Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Texture in Surface Embroidery

One of the loveliest things about embroidery is the textures we work to create. Smooth, fluffy, bumpy - so many different textures, all of them interesting and tactile.

As a textile artist, embroidery has long been one of my loves. I have given away many of my creations (I'm a "process more than the product" person) but I will show you one of those I couldn't part with. It portrays a variety of textures.This is not my design, I took it direct from a book by Lalla Ward called the Countryside Embroidery Book. Unfortunately it is no longer in print; it is a most beautiful book showing 12 scenes, one for each month, of British birds, flowers etc. The ducklings in this pic are fluffy, being worked in Turkey stitch/Giordes knot, which is basically a long looping stitch that is then cut to produce the fluffy effect. This contrasts strongly with the poppies, which are in smooth satin stitch. The butterfly has a fluffy body and smooth wings. The borders are first, padded satin stitch, stem stitch and blanket stitch.

Another way of creating texture is with the stitches themselves. For instance, in my galah, the bird is actually painted with fabric paint and them embroidered with detached chains. This gives the texture of the feathers quite well.
Unfortunately I wasn't able to upload this photo so I will show you next time!

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