Blue-breasted Fairy Wren by Renette Kumm

12th August 2022

Brilliantly coloured birds make ideal subjects for embroidery projects. The blue-breasted fairy wren, native to Western Australia, fits the bill perfectly. With his brilliant blue head and breast and golden-orange wings, this little fellow is just begging to be stitched.

Fortunately, Renette Kumm has answered the call, and has designed Blue-breasted Fairy Wren, a stunning threadpainted study, from Inspirations issue #115.

Like many other bird couples, only the male of the species displays the beautiful plumage that you can see in this project. However, curiously enough, not all males sport such brilliant colours. The colours only appear on breeding males. Non-breeding males, as well as females and juveniles display a grey-brown plumage with almost no other colourful, distinguishing features.

These little birds live in groups of up to ten birds, and predominantly feed off the ground enjoying grubs, ants, flies and other insects as their meal of choice. Despite the relatively large family groups, the blue-breasted fairy wren is a shy creature and difficult to observe in the wild. The beautifully coloured males are often the hardest to spot as they hide in bushes or foliage when people are close by.

This aspect of their nature makes Renette’s study even more special. In this project, the blue-breasted fairy wren is standing proud on the ground, gazing out at the observer with an intelligent eye.

He appears to have alighted to seize a tasty insect for his breakfast and has been captured at that moment in time, his feathers shining and his tail erect.

Renette has reproduced the feathers perfectly, using subtly varying lengths of stitches to represent the different types of plumage. The transition from one colour to another is so smooth, the result looks three dimensional. This effect is made even more pronounced by layering stitches on top of one another which give the impression of feathers resting upon feathers just like the real bird.

The palette that Renette has used is wide but the variety of colours is what produces the photographic effect of Blue-breasted Fairy Wren. She has not skimped on any detail, from the delicate touches of blue in the tail feathers, all the way through to the shifting soil and tufts of moss beneath the little bird’s feet.

Renette gives clear instructions about the order of the stitching and the direction of the stitches for this project. These instructions are highlighted with clear photographs for each section so that you’ll always know you are getting your stitching just right in order to achieve the overall effect. 

This allows you to relax into the stitching, confident that every tiny stitch you place will add to the verisimilitude of the finished piece.

You’ll also be excited to learn that Blue-breasted Fairy Wren is the second project now that includes the design pre-printed on the fabric.

That means that when you open your Ready-To-Stitch kit, all you will have to do is place your fabric in your hoop or frame and start stitching. You won’t need to worry about having to transfer the design on to the silk or ensuring that you haven’t accidentally missed a detail. It will all be there, making your stitching experience even better.

Blue-breasted Fairy Wren will make a wonderful, heirloom piece that will take pride of place on your wall. Although you may not get the chance to see this secretive little bird out in nature, you’ll get the pleasure of gazing at him every time you walk into the room.

Make Your Own Blue-breasted Fairy Wren

Step 1 – Purchase Project Instructions

Blue-breasted Fairy Wren by Renette Krum is a colourful, blue-breasted fairy wren depicted with threadpainting.

Printed Magazines

Inspirations Issue 115

Digital Patterns

Blue-breasted Fairy Wren – i115 Digital

Step 2 – Purchase Ready-To-Stitch Kit

The Inspirations Ready-To-Stitch kit for Blue-breasted Fairy Wren includes everything* you need to re-create this spectacular wren: Fabrics (inc. with pre-printed design), embroidery threads and needles.


Blue-breasted Fairy Wren – i115 Kit

*Please Note: To cater for flexibility of purchase, instructions are not included with our kits. For step-by-step directions on how to create this project, please refer to the magazine/digital pattern.

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