Monday, August 31, 2015

Splish Splash...

One of the best ways I know to stay cool on a hot summer's day is to sit under a ceiling fan and work on a project that has cool blues and greens in it -- which is my idea of color therapy!

One of my favorite blue and green designs is REFLECTING POOLS, done many years ago...


It was the first piece I created for my "Impressionist Collection" because it was such an asymmetrical abstract, it really didn't fit with my other more traditional samplers.  It was also the first piece I created using a technique that still fascinates me today: mixing "heavy" #5 pearl cotton variegated threads with "light" stranded silk or cotton threads in the same colorways, just to see what happens when you put them side by side.  Here's an example of what I mean:


The border areas in REFLECTING POOLS are stitched with 1 ply of a 3-ply #5 Caron Watercolours thread; and the same stitch pattern is worked "on the other side of the border line" but using 1 or 2 ply of a finer cotton or silk thread (in this case, Caron Waterlilies).  You're making the same stitch pattern, but all of a sudden it looks different - paler, softer, farther away.  Here's another example:



While the thicker #5 version has a richer, more solid look to it, the thinner version looks totally different, doesn't it?   I love the lacy-ness of those inner patterns, although the variegated colors really pop in the heavier border areas.  When comparing the two versions I rather think those "light" versions would make terrific background patterns for painted canvas pieces.   And notice how different the plain ol' Basketweave Stitch looks when done with 1-2 ply of a stranded silk, against the more solid chunk of Basketweave done with the #5 Watercolours.  Interesting, huh?

NOTE: I used a family of Caron Watercolours, Wildflowers, and Waterlilies in 068 - "Mediterranean" for this piece, and yes, the thread colors between the different thread types are different.  But you know, that's one of the things I like about using variegated threads -- every stitched piece will look slightly (or even greatly) different, since dye lots can change drastically over the years -- because that makes every stitched piece unique.... 

Anyway, this piece was stitched over 10 years ago, but I love it just as much now, and it is still refreshing to look at, especially on a hot summer's day. The darker border areas remind me of mosaic tiles around the edge of a swimming pool, while the inner patterns are a softer, paler reflection of those same tiles, only seen under the shimmer of an imaginary pool..... Ooooooh, very cool!!

2 comments:

The Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure said...

VERY clever use of thread weights.

feather-stitching.com said...

I must say this has always been one of my favourite designs of yours - I finally have it kitted up ready to go, and if mine looks half as good as your stitched model I'll be happy :)