Insertion Stitch Sample: hand stitching
Insertion Stitch Sample: machine stitching
I wasn't pleased with how the bonded felt behaved when I stitched into it. The felt layer went fluffy and peeled away from the fabric which then frayed a bit and looked untidy, so I made tubes of fabric for the machine sample and tacked them onto soluble stabiliser. After stitching, I trimmed away the excess stabiliser then dissolved it away in lukewarm water.
Simple Counterchange Sample 1
This was pleasing and fun to do. It amused me to have the two birds flying off in different directions.
Interchange Sample 2
This exercise really scrambled my brains! I read the instructions several times and had to do a couple of mock-ups on paper before it finally penetrated the fog that I call a brain! Once I understood it, I really enjoyed the exercise.
Counterchange Sample 3
I really enjoyed choosing the colours for this sample, although it's just as well I prepared plenty of bonded felt because it took two tries to cut it accurately enough. I enjoyed mixing hand stitching and machine stitching here. I chose the alternating squares because it was the only decorative stitch on my machine that I felt was bold enough to hold its own alongside the half cretan hand stitching. I quite like the effect of the scalloped stitch around the edge.
"Mock" Insertion Stitched Sample 4
This was fun to do. After the regular symmetry of previous samples it was nice to play about with the shapes and their placement. It also gave me a chance to use a piece of fabric that was so dull I almost threw it away. I tried painting it with diluted acrylic paint. It was better but still a bit dull, so I tried printing on it, since I was running short of printed fabrics. I used acrylic paint and irridescent medium for the printing. I am really pleased with how the colours turned out, the dark wine background showing them up well. It just goes to show that there are no disasters in design!
Overall, I enjoyed this chapter. It was a welcome return for me to the discipline of regular working. I didn't think I was going to like it, since I struggled so much with the first insertion stitch sample. I find neat and regular hand stitching very difficult to achieve, and my aging eyesight didn't make it any easier (serves me right for laughing at my mother when she couldn't see to thread needles when she was about the age I am now!) However, it was so enjoyable to be doing something creative again - and seeing what is to come I can't wait to get at it.