Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Embroidery in Progress: Winter Trees

A couple of weeks ago, I was outside in the morning with my boys, waiting for the bus to arrive, and I was struck by the winter tree branches against the grey sky. I ran in to get my camera and took several photos, including this one.

I've always liked tree branches, especially bare ones. I can get completely lost in that negative space. I thought about whether I wanted to draw the branches, or maybe paint them, and then, since I'd been feeling a tug towards embroidery, not having done any in a bit, I decided to try to render the branches in floss.

This is my progress so far. If you don't embroider, you might not realize...this is hours and hours of stitching.


I've got the main bit of tree completed, and now I'm working on the thinner background branches. I really wasn't sure how to approach this, so I just jumped right in. I began by backstitching the outlines but quickly abandoned that in favor of working the trees of a piece as I went. I've got a mix of stitches, too, depending on what I think I need in the spot, but it's mostly backstitch, stem stitch, and a few chain stitches and French knots here and there. You can't really see it at all in this photo, even when clicking on it, but there's a lighter grey/green here and there within all that grey, and the background branches are different shades of grey as well.

This is Grand Experiment, and I'm figuring it out as I go and learning, too, but overall, I'm pleased. I look at it sometimes while working on it and just get really happy about it. I'm not making it to be anything, like a cushion or something like that; I'm making it to hang on the wall, although I haven't decided quite how I want to arrange that yet. Like everything else with this experiment, I'll figure that out when I get there, I'm sure.

If you want to see more in-progress photos, the Flickr set is here; I'll add to it as I go, probably.

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10 comments:

frangipani designs said...

its beautiful, I love it! and I love winter trees too! cant wait to see what it will become!
Claire x

dash robin said...

I love bare branch trees in winter too and this is a lovely piece in progress...even if you finished it now it would seem complete...i have embroidered and am amazed at the time this must have taken. Good luck with the next steps. xoKate

Jen said...

Beautiful! I love bare tree branches...I've got so so so many pictures of one tree in our yard. But each time I look at it there's always something different about it to photograph!! The embroidery is beautiful! Talk about patience! :-)

Sally said...

Just marvellous. Truly ruly. I love it. And yes.... hours and hours and hours of stitching.

Donna Lee said...

Amy, it's coming along beautifully. Those are the projects we learn the most from. I like your color choice. It's a good contrast without looking harsh. I'd mat it and hang it on the wall.

Olivia said...

Oh I really love this, Amy. And I have always found the stark bare tree branches very beautiful (we have lots of european/decidous trees in my part of Canberra).

Sharyn said...

Amy-
I just found your blog via the Squam one and happy I did. Your stitched piece is beautiful. As someone who embroiders I understand how long it can take to fill even a tiny section with stitches. I do find the work relaxing and almost meditative,do you? Hope to meet one day.Are you attending Squam? Which session?
Yours in stitching, Sharyn

Bells said...

amy this is a work of art. How stunning. Can't wait to see it completed. Bare branches against a bleak sky is such a potent image and I'm so glad you're capturing it. Just lovely. Hours well spent I say!

lamina @ do a bit said...

Wow that is a lot of work and looks amazing! I think it's good to experiment becuase you never know what little gem you may create :)

Michelle said...

Yay!!!!!! Love it! I agree with bells, definitely hours well spent!