Some people, when going away for the weekend, pack half their wardrobe just in case they will be required to change for dinner, and lunch, and breakfast, and country walks, and afternoon tea, and formal outings, and informal outings, and anything else that might turn up. I don’t. But that’s no reason to feel smug – I have my own weakness. I pack stitching projects.
Even though we were only going to be away from Saturday morning to Sunday evening, and even though most of that time would be taken up with helping out at an Austin Seven trial (a type of vintage car competition), I packed not only the strawberries, but after some hesitation also my folder of Kelly Fletcher flowers. Guess how much stitching I did. That’s right, none. The days were taken up with preparation and the trial itself, and Saturday evening with many enjoyable hours of conversation over dinner and beyond, touching on features of Old English, goldwork on Russian military uniforms, and what the apostles did after the events recorded in the New Testament.
So has any stitching been done on the strawberries at all? Yes, a little, at home after supper on Sunday evening. I did consider using heavy chain stitch, but decided to keep that for the larger version of this design, or one of the Kelly Fletcher flowers. On this one I’m sticking with stem stitch all the way, and here is what I’ve managed so far.
I like the effect of the intertwining stems, and the contrast between the slightly fuzzy look of the silk/wool blend (dark) and the smoother appearance of the stranded silk (light). I am a little puzzled by the middle of the three leaves on the top left, where the thread seems to be a bit thicker than on the other two, even though it is the same thread, but that may just be a trick of the light – I’ll see if it does it in other places as well.
Incidentally, looking at the picture as I was editing it for this post I noticed that I’m tackling the dark green and the light green stem in different ways; understandable to some extent as the dark green one has the extra bit going up to the flower, but perhaps I should have tried to keep the rest the same, rather than having the strawberry as a later offshoot on the left, and the leaf as a later offshoot on the right. Oh well, I’m not going to unpick it!