Thursday, February 11, 2016

Raised Lace Bullion - The NEW Name for this Brazilian Embroidery Stitch

Raised Lace Bullion
...because that's exactly what it is.
This is the stitch I shared in the last two blog entries. I named it "Spinal" something which sounded a little too medicinal for me - so I thought about it on the way home from the grocery store this afternoon.
And THEN I thought about other things I could do to have my way with it. Now I'm sharing with you, and I'd love to see what you can all think up. You've read the directions already, so I'll share another idea:
First I'll write about the cast-on stitches on each side of the bullion. You can see that the lighter color shows points A, B, and comes up at "C". A-B-D and the down-and-out position at "D" are all in a straight line with just a couple of threads between A-C and later with D-B. 
I've mentioned previously that while I'm casting on with my left hand, I'll hold the loops on the needle and pull them down to the needle approximately the thickness of my fingernail (this keeps the cast-on stitch from getting too tight).
          After placing the loops on the needle, I wrap the floss to the back and then hold everything onto the needle as I settle the stitch in place.
You can see from the picture above how this helps the cast-on stitch to stay nice and even. The picture shows that I'm starting to whip stitch under the carrying cord on both sides and over the bullion on top. As I was doing this, I thought that I could have even more dimension by adding a row of up and down detached buttonhole stitches along that darker-color center rib. I didn't do it, but I thought it.
Instead, I made a second cast-on stitch (15 loops this time) on each side of the first cast-on stitch, and then I added a row of detached buttonhole stitch. (I stitch with the needle pointed away from me - or 'up' - when I do this stitch.)
I'll add my usual disclaimer here. I write about what works for me. Everyone should do these stitches in the way that works best for them.

Only one side is shown. Cuthbert, my Norwegian Forest Cat, hopped up on my lap and wanted to admire my work.
I let him. (I'm a sucker for compliments, especially from a cat.) I did manage to snap a couple of photos of the finished idea, upside down and right side up:

OK, I agree. I looks a little like a hot dog on a bun needing only mustard. Cuthbert did wonder where it was, because he was getting hungry.
......and Cuthbert

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Spinal Double Stitch - A NEW Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery Adventure

I'm calling this a Spinal Double Stitch. And I'm explaining it in pictures.
In my previous post, I explained the process, but I used only one color:
Now I'll explain the stitch again with contrasting colors. I'm using Lola (EdMar Co. 100% rayon Z-twist floss).

Although I tried to call this a Ribbed Double Cast-on Stitch, I realized that it isn't a double cast-on at all - it just 'plays one on TV' - or looks like one.

It's actually a stitch with a spine. Yes. A Spinal Double Stitch will do until I think up something more clever (might never happen).
On a 5/8" fabric bite make a 15-wrap bullion.
With a contrasting color, make a 12-loop cast on stitch on one side.
Add a second 12-loop cast-on stitch on the other side.
Everyone should do the cast-on stitch in the way that is easiest for them. I learned to do all of my casting on with my left hand. When I want the cast-on loops to lie AWAY from the center, I'll tuck the floss behind the needle. You can turn your work for the second cast-on stitch, or you can leave the floss on the left side of the needle as you settle the loops in place.
In the photo above, I'm just getting ready to tuck the floss behind the needle and finish the right-side cast-on stitch.
I've mentioned before (this is just what works for me - and also saves a LOT of time and decreases kinks that pop up in our Z-twist rayon) -- after all loops or wraps are on the needle, hold that wrapped or looped needle and pull all of the floss on through the needle eye (this will lessen kinks) and then back it out to a short floss tail. Still holding the needle/stitch, settle everything in place.
Something else (I do tend to interrupt myself now and then...) that I learned is to work those bullions down tightly. However, for cast-on stitches, I like the loops to look nice, not all choked up and prune-faced, so I just cast-on to the needle, sometimes just the thickness of a fingernail. That way I can preserve the beautiful loops.
    OK, back to business . . .
Rethread your needle with the bullion color. You will whip stitch through the 'carrying cord' of the side cast-on stitches.
          Begin by bringing the needle up between cast-on loops (and under the center core thread). Next, slip your needle beneath the bullion and beneath the opposite-side (left in the photo) core thread (between loops).
         Whip-stitch down the bullion. Note, in the photo above, the thread twist. When you whip stitch in this manner, your floss will lie in the same direction all along the 'spine'.
Try to keep those horizontal stitches in a straight line. Your stitch will look nicer if you do. (Although, there isn't any reason you couldn't work a cross stitch - down and then up -- you could try anything). Remember, it's OK to play with your floss.
So you don't have to scroll up and down, here is a picture of the Spinal Double Stitch in two versions - one with a light bullion for the center core; one with a dark bullion for the center.
Yes, I have a flower that will be the beneficiary of this exciting new stitch. If you want to play with your floss, too, you might want to see what else you can think up. I love credit, credit is nice (all of our stitchers know the copyright stuff, so I won't wear out your eyeballs with excess reading), so if you just make a mention of where you saw this, I'll be forever happy.
Have fun!



Monday, February 1, 2016

Doodling Around With a Little Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery

I had an idea -- one of those "I wonder what would happen if...." exercises.  Here is what happened:
I call this a Ribbed Double Cast-on.
It's a major beginning experiment, so I think there are other things I could do to make it look better.
     First, I made a 15-wrap bullion with Lola.
     Next, I made a 12-loop cast-on stitch on one side of the bullion, right next to it.
     Then I made a second 12-loop cast-on stitch on the other side of the bullion.
To finish the stitch, I brought my needle up through the 'carrying cord' of one cast-on stitch, slipped it under the bullion and came up through the space between cast-on loops on the opposite-side cast-on stitch. 
I repeated this, whip stitching along the length of the bullion and cast-on stitches, connecting the two cast-on stitches together with the bullion in between.
It looks like a double cast-on stitch, but is just another way to get the same effect. Plus there are probably a lot of possibilities that I haven't thought about yet. Maybe some of our stitchers can come up with something wonderful. 
I know you could always make just the bullion and one cast-on and whip-stitch them together, maybe more loops/wraps on a shorter fabric bite?
By the way, the other day I made that little turquoise blue jobby up in the left corner.  I call it a Debbie Drizzle - it's named for my friend and fellow B.E. designer, Debbie Kelley of DK Designs. She will know why - ask her about her BDEIG Seminar Class Doodle Cloth....
     Up Close:

Yes, it's "The Comma", (described in almost all of my books about Brazilian dimensional embroidery).  It's "The Comma" but worked as a drizzle.  (I just LOVE Brazilian embroidery's 'no-rules' rule. . .)
To finish, I'll share something I don't usually do in public -- share a picture of my doodle cloth . . .

Here's why.  SOMEBODY was sleeping on my doodle cloth and I almost couldn't find it. Cuthbert! Tsk, Tsk...
      Have fun - let me know if you come up with new ideas for any of these stitches.