Hoops

Embroidery inspired by Robert Delaunay’s artwork.

Embroidery inspired by Robert Delaunay’s artwork.

You know, the longer I take between blog entries the more work I am able to show, making me look much more prolific than I actually am.

Anyway, let’s talk about embroidery!

Painting is a huge pain in the ass, especially because my painting space is also my home office/kitchen/living room. Every night I either have to shove all my supplies against the wall so I don’t trip on it in the morning or pack it away in a cupboard (where it is more often than not, completely forgotten about.) So somehow this led me to pick up embroidery… which is low maintenance, inexpensive, surprisingly relaxing and has the added bonus of being able to work on projects in my bed!

For my first attempt, I decided to go BIG. If embroidery wasn’t my jam, then I wanted to know it right away — so I started by stitching a person. Now, I wouldn’t recommend this technique of starting out with a high difficulty level, but this is just how I roll. I started out with a photo of my husband when he was a kid (early 90’s = laser background) and sketched out the lines with a fabric marker. Then I just started filling in the areas with the appropriate colour with different lengths of stitches. On the face I attempted to do some shading, which didn’t turn out as terrible as I had anticipated.

I’m guessing this took around 10 hours — not including a false start where I began stitching on a different coloured background. And I absolutely LOVED working on this.

My first embroidery project!

My first embroidery project!

This next project I worked on during a long flight home from Florida. I am a very nervous flyer, so settling into a fun embroidery project was absolutely perfect for calming me down.

PRO TIP: With all the restrictions on what you can bring in your carry on luggage, you CAN bring needles, but not scissors. So just pack a container of floss and use the little metal tab to snip all your threads.

And of course because I had just been in Florida, my UFO is abducting an alligator.

Alligator abduction

Alligator abduction

For each project after that, I starting giving myself little challenges. Trying out a “thread painting” technique, working with French knots, and seeing if I could replicate a complicated pattern of a dress (I couldn’t, but that’s okay.)

In 2019 I’m hoping to start combining embroidery with other forms of art, mostly to justify all the money I’ve spent on fancy art supplies. I’ve also recently gotten into weaving (more on that later) and am sloooooowly working on tapestries that will be embellished with embroidery, though my work schedule is hogging all my free time lately.

Let me know if you want any embroidery tips/resources for beginners!

If you are finding foliage boring — just add a dinosaur!

If you are finding foliage boring — just add a dinosaur!

Skeleton in a 70s patterned dress

Skeleton in a 70s patterned dress