Thursday, February 12, 2015

Chip, chip...

... chipping away at it.

I may not have managed a lobe a day, but the piece is coming along. Filling the first centre with chipping was rather fun and relaxing after all the pesky ends.

For those who are not familiar with goldwork, 'chipping' is a technique where you cut purl threads (hollow, springy threads), usually check purl because the rough surface plays so beautifully with the light, into tiny pieces - each roughly as long as the thread is wide. Then you stitch the pieces onto the fabric one by one, each at a different angle until the area is filled. 

I really get a bit of a buzz from stitching this puzzle and fitting them all in tightly. The end result is a textured filling that contrasts beautifully with the smooth areas of laid threads.


Next another lobe covered with laid work. For this one I used a medium weight imitation Jap thread and couched in a traditional brick pattern. 

The shades of thread used for the couching stitches is slightly different in each row but it doesn't really show as well as I had hoped for. Am I about to unpick it? I don't think so!
From this point on, the idea is to repeat the same fillings. I think that if each was different the overall look of the piece could very easily become messy and busy.

After the brick couching came a second padded satin stitch lobe, followed by more chipping. The laid thread with the stripes of couching on the next lobe is done and all left to do on that one is the outline.

I was not going to reveal the whole piece until it was finished, but I can't wait. When you just see it bit by bit the patterns all look so much the same. It is not until you look at it as a whole that the effect of the repetition of patterns make sense. 11 down - only 4 to go...

Best stitches,
Anna x


  1. i love the detail. thank you for sharing up close. stunning....

    1. thank you for the feedback. I often wonder if my posts get too 'geeky' so it is nice to know that others enjoy it. Anna x

  2. This is so nice. I hope you will offer it as a sampler piece to others.

  3. Stunning, and it's great to see such a close up view of how you did it.

  4. Beautiful and interesting post. Thankyou.

  5. This is looking gorgeous , simple yet is covering nearly the whole entire goldwork technique

  6. I'm extremely impressed by the work you did on this piece! You've definitely taken embroidery to a whole new level. I didn't know that some of that stuff was possible. I also like the close-up pictures you have in the article to show how you did it. They give a really good view of the techniques and patterns you used.

  7. It's possible that chip filling is my favourite goldwork technique (to look at, lol), and yours is really gorgeous. So nice and dense! It's going to be a great piece. :D

    1. Thanks Monica, I really enjoy the puzzle of making them fit snugly.

  8. absolument magnifique!
    j'ai été ravie de vous rencontrer dans votre domaine.
    Vous proposez de bien jolies choses dans des domaines que j'apprécie.
    Je vais donc vous faire une visite plus approfondie afin de ne rien manquer.
    Je m'inscris également à votre lettre d'information.
    Merci de votre visite
    bien cordialement à vous.