Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Flat Top Casket Progress

Precious is Finished!
 Hard to believe she is finished...kind of depressing actually, I really miss working on her every day.....time to start thinking about the next one I guess~ which will be a more traditional double casket...not that this one isnt traditional. By traditional I mean, getting to use my antique silks and silk gimps and plates and all the fun  wonderful 17th c reproduction trims and threads I have been collecting.
It was really hard for me to get a good picture, so I gave up and just took a couple videos~
This first one was particularly frustrating, because she just doesnt look anywhere near how she looks in person. The dim candlelight just makes the marguarite beads of the water and grotto just dance...not to mention the gilt trim...I am more than happy with it, I love it. 

Since I live at the end of a dirt road, off another dirt road...its super dusty in my house so I had an acrylic case made~ the top slides over the fitted base to keep all the dust and whatever else(fingers) out! 

If you think something like this is too much for you to ever finish~ just remember, a little here, a little there, and 5 years later (maybe sooner for you) its done!

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Flat Top Casket Progress

  I said I wasn't posting pictures of Precious until she was finished....and I'm sticking to it! It makes my heart smile so many of you are as excited as I am to see her finished. Putting the panels on was a breeze, she has been finished since Friday the 18th~ as in, all panels glued on, hardware on....she's just waiting for her trims...she's shy and doesnt want to be seen until she is fully dressed. I had planned on using an antique gilt trim I have,  its absolutely gorgeous and EXTREMELY flexible....and literally as I was about to cut into it, I realized how perfect it would be for my mirror frame~ one needs a very flexible trim to go around all those curves and angles....so I got out my little trim samples and decided to use the 17th c reproduction gilt trim, so we are patiently waiting for that to come in the post. Maybe by Friday.....

O.K. I'm not going to lie...its killing me waiting too!
I am keeping busy now making her travel case~ so in the meantime, thought I would share some of my favorite pictures~ pictures of the back of her embroidery.

  One of the reasons the panels went on so easily, is that I have stitched everything over paper~ yes~ glued the paper on first, before stitching. It was worth it a zillion times over in the end, to be able to just cut the panels out and glue them on...and using the Gane Yes! Paste, it took literally minutes. No joke.
  I want my panels to look exactly the same after mounting on my casket, as they did on the frame....and working this way, they absolutely do!  If you enlarge the pictures, you can see, I even have wire tails....and they are totally invisible when mounted~ they nestle down into the Yes! Paste like little babies snug in their beds.

 I have to say that I enjoy looking at the back of the panels as much as the front....but the swan side was the only one I actually took a picture of...the other ones went on so quick, I forgot to snap a pic of the backs!

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

My Flat Casket Progress

All Stitching is Finished!

 Can you believe it? I can't. Nearly every day stitching on something that I hoped would one day come to and end, as much as I thought, 'is this ever going to be finished'?  Well my friends...that day has come!
Five years of work here on the piano...just hangin out
Enjoy this little video~ the next time you see these panels, they will be on their casket!

Since I stitched over paper...there are no tedious steps now...just cut these babies out and glue them on...not lying...I may have already started  XOXOXOXXO

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Casket Progress~

Swan side finished~ 
 I have been so busy getting my orders filled I havent had much time to work on my casket, but like I always say, a little here...a little there...adds up and voi~la, I finished the swan side of my casket last week~ WOO!
 Once the roses were on, I made a few other flowers to make things interesting....just an excuse to use beads I haven't used yet really......

 This is on the lion side....it was imperative that I find a spot for these tiny stripe beads....I was not going to spend 5 years on a beaded stumpwork casket, and not have them somewhere....since nearly every single 17th c beadwork piece I have studied has had striped beads on it someplace.
It's cute. I like it.

 The design I drew out included these bellflowers....I have snowdrops on one of the friezes, and debated several years I guess....on weather to make these snowdrops, or yellow bells...(the Yellow Fritillary). Me and yellow bells go waaaay back...I mean, probably before I could talk. We would venture out each spring to pick them...I can remember my Pa bringing some home from the mill in his lunchbox....cant imagine what the fellas thought seeing my Pa out picking wildflowers on his lunchbreak...XOXOXOXOXOX
I love them so much, really when I got to this point, there was no question, yellow bells went on both the swan side and lion sides.
  With so many roses, I needed some rosebuds. I think I had 6 or 7 for each side planned....and as I was making them, I did what I was afraid I would do...and slid out my finished panels from their storage case to 'just make sure' they looked 'full' enough.  :::::::sigh:::::  I knew it. I didn't like the lid~ too sparse, so I decided I would spend my sewing day making rosebuds, and as many as I got finished in that one day, I would put on the lid.

 I got 11 made, and attached them on the garland around Lady Victory ~ the angels loved how they smelled so they each picked out a few to hold too~

 Once the rosebuds were on, it was just leaves left....I made 30 leaves for the swan side to complete it. I could have put more on there, but I think I need to draw the line somewhere.....I have had folks comment that they think I just like making tedious little things forever and will never get it finished......not the case.
Tho I do really love the process, I do in fact, want to get it finished!

  I have more caskets planned you know ;)

As for the lion side....the last side...it is finished save for the leaves...30 leaves as well...and yesterday while camping I got 7 of them done...the end is very near my friends!

~A Day Spent Stitching, is a Blessed Daye Indeed~

Monday, October 07, 2019

2019 Ltd Ed Nutcracker Ornament Kit

Time to get one, if you want one!
I am now well into single digits on the remaining 2019 Ort King Ornament Kits. 
Once they are gone, they're gone!  If interested, just click this link for more information & ordering ~
Happy Stitching!!

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Initials & Date are ON

So I Guess That Makes it Official...
 I officially need to get my fingers greased up and get to towne on these sides to finish them this year. I like the larger pearls...yes, REAL pearls~ I wanted them to look chunky and in a 'script' that I have seen in pearls on several period caskets~ the small one millimeter pearls I used on the front were just too small to get the look I wanted
If you look to the left, you will see a bit of the evil Satan's Bush on the Swan side panel....ohhh those bushes. Tip: Test your stitches on a practice piece before commiting on the actual panel
And I have an active practice doodle frame set up for such things....but did I use it this time? Nope. I had studied a casket up close at Colonial Williamsburg, and on it, in 4 different places, I found about 1/2" or smaller(I know why) areas with a very fascinating, microscopic stitch that I really loved the look of. It looks exactly like what I was able to execute in beads...but I still havent figured out the stitch in silk yet~ no its not a bullion stitch of any kind...anyways, I was bound and determined to have that on my casket.
Hours upon hours upon hours and a zillion beads later....I had like....literally....half inch of space worked...my eyes were killing me, I could no longer retain focus, my neck hurt....it was torture. 
But me being stubborn as I am, I kept going until I filled in every last space of my bushes, and covered over forever the garbled of overwritten mess of 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018 of dates I had planned on having there....
I moved them over to the Lions side

So, I better get busy on this~ I have all the background roses finished, all that is left that is drawn on the panels now are the grape clusters, so those will be next, then it will be a never ending sea of leaves leaves and leaves...and then most likely, more leaves
To say I cant wait would be an understatement...but...
I cant wait

Thursday, September 12, 2019

This Summer

Where did it go?
  It seems like its been forEver since I was able to work on my casket~ I can't even remember if I have shared my Lion with ya'll?  I got him finished before I left for England...really wanted to give him real teeth...but alas, my tooth drawer did not yield anything his size, or worthy of his stately presence....so he got glass teeth...I hope he doesn't mind.  
For my birthday husband gave me the gift of him cooking supper for an entire month~ I didn't think it would last, but here we are a week and half in, and hes still going, so I have been taking advantage and spending the time I would normally be cooking supper,  working on my casket. It's coming on very slow...a million and one flower petals and leaves...thats where I'm at. 
 I had such a wonderful time in England, words cannot even describe it. I went with my bestie a week early before Summer School and we stayed in London and had a blast.  There was never a dull moment~ the first day, after arriving and getting our things settled at the hotel, we were off to Covent Garden. I wanted to get some paper at Il Papiro....but alas, the Italian Stationer no longer has a store in the Market. The White Lion was beautiful as ever...I think I need to eat supper here the next time I'm in London....

 O.K. now this is a hilarious memory for me that will make me smile until the day I die...and probably afterwards for that matter....anyone who knows me knows I am a morning person and ALWAYS on time...always early...don't ever want to be late~ not me.  Well we had planned on walking across the Thames our first morning in London, and being at the Tower of London a little before 10 am, when it opened. I slept well on my flight, and wasnt feeling any jet laggy at all~ my bestie tho had been up over 24 hours by the time we went to bed....I didn't bother to get out my alarm (you can tell where this is going?) because I wasnt that tired, and well, it was just around 8pm....I would be up in plenty of time, and would wake her up if needed.....so I literally blink my eyes and am jolted awake by a loud slam~ someone had thrust open our door and the little flip lever thingy had caught it so they couldn't come in....about that time, I am wondering what the heck is going on because Im not really awake yet, I see S look at her watch and at the same time she jets out of bed and says 'its 11 o'clock!'  
Oh my golly. I dont think I have ever slept that many hours in a row before! LOLOLOL  I am still laughing about it. So...we were a bit late getting over to the Tower of London, but it was fantabulous, none the less.

 I got to see the crown jewels~ amazing. All the armor in the White Tower....amazing. The Chapel in the White Tower~ Heavenly. It was a beautiful day out, and yes, I even got to see the Ravens. Because we were a bit late, we didnt have time for a proper visit to Westminster Abbey, so I took a quick zip out to Harrods 
 Who knew that LaDuree has a tea salon around the back of Harrods? Well you do now!

 Can you imagine getting to work at this counter? Since when were tea & cakes so blasted gorgeous?
You must make a reservation for Afternoon Tea tho~ if you are thinking of going~ you can reserve online at Harrods' website

I have been plugging away at roses...trying to get all the flowers finished that are drawn on my panel first...then will work on foliages and see if I need more flowers. I am afraid that I will get these sides finished, and then go back and look at the top or the front, and decide they are too sparse and get sucked into a never ending vortex of adding more flowers and leaves until every bead I own is on here somewhere.....