Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Along the grapevine

We have been super busy for the past two weeks in preparation for this years harvest. It all culminated yesterday when the vineyard was full of pickers and tractors and trucks. Today we breath a sigh of relief that the harvest went well and is over for another year.

In between the pulling off of nets and picking, I did bring out a piece of crewel work I started quite a while ago. You know how you start something and then you are not sure if you really like it? I remember putting this one aside feeling very 'not right' about it...

I cannot for the life of me now see the 'not right' part. The middle leaf needs a bit more work done to it but I am liking the overall look of it and the layering of so many shades of green creates on the leaves.

The completed leaf is stitched in Battlement couching which creates a lovely layered shading.

1. First you stitch a normal trellis, keeping the spacing of the stitches quite large.

2. Then you stitch a second layer over the first, using a different colour or shade. 
Each stitch is placed exactly next to each of those in the first layer. 

3. Next you stitch a third layer, again using a different colour thread and placing each stitch along side each in the previous layer.

4. To finish, each intersection of the TOP layer only is couched in place.

Although it is not a super common stitch it is quite often used in traditional crewel work. What I really like about it is the even and subtle blending of colour it forms within a shape.


Only three grapes were stitched when I pulled the piece out of the cupboard. I remember thinking that I would use a variety of circular stitches....
I don't think so any longer.

. I love these fat and plump whipped spider's web circles, so I think I will just use one stitch, but a variety of shades instead and see how it goes...

Happy Tuesday stitching everyone,
Anna x


  1. Just not the right time, that's all. I love the shapes of those grape leaves! They are very appealing. And all the greens too. Very inspiring, thanks Anna!

  2. Great tutorial for Battlement couching. Thanks for that. Your embroidery is beautiful and it's so very appropriate for the grape harvest. (Lucky you, to live in a vineyard! My dream....) Enjoy the fruits of your labour!

  3. Wow, those grapes are something! Do you make any of your own wine? It must feel sad to see them gone... The embroidery is lovely! I really like all the dimensions that are showing up.

    1. LOL the moment the last truck full of grapes leave through the gates we breath a deep sigh of relief. Some years we have some wine made but most if it goes to other wineries.

  4. wow what a lovely embroidery.i really like it.your blog is always useful and great.thanks for sharing it.

  5. Love the battlement couching, thanks for the excellent tutorial! What kind of wine is it?