Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Santa Time!

Well, it's that time of year again.... when snowflakes are falling and stitchers are frantically stitching to finish their projects by the holiday deadline.

I've been stitching up a few small Prairie Schooler santas that I'll be giving as gifts (the ones shown at the top).

And then (as time permits) I've been pulling out various Christmas canvases and stitching a bit on each one, to get back into the Christmas Stitching Spirit.

Here's a Santa I'm working just for myself - it's a Pat Thode Santa that I showed you quite a while ago....

It was one of those (many) projects that I stitched just so far then set aside when I got bored with it. I picked it up again last week and decided to push on through to (finally) finish it. In a spurt of energy I added all the finishing touches - the ribbon on the wreath, the pull string and button wheels on the sheep, bells on the boots, etc... and then I decided it needed a different kind of background.

I tried a bit of the vertical lines of snowflakes. Nope, too faint.
I then tried some pale vertical stripes - like wallpaper - but it looked like Santa was in jail. An upscale shabby chic jail, but still, not the look I was going for.

Then, as luck would have it, I was in the midst of printing a batch of my BLACKWORK PATTERNS book and as I was collating the pages, a thought flickered thru my brain - why not try a blackwork pattern for the background? Oooooh, that was intriguing....
so I stopped and picked out a pattern to try on ol' Santa. Here's how it turned out:

I think I like it. It's so different... maybe it's too distracting, but still, I like it. I used one ply of a pale seafoam green DMC floss (which the scanner goobered up a bit) and the ecru snowflakes are done with a soft Hi-lights thread.

But, you know, I really do like it. At the very least, when I look at it now, I'll be reminded to use more blackwork patterns in my future pieces.

So......Ho, Ho, Ho, cross this one off the list..... and on to the next!


Coni said...

Bad Laura! Bad Laura! Aunt Chrissy sent me a "DANGER DANGER WILL ROBINSON" email this morning about this post, and she was right......I WANT IT ALL AND I WANT IT RIGHT THIS VERY MINUTE!!!!

Love love love the Pat Thode. The background is just divine.

Mary said...

It's absolutely gorgeous, and so different! Perfect!

Rinda Just said...

I think the background is perfect! I'm going to keep that in mind for future use. Thanks, Laura, for all the great ideas. I took your idea about borders to finish my Mystery in a Corner and it turned out great!

Rinda Just,Boise

Carol S. said...

I love the idea of combining blackwork and needlepoint! For me, the background is a bit busy--I probably would have stitched either just the stuff in the seafoam or just the ecru snowflakes. But I will say that seeing this has opened up my eyes to some new possibilities. Thanks for sharing. BTW, I do love how all the little touches you only had left to finish make the whole piece really come to life!

SueB said...

omigosh, you know what they say about great minds thinking alike?! those are two of my favs - Prairie Schooler Pat Thode - TFS!

Carol in Indian Springs Village said...

Love the background on this, it really adds a lot I think. And the extras on the rest? Fab! Especially love the peppermint looking buttons as the wheels.

pv said...

The blackwork actually ads depth and more texture to the design. It looks great!

Edy said...

I have always liked blackwork or darning patterns as a background on a canvas piece, even on painted canvases! They are light and yet so interesting to the eye, and if the colors are muted enough, like your are, I think they make the work absolutely POP!

Sherry aka Celtic Dream Weaver said... are inspiring me. Where did you get the pattern for this Santa. Please send me an email and tell me all about it. I LOVE it and I love what you did to the background too. IT is a beautiful piece of ART!!

Anonymous said...

me encanta la idea del Blackwork para el fondo, me gusta

Isabelle said...

Very impressive. I like the fluffy sheep !