Art with My Needle ~ Week 15

A naked Lady.

No! It is not me.

I found her lurking at the back of the wardrobe.

She has been in there for a couple of years now.  No wonder she is still so young and fresh.  I wonder if I sat in there for a few months would it act like a freezer and keep me fresh ❓

This lady hung in my bathroom for years.  You saw the colour of my bath yesterday and this piece I did to suit the decor.

The idea came from a line drawing in an advert for Armitage Shanks, that I saw many years earlier in a voluminous Sunday newspaper.  The lines appealed to me so I kept it with all my other scraps of paper.

The piece is hand stitched with only two stitches used throughout.

I traced* the outline drawing onto a piece of Stitch and Tear – a temporary stabiliser fibre that is easy to remove after your stitching is completed.  It can be torn away in either a horizontal or vertical direction, and should be removed carefully in order not to disturb the stitches of the design.  It is not recommended for very delicate fabrics or knitwear.

The next step was to tack the design to the back of my chosen fabric: in this case a peach satin.  I placed the work in an embroidery hoop and worked all my outline stitches in backstitch using 2 strands of Stranded cotton.  For the hair I used a Maderia gold sewing thread.

Towels have a bouclé surface, so to achieve this effect I worked in exaggerated French knots.  I outlined the towel in a darker tone and also used it to give the effect of the naturally falling folds.

Normally when mounting a piece of work it is stretched taut over a board or heavy card, and then a series of large lacing  stitches are worked north to south and east to west at the back to hold the piece in place.  This time when positioning the piece I noticed the ripples and they reminded of ripples on gently disturbed water.  I liked them!

Since we only see one leg in the work, the ripples add to the effect of the other hidden leg testing the water…. so the ripples stayed!

*Over the years, tracing has played a big part in my pattern design.   I will play with a shape for hours.  Chopping, reversing, changing an angle and sometimes even removing lines.  My dining room window becomes my work bench for this purpose.  The design is attached with masking tape and the tracing paper placed above it.  Being at the window, is good for many reasons.  In winter the radiator below it keeps my legs and feet warm.  The glass lets the light shine through my chosen work and when my eyes need a rest from the close concentration, I have the landscape to enjoy and exercise my eyes on!

11 thoughts on “Art with My Needle ~ Week 15

  1. Nick

    Very unusual and intriguing. I’ll take your word for it there’s a hidden leg testing the water! She certainly looks very languid and relaxed – and that’s BEFORE she got into the bath!

  2. Baino

    I still marvel at your patience with needlework. I have a cheap but cute picture of a couple in a barrel bath . .it’s a reproduction sepia print that someone I have long lost touch with bought for a housewarming present and I just can’t take it down.

  3. Grannymar Post author

    Gaelikaa – Everyone has a talent, and sure if they were all the same wouldn’t life be boring.

    Nick – Maybe it was the steam from hanging out all those years in the bathroom! 😆

    Baino – The present occupant of the wall space is a Print showing a violin and bow sitting on music scores. I bought it to match the colouring of the curtains. One male guest announced to a gathered throng one day that “Grannymar’s bathroom is a great place to have a fiddle!” 🙄

  4. Grannymar Post author

    Maynard – Who?

    WWW – Looking at the piece after all this time I am thinking “Why not hang it again?” These weeks are opening my eyes once more, but in a different way to my work.


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