Wednesday, 22 November 2006
Felt wedding cushion
Sorry I've been away from the blog, I've had the busiest sewing, card making, present making and emailing week ever.
Lots of really good big long emails from friends, I do love it when people I don't get to see very often send a huge mail about their lives. Plus I've been trying to catch up with Flickr comments, blog reading etc. though still lots more to read in between card and gift making.
I got to see one distant friend in person, all the way over from Norway for the day (for a big birthday party). I FINALLY managed to finish her wedding gift of a white cushion with stag embroidered on it. I'd been struggling with it for an embarrasingly long time, but it kept shrinking until it was tiny and the embroidered bit was almost going to get trapped in the seam.
It was a hand felted on MrP's floor last December (a very wet affair) using wools from Australia (where they come from), Scotland (where they met) and, Norway (where they live), but the Norwegian bit which was for the back shrunk so much it was unusable in the end, so I cheated and remade the back with felt from an Ikea cushion! Well, it is Swedish and that's where they were married, so the link is there. And the stag, well obviously the gift is from me so hand made with a Scottish image, but the image can equally translate as a reindeer in Norway or Sweden. Blimey, almost as many links and connections as a good blog!
The embroidery thread is antique stuff from my great aunt, probably from the 20's. It's lovely but was incredibly snaggy so the antlers turned out quite lumpy and imperfect... though that was also cause I had no heating when I was sewing it so my fingers were a bit numb (can anyone hear violins?).
It feels like I spent a lifetime sewing and unpicking and re-sewing. And you know how it is when you work with something too long, past the enthusiastic stage, you start to think it's completely crap. Unfortunately I didn't get any decent pics as the weather was so dull and grey. But these are better than nothing. The problem came because the marker I used to draw the stag was supposedly the kind that washes out.. but it didn't and so I had to wash a few times before shrinkage meant I gave up, so there is a trace of the drawing under the embroidery, though it doesn't show in this low quality picture, thankfully.
I also made a cream wool bag to hold 'things' from the trip, but which conveniently fitted the shrunken cushion perfectly. The back of the cushion shows here, but you can't make out the stitched writing as it's too subtle, it has their names and the year on it. The bag is not the design of a bag for a person to carry on their shoulder, but for an animal (like a reindeer) to carry in pairs slung over their back. I did a lot of Lappish inspired work in 1992 when I was in the 1st year of my textiles degree (which I never finished, if you are new to my blog, I changed dept.) and I had that in the back of my mind as I was making this...
Detail of bag when full...
Hmm, the stitching doesn't show up, but it has '2006' just below the button.
I've also been making lots of Christmas cards of course. How organised you cry. Finally Cally is on top of things - except they're not for me to use, they're for my mum, and I'll never hear the end of it if I do my own before handing over all hers. As always, the house is now chaotic with fabric scraps, paper, card, thread and images. My socks are becoming home to huge gatherings of thread as I walk, quite cute actually. Oh yeh, forgot to say half of my busyness has been sorting out (again) my sewing room so I can access things to make again. Not got my best things, but the sewing machine and threads are available at last, such a relief.
So to those of you expecting a card from me... check the post in March! No, hopefully I'll get to mine in the 1st week of December.