Saturday, May 28, 2011

Stumpwork Initial Finish

Last weekend I had another finish, the Stumpwork Initial! I am so pleased to get this done. It started life as a class at Beating around the Bush in Adelaide, Australia, in October 2009.

In the last post about this project, I had pretty much finished with the flowers. In fact, I had had enough of them. Sometimes you just get tired of a project and have to finish it. Here are the flowers, leaves and two of the butterflies cut out. I thought they looked a bit dingy, so I took a deep breath and washed them in a mixture of laundry detergent and oxygen bleach. Remember, these are all made of silk. The brands I use are Kirkland High Efficiency powder (available only at Costco in the US) and OxyClean. After swirling them around for several minutes I rinsed them in a sieve and set them out to dry in my laundry room.

I think they do look a bit better here, so I stitched them onto the initial.

I'm still not particularly happy with the white flowers, so I think I'll send it off to Bobbi, who runs our local dry cleaning shop and is used to my silk embroidered items. It took me three tries to get the butterfly body right. It's a 20 wrap bullion knot with three strands of cotton floss. It's supposed to have yellow spots on the darker blue portion of the wing, but I forgot to add them.

This is the photo of the original project. You can see I don't have quite as many flowers, as I just got so tired of them.

I haven't quite figured out what to do with it. I'm seriously considering adding a round border and mounting it as a roundel. That will take some doing, but I have an idea of how to go about it. So I guess this project really isn't quite finished, and you may be subjected to another post about it.

Likes and dislikes:
This is a kit and a class by Jan Kerton of Windflower Embroidery in Victoria, Australia. Jan is a delightful teacher, and all of the materials are very high quality. This kit had Madiera, YLI and Gumnuts silk floss, silk fabric, and even silk organza for the base of the cut out shapes. She provided a CD of all the initials, so we can assemble more materials and make any one of the initials. Also included are the materials for making strawberries, blackberries, and a beaded dragonfly.  Unfortunately, she doesn't have a distributor in the US, so if you want a kit you'll need to order from one of the shops in Australia listed on her site. She may be coming to the Koala Conventions in Seattle and Atlanta in 2013, but that is quite a long way off.

The only think I didn't particularly like was that the shapes to be cut out are drawn in black ink. This isn't an issue with the leaves and the butterflies but I had a hard time covering the lines with the while floss.  I have combined the shapes all onto one sheet of paper so I can copy them on to transfer paper, but I will try to lighten the lines first.

I mentioned in one of the previous posts that I want to make one for my granddaughter, and this is still on my list of things to do. Someday.

If you would like to read all of my posts on this project, just click on "stumpwork initial" in the labels cloud and they will all pop up.


  1. Absolutely stunning! You have done types of embroidery I have never heard of and everything is exquisite. Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Cynthia, I like your version MUCH better, it's lovely! The butterfly adds balance and an extra dimension. Wonderful!

  3. Hello! These are absolutely gorgeous!!! Love, love, love them...actually I can't remember any more words to express my feeling just now...but I can say for sure that I love all your works. They are too exquisite , wonderful, intriguing. You always inspire me. Thank you for that.

  4. I also think yours is much better than the original which kind of looks bulky to me. It is very pretty and I hope it gets pride of place where everyone can see it.

  5. I love the stumpwork initial and see that you have also finished your Trish Burr project. I am way behind the times because blogger hasn't been very friendly letting me leave comments LOL. I love seeing what you get up to and the lavender sachets are a wonderful idea. Although I don't have a dryer I do have sachets everywhere in the cupboards etc that need renewing.

  6. That's beautiful! Absolutely gorgeous.


I love to hear from readers! Please let me know what you think of my posts. If you ask a question, I will reply here on the blog, so others can see the answer.