I took Thursday and Friday off work to celebrate my birthday. I have had a lovely weekend and am not ready for it to end but I had to return to work this morning. :-(
On top of that, many of my Japanese embroidery friends are in Bournemouth this week for the September Japanese Embroidery UK class. I never attend the September class but I always long to be there with them. :-( :-(
But the main reason for my grumpiness is that I over slept and did not have any time to bead before work today. This is the first morning that I have not been able to squeeze in even a few minutes. :-( :-( :-(
To give myself a quick beading fix and hopefully lift the glums, here are a couple of pictures of some of the beading I did yesterday. :-)
When I had removed the previously beaded motif and looked at the bare canvas I was completely overwhelmed by the amount of work required. Floral Melody is approximately 12 inches wide by 6 inches high. Both sides are heavily beaded. All I could see was the hours and hours and hours of beading.
I reminded myself that I like beading and could happily spend hours and hours and hours doing it. I looked again at the design and noticed that it is made up of individual motifs, a few larger ones and lots of smaller ones. I decided not to focus on the whole but rather to concentrate on just one motif at a time.
In Japanese embroidery (beading included) you work the foreground motifs first. On Floral Melody the motifs don’t actually overlap so I chose to treat the larger motifs as being in the foreground. Even the largest motif has several components; the flower, the stem, a few leaves and some bracts. I decided to work on this flower first.
Now that I have got going, I am really enjoying the beading this piece. It is true that I enjoy whatever I am working on but this one is pure JOY! The previous Phases have been somewhat repetitive, although that is not necessarily a bad thing in my book - I like that kind of work and find it very relaxing. The dynamic of this phase is completely different. It uses a greater variety beads and techniques, and each motif works up relatively quickly. It is fascinating to see the fanciful flowers and foliage emerging from the lines printed on fabric.
As with the Japanese Embroidery, each phase introduces a new technique. The new technique on Floral Melody is moriage which gives a 3 dimensional effect without the aid of padding beads. I am finding it a challenge to obtain an even, consistent look to the raised areas and have reworked them several times before I have something I’m satisfied with. As with most tricky techniques, the results are worth the effort.
I am really pleased with the progress I made in August. I have been getting up earlier so that I can do some stitching before I leave for work. I haven’t managed a hour every day but I’ve done slightly more on others, especially at the weekends. Even though I had a week with virtually no stitching (when I scratched my eye) I’ve put in over 40 hours on Floral Melody this month.
I estimated 130 hours stitching time for this design. Looking at how much I have done in 40+ hours, I think it is going to take even longer (I always underestimate the time required to do something!) but if I average 40 hours per month, I should be able to finish it by Christmas.
I managed to finish Floral Glove before the end of the month, but only just! I am pleased to have it finished and pleased with the finished article but I am far more pleased to have started my next project. I’ve been itching to do this for the last 5 months. When I was struggling with the long and short stitch on Camellia’s I thought that Trish Burr had launched her thread painting correspondence course solely for my benefit. I’ve only stitched one small element so far but this is now my evening project.
I have also stitched the last three Round Robin Travelling Pages. Some of these are starting to find their way home so I will soon be able to show pictures of my contribution. I have one more Travelling Page on a different subject and a couple of postcards still to do.