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Monday, April 21, 2008

Cinders, Day 1

Direct from a hotel in Corning, NY, I present the pathetically minute amount of stitching from my class today! That's right, folks, I stitched a whopping three stones of the archway and a little bit of the hearth between the broom and Cinderella. Oh, and a doodle in the corner.

This class is turning out to be more challenging than I expected. Actually, I should say it's adaptable to the level of the stitcher. It's a beginning blackwork class, and can certainly be done as a copy of Marion's stitched piece. It can also be much more challenging - not in the stitching itself, but in the finding of appropriate patterns for each area.

Marion has provided 15 pages of various filling patterns. I'd guess there are over 200 patterns in all. (For the record, many, if not most, of these are NOT reversible. Blackwork does not have to be reversible.) We're finding patterns that are appropriate in scale to each area. We're then shading them by adding or deleting stitches, changing the color value of the thread, and/or changing thread thickness in some areas of the pattern. By clicking on the picture and looking at the three completed blocks in the archway, you can see a bit of this. The two larger blocks are in a lighter color and are missing some stitches. I'll probably use a similar effect on the inside and outside of the bucket.

In the hearth, I've stitched some basting lines. These will be used so I can tell when I want to change colors within that large area.

I'm going to learn a lot in this class. Most of my blackwork background has been with reversible bands (as in Tiramisu). This is the first time I've worked with shading blackwork, and so far it's been a bit frustrating (like when I tried a pattern in a certain area only to find out it was far too big for that area, or when I tried to make a complex pattern reversible just to see if I could).

I just realized it. I've been doing a LOT with shading lately, between Winds of Color and these two classes with Marion. Apparently, if last year was the year for goldwork, this year is the year for shading. There are three very different techniques: canvaswork, surface embroidery, and blackwork, but they all require many decisions for shading. It's wonderful to know there's always something to learn in this fascinating needlework journey!

(Isn't it fun when a blog post doesn't end up the way you thought it would? This in itself is part of my journey - helping me find the parallels in my projects. I might not have made the "shading" connection without writing about it!)


M&Co. said...

What is the name of this class? Is this one of the fairy tale series?

The Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure said...

Congratulations on the needlework journey. I love fairy tale designs myself. They take me back to second grade when I read every fairy tale I could find!

I also find I discover what I'm doing as I write about it on Blog. For me, NP is a fascinating intellectual journey so it's great to watch you make your own way leanring about other types of needlework.


Mary Corbet said...

I think it's looking well, despite only a "little" stitching! Every time I sit down to stitch, I have great expectations of making a lot of progress as far as coverage goes. It never happens!