Deerfield Embroidery

As part of a Home Study Course I’m completing in crewel embroidery, through the Embroiderer’s Guild NSW, I completed a Deerfield piece inspired by a project in Inspirations issue #56.

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I’m not ordinarily a “blue” person, in all honesty it is probably one of my least favourite colours.  BUT for some unexplainable reason, I LOVE Deerfield embroidery which is primarily blue on white.  I received my assessment back from the teacher and I was again praised for my stitches and tension control in my embroidery.  In this piece I experimented a little with using negative spaces/minimal stitch use and thankfully, that gamble paid off.  The teacher’s comments to this effect were:

“…you observed the tonal values of the blues from very dark to very light create a wonderful effect of light, shade and perspective…”

“…I note that you wished to experiment with minimal stitch use and the result is very appealing, I like it very much – for the pattern of open seeding stitches used on the body, the solid New England Laid stitches on the wing and around the neck, and the solid satin and French knots in two of the three circles [berries]…”

I’m pretty happy with my progress in this course so far.  Hopefully I can clear up this sinus infection that I yet again have, so that I can get cracking with my next module.

A Deerfield embroidery piece

I’m taking part in a crewel embroidery course run by the Embroiderers’ Guild NSW, the course is no longer offered but I signed up in the last intake. I’ve submitted two modules so far, the first being a traditional crewel design with a snail in the middle (see photo below). The second module I hated working with a passion (photo below) – it was basically focussing on trellis and couching stitches. I just couldn’t get the stitches as even and perfect as I wanted them to be. I am a bit of a stitching perfectionist which is why it often takes me so long to finish a piece of embroidery, because if a stitch or section of a design is supposed to be square, I will do my best to make it a square – if couching lines are supposed to be straight with the couching stitches 1/4 inch apart, I will unpick and re-do until they are perfect. I have had an ongoing goldwork project on my to do list for about five years for this reason, I want the couching stitches to be perfectly evenly spaced. OCD I know!

Anyway, I strayed off topic there for a second. The third module is focussing on Deerfield and as I mentioned in a previous post, I kind of put this on the backburner because I decided that I really didn’t like the fabric supplied in my kit, and furthermore I didn’t like the design I originally chose. So off to my local embroidery store I went in search of new fabric. I didn’t find exactly what I had in mind but it is a nicer fabric to work with than the original, and considering it is due to be stitched and posted in for marking by 10 February, I will need to just get over my issues and get cracking. I’ve ended up adapting another design of my own, from a couple of Deerfield designs featured in past issues of Inspirations magazine. I will keep you updated on my progress!

I have just finished stitching the Aboriginal print dress for my boss, it’s now in the wash with a ton of fabric softener, I’ll post a photo of that when dry & ironed. Happy stitching!

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