Sunday, June 7, 2015

Flower Lessons

My practice flower.

 I cut a piece of fabric 20 cm square, steamed it and measured it again. It was still 20 cm in one direction but only 19 cm in the other. So the fabric must be  shrunk before use.

 I traced a flower from the corner of my pattern, using a pencil. The pencil lines faded rather rapidly. I'm glad I discovered that before I traced out the whole pattern! I think a black ballpoint pen might work better than a pencil.

 I used three related shades, but I rather think that the dark and medium are too close to each other. A lesson for when I choose colours for the real thing. This flower makes me think of waterlilies, so I'm thinking of choosing waterlily colours.

 When I started working the chain stitch, I had to change my thinking from lazy daisy type chain to chain stitch as a filling stitch. In lazy daisy, you want a space to show in the middle of the stitch, but when filling, you're trying to cover the fabric completely. Corlie, leader of the craft group I belong to, showed me how to tug the thread and then if necessary use a thumb nail to squidge the stitch together. I concentrated on that and on getting the lines of stitches close enough together to cover the fabric.

No doubt I have a lot more to learn, but I think I learnt quite a bit from this flower.


  1. Beautiful! I used to do hand embroidery and the chain stitch was my fave :). Although I've never seen the chain stitch used this way :).

  2. I love the way your flower looks! Embroidery is on my to-do list when I retire.

  3. I did take multiple sewing classes (not embroidery) but they always said to wash the fabric first. It can be tempting not to because the use a sizing in most new fabrics that may seem nice because of the stiffness but on a machine it can make the needle skip and they said most of all the cotton shrinks too. I did not know that you could kind of fold that chain stitch up like that, I always wondered about that tinny bit of fabric you could see.
    Your practice flower looks great and fun to view the close up.

  4. It looks beautifully and evenly filled!

  5. Great job..... your flower looks beautiful....good to wash the fabric first.....

  6. Amazing !!! Your post is a valuable resource in how to approach embroidery perfection . You have achieved a nice dense, evenly covered fabric with your even, lined stitches :-)
    I always soak & wash any cotton/cotton-based fabric that needs embroidery or sewing (including sewing a fall on saree) -- it's become second nature. But I didn’t know about the steam-check !
    Great post !

  7. Lovely flower, I like your colours and it does look like a water lily I look forward to seeing your progress with the design.

  8. This looks a very interesting project that you have started, you have done well with your chain stitch, I will look forward to seeing some more.