Thursday, October 8, 2009

Vintage CQ...Flower #20

As promised, the poppy!
Ann Cox's book has been a brilliant guide, although the font is a little small and I find her instructions a bit wordy. But I am sure that every single thing she says is important, so I squint and pay close attention.

This is a "medium" level flower, and it did take quite awhile, but it was fun, and worth it.

There was a lot of multi-needle action going on!

You gather the edge of the ribbon with a fine thread, and then bury the end of the ribbon (13mm, from RiverSilks) with a large needle, being careful not to munch your gathering thread. It is all rather pickier work than I am used to.

The concept is this: you bury both ends of the ribbon, (knotting it off on the back with threaded needle #3), then you pull on the gathering thread, then you tack down the petal at the gathered base, catching the fine thread. This shot shows petal # 3's second end being buried.
I would never have thought of this in a million years.

Painting the ribbon after it is in place is not that hard...especially with a black background! ;-) You do have to be careful not to let the paint run, and I had my blow-dryer handy to zap my ribbon dry as soon as I was done putting the Dye-Na-Flow on it.

I decided not to give my poppy a black center because of that black background, and went with the pale green one that some Shirley poppies have.

This, too, is quite picky work, but there is a reason Ann Cox's flowers look so nice.
Can you see how this is gathered twice, first the circle of silk around the interfacing/stuffing core (oh yes, you don't just use stuffing, you provide a flat surface for the stuffing to rest on), and then around the perimeter? This gives a smooth and even surface for the center.

Ann shows you how to wrap the threads used for the pistols around a large needle so they will be of uniform length when you cut open the loops.

The stem was just some couched yarn, and the leaves some 4mm ribbon in a fly stitch.
It's sweet. I like it.

Here is a reminder of the quilt that inspired all this....

I wish I knew the name of the maker, or even the source of the photograph, but alas, I don't.
It is sublime, isn't it?
I had made some blocks this summer to go around the central section of wheel blocks, but have decided to scrap them. They are too loud and--alright, crass--for these dignified flower blocks. I don't wish to replicate this quilt exactly, but I'm going to have to try again with the outer ring of blocks.
But I still have 10 flower blocks to go....and that's only making 30 of them, not the 40 this quilt has.

For my next one, I plan on borrowing a concept from Thelma Bradshaw. Her work is so amazing....

22 comments :

Summerset said...

Oh, it's awesome! All the picky work paid off - just the kind of craziness I like.

Kay said...

I used to make ribbon flowers for hats, so I've done this technique--sort of. The buried end and the paint after the flower is made are such great ideas. Wish I'd known them then. This will be a great quilt. I'm eager to see what you do with the border blocks.

Vicki W said...

Wow!

Yep, that's exactly the same craziness that Summerset craves.

Aida Costa said...

Wowza, that's some finicky needlework! But the results..........!! As you say, there's a reason her work looks incredible and now I see why. Thanks for a great post! Your poppy looks really spectacular.

Dena said...

Although this technique had a lot of steps, the added detail really makes for a realistic flower. Great job!

Lottie said...

Oh my goodness your embroidery is amazing and Poppies are one of my favourite flowers - yours looks so realistic

Raspberry said...

Oh! I'm excited to see what you do with Thelma Bradshaw's ideas. :)

Marty52 said...

Beautiful, Allie! I'm taking notes. ;0)

Deb H said...

Really beautiful Allie. What a wonderful project.

Rian said...

Ooh, I LUVS dat poppy!

Granny Fran said...

What a magnificent poppy! You are doing wonderful things with the help of the book. This is going to be such an amazing quilt. Your historical treasure gifts were drawn by your creativity.

Plays with Needles said...

The dye REALLY changed the color of the ribbon completely which was kind of cool but I was surprised as well...did the ribbon soak it up like watercolor paper or did you really have to paint it on?

The real inspiration poppy was beautiful and your final result really paid off.. I was wondering the other day if River Silks had a 13mm ribbon and I can see from your pic that they do...

By the time you get 30 flower blocks done, they will almost look so stunning on their own that I can see how you might wrestle with how to set them off...Nobody is up to that challenge better than you, my friend. Beauty is as beauty does...xo Susan

Lisa said...

Love the poppy! So gorgeous! Gonna have to get me a copy of that book! Might have to get brave and get some dyes to try this with!

Thelma said...

Oh Allie, such a beautiful flower! I can't wait to see your next flower!

Conni said...

OH MAI! UR FLOWR IZ TRULY WANDERBL!

Maureen said...

I love the poppy!!! I'm going to have to get to work and start painting! Your quilt is going to be stunning.

FredaB said...

Hi Allie

I too want that book as I have a couple of hers already. I am holding off so it can go on the list for Christmas. Santa scratches his beard or bald head VBG tryinbg to find things. I am glad you are doing them first and I can follow you. I do need some 13mm so may try the River Silks. I think Maureen G. carries them.

Very beautiful when finished. Love the painted look.

Hugs

Freda

Eva Mari said...

All I can say is YUMMY! I wish Icould do this..

I have a contest in my blog so please join in if you would like to!

Hugs and the usual immense admiration from Eva Mari in Norway

JoWynn Johns said...

It's sweet, and I love it, too.

Kerri Murphy said...

I miss you. Where is my Thursday blog entry? I look so forward to your blog. Seriously, I was thinking about the quilt you are doing. Are you going to do the same type of border?

Kerri

Robin said...

This ribbon poppie may be my favorite block center so far... I LOVE poppies and I love this one!!! Thanks for showin' how it's done!

belvedere beads said...

the quilt is amazing - it's like a painting.