pretty crewel stitchery

January 27, 2012

the new crewel

As is my usual habit when dropping into my little local library I like to browse the craft section to see what's new that might peek my interest, 'cause you never know what treasures you might find. Most of what's there tends to be a little on the older generation side, but occassionally you come across the odd contemporary gem, such as my find last week of Katherine Shaughnessy's first book of contemporary embroidery, The New Crewel.

Like I need a new hobby! On the other hand it could have been the art of motorcycle tank sculpture which I also saw a video dvd for the same day *grin* But I have been mulling the idea of experimenting with some embroidery just for the fun of it and this book appealled to me because it wasn't just 'regular' embroidery, but something a little different (which I always like) and there were some really beautiful examples of what even some very simple stitches could achieve...

the new crewel

I really liked the effects of these particular stitches, especially those of the eyelet hole (bottom left) and overcast stitch (top right), and could imagine lots of ways these could be put to interesting effect in my projects. I also thought the effects made when long satin stitches were used on mass to create awesome shapes (bottom right) and optical illusions (top left) were lots of fun *grin!*

the new crewel

This was my favourite two-page spread, I guess 'cause it was in these lovely olivine green tones, but I also loved the layered branches of the 'Peace Tree' (left, but shown better above) and the delicate seed head of the 'Queen's Lace' (right)...

the new crewel

...And these were my particular favourite projects from among the ideas section. I especially liked the curly fronds along the skirt hem (bottom left) and the starbursts on the jeans (top left): the latter reminded me of something I played with similarly on my first pair of denim dolly pants *grin*

Katherine's next book, The Motif Collection, is due out this summer and will definately by on my reading wish list. In the meantime I have several different embroidery hoops that I could use to play with the ideas from this book, and the local store has a really cool craft section with lots of yummy yarns and all the makings for. I see an artist's date in the making...

Do you crewel?

I'd love to see more examples of this embroidery style to spark my muse. Feel free to share your links below. Thank you - have an awesome weekend! xo, B

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