Wednesday, 19 April 2017

The next tapestry cushion

I think I bought the kit for this while I was still buying anything indiscrimately. It is from the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, from a Kate Greenaway drawing. I saw the possibility of doing the letters in blocks immediately. I was not going to do mice, even clothed ones, even I could have. The pale print on the canvas had faded badly but not the dark coloured letters.

I planned the colours of the blocks, and started stitching in the middle of the canvas deciding on the actual shapes as I went along. I learnt a valuable lesson in the process. I am not much good at planning colours. I took shades into account but not tone. I did two strands of different colours together. I restricted myself to the yarns provided in the kit (and it annoyed me that the shades had been cut to different lengths) so one was always white. It would be more successful if you did similar tones together.
I didn't use a frame so the canvas slanted.  I straightened it a little by doing some rudimentary blocking when it was finished, but I relied on it not being noticeable after putting it over a cushion pad.  The pad by the way is from John Lewis, and after finding that feathers escape from their feather and down pads I now buy ones with polyester filling.  They are a bit too round and bouncy from being overfilled.

Afterwards I could see how it could have been improved with more foresight. I had planned to do some patterns of my own, but now I am doubtful.

On the whole I enjoyed the stitching, but I don't think much of the result. I like it because it is my own. It took longer than previous cushion covers because I no longer stuck to my decision to do a bit every day.

Stitched 8 June 2015 to 31 August 2016; finished cushion 25 February 2017

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

The next blanket


The next blanket, #184, was supposed to be pale pink, but when it came to sorting out the yarns it turned out that there was little pink.  So I added the remains of the yellow and some apricot, and the rest is neutrals - white, off white, beige, grey, sheep coloured (undyed wool) and so on.  I like it.  The boucle is from Blanket #172 and it adds texture.  The softness comes from the angora in yellow Paton's Fuzzy-Wuzzy.

I unravelled this shawl, knitted according to a Shetland pattern.  The unusual thing about it is that the centre is knitted in moss stitch - usually it is done as garter stitch.  The other thing is the choice of yarn, an ordinary wool, not shetland.  I thought it was 4 ply, but unravelled it was much thinner, a 2 ply.  It is still very soft, and a pleasure to knit with.