Nuido It Yourself - Japanese Embroidery with Madeline Scharpf

 

ロングアンドショートステッチ <<< That’s Katakana. It’s one of three Japanese alphabets and used for words that are not originally Japanese but are commonly used. If you could read it, it would say: ‘rongu ando shiyoto sutichi’. That doesn’t help? What if I told you it’s, ‘long and short stitch’. Does ‘rongu ando shiyoto sutichi’ make sense now that you read it again?

 

The only difference between these two examples is the thread thickness.

The only difference between these two examples is the thread thickness.

You may be thinking, ‘Hey, that’s just regular ol’ basic embroidery stuff. What makes this Japanese?’ Well, these projects are inspired by ideas from modern, Japanese craft books bought in Tokyo then translated using my mega-awesome language skills. I’ll admit, I learned Japanese for the purpose of reading craft books as well as to help my husband and sons play Pokemon before the American releases. It can take a year for video games to be translated in English…ain’t nobody got time for that!

 

There's some more Katakana! It says, 'haibisukasu'.

There’s some more Katakana! It says, ‘haibisukasu’.

The long and short stitch, with it’s alternating lengths, is often used for embroidering flowers. It gives a sense of color radiance and creates depth. The petals of this Hibiscus are done entirely with long and short stitches. The definition of each petal is created by varying the color and angle but not the stitch type. You can create any flower shape and make it beautiful using only one, simple technique. Before beginning the long and short stitch, the petals were outlined with a chain stitch.

Now, you might be saying to yourself, “Ho-hum, embroidered flowers are old hat. Give me leopards, purrr!!”

 

Thank you Husband for helping me take this picture!

Thank you Husband for helping me take this picture!

Long and short stitch isn’t only for classic effects and it’s a great filler stitch that anyone can do. All you need to know for this project is, chain stitch and long & short. I chose a simple ribbon design because illustrating ranks low on The List of Things I Do Well.

 

Just a chain stitch and a few long & shorts.

Just a chain stitch and a few long & shorts.

Outline the ribbon with a chain stitch and make the center of the spots with varying long & short stitches. Don’t worry about perfection, everybody get random!

 

You could make the band any color you want!

You could make the band any color you want!

The band is an example of an even effort but the black portions of the leopard spots are more free-form.

 

Work back and forth in sort of a rainbow pattern.

Work back and forth in sort of a rainbow pattern.

Filling in the rest isn’t an exact science, but try to vary the lengths and put a short on top of a long when you can. Begin nearest the center, work back and forth until you’ve filled in your figure.

 

The back of my finished hair clip.

The back of my finished hair clip.

That’s all there is to it! Instead of leopard spots, try pink zebra stripes or colorful geometric shapes. To finish, I decided to trim the linen and outline stitch onto a piece of felt with some pink thread. You can turn this into a brooch or a statement necklace, I made mine into a hair clip.

 

I realize my clip isn't new anymore. Sometimes we've gotta use what we have.

I realize my clip isn’t new anymore. Sometimes we’ve gotta use what we have.

If you want a hair clip too, just cut another piece of felt, make two slits more narrow than the metal clip, secure the clip with a few stitches and glue it to your embroidery. Come back next month because I’ll be talking about the alluring world of Sashiko. Ja mata! See you next time! じゃまた!

 

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Madeline Scharpf

When she’s not gallivanting overseas (usually to Japan) Madeline is making things at home in the Oregon countryside where she lives with four dogs, a pig and her human family. You can keep up with Madeline’s endless fiber projects and find her travel blog at www.madelinewonderland.com as well as visit her Etsy shop at www.etsy.com/shop/TheAliceSyndrome.

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Kate Blandford's Deviant Discoveries

Welcome back to another Deviant Discovery. Following up from this post a couple of weeks ago I have stumbled on yet another skull themed delight, this time in the shape of a radical hand embroidered cat skull by the talented Sotone.

Sotone - Cat Skull
Has anyone seen any awesome stitchery over on dA? If you’re a member be sure to join the Phat Quarter dA division. Have a happy weekend!

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It's Kate BlandfordKate Blandford is a craft and doodle enthusiast currently working in Bristol. With a penchant for cross stitch and pixels, Kate produces work dabbling in both the handmade and the digital. Her work was once described as ‘shabby chic for Satanists’ due to her love of embroidery, twee skulls and Slayer. You can visit her website here: www.kateblandford.com

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Sequintial Art with Claire Barrett from Hawthorne and Heaney

In programs past, costume does not always carry the subtleties of the setting of the film because they needed to come across on the screen, so in person, the costumes can seem a little over the top. However with the increased popularity of HD TVs and 3D cinema, costume is having to step up its detail game and embrace that the audience will be able to see EVERYTHING. This years New Designers 2014 show showed an abundance of highly detailed costumes for all kinds of production showing that this is a move that is taking place right across the board.

Hawthorne & Heaney has been involved in part of this change as we have been asked to produce embroidery pieces for shows such as Dracula and Di Vinci’s Demons using traditional goldwork techniques such as the house badges . Shows with historical costumes that previously may have taken short cuts to create the effects they needed for the screen are now looking to people with the same skills as would have been used in the setting to provide an authentic look.

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Game of Thrones is great example of a costume team really pushing the boundaries on level of detail. Michele Clapton heads a vast team costumiers, armorers, dress makers along with Michele Carragher, responsible for the amazing embroidered creations for the principle cast members. HBO are so proud of their set and costumes they have produced an exhibition in which they display some of the costumes and props so that the public can appreciate them in all their glory.  The exhibition is on its way to its final stop, Vancouver where it will be showing from 16th Aug- 1st Sept so catch it if you can!

Michele Carragher’s designs have brought a bright spotlight onto embroidery in costume as the intricacy of her designs demands attention. She has a multitude of experience designing embroideries for costumes for other TV series and films before working on the plethora of pieces that she has produced. There is a variety of techniques used in her designs including goldwork, silk shading, beading, and smocking through which many subtle themes and concepts are communicated to reflect the development of the character as well as being remarkable pieces in their own right.

In response to this, the London Embroidery School is delighted to present the final class in our Summer Season Series, the Jewelled Beetle class with Michele Carragher.  Now you can not just admire the Michele’s work from afar, but learn directly from the designer herself teaching one of her designs. The piece that will be taught in this one off class is a stumpwork embroidery beetle (below) it is an incredibly beautiful and intricate piece, reflecting the real insect with surprising accuracy. The skills from which can be transferred into other designs as Michele has done throughout the series.

If you would like to be part of this rare opportunity to learn from such a distinguished embroiderer then book your place now to avoid missing out. Follow the link to book or call 0207 226 0164.

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Claire Barrett - Hawthorne & HeaneyClaire Barrett is an embroidery designer who has been working in the embroidery industry for six years. A former Creative Director at Hand & Lock, Claire runs Hawthorne & Heaney, dealing with celebrity clients such as Kanye West and high profile companies such as Henry Poole & Company Savile Row tailors.

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Mr X Stitch brings Showtime Snippets

Showtime Snippets sweeps together all kinds of titbits from the interwebs into this handy digest for you. If you’re a stitch/textile artist, hopefully these snippets will help you find shows and exhibit!

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Mr X