What Are You Stitching?

11th December 2020

As all the beautiful birds continue to sing their many and varied songs, so too do our wonderful readers continue to stitch all the many and varied forms they come in. Following on from our What Are You Stitching? segment last week, we have even more avian themed projects to share with you today. We’re sure you’ll be inspired by the magnificent work from your fellow readers.

Joan Kolar

‘I had wanted to do some crewel work for a while after completing a crewel needle case some years ago. I saw Percival Parrot designed by Jacqui Macdonald in the RSN Book of Embroidery. I thought he was gorgeous and hoped I might be able to do justice to the project. Once completed, I was fairly happy with how Percy looked, but I couldn’t decide what to do with the embroidery, so I packed it away, awaiting inspiration.’

‘I finally decided that I would make a needle book out of Percival Parrot. I had a picture of ‘Little Bird’ by Laurelin and used the thread left over from Percival Parrot to embroider him. Now my needle book has Percival Parrot on the front, Little Bird on the back and a selection of my needle packets inside.’

Percy is fantastic and you’ve turned the whole project into something wonderfully practical, Joan. Well done!

Mavis Brown

‘I have finally finished my Australian bird series; the kookaburra, magpies, rosella, and now the galahs.’

‘I did the kookaburra and the magpies as a pair. I have always had a fondness for galahs, so I designed this piece around a photo I saw. I still need to have the rosella framed, so I will have that done along with framing the galahs properly when we have access to the framer again after all the COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted.’

What an amazing series, Mavis! They will look absolutely fantastic all together on the wall; a little slice of Australia captured so beautifully in needle and thread.

Christine Wellnitz

‘For my embroidery masterclass at the International School of Textile Art, I was given a task to transform a 17th century picture of a bird sitting in a flower field into a modern design – without changing the bird!’

‘I decided to work a bag for my little slate frame. I chose a lovely Italian style fabric for the bag and used the back side of the fabric for my design on the flap. Even inside the bag I tried to be creative and worked some really useful details. Since then, I have used this bag nearly every time I have visited an embroidery exhibition or fair – with a bit of pride, I admit.’

Rightly so, Christine. It’s fabulous that you’re proud of your work and showing it off (as we should all be!) and having a bag for your slate frame is such a great way of doing it.

Elza Bester

‘When I saw this photo of a Golden Eagle, I just knew I wanted to stitch it. The photo was taken by a friend of mine, Annemieke de Witt from the Netherlands. She is also a very gifted painter in her own right.’

‘The image was printed on cotton. I used no. 40 viscose sewing embroidery threads, stranded cottons and a bit of metallic thread for the eye. It took me about 8 months to finish.’

‘I used long and short stitch, French knots and stem stitch. Of course, it is much more colourful than the real Golden Eagle, but I used a bit of artistic licence. I call it my COVID-19 bird as it helped me to get through this difficult period.’

It is magnificent, Elza. You’ve caught the elegance of the subject so well, and the colouring just adds that bit extra to turn this into a really special piece. Congratulations.

Birds, insects, animals, plants – the truth is, all of them make fantastic subjects for embroidery. And we love seeing all of them! We don’t really mind what your inspiration is, if you’ve finished a project, we want to show it off. Just send us some pictures of your work, along with a bit of information about the project and your stitching journey to news@inspirationsstudios.com  

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