Monday, December 21, 2009

Sashiko Pin Cushion--Finishing steps

This is the back, the embroidery finished and sewn to the pin cushion and lining (that's why it's lumpy)

This is the pin cushion side--one square of blue flowered fabric the same size as the embroidered back, and another square of the same fabric, turned 45 degrees, appliqued on and stuffed with polyester fiberfill. I made the stitches as invisible as I could, using a sort of hem stitch.

Two opposing points are folded in and stitched down, the other points will be the "cover" and "needlebook"
With a button and loop to hold it closed when not in use.

Here it is all buttoned up.

and from the back.

And here it is open and ready to use. The needle is tucked into the left side, and the pins in the middle.

My problem now is that I really like this little thing, so now I have to either make another one, or something else for the swap!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Progression--embroidering the straight lines

Here, I've drawn out the pattern with the soapstone pencil. The ruler came in handy, as did the lid form a spray can I had handy to trace the biggest circle. The inner ones I just did by hand in roughly thirds of the space.

I began the embroidery with the outline, then planned to work all the straight lines and do the circles last so they'd be on the surface. I'm using the perle cotton and the quilting basting needles. The eyes are smaller than the soft sculpture needles, and they're a little shorter, but I'll try the others on another project. This needle is working out fine so far.

I don't know if there is a rhyme or reason to the traditional methods of this embroidery, I was too impatient to start to look up any more detailed instruction. I does help to pay attention to where you go with the pattern, as you can end up cutting thread and moving around too often. I tried to look ahead for the next direction when I started out and it has worked ok so far.

It's kind of like following a maze. Or one of those puzzles where you have to trace every line without running over any twice. I have to admit I ran into a couple of dead ends and had to take out the stitches and re-think my route.

Here, I'm beginning the last of the straight lines, the corners. I should have somehow worked them into the rest of the outer squares or triangles, but, hey, it's my first time! I have two remaining longer straight lines to fit in and then I'll do the circles and be done with this part of the project.

Sashiko pattern

This is the pattern I'm starting with for the project for the Swap-bot Swap--it's the back of a pin cushion that folds like a furoshiki bundle--a variation of the Yotsu Musubi

I found the idea on this page the third item in their list on this page. I'm looking now for the lining fabric, undecided whether to use a floral pattern or a geometric, like the striped one in the picture. I drew it out onto the piece of fabric with the soapstone pencil--a very cool tool! It brushes off easily, but not so easily that I lose the pattern as I work.

The next post will be pictures of my progress with the embroidery.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Sashiko Embroidery

I'm starting yet another new project--

Sashiko embroidery is from Japan and is done with heavy cotton fabric and fairly heavy cotton thread, long needles and a choice of many lovely patterns. I found this tutorial and decided to start a Swap-bot swap for beginners to get myself to actually make something of it.

This is a picture of the two fabrics, thimble, soapstone pencil, washable fabric pencil, perle cotton and two types of needles I found--3" soft sculpture needles and quilter's basting needles. I'm working out a pattern which I'll post soon.