I am increasingly calling this band sampler freeform embroidery because I just pick it up and work bits as I feel like it but this section was different.
I am always aware of anticipating what something might look like when it sits next to the previous section of the sampler. Some areas of stitching may jump out more than others, or I am aware of the shift in colours, or sometimes the shift between patch worked, hand dyed foundation fabrics to a normal even weave linen. All these considerations can cause me to worry that the overall effect is of something odd. But so far it never really does look odd. I think the band is so long that when people look look at it, the colours and embroidery styles matches.
As you can see with Section 49 I was feeling tired of working in horizontal blocks I turned the bands and worked a vertical format. February 2010 was the start of the year of the Tiger and when after I worked the tiger in cross stitch I decided to echo the feel of an oriental scroll. My point is that in this section of the sampler, my ‘freeform’ was not so free. It did echo an idea and my design for the stitches around the tiger was not totally graphed out, but designed as I stitched.
The fabric is hand dyed 18 cnt Aida cloth and threads were hand dyed using procion dyes. Over the next few weeks I will share close details of the stitches in this section. Since the stitches are worked vertically and not in bands I will talk about areas. I hope I can remember what stitches I used. Normally I keep a record in my studio journal but for section 49 I kept very few notes I have no idea why!
If you are a new reader the For Love of Stitching Band Sampler is nearly 100 feet long – that is not a typo! The sampler is only 15 cm (6 inches) wide and consists of different strips of fabric which are stitched together to form one long strip. I have the backstory of how and why it was made, on the Sampler FAQ page. You can read about each band or detail by browsing the Love of Stitching Category