Monday, April 2, 2012

A Full-Blown Rose - Brazilian Embroidery by Ruth Griffith

I have a friend named Ruth who does absolutely lovely Brazilian dimensional embroidery. She is the same person who designed almost all of those beautiful pillow top designs you'll find at the JDR website. Starting on that page, you will see pages and pages of beautiful pillow designs.

Recently I was fortunate to be able to market some designs for Ruth Griffith. This picture is her "Full-Blown Rose" - one of several different roses on her "Mini-Roses" design, which I sell for her. Here's a picture of her original embroidery:
I thought it would be fun to stitch one of her focal roses using Lola-weight rayon floss by EdMar and the #15 milliners needle instead of the #1 milliners needle usually chosen for Lola stitches. Here's a picture of the two needles so you can see the difference.
This rose is lovely, no matter which needle/thread you select. With the #15 needle the flower stands about 5/8" off the fabric. Ruth has developed a wonderful method of giving those inner petals a realistic look.
     You can see from the first picture and the cast-on stitch which starts the second rose that I make my fabric bites in a straight line. The "c-d" points of the cast-on are between "a" and "b" and will help the stitch to stand up nicely off the fabric.  (If this isn't making sense, just drop a comment there at the bottom and I'll try to answer it further.)

Oh, yes - by the way, that #15 needle looks like it will leave a hole in your fabric the size of Crater Lake (Oregon), but stitching on our Blazer poplin with its tight weave causes the holes in the fabric to close right up as the needle passes through.
     While I'm writing about the #15 milliners needle, I should mention that it is a wonderful choice for our nubby-textured rayon thread, Boucle.  Recently, I even tried this enormous needle with our lightest weight rayon, Glory, to stitch some little red clover flowers. Not bad, except the eye of the needle is so large the floss kept falling out!
This is part of one of my newest Millefiori designs, "Whisper of Springtime". It's not on my website yet, but I blogged about it here. I'll be teaching the design at our BDEIG Seminar this June. You can see pictures of all of the Brazilian dimensional embroidery classes here.

When I do any embroidery, I never feel too bad about changing things around a little - flowers, colors, stitches. Whenever we purchase a design, it's our choice to truly make it our own. So when I'm stitching Ruth's "Mini-Roses" design, I wanted to change the shapes and sizes of some of the leaves. I just pulled out my Marvy wash-out pen and re-drew some leaves. Nobody said I couldn't! I change stitches, too, whenever the mood strikes. 
If you have one of the #15 milliners needles, give it a try. Stitch a flower with variously-sized needles onto your doodle cloth, write notes, and then select the one you like for your flowers.
Ruth's design has little white oat pearls interwoven into the border. I might switch to size 11/o pink seed beads -- three of them in a row will be the same size as the oat pearls, I think. One of my other favorite things to do is to add beads and other fibers into my embroidery. I like the sparkle of bright, shiny things.


  1. That is so very pretty. I have to learn how to do this

  2. You won't want to do anything else after you learn Brazilian embroidery. If you are interested in learning, visit the BDEIG website - there are notes about the stitches and free designs posted. Then, check the chapters page for stitching groups in your area and join one. You'll be glad you did. Let me know how it goes, or if you have any questions.

  3. Thank you so much. I will definitely check it out.

  4. very nice thank you so much :)

  5. so cute....where i can find the tutorial?