Friday, February 9, 2018

Japanese Landscape - Part F

It's been three weeks since I last showed you my Japanese Landscape. In the last post, I hinted on having started the flower on the left but needed a little more time to complete it. Within the circle of the flower, there are 4 smaller circles that are covered in cutwork using rough purl and surrounded by bright check loops. Just to give you an idea, below are all the different metal threads used in that tiny space.

(click on the post to see the animation below)

The gilt were easy to use but the copper and silver were a little strange. Every time I would measure and cut a length, I would thread it and stitch it down only to find that I'm a little short. I had a discussion with a few goldwork stitchers and they mentioned the same thing happening to them. It has to do with how the rough purls are made. The copper and silver had a tiny bit of space between the coils, so when it is stitched down the coils get compressed and the length gets shortened.

It took some getting used to, but the results are so pretty. I think I would have been happy just leaving it like that.

The final step is to surround each circle with bright check loops in copper and gilt. The instructions don't say how long the cut lengths should be so it was a little guesswork on my part.

When I finished the first circle, I was not particularly happy with it. It felt like the loops were too high but at the same time I didn't want to unpick it. My mom liked the length and since it would be hanging in her living room I decided to let her have the final say. I still wasn't happy, which is why I avoided the project for so long.

I had enough with the procrastination, so I had a talk with Natalie. She recommended trying a smaller length, see how it comes out or consider having two different heights for the loops if I didn't want to unpick the copper. I decided to give it a go and made the gilt bright check a tiny bit shorter than the copper.

After finishing the first one, I could see that it could look nice. There isn't a noticeable difference between the copper and gilt in terms of height.

I'm so glad I finished this section. It's been bothering me for weeks so I'm relieved to finally be able to move on.

An overview over the piece so far. The upper left corner is now done. I'll be moving onto the upper right corner on Sunday. I've already started pulling out all the packets and there are just as many in this one as there was in the other.


  1. This is coming along really nicely, and if I run out of ideas for Akhenaten, I'll be looking at your blog for ideas!

  2. This is looking so beautiful. You have the patience of a saint to work all the fussy bits. Of course, the results are fabulous!

  3. Stunning piece and you are making such good progress, must be the well disciplined procrastination.

  4. Just looking at all these pretty materials makes me happy, and what you do with them is just stunning! I think I prefer the shorter loops as well, but in hindsight it might be a good thing that the copper and gold ones aren't exactly the same :)

  5. I am so pleased that you worked through the issues with this. The flower does look lovely with the two different colours and slightly different styles.