Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Spirograph I - not quite according to plan

As I mentioned last time, the largest, final spiral is a little more of a problem than the others have been. As you may remember, the design is on the back, so turning the frame over, this is how it looked:

There a few things wrong with this, but the most obvious one is that you can't see all of it. I'd thought I could get all of the design visible on the frame at the same time, but unfortunately I was wrong. I've done all I can with it laced up the way it was, but in order to stitch the final one, I need to unlace the sides, take the stretchers off the side bars, move everything on, and then lace the sides up again. This is not a job I like at the best of times, and with a large frame like this, it's a real chore. Still, I've done it, so here's the full final spiral:

Much better, although this does have a knock-on effect on some of the work I've already done:

One of the earlier spirals is now partly wrapped around the stretcher bar. I need to get the final spiral finished off quickly so that it's not held like that too long. I don't think it'll stretch, but there's no need to take unnecessary chances. In case you're wondering why the back looks a little odd, I put a piece of muslin over the designs to prevent any of the transfer rubbing off onto the front fabric rolled onto it.

Back to the last spiral. If you look back at the picture above, it's quite clear that some of the transfer is very faint. The paper I used to make the transfer was two pieces of kitchen parchment stitched together up the centre, and I think that it was where they overlapped - where there was two thicknesses of paper - that the transfer hasn't come off too well. Also, despite my best efforts to keep everything in place, the transfer must have shifted slightly as I was ironing it, as it's smudged in some places and in others I have two lines where I should just have one. Not a good idea in a design like this!

After a bit of work with a pencil, though, I now have a design I can use:

Much clearer! I can now start on the goldwork.


  1. I sometimes think that some of the most interesting parts of embroidery design are the problem solving bits - the parts you don't forsee. Glad that you have gotten things back on track.


  2. Yvette,

    You're absolutely right - that's one of the reasons I prefer to do my own designs, as it then all becomes a problem to solve (in a good way!) which I enjoy. If everything just worked all the time it wouldn't be a challenge and we'd never progress.