Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Dragons and Daffodils

I was wondering where I was for a whole month.  I found me in my garden and found my dragon there, too. First of all, this is the daffodil.
There were two of them blooming in my Oregon garden this morning ... in March, already. I snapped this picture with my trusty camera and didn't have to do any "magic" to it ...well, its aroma is totally magical.
I've just finished editing the second Education Projects book for our Brazilian dimensional embroidery group, BDEIG, Inc. It's going to be a good one - lots and lots of projects to stitch. More on that later.
Here's the little dragon:
He's one of the Brazilian dimensional embroidery "Cutie Pies" from the back cover of my book, Take A Stitch.
Fabric print available, instructions are in the book -- available at my website, www.Millefiori-BE.com. A lot of people already have my book; if you'd like the print, send me an email and let me know if you would like a cream or a white print. I'll let you know the cost plus postage and you can do the PayPal or check thing to get it on its way to you.
OK, back to the little dragon. Here are a couple of detail pictures to entertain you. (He's harmless unless you stick yourself with your needle) Here he is napping on his nose (also known as a "detail photo")

And here he rolled over on his back:
Doesn't look very tough now, does he?? 
Oh, wait, he just said "grrr" (or whatever it is that dragons say ...if they say anything):
Looks like he was just at the dentist's, doesn't it?  Grrr.
There were lots of other Cutie Pies. This next one I called a Barnyard Dragon:
...and I think those dimensional stitches we do come in pretty handy.  If you scroll back up, you'll see that I used various animal tracks to separate each of the Cutie Pies (even the edge border).
And then I stitched this little pelican, another of the Cutie Pies. He's just been out fishing - nice he has a place to store his fish.
So now I'll go back to work. By the way, I've been posting on Facebook. I have a Millefiori page there, but there are also a couple of really interesting Brazilian embroidery groups you might like to visit.  
    This is the OTHER daffodil I saw this morning. It's the start of my daily circuit around my garden with my camera. I saw a camellia bud the other day, and the snowbells are blooming everywhere (they think they are weeds, but I don't -- I like them all).  Daffodil ahead:


Monday, February 6, 2017

Garden Party, Wishes and Dreams - Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery Daydreams & Trellises

I was thinking about trellises. So I thought I'd jot a few notes.
     These are a couple of my older Millefiori designs for Brazilian dimensional embroidery. They are also posted on my website, www.Millefiori-BE.com. I don't have a lot left, so please email me to be sure they are still in stock.

This first design is #926 "Garden Party". First I did all of the dimensional embroidery with EdMar's 100% rayon floss.
I even stitched that vining rose on the trellis with a new idea - the Continuous Drizzle, and then I did the same with the leaves on the tree at right. This is the climbing rose:
After I made the vines - some green, some pink - I attached them to the trellis - sometimes with the pink color (to add another rose).
It was fun.
      So then, I wondered what would happen if I got a little more creative. I had an 8x10" shadowbox and some beads. I decided to stitch the entire design with anything except rayon floss. Here's a picture.
Lots of bead shops have flower beads. One of my favorite sources is beadcats.com (probably  because they have so many flowers and leaves). I have some 1/8" rayon ribbon floss. It's on spools, so I can pull off 5-6 yards at a time if I want as I'm making a continuous drizzle.

By the way, I do have the tutorial for the Continuous Drizzle available as a pdf file. If you'd like a copy, please email me by clicking on the "Love and Peace Rose" (from my garden). My email addy is also on my website.

Back to the fun~~  The fence back there on the right is made with toothpicks that I painted white with my trusty acrylic paint (also couldn't find any fences at the craft store that were small enough). The background is layered sheer 4" ribbon or other sheer fabrics in 'outdoor' colors, getting darker as the design came closer (depth). Here is a detail photo:
The kitty on the lawn chair is a button. You can see those little rubber duckies peeking out. They are floating on a piece of mirror (to suggest a pond) that I pulled out of an old compact.

Oh - and that trellis. . .   Well I "built" this one from balsa wood and painted it, but since then, I've found you can do an online search for 'doll house trellis' and find all sorts of trellis pieces that would fit perfectly.

Some time later, I had the idea to design a 'companion piece'. This is Millefiori design #969 "Wishes and Dreams". I had ideas for more new flowers, so fit them into this design. In addition, this is another of my "Where's Waldo's" of B.E. - with the kitten, the owl and the bunny, plus a couple of flower fairies.
I love my work~~
     ....oh, yes -- and I have a "Wish" and a "Dream" -- that I could have more time to make even more.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Warty Old Frog (with Flies) and a Four O'Clock

Entertaining myself with my Brazilian dimensional embroidery designs, I stitched a warty old frog - a BLUE warty old frog. He seems happy enough, though - he has 'snacks' floating around his head.
This flower could be anything, but I added the 'fly stitch' tubular part to turn it into a Four O'Clock. The petals are colonial knots and the center of each is a bead.
     These are a few additional designs I'm sharing from my book "An Artist's Garden". The book's pictures are in black and white, so you can save these pictures into your file if you'd like color reference. 

Friday, January 13, 2017

January in An Artist's Garden - Brazilian Embroidery Designs, plus Notes on Couching

January in western Oregon, USA, and there is snow. It's up past my ankles.
It's hugging the trees.
It's even taken over one of my favorite summer stitching spots.
So I move my stitching time indoors. It's time to share more of the Brazilian dimensional embroidery flowers I've published in my book, An Artist's Garden:
You can read more at my website, www.Millefiori-BE.com at "Books by Rosalie Wakefield". Meanwhile, here are a few more pictures in color.
Simple stitches are used to make this pretty Floss Flower (Ageratum) -- straight stitch, buttonhole stitch, and a bead at the center.
These are all small designs, traceable (although there is a pre-printed design with all of the flowers and veggies).
      Speaking of veggies, here's one - an eggplant that makes one ponder the age-old ponderment (I think up new words now and then, too...) "Which came first, the chicken or the eggplant??"
Yes, it's a fairly scrawny chicken, so it is probably saved from the stewpot. It looks better in Brazilian embroidery anyway - the 100% rayon Boucle makes lovely chicken feathers.
This is the English Daisy (Bellis perennis), not too different from the Floss Flower shown above.
I have a note written with the instructions that mentions that white or light flowers will stand out against white background fabric if you surround them with a frame of greenery or fine growth, or change the color of the flowers. 
Brazilian dimensional embroidery has lately removed itself from the fine growth we all used in The Olden Days. Now we tend to direct our attention to the actual flowers. But fine growth (couched Glory in greens with French knot 'field flowers' added. Here's an example:

These pictures are from one of my older Millefiori designs, #921 "Twelve for Tea", featuring floral designs from My LadyFlowers.
There are several methods for stitching fine growth, all described in my most recent book, My Book of Stitches. They are Airy Fairy credited to Virginia Chapman of Floss Flowers Plus, my original Automatic Couching and Brazilian Couching. Stitchers can also add fine growth with feather stitch or fly stitch, or can also try the technique I call "R.M. Couching" (named for B.E. designer Rosie Montague and illustrated in her book, Brazilian Three-Dimensional Embroidery). 
    I used her technique for the pictures shown here.

The difference between Rosie's couching and the Airy Fairy couching is that Airy Fairy starts with a long, long stitch which is then tacked and couched back to the flower with side branches and the addition of French knots. Rosie's couching also starts at the flower, but all stitches are short (about 1" long) and all subsequent stitches, also 1" long, sprout from the sides of the original stitch, building from the flower up and out.
Back in An Artist's Garden, here's the Flower Girl - a design approximately 2" tall. I've mentioned previously that these little designs will apply nicely to crazy quilts, wearable art, needle books, or any other spot where people can stop you and say, "Oooooh, what's that?", and you can proudly answer, "Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery!  Here!  Let me show you how!!"

Monday, January 2, 2017

Mynah, All Mynah -- A Free Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery Design From Me to You

With a new year, I thought it would be fun to give my blog a new look. Just like shopping for fabric, it took a while to decide on the 'perfect' colors to dress up these pages (especially since I like them all). I'm also going to update my www.Millefiori-BE.com website. That's next. 

Now, however, I'm sharing a freebie "challenge" design with my fellow Brazilian embroidery stitchers:
"Mynah, All Mynah"
Yes!  It's black. On black. (The "Where's Waldo" of the avian night world~~)
I'm posting pictures here, but all of the instructions (with pictures) are free as a pdf file.
      If you would like a copy, please send me an email (go to the "About Me" page on this blog for my email address). I'll send the file out by return email. I'm requesting that (because of copyright issues) you ask for a copy for just yourself. If a friend would like one, please ask them to send a note to me separately. Thanks!  Respecting copyrights is a perk for those of us who design; your tacit agreement is our encouragement to make more designs for you. 
I designed this black bird for those who do NOT like to stitch on black or dark fabrics. I encourage you to give it a try anyway; you might enjoy it. (You might also enjoy turning this birdie into a blue bird or a red bird/cardinal, or use the colors of your choice for both bird and background fabric.)
The Mynah bird, for those of us who like sparkly things, is easy to relate to. Those who do dimensional embroidery are also attracted to the shiny rayon colors and are enamored of beads, specialty threads, ribbons. The Mynah (or Myna) Bird is related to the starling. Other black bids attracted to shiny objects are the crow, the blue jay, magpie, jackdaw, the raven and the bower bird. Hard, shiny things might be a reason why birds don't have teeth. . .
I thought about these Sparkle Collectors who swoop in, accumulate a 'shiny' or two and fly back to their nests to enjoy their spoils.
By transferring the traceable pattern to Solvy film, you can easily see where to stitch. This design is 6" x 6" and I mounted it on wooden stretcher bars while I worked.
Our black bird is stitched with black Iris (100% rayon Z-twist floss available from B.E. merchants listed at the www.BDEIG.com website). Nice. Shiny.
If you scroll back up a couple of pictures ago, you'll notice that shiny eyeball. You can use a 3mm. facet-cut glass bead, but I had some golden sew-down rhinestones in my stash (Swarovski 3188 Lochrosen Rhinestone 3mm crystal) -- extra sparkle, always a nice concept.
I stitched the leaves and branches with green floss, choosing green glass leaf beads from www.beadcats.com (also available from other bead shops). The object of this birdie's affection is an 8mm faceted bead. These are plastic, but glass is nice, too (I'm an equal opportunity bead lover).
      The adventurous stitcher might opt for small dimensional rolled roses instead of beads (the black bird won't mind), and a nest filled with flowers is an awesome concept.
The lower branch holds the black bird's nest. I re-purposed a handful of leftover floss, couched it down around the top of the nest in a circular shape and then added more beads.
That little pink kitten bead hiding in the nest ... I'm not sure how she got there; cats tend to hang out around my embroidery.
So. This is my challenge to you. Find a small piece of black or dark fabric. Luckily, I have a collection of dark green-on-black cotton prints (15" x 15") with a poly cotton lining fabric - not many left, but the price is very reasonable. If you email me, I'll send you details.
This is a FREE-from-Me-to-You design:
"Mynah, All Mynah"
(that dream within the hearts of us all ....)
It's a pdf file; just email me for a copy - and enjoy the challenge~~




Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Cloud Nine, Angels Wings and a Gingerbread House

I love the winter holidays and am inspired to create Brazilian dimensional embroidery designs now and then. I'm sharing some of my Millefiori designs with you here. They are all posted on my www.Millefiori-BE.com website if you'd like to read more and/or order a copy.

This is one of my Millefiori holiday Brazilian dimensional embroidery designs.
It is #998 "Cloud Nine", another name for flowering dogwood (Cornus florida), one of the most beautiful native American flowering trees - the state tree of Missouri and Virginia and the state flower of North Carolina and Virginia.
      The border is stitched with my original Interlocking Stem Stitch (if you stitched "Ruth's Gazebo" you may have tried it already), and the flowers with their distinctive dogwood petals are notched with an interesting technique. I never shy away from beads and other sparklies, and you can see that I used matte size 8/o seeds for the little berries.

This design is #838 "Angels Wings" -- stitched with Glory in mostly satin and straight stitch (which is just 'single satin stitch').

The wings are colorful caladiums, and the instructions have several versions of 'angel hair styles' to chose from. These both make lovely ornaments or gifts for friends. I used braid around the frame edge to dress this design up a bit.
Here's the idea for framing these little ornaments:

Then I had an idea to stitch a gingerbread house in all dimensional embroidery. That was fun!  It's a small design and makes a lovely winter tablescape with ornaments and a little candy dish nearby. 
     This is Millefiori design #962 "Gingerbread House".

Charms and beads are fun to substitute. The Gingerbread House is framed with holiday greenery and decorated with only the most delicious candies of the season. As you stitch, you can dream on cotton candy clouds, munch on a minty candy roof or doorknob; you can garden with gumdrops and lollipops or treat yourself to a candy-pink cupcake in a chocolate bullion wrapper, or you can wander a candy almond path in search of old-fashioned Christmas ribbon candy.
(I think I gained 5 pounds just stitching this design).
              A marshmallow snowman with cinnamon-stick arms and chocolate chip eyes adds to the sweetness of this BE design. Stitches include criss-cross satin stitch, Brazilian outline stitch, raised buttonhole stitch, knotted buttonhole stitch, Star-Fill, the Barbed Bullion, and a Millefiori stitch named “Stretch.” It’s a real temptation to embellish this design with beads and other sparklies, but no beads are needed – the beautiful rayon floss does the job all by itself!
Another holiday design that I stitched long ago is Millefiori design #868 "Winterlight".
This small design was made for a greeting card.
By the way, I've found flowers in one of my books, "An Artist's Garden" that can easily be used to make small ornament-style designs, or gifts for friends or family.
Everything is posted at my website (www.Millefiori-BE.com) or you can send me a message (on this blog and also at the website) if you have questions. 
Thread your needles, and enjoy the holidays!!


Saturday, December 3, 2016

Whew! I Almost Lost You All ....

Just a speedy little note and then I'll be back soon. I almost lost my blog, couldn't post, ruined my whole day not having anyone to chat with. But the tekkies at Blogger helped me, and Google Search added their 2cents.  Now I'm back and will have freebie design for you and hopefully (if I don't click the wrong button again...) a new look.