Thursday, 13 May 2010

'Masquerade' slip case

I haven't had a chance to do much - or any, really - embroidery recently, so I'm terribly behind with where I'd intended to be with the Spirograph wall-hangings.  I'm going to start the next one soon, though, so look out for that!

Before then, though, I thought I'd show you another application of the appliqué method I used on the character cushions.  This looks completely different, and so I hope this shows you just how versatile a technique it can be.

This is a slip case for the Kit Williams's book Masquerade.  The design is inspired by the beautiful illustrations within the book, but is not copied from them - this is my own take on the theme.  The eagle-eyed amongst you may notice that the hare is a very close relative of the one I stitched in Moon!

The background is a gold silk dupion, to give a slightly rough texture.  The hare is worked in split stitch, to create a look of fur and to give the shading.  I'm not entirely happy with this as I think the first shade of brown I used is too dark, or the others are too light, depending on how you look at it. The stems and thorns of the tangle of roses are also in split stitch, but the leaves and and the roses themselves are appliquéd.

Here's a close-up, so you can see the design more clearly.  The photo's a bit too bright, unfortunately, so the colours aren't quite right, but I hope you can get an idea of it.

The leaves are a plain green silk, edged with Gutermann Dekor gold metallic thread in chain stitch.  In fact, all of the elements of the design are edged in this way, bringing it all together.  The roses are in hand-painted silk satin, edged in the gold metallic thread, but here the gold is also stitched into the appliqué shapes themselves, to pick out the individual petals.  Further detail is added with French knots.

One rose is seen from the back, so all the detail of the structure has been stitched over the appliqué and onto the background.

As the appliqué pieces are over felt shapes, as with the cushions, when stitched over in this way it gives a sumptuous, quilted feel to it, adding depth and texture.  If you wanted, you could use this as part of a stumpwork project, by using additional layers of felt beneath the final applique layer.

This is one of my favourites of the slip-cases I've made, and I hope you like it too!


  1. This is soooooo beautiful!

  2. Just visiting and catching up with my blog friends. This is lovely work, Ruth. xx

  3. i have been reading your blog from the beginning and I just wanted to thank you for sharing all this information with us. I realize it is a lot of work to do the kind of tutorials you do and it is greatly appreciated.

    I also had to chime in here to say this slipcover is absolutely gorgeous. The design and execution is just perfect.

  4. Oh thank you! It's always a pleasure to get such lovely comments, and it makes writing the blog worthwhile.