In this chapter we are looking at ways to decorate and stitch into our drawn fabric
I started by collecting various threads, ribbons, ric rac, tape, wire and strips of fabric and netting to use with my dyed linen scrim. I also looked out a beautiful antique towel on which my Grandmother had worked Drawn Threadwork, I wondered if I would achieve anything so fine but looked forward to stretching the boundaries too. This technique is new to me and presented me with a steep learning curve which really tested me at times but I felt a great deal of satisfaction when I completed each piece.
Sian suggested we use an empty 2 litre water bottle covered with bubble wrap and dark plastic secured in place with sticky tape into which the fabric was pinned in place, this served to support the stitching on a slight curve as I worked.
Experimenting with stitchery ideas to decorate drawn fabric where threads have been withdrawn horizontally:
Needle weaving on bands of horizontally drawn threads:
I used graph paper to plan the tapered woven shapes as it was important to count accurately. I’m really pleased with the shapes achieved and the interesting negative spaces which resulted
Diagonal stitching on the bars
For this sample the threads were withdrawn in both directions to form a grid. Buttonhole stitch was worked around the edge. I then experimented with different methods of stitching diagonally on the bars using a variety of materials to develop diagonal patterns.
Diagonal stitching on the crossovers of the grid .
This sample introduced me to Russian Drawn Threadwork which I absolutely love. I have been intrigued by the beautiful drifts of colour which developed as I worked. I had to concentrate hard to ensure my stitching was consistent!
This time I experimented more with stitching on the bars and crossovers using a variety of materials:
Further development of diagonal stitching to crossovers using Russian Drawn Threadwork and use of the drawn threads to decorate the outer edge:
I’m delighted with this! I love this technique.
This is very tongue in cheek! We were asked to look at patterns in our research and to use them in our stitchery. This was very tricky and I wavered over including it but having spent time planning and stitching I’ve decided to go ahead despite bad stitching!! I also feel I could have concentrated more on patterning rather than this contrived image but I learnt a lot about the methods included. The curves were difficult – it would have been better to attempt the square shapes of the Empire State instead! Although I do like the ‘cartoon’ style in the end.
Another example of using patterns from my research. The map of New York City provides a wonderful grid and of course has Broadway meandering through it. I decided to use machine wrapping of the bars but this was tricky as explained in the working sheet. I ended up working 2 grids as I wasn’t happy with the first [yellow grid] but delighted with the outcome using both of them!
My plan on graph paper:
I love how this grid [map] seems to have grounded me and how the sights and experiences we had in New York are somehow held within it.