Monday, June 13, 2011


OK, the term is nearly over and I'm looking forward to not using the word, "homework" for a while. I'm working on my last stitching task for my history subject. This task came via one of the students. She brought in an old drawing book which belonged to her great-aunt Clara. It was published by the Adelaide Education Department in 1899--so definitely historical material. We were each allocated one of the drawings to interpret and stitch. Mine is a blackberry.The colouring in the book was extremely careful, delicate and restrained. I'm having a bit of a dilemma with my interpretation. The pieces are to be displayed as a group and most of my collegues have gone with the old-fashioned pretty look. My feeling about blackberries is that they are vigorous plants with a strong tendency to break bounds. How to respect the character of the plant and yet harmonise with the group? I've started by using a green crinkle cotton for the leaves. I've vliesofixed two layers of fabric and blanket stitched around each leaf. That allows me to layer the leaves and they can move relative to each other and pop out of the page to some extent. My next decision is the stalks. I'm thinking of twisting up some of my handspun--if I can find the right greens. I can couch it down and hopefully add some thorns either in the texture of the yarn itself or with my couching stitches. I have various thoughts for the blackberries: maybe a combination of french knots and seed beads? Then there's the border. Several of the pictures have this clear outline. I'd like to see if I can send some tendrils over the fence! I think I'd better wait until the rest is done though before I try that. Already the design is feeling a bit crowded--hemmed in--so I may need to enlarge the design area to contain it. I've got a little bit of room to play with.

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