Friday, February 5, 2021

Crewel Work Reflections

 I wanted to finish my crewel embroidery inspired by William Morris within a week since my last post (3 weeks ago) and I did - Well almost....

I had a couple of really good stitching sessions before it again came to a grinding halt. Can you spot that is missing in the picture above?

First; I had quickly completed the three leaves above the main fruit (artichoke, perhaps?) which I stitched in satin stitch with with stem stitch veins.
All I then had left to embroider were the two flower sprays on either side.

While working on the piece, I had been really unsure about which colours to use for these. When it came to finally stitching them, it suddenly just fell in to place and I used the run of greys with just a little bit of blue-grey accent. 
So far to good, I was on a real roll - the end was in sight. Until....

... I had just three... Just three tiny little petals to go.. and I ran out of that one shade!!! 

Now you would think that with a stash the size of the stash I tend to have, I would have a skein 'floating' around somewhere, wouldn't you? But no. Isn't it always the way? So irritating.

I couldn't get to the shop for a couple of days and when I did - shock, horror - they too were out of stock of that one colour. Sigh! 
A few days later on my way to work, I finally managed to get (the last in stock) colour I needed and finally, finally the piece is finished. 

'Reflections' crewel embroidery by Anna Scott
by Anna Scott

I am so happy to have it finished. I was curious (and perhaps even a bit apprehensive) about the colour palette of grey and gold when I started, since it is not colours I have 'played' with before. It has been really interesting working with these shades. At times I was worried the greys would be too bland and drab or the golden yellows too brassy and 'in your face.  In the end, I couldn't be happier with how it turned out. 

I have even managed to name the piece ~ REFLECTIONS. 
As I have mentioned before, finding a title I am happy with for my pieces is sometimes a bit of struggle and this one was rather tricky. For some reason, I had in my head that I wanted a single word title.
I was thinking about how this design is inspired by William Morris designs and if I could somehow tribute it to Morris. I try not to copy, but there is no way of denying the influence of his design in this piece - a 'Reflection' of my appreciation of  his work. 
And when I stitch, I think and ponder - my mind goes wandering. While stitching this, there was another Reflection; My thoughts often wandered to a friend of mine, who is dealing with some pretty nasty health issues. A Morris devotee, her love, knowledge and enthusiasm for anything 'Morris' is contagious. I feel this design also is a 'Reflection' of her influence of my appreciation of Morris' work. 

I still need to make the panel up and yes, it will be another pillow - although it would make a spectacular large tote bag or chair seat. 
I have started working on instructions and ordered everything I need to make kits for you, so hopefully I will be able to have it in the shop within too long. 

In the meantime...
Partway through this project, I mentioned doing a little tutorial for how I stitch Cretan stitch leaves. I never got around to it (sorry) but I have been thinking:
In this project, I have used three different stitches for the small leaves (not counting satin stitch) so next week I will show you those three stitches and how they compare and can so easily be interchanged. 
Stay Tuned...

Have a fabulous weekend. Stay safe & Keep stitching
Anna X


  1. So pretty! It's such a peaceful colour combination.

  2. At first I couldn't find where you were talking about, Anna, but now I see ;).
    You must have been so disappointed that you run out of that particular shade, it's indeed so annoying! You should think that the shop would have that color, since it is not a common color. Once I'd the same with the common color black, regular black, you should think shops would order more of that black color, but no.... So, I can imagine your disappointment, but finally you got it ;).
    The result is another awesome work of art, it's breathtaking beautiful. The name of this piece is well chosen. It's a tribute to your friend and to William Morris, he would feel honored.
    And for the colors grey and gold: sometimes it's good to step out your comfortzone. Actually I now do this too with the build of my farmhouse in miniature, since the hard lockdown is still lasting I have no supplies of wood, so I have to find new solutions ;).
    Wishing you a lovely weekend, stay safe and take care, dear Anna.
    Hugs, Ilona

  3. Anna, this is a very, very pretty piece. I would very much like to stitch it. Will you be making a pattern with a thread color list available?

  4. Dear Anna, how frustrating to run out of the last color so close to being finished! Yikes! It is fortunate that you could find more of the right color and it didn't take too too long. :) I do agree with you the the silver and gold is an unusual combination.... but beautifully complementary! (Sort of channeling the opposites purple and orange in a subtler way) I love the name you have given it... so much to Reflect on! It is just stunning! I have a weakness for gray... it is my go-to neutral color.... which is not normal! LOL! And as always, I look forward to learning more about the stitches... I learn a lot from you even though right now I am only sewing petit-point!
    Stay well and stay safe and keep making minis! :)

  5. I've loved that colour combination from the start! Congratulations on tracking down the last bit of thread you needed to finish. I know the shops are struggling to maintain full stock with all the restrictions on flights to Australia - things like thread are low priority for the limited freight capacity.

  6. Love the contrast of the solid with the meshwork of this beautiful piece