Melitastitches4fun's Blog


A Tip For Threads With A Twist & Tied Up With Celtic Knot
August 11, 2018, 3:12 pm
Filed under: Celtic Knot, Dare to Design With Orna Willis, General comments, Threads

Have you ever had threads get twisted when you stitch? Who hasn’t? Well, I heard people try and explain z twist and s twist. While I understand it, I can’t see it. Until I can see the different twists, I will use the simple tip I heard from Cleo at my EGA Brandywine Chapter meeting which is to use the thread as it comes off the skein. This means that the beginning of the thread goes in the eye of the needle. Then, cut the other end and finish with that end. I was seeing issues with Trebizond and now I’m not.

This is the beginning of the second design that has come out of my design class with Orna Willis. My paintings reminded Patrick from my ANG Chapter of a Celtic Knot. I don’t know if the stitched piece in my colors will still remind him of a Celtic Knot but that’s what I’ve called this design.

Here are the paintings.

I tried to paint in my stitched colorway but didn’t do great.

Here’s the inner area stitched (sequins and beads will be added last). I’m using Trebizond TRA 381 Orange Sherbet, 3586 Birds of Paradise, 343 Peach Sorbet, Bijout MMT 429 Jasper, Kreinik 1/16″ ribbon 2122, and Watercolours 144 Pomegranate in this inner area.

A different color of Trebizond, Bittersweet TRA 376, replaced the Orange Sherbet TRA 381 into the next surrounding area.

I love how it’s looking but it certainly isnt easy to stitch due to the nonsymmetrical features and the weaving. I could stop here and add beads and it’d be a pretty little thing but I am going to keep on going!! All these threads are from the kit that came with Orna’s class. Even after I finish this piece, I’ll have threads enough to stitch at least a third piece!

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Scotch Stew Published in Needle Pointers
July 10, 2018, 6:38 pm
Filed under: Melita's Designs, Scotch Stew

Needle Pointers magazine has published Scotch Stew in the May/June 2018 issue! The magazine is late reaching our homes but it got posted online a week ago. So, I knew that it wasn’t on the cover. But, it’s so rewarding and fun to see my design published. I can’t show much of what was published due to copyright issues but this should be ok.

Again, Pam Gardner did a magnificent job of diagramming the stitches and clarifying text I suggested. I was able to send her better diagrams than previous published pieces and she said that made it much easier for her. I sent everything to her shortly after Seminar last year and was able to practice using computer skills that I learned from Cynthia Thomas.

This was my second attempt at an all Scotch stitch design. Here is the piece framed (by Repenning Fine Arts in Audubon, NJ). It received a third place ribbon at Seminar last year. Both of my Scotch pieces will look great on our newly painted bedroom walls.



Scotch Flower and Hearts
June 24, 2018, 9:14 pm
Filed under: Melita's Designs, Scotch Flower and Hearts

This design was my first attempt at an all Scotch stitch design. But, I almost didn’t finish this design because of the reversed heart pattern in the corners. It was a tricky pattern that I needed to chart out for each corner because the hearts remain upright. I couldn’t rotate the canvas.

For the rest of the outer border, I used Scotch and Smyrna stitches.

The center flower used a Watercolours, Baby Breath. The skein is from the stash of a deceased member. It has a hand written dye lot but no color number assigned. So, it’s quite an old skein. I love the colors and was particularly careful to have the threads color movement match on each side. And, it goes with peach and teal/turquoise very nicely including Crystal Braid CR17, Vineyard Silk Classic C-079 & C-184, Trebizond TRA701, and Splendor S818 (I’m not sure what Kreinik threads I used). I charted the center using offset scotch stitches over 3, 4, 6, and 7 threads before stitching.

I put the piece away quite some time ago and just recently found it. So, I decided that my own design wouldn’t beat me! And, it didn’t. It’ll make a nice companion piece in our recently repainted bedroom.

If I were to do this again, I wouldn’t be so particular about the color movement in the center flower. And, I would use a Mosaic stitch on the sides instead of all Smyrna stitches just for variety.



New Crescent River Finished 
November 19, 2017, 1:03 pm
Filed under: ANG Keystone Garden Chapter, Crescent River

Thanks to my ANG Keystone Garden Chapter who wanted to stitch this for a project,  I restitched it using different threads.

I can’t remember where I found this stitch for the grass but it worked well. The shades of green Watercolours Wasabi 271 provided most of the grass. The slightly dark grass is from Watercolours Guacamole 206. I wanted the shading to look like sun making certain areas lighter. I think I added too much grass. So, I may have the mat cover some of the right grass area.

And, the wild flowers are either Diamond Eyelet from Stitches by Effect by Suzanne Howden and Beth Robertson or Diamond Eyelet Variation from Plants & Animals by June McNight. To avoid a streaky effect from Watercolours Autumn Frost 143, I didn’t always complete each eyelet. Rather, I would start a second or third in order to get to a new color along the overdyed thread.

This one doesn’t have the threads showing under the crescents but it seems to lack the contrast that the first one had. I forgot to check the gray values of the threads. Others are still working on the project.



Overdyed Spools
August 30, 2017, 8:33 am
Filed under: Melita's Designs, Spools

I redid the design I gave to my sister & have donated the design to the 2017 Chapter Project Book. You can see it at Seminar in the Distance Learning Program area. It is intended to teach how to manipulate an overdyed thread. This uses the same overdyed thread, Watercolours Lilac (039) as I had used for my sister.

New piece:

Spools 2

Original piece:

Spools



Scotch Stew
August 28, 2017, 12:11 am
Filed under: ANG Seminar 2017, Melita's Designs, Scotch Stew

This is another “challenge” piece intended to explore a single stitch. I selected the Scotch Stitch. And, I’m happy to say that it received a third place ribbon in origin design, non-professional category! My artist’s statement follows:

In researching Scotch Stitches, I learned that Box Stitches are described as a “series of diagonal stitches that form squares or boxes” from Jo Ippolito Christensen in The Needlepoint Book. The Mosaic Stitch is the smallest of the Box Stitches, Cashmere is a rectangular Mosaic Stitch, and Scotch Stitch is an expanded Mosaic Stitch. I found Scotch Stitch variations in The Needlepoint Book, Amy Bunger’s Keeping Me In Stitches, and SuZy’s Portable Stitches app. However, I found the Scotch Stitch variations in Scotch Stitch by Stitch by Kathleen Rake the most inspirational and educational by learning how to vary stitches with size, direction, color, and threads to create endless variations.

After having just stitched Designing with Stitches by Julie Goetsch (http://needlepoint.org/Archives/00-01/Design.php – originally published in NeedlePointers, Volume X, Number 1, Spring 1982) with my ANG chapter, I stitched the frame using the Cashmere and Mosaic Stitches instead of the Oblong Cross Stitches as Julie had done. The frame is comprised of numerous 4 by 2 units and 4 corners that are 2 by 2. This created the appropriate negative spaces: 25 areas that are 8 by 8 and 16 areas that are 4 by 4.

There are 10 variations of the Scotch Stitch in the 25 larger negative spaces (8 by 8 areas; A-G), 3 variations in the smaller negative spaces (4 by 4 areas; a-c), and 6 variations (6 by 6 areas) repeating to form the outermost border. There’s lots more variations that could be cooked up using more Scotch variations, more threads, or both!



Festive Fireworks, Published and on the Cover of Needle Pointers July 2017
August 11, 2017, 11:46 am
Filed under: Festive Fireworks

How exciting to see Festive Fireworks on the cover of the July 2017 issue of Needle Pointers!! I knew it was getting published but not that it would be on the cover. I worked with Pam G. again to create the final charts and diagrams. I gave her my hand written charts, diagrams, and instructions to transform them and she did a great job!

Cover of NPs

This piece started with a group who encourage each other to design a piece based on a particular theme & this was to be something that “expressed a celebration”. And, being from Philadelphia, I immediately thought of all the wonderful fireworks especially the ones for the 4th of July. And, I’ve often thought that stitch patterns in Jean Hilton’s books remind me of fireworks and I used Stimulating Stitches and Needlepoint Stitches for most of the stitches. Since we have fireworks several times during the year, I created a main motif of the center star surrounded by a border of Symrna stitches and corner crescents while the smaller side motifs are different in each of the designs resembling a variety of fireworks. When I found the red, white, and blue Silk Lamé Braid, I literally jumped for joy! The 5 points of the center star are intended to serve as a guide for counting throughout the piece. Stitches used are: Crescents, Smyrna stitches, Jessica stitches, Wrapped coils, Double Fans, Plaited Ray, and Wrapped Sheaf. Everything was diagrammed before stitching. Since there is exposed canvas, I took care so that threads do not show through.

I was too shocked to jump for joy when I saw the blue ribbon! First place in non-professional original design at the 2016 ANG Seminar! We were allowed to get photos after the exhibit closed & as long as no other piece could be seen. Another benefit of volunteering – behind the scenes access. The First Place and special award ribbons are beautifully hand stitched and this one was done by Elena L. from the local New Orleans chapter. Thanks to all the volunteers for your efforts – the seminar was fantastic.

I stitched the stars as 3 separate pieces (as seen on the cover) but then framed them as a single vertical set.

Blue Ribbon

It measures approximately 11″ x 23″, is stitched on 18 count monocanvas, and used Fyre Werks, Silk Lamé Braid For 18 count, Kreinik #4 Braid, Crystal Braid, Soie Cristale, and Dinky Dyes. 

2016-06-05 18.24.45