Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Happy happy joy joy


Happy Wednesday friends!  I'm so excited to have finished my first handpainted canvas that I just had to pop in for a quick minute to share it with you...

canvas by Lee

Like I said earlier, I purchased this canvas in San Francisco at the EGA National seminar in the fall of 2010 along with two Lee luggage tags.  I promptly plunked the tags and the canvas down in a large zip bag and began adding (from stash) any red, white and blue thread I thought might come in handy to the zip bag.  You've never seen such a bunch of red, white and blue thread in all your life.  I let the options paralyze me for awhile.  Too many options.  Had to decide where to start and work from there.  I studied the nine little color blotches along the edge of the canvas until I felt like I had a good handle on the "true" colors of the project.  The brown was such a pretty brown that I decided to start there.  So, I had the 'perfect' brown thread in my hand, ready to start, but, uhhhh, how should I start was the next question...

Luckily, I have picked up a few basic needlepointing books along the way so I referenced them and came up with some fairly easy stitches for the eagle.  I just love how he turned out which spurred me on to get the flag started.  Cue the koo-koo crazy music... 

It took me about two nights of trying different stitches before I found the diagonal stitch you see above throughout the flag.  I don't remember what it's called in real life, but I call it the long-long-short stitch.  Long-long-short became my best friend as I stitched and ripped, stitched and ripped...

The flag needed to have some sheen to it, I thought, but not too much... So after MUCH trial and error, I decided I'd use two kinds of thread in each color block of the flag - one shiny, one not so shiny.  If you look closely you can see that I've used a #5 perle cotton and a rayon in the same exact color, in altering rows for the entire flag.  The flag has two shades of red and three shades of blue, thus I used 4 reds and 6 blues for the flag.  The stars were the last to be stitched.

Again, for about two full nights, I tried every thread and every stitch I could think of but nothing looked right.  I stitched and ripped, stitched and ripped...

I finally gave up and threw myself on the mercy of a couple of my needlepointer stitchy friends.  What we landed on for the stars is what is called a Rhodes star.  I think it's just about perfect!  The thread for the stars is called Hi-Lights by Rainbow Gallery.

Special thanks to Miss Pat for that suggestion!  Kiss Kiss Miss Pat!

So in the span of about a week, I nearly tore my hair out figuring it out, but I started and finished my very first handpainted canvas.  All in, I think I used 19 different threads from 6 thread 'families':  perle cotton #5, DMC floche, DMC rayon, DMC antique effects, Rainbow Gallery Hi-Lights, and Mandarin floss (bamboo). 

It's so uplifting to finish something quickly, don't you think?

And, as promised, here is "And the Rain Fell"  all framed up:

sorry about the glare... couldn't be helped...

And that's all the news that's fit to report folks..

Have a great remainder of the week and keep on stitching!

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations on your canvas finish. It looks amazing.
    The LHN piece is pretty wonderful too.