Saturday, April 24, 2010

Vivian Leigh Almost Grown Up

The last Stars quilt block on the top row is almost done.  I first did the squares outside the center star.  They are a four step trellis variation stitch.  Then I did the slanting button hole variation stitch with my overdyed silk and have started the first of the Sprats Head stitches that fill the triangular empty spots around the border of this block.

There's a closeup of Vivian Leigh below so you can see the trellis variation stitch better.  This is stitched four times and I didn't finish it so you could see how Tony took a basic trellis pattern and added layers to it to make a complex layered stitch that is very pretty.  You can see that the stitches in the Stars for the New Millennium book are not standard.  The Headmaster is making them up as he goes along.  After I finish this piece, I'm going to reuse the Stars book as a stitch dictionary and as inspiration to embellish other stitches to add depth and complexity of color and texture to the painted canvases I love.

The first step of the square Diagronal Trellis Variation is above at the Southwest position between the black rimmed kite shapes.  It is done in C3, which for me is my terracotta Trebizond silk perle #Peach Sorbet 343.    I did two of the squares with the canvas right side up and the other two with the canvas upside down so that I was certain that the top layer of the trellis was always the same.  Tony tells us the Southwest to Northeast layer is done first and if I turned the canvas sideways to work, I was afraid I'd get the wrong layer on top.

Move counter-clockwise to the right and you'll see layer two, which is long narrow cross stitches laid on top at an angle.  This step uses A1, my violet Impressions 6242.  If you continue to move counter-clockwise, you'll see step three, which adds another layer of long narrow cross stitches but these are in B8 (black Trebizond silk perle #1320) and they slant the opposite diection.  There is a lot of compensation in this layer but it's easy to do.

The final step adds tiny Upright Crosses over two threads between the slanting narrow cross stitches.  This step is done in D2, which is my light copper metallic Petite Treasure Braid #PB21.  I am not sure if you can tell from the last square in the upper Northwest corner, but this step really brings the stitch to life by adding a touch of metallic.

The last two steps in Vivian Leigh are the parallelograms in slanting buttonhole variation stitches and the triangular Sprats Head stitches that interlock to make up the border.  The instructions say to stitch the buttonhole stitches with B7 and the Sprats Heads in the overdyed silk (which is separate from Tony's colors A, B, C and D).  I decided that since my B7 is the black silk perle Trebizond #111, and my overdyed silk floss is Threadgather's Silk N Colors #Autumn Twilight 62, that the overdyed silk would make better buttonhole stitches and the silk perle better Sprats Heads, so I switched them.  I like how it all turned out, although I am tempted to pull out the buttonhole stitches and do them all in an terracotta overdyed cotton floss that shades from coppery dark to light terracotta....

We'll see if I actually do it once I finish the Diagonal Trellis Variation area and once I master a Sprats Head or two.  I will still have to do the sashing under Vivian Leigh before I can put this away for a bit to go back to my Leigh Dynasty ornament.  I won't be doing the right outside border until all of the quilt blocks are done to minimize disturbing the border while stitching quilt blocks.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow Blogging at Archived Yahoo 360 postings at

Introducing Diana Bosworth

Texas stitchers and fans of Petei's designs already know all about Diana Bosworth, the genius who works at The French Knot in Fort Worth creating the monthly Santa club there each year from Petei's canvases.

Santa fanciers probably have at least heard of her little booklet called Beards I Have Known, which is full of tips on stitching a huge variety of beards and hair for your Santa Claus. (I own an autographed copy which I use a lot.  Diana, I'm waiting for you to write Backgrounds I Have Known, or Clothing for Petei books.  Either would be a great addition to my bookshelf.  Pretty please?)

Now courtesy of the Cleburne Times-Review's online paper, we can read an interview with Diana done by Larue Barnes.  Larue kindly let me use her photo of Diana above, too.

I have to say I disagree with Diana Bosworth's husband when he says,  “I’m so proud of Diana. What she creates are heirlooms, they are true treasures.”  The true treasure is Diana herself.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow Blogging at Archived Yahoo 360 postings at