Wednesday, 23 May 2018

WIPW - Crazy for Guinness

With one thing and another it has been a busy week. The result? There isn't much to report on Work In Progress Wednesday.

Crazy for Crazy
It took me some time to decide which colour to use for the next crazy quilt octagon block. Then I saw an advertisement for that Irish drink, and I got 'Crazy for Guinness'.

I sorted out my stash of black, and it was quick work as I have very little of that colour. The embroidery and embellishments will of course be in tan, and luckily I have a bit of that particular shade of light brown/beige.

This is as far as I have got! More digging among thread, beads, and maybe I have to do a bit of dyeing.

Monday, 21 May 2018

STUMPWORK TUTORIAL - Millinery and Hat Making

Previous parts of the tutorial can be found here:

Part 7 - Millinery and Hat Making

Here is the seventh part of a tutorial for stumpwork portraits, inspired by Fay Maxwell, whose excellent book Ladies with Hatitude I warmly recommend.


There are many materials that can be used to make a hat - fabric, felt, lace, yarn, fur...

The simplest of fur hats, a small rectangle!

A lace flower can be cut out and draped over the head.

Let's make a hat out of a piece of felt:
Cut out a piece large enough for the brim and the crown.

Cut out the rounded crown

 Stitch it down around the top of the head.

The brim should now stand out.

With pins, try out how to shape the brim.

Like this? Then stitch it down.
 The brim can be decorated with some stitches.

Now, let's make another hat, using the same fabric used for the coat.
Take a strip of fabric, gather it in the middle, and cut off.

Drape the gather over the top of the head.

 Stitch it down.
 Fold in the raw edges to shape the crown of the hat.

Fix the two far edges of the brim to the background so the brim stands out.
For a simple decoration on the hat, take a piece of felt,

 gather it, and stitch down.

Instant glamor, even if the brim has a raw edge!

For ideas and illustrations of various hats check out this list.

I usually make my portraits into cards by stretching the fabric over a piece of cardboard. Click here to see.

Here ends the basics in Stumpwork Portrait making. In future I will post alternative ways to arrange hair, make garments and so on.
I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and will have a go!

Sunday, 20 May 2018

Sunday Stitch School - Lesson 61: Raised Fishbone Stitch

In my neck of the woods the trees are showing off their new leaves, so I thought we should do a leaf-shaped stitch today.

Here is Raised Fishbone Stitch,
and I hope the pictures are enough to explain the way to stitch it.

Beware, this stitch is certainly a thread-eater!

Mattia tells me the two names in French are:
Point d'arête en relief
Point de passé plat croisé 

SSS Reference Chart
Teal tailoring wool scribble cloth
Aida sampler, if possible.

Saturday, 19 May 2018

STUMPWORK TUTORIAL - Hairdressing and Final Touches

Previous parts of the tutorial can be found here:

Part 6 - Hairdressing and Final Touches

Here is the sixth part of a tutorial for stumpwork portraits, inspired by Fay Maxwell, whose excellent book Ladies with Hatitude I warmly recommend.


The most enjoyable part of making a portrait is hairdressing.
Hair can be made out of stranded floss, yarn, banana silk, or almost anything...

long and windblown

a perm gone wrong,

a shade to go with the dress?

I settled for stranded floss,

and made a number of loops.

fixed them at the top of the head

and the sides,

tightened and tucked in any stray strands.
I then stitched a couple of beads for earrings.

I added a fastening for the dress.
A bead fixed loosely with string.

 to make the loop.

Finally, I added a blush with a red pencil.

We are nearing the end of this tutorial for the basics. I hope you have enjoyed seeing the portrait grow, and maybe have had or will have a go yourself. The perfect way to use up those small pieces of scrap fabric.

A request for millinery has come in. So I will make one more tutorial part, for making hats.
This will be posted on Monday.

Then I will in future add further tutorials for many more hairstyles, hats, clothing....