Wednesday, November 11, 2015

St Martin Panel


Look at what I found! I have picked up the St Martin's panel again and this time I intend to finish it!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Royal gloves - sewing things up


And finally I had this lovely pile of embroidery.  We are going to pretend that both of the hummingbirds are facing the correct direction and proceed accordingly.  Next we are going to sew the embroidery to the pieces of our gloves.  The gloves here are actually mittens, because we are Vikings!


I just love my quilter's tools.  Here I am using my block ruler and chalk pencil to get all the lines perfect.


And now I've ironed in my the folds for the embroidery piece.  I used an ultra-lightweigh fusible called Misty Fuse.  The fusible itself is like gossamer and floats on the air.  It's good to tack things down and doesn't add stiffness to the piece.  It's not so great if you have the ceiling fan on.  I wouldn't use it without extra stitching though.  I also have my trusty block ruler to line things up just right.


 I pulled enough silk from the ground fabric to use it for stitching down the embroidery. Here are the teeny tiny stitches on the fold. 20150925_191654

And here is the embroidery all sewn down to my glove piece.  Can we make it prettier?  Yes!


I used the light yellow silk to lucet up some cording for a matching trim.  Then I used the same silk to stitch down the tiny trim over our seam edge.


And here is one finished cuff ready to be sewn into a finished mitten!

Royal Gloves - Rhino

Sven's heraldry is a rhino, which was an interesting design challenge.  It's difficult to make larger creatures in the Viking aesthetic and have them still look "cool" to the modern eye.  After a large number of drafts I finally was happy with this guy.  The rhino was bigger and had fewer smooth lines than the hummingbird, so I went with a tissue paper template for the stitching pattern.  Here's the template basted onto the gorgeous red silk.

I don't like the tissue paper, so it took enormous self control to leave it on while I stitched.  Here's some stitching progress on my rhino.  The color palette and thread are the same set as the hummingbird.

Finally, I was far enough along to pull off the tissue paper!


Nearly done....

And here is a slightly fuzzy picture of the completed rhino

Friday, October 23, 2015

Royal Gloves - hummingbird

My commission for gloves for the Royals of Ansteorra has been delivered, so now I can post my pretty pictures!  The gloves were for Sven II and Antigone II and were given in court a couple of weeks ago.

I had a lot of fun with these, since I had a lot of latitude for design work.  I decided to go with a Viking theme, since they both have some great Viking kits.  I wanted to use their heraldry in a way that maintains the artistic aesthetic for the Viking age.  I spent quite a bit of time futzing with the designs until I found something that I really liked.  My inspiration was largely woodwork and stonework designs from the Viking era.  Here is the hummingbird for Antigone.


The ground fabric for the embroidery was a nice Dupioni silk.  I drew the hummingbird on the muslin that I was using to reinforce my silk and then basted the design to show on the front.  Below are the front and back showing the tiny basting stitches.  



I wanted a little bit of depth on the hummingbird, so the arc of the wing has a layered stitching underneath the satin stitch.


The stitching is in Rainbow Gallery Splendor silks, which is a spun silk.  Both Antigone and Sven have white charges on their devices.  The Viking aesthetic would have been lots of bright colors.  I decided to take a bit of artistic licence with the colors.  I chose a color palette with lots of colors, but then picked extremely washed out versions of the colors.  My goal was to see lots of colors up close, but for the charges to look white from a distance.  Here's a fuzzy progress  picture of the stitching.


Here's another progress picture for the hummingbird.  The fill stitches are a variety of colors and the outline is all in white.



I pulled some threads from the dupioni and used them for the eye embroidery.  And here is the finished hummingbird!


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Strapping new arms

At Gulf Wars I picked up some new lightweight plastic arms.  I needed to strap them, so I thought that I would share with you how I got it done.

First, here is what I am putting under my elbows.  The sleeve is fairly tight and I am using it to keep my arms in place.  The elbows are tied directly to the sleeve.

Here is my trusty strap cutter and the giant chunk of leather that hangs out in my work area.  I've got the cutter set to the correct width for my buckles.  I'm cutting four straps - two for each arm.

Here are some freshly cut straps and buckles.  It's a start.

I'm fussy about raw edges on leather, so here I am beveling the edges to smooth things out.

Compare the beveled edge on the left to the raw edge on the right.

The left strap has been beveled, smoothed, and waxed.  Now you can really see the difference between the nice strap and the raw edges.

Here are my trusty tools: edge slicker and beeswax.  I used my anvil to hold the strap in place while I worked the edges.

After I finished the edge work, I oiled the straps with some neatfoot oil.  The oil will protect and condition the leather.  As an added bonus the oiled leather looks nicer.  I've also riveted in my buckles on one end.

I drilled holes for the initial placement of the straps.  First strap has its first rivet.

How do you keep things still for the hammering?  Tape!

Needs more tape!  I don't want the strap wiggling on impact.

The straps are riveted in and ready to punch buckle holes.

All the holes are punched and the longer edges are trimmed off.  All done!

Here are the arms with my gear.  The yellow is some wool felt for extra padding.  The purple lucet cords tie the elbows to the arms and point the elbows to the sleeve we saw in the second picture.

Gloves on and we are ready to go!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Weaving checks!

Weaving checks
I'm having lots of fun weaving checks!

Weaving with metallics
It was only a matter of time before I rummaged through my collection of metallics. Here is "Artiste" brand gold thread with black crochet cotton.  This was my first project with the Artiste brand gold thread and I really like it.  It's soft and smooth and still has a very nice shine.  I had absolutely no problem with thread shredding.

Weaving with Kreinick Japan gold
Next up was the Japan gold, which turned out lovely.  I wasn't sure how it would hold up, because the thread itself stretches out.  I previously did some fingerloop braiding with it and the metallic loops were unmanageably longer after a while.  I was super careful with the warp tension and fairly delicate with my weaving.  The texture betrays a bit of warp difference on the gold, but the piece will lie flat so it seems an acceptable variation.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

More Inkle Loom Fun

I've been having fun playing around with my inkle loom.  Because I love string, I have a lot of different options to play with around the house.  The pattern print outs are from the "Inkle Loom Generator" which is free to use from the blog "The Carolingan Realm."   Here's some pictures of what I've been up to.

IMG_0618 Inkle weaving stripes Inkle weaving Inkle weaving

Also, here are some pictures from our Barony's Fiber Arts Guild meeting last month: