Thursday, November 2, 2017

Japanese Embroidery Phase 1 - part 1

Thursday night we made our way to Natalie's house where the class is being held. I got the chance to finally meet Marilyn in person. I "met" Marilyn a year ago through another Japanese Embroiderer from the UK on Instagram. When this opportunity came up, I sent her a message to ask if she would like to join us. For this class, we were 4 stitchers starting phase 1, one stitcher was continuing hers and 5 other stitchers working on various phases.

The purpose of meeting the night before class starts, is so that those of us starting phase 1 can setup their frames. I knew this was a complicated process, but I never imagined it would take so long. We were there for about 3 hours.

Sue Sprake and I
Our stands and frames came from P and G Enterprises. The stand comes in 9 pieces. It's very compact and easy to assemble and dis-assemble. Dis-assembled, Marilyn was able to fit hers into a large gym bag. The frame is pretty easy to assemble as well, the hard part was getting the fabric stretched just right. The first step is stretching the fabric along the weft. My fabric kept coming out crooked or I wasn't able to do a full turn on the scroll bars on each side.

Lacing under Sue's supervision
I think I had to redo mine 5 times before it was approved for lacing. It was time well wasted, because now I know what to look out for.

Here's a close up of the lacing.

The fabric is drum tight. So tight, every time you pull the needle in or out of the fabric it makes a really loud puncture noise. It's very funny to hear, especially as we're supposed to stitch in total silence.

The frame all set up and ready for the first day of class the next day. More tomorrow.


  1. Setting up that special frame would be a daunting task indeed. I can see why they wanted to devote an evening to it.

  2. Great that you have the frame set up. Do you have extra fabric stitched on to the sides to use the longer frame? Or are you going to be stitching on the end pieces of well. I hope you know what I mean haha!

  3. You're in good hands. Sue's work is amazing.

  4. Goodness, yes, setting up the frame is always the most daunting part of any project!

  5. Wow! I can see why I stitch in hand now...
    But of course you couldn't do this sort of work in hand. Glad that you had an expert to guide you.

  6. I'm so excited that you're posting about this, i can't wait to see your work and hear about the classes (I know I'm behind on blog reading so you might have posted already!). I wouldn't have the patience to set up the frame properly, I'd whack it in a Qsnap and be done!! I also wouldn't like to sit and stitch in silence - what's that about?

  7. That sounds challenging, but a drum tight fabric is worth it!