery on blue silk dupion background.

My son, who is just starting his second year at university in London was very disappointed that it was going to our Embroiderers’ Guild exhibition to be sold and to my amazement, asked me if I’d make him a cushion cover featuring my embroidery for his new flat ( a very expensive bedsit).

Together we designed three long panels of crazy patchwork in shades of blue and white which will go on a white silk dupion background and I’ve started stitching.

Blue crazy patchwork cushion 1

I normally highlight blue with yellow/gold, but as James has gone for mostly white furniture (it was the cheapest finish at IKEA and he knows how to make his pennies go as far as possible!) I’m going to use white and silver as accents.

Blue crazy patchwork cushion 2

 

Lots of silk as usual, both fabric and thread.

Blue crazy patchwork cushion 3

Japanese cotton yukata fabric and a vintage print.

Blue crazy patchwork cushion 4

Hand dyed shibori indigo, batik and embroidered silk.

Blue crazy patchwork cushion 5

Scraps of silk and cotton: plain and printed; commercial and hand dyes.

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Blue crazy patchwork cushion 8

These are a great size to put in my travel sewing kit and work on while I’m out and about. I’d almost forgotten all the things I love about crazy patchwork: working with fragments of gorgeous fabrics, having mini canvases to stitch into and enhance and sections small enough for me to not get bored before the next idea strikes.

Blue crazy patchwork cushion 9

I’m so touched that my son actually wants some of my work on display in his bedsit. Oh and the fused fabric cushion didn’t sell, by the way, so I surprised him with it just before he went back for the new term. He was delighted.

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As soon as I hooped up the fused fabric embroidery, I spotted several areas that needed filling in.

Fused fabric embroidery 1

Either side of the gold inclusion to the left and areas top and bottom, which became more obvious when in the hoop as that’s going to be the size and shape of the finished panel. After that, it was an easy fill in job.

Fused fabric embroidery 2

Originally I stitched it with oddments of machine thread I was given when my best-beloved aunt died and although I’d added some lines in single stranded cotton, they seemed too thick, so I used Guterman rayon and metallic thread in dark blue, turquoise and silver.

Fused fabric embroidery 3

Despite being machine threads, I was pleasantly surprised at how nice the metallics were to sew with and also, how well they lasted with very little shredding and shedding of the outer metal coat.

Fused fabric embroidery 4

I’m happy with the coverage now so this will be put on one side until I’ve got a cushion pad organised and I know what the sizings are going to be for the completed cushion cover.

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