Saturday, March 22, 2014

Brother Rabbit - ups and downs

Working a new design always has its ups and downs. I constantly doubt my decisions and choices. At times I will do the wise thing and stitch a small sample but most often just keep my fingers crossed that whatever idea or picture I have in my head will actually work... sometimes it is not even an idea of how I do something, just a vague idea of how I want the finished result to look.

The slip for the rabbits body looked tidy enough, but having finished stitching it, I still put off attaching it to the main design and starting the legs. How would this oval, camel coloured 'blob' ever end up looking anything like a rabbit?
And my idea of stitching the legs in raised stem stitch - would I be able to make it look as a whole and blend the stitching neatly? After a few deep breaths (a couple of days later), I picked up the needle yesterday and got started....

The body 'blob', was now a padded, domed blob and the raised stem stitch was exactly as tricky to get into place as I had expected. When the shapes are this raised, getting the needle to slide across the surface and only catching the little bit of thread that it needs to is not for the faint hearted. But one stitch at a time, and you get there in the end.

With the front leg done, my optimism returned - it looked as if it would turn out as I had envisaged. Yeah! Next: rear leg and thigh, same thing just bigger, right?

I am really happy with how it looks, but....

- no matter how careful I was and how hard I tired to avoid it, working the raised stem stitches over such high padding made it impossible not to constantly rub against the existing stitching - I should have known better!
From a distance it looks fine, but close up the stem below the rabbit and the lower edge of the leaf have gone all fluffy - the beautiful shine of the silk all worn. A super fine curved needle could perhaps have prevented it or I should have used my cling wrap trick (tacking cling wrap tightly over the completed areas), but by the time I discovered how bad it was getting it was already too late.

Now this is the point where, in a class situation, a student will look at me and with a hopeful expression and ask 'shall I unpick it?' and my answer will be 'that is up to you - but if you know it is the only thing you will see when it is finished - I think you should'.
So guess what I will be doing....

... gardening, I think! It is a beautiful day and I think I need a little break before making any hasty decisions.

Have a lovely weekend,
Anna x

PS ... and don't worry - the notes for 'the order of work' is already reversed, so if you plan to give this design a go, I have made this silly mistake so you won't have to.


  1. It is wonderful to know that I'm not the only one who proceeds by the "seat of her pants". I just barge ahead and hope for the best.

  2. It is amazing to see the rabbit come to life step by step. Thank you for showing and explaining all the details. This is a great project! Best wishes, Dianne