Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Crewel Work Doodle

I mentioned in my last post that I made up a new crewel small design by combining snippets from a pattern in the A~Z of Crewel Embroidery book, and have made some progress on it. What I am finding out from this is what a terrible job I did transferring the design using the prick and pounce method. The pricking and pouncing went fairly well, but I had trouble connecting the dots with the paint. If you look very closely at the leaves and tendrils you can see a bit of the lines peeking out from under the stem stitching. Maybe if I wrapped the stem stitch it will make it bulkier and hide the paint.

But the really bad parts are on the flower on the left and it's accompanying upper leaf. Look how thick I made some parts of the line, and also note the ovals in the center of the flower. They're not exactly centered, are they?

So I had to cover the flower completely, instead of having some white space around a green satin stitched center oval, as shown in the original design.  I'm having to alter the upper leaf quite a bit as well. So the lesson to be learned from this is, when the directions say to use a 000 sized brush, they aren't kidding. Don't use the brush that came with the paints! You really need very fine lines. My directions came from the RSN Essential Stitch Guide to Crewelwork, and also from blog posts by Mary at NeedlenThread.com. I know others have posted about this, but I can't quite find the references. 

I also mentioned that I'm using threads leftover from previous Tristan Brooks kits, but am finding that I have quite a lot of thread and there is no way I'll use anywhere near all of it. So I may make another little design and try my hand at the painting again, this time with the right sized brush.

By the way, in answer to Bunny's comment about the charcoal coming off, it blew off quite easily and there's not a trace of it anywhere. I did decide to see if the paint could be rinsed off easily, so I made a little test sample.

Notwithstanding the spelling, you can tell what Beatles song was floating around in my brain this morning.

I dabbed some water on the "y" with a cotton swab. Pretty ugly.

Then I washed the sample with a bit of soap, squeezed out the water and took a pic. I enhanced the photo due to some ugly shadows in it, but basically the paint didn't come out. The results of this experiment are pretty obvious, don't try washing your painted prick and pounce design.

I hope to finish this soon and will show you the final result, and have made some progress on the Smocked Hanger Cover.  I brought it with me today when I took my mom to the doctor's, but they are getting efficient these days and we didn't have to wait much at all. Consequently, I didn't get nearly as much done as I had hoped.


  1. Cynthia,
    your stitching is always beautiful! Keep up the wonderful work.

  2. Thanks for the experiment. I may have to give this a try. There's always dust in the bottom of those bags.


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