Monday, 17 January 2011

A more productive use for a sewing machine

Those of you who either know me or read my blog regularly will now that me and sewing machines don't really see eye to eye. But, the sewing machine killer (yep, that's me) finally conquered her demons when I bought a 2nd hand Janome XC33, more expensive then my earlier models (but still a good price) and suddenly I was making things.

Now, I made a few handbags and skirts, and whilst the end result was pleasing the actual process wasn't much fun. I ended up stressed and often swearing at the material, needles, machine and if my poor hubby happened to walk past him...well, I think you can guess.

So, after a course at Urchfont manner on machine embroidery I decided to have a crack at my first proper piece.

But, what should the subject be? Well, I had no idea what to get my parents for Christmas, so I thought I would make them something.

They both love Budleigh Salterton in East Devon, so I took a photo and printed it on special paper from Ario (I love their unusual products) and started to stitch....and stitch....and stitch...

I stitched for 3 days, layering threads, silk rods (dyed from Steff Francis who does wonderful colours) and even some angelina fibres for the reflections. I decided to keep some of the sea unstitched to show that it started out life as a photo.

And this is how it turned out:

Because of the pressure on the fabric, it puckered slightly at the edges so I decided to frame it (not easy considering how thick this piece is)

As you can see, I used many, many layers, keeping some of the silk rods and more textured fibres slightly looser to add depth and texture.

When my parents opened it at Christmas their faces said it all, even my family in New Zealand recognised it as Budleigh Salterton when we showed them over skype!!
All in all, I must admit, for my first attempt I am pretty pleased with myself. If it wasn't a gift for my parents (where I can visit it often) then I don't think I could have actually given this away!!
Now I just need to get inspired for another one.
Happy crafting
Li'l Pidge x


  1. Pleased with yourself I should say so :) what a wonderful peice of art 10/10 and a gold star
    Von :)


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