Mt. Rainier and Lenticular Clouds - Dec. 2008 copyright: JMM

May 22, 2012

A Sneak Peak at "The Project That Ate My Brain"

A few weeks ago, I featured my first foray into a bead embroidery fusion.  A few people asked me what I was gonna do with it. I said I wasn't sure, since it was just stitched onto some plain cotton fabric.

I've decided how I am going to use this, but of course that meant the need to stitch a whole bunch more patterns for this ambitious project.  

Here's a set of 2 smaller designs.

Close up of the green one.

I have fallen madly in love with varigated thread and floss!!!!

So I went out to Michael's in Wareham to buy some more cool threads & flosses.

The Asian letters were the hardest part of this design.

I had to shoot a couple of pictures of the virgin crochet thread before diving into it.  Ooooo PURTY!!!!


As soon as I transferred this design I knew how it was going to be stitched, hence the need for all that rainbow thread.  I also tried to use Kreinik blending filament, a beautiful sparkly thread that comes in a variety of colours, but it's very difficult.  It breaks and tangles extremely easily, even when I used thread conditioner and also paused after every stitch to let the needle unwind.  I used it for the 5 hearts, and planned on using it in the butterflies.  I want to use it more often but the frustration level with it is quite high.  I'd also planned to use coloured floss to fill in the main design but my friend Sheila suggested I use black and I readily agreed.  

The black really made the coloured outline pop.  I hobbled through more sparkled thread tangles for 2 of the 3 butterflies.  I was going to add gold to the green butterfly, but by that point I just wanted to finish!!

This design was not as easy as I thought it would be.  I delusioned myself into thinking this would take one afternoon.  It took 2 days.  I was so sick of green, hence the hot pink.

Scary, innit?

Oh and then, I found a small bead stash I totally forgot I had and so of course I had to incorporate those beads into the next paisley design, instead of exclusively using Delicas like in the prior pieces shown above.

It was at this point that I began to suffer some fatigue on this project.  I got a brainwave for a mixed media project, centered around a silver Grateful Dead dancing bear pin that I had.  I removed the pin back to create a little scene with felt, buttons, sequins and embroidery.  This represents a line in the song, "Scarlet Begonias", that says, "The wind in the willows playing tea for two, the sky was yellow and the sun was blue..."  I am resisting the urge to festoon the sky with more stuff, but I'm not gonna rule it out.

The silver bear is inlaid with turquoise. I outlined him in rainbow thread.  

Since there was a pile of sequins on my table, I couldn't resist taking a shot.

And one out of focus so as to emphasize the sparklies.


  1. This is excellent, I enjoyed looking at the photo's.
    Well done.


  2. Anonymous12:24 PM

    Very funky love :0)

  3. It's all gorgeous, but the blue-and-white is perfect in its simplicity.

  4. Gorgeous work!! Loved seeing the photos!


  5. Dang, gurl - you gots the MAJOR crafting skills! I really loved the rainbow thread, and filling in that design with black was genius. I tend to like bright colors, like in that thread against black (like, say, a black embroidered skirt), but the way you worked that project was really cool!

    Some Dark Romantic

  6. Wow, those pieces are fantastic! I never had the patience for embroidery, but it sure looks like fun. The rainbow thread is so cool.
    Everyday Inspired

  7. Thanks everyone! I admit that I am still fatigued by this project, and the 2nd to last design I'm embroidering is taking a long time and I'm not too happy w/ my technique but alas, I am pushing thru!

  8. Wow! I agree with definitely have some mad skills. My faves were the green one and the oriental. All are gorgeous, but those two really popped for me. The green one is like part Celtic/part Mandala. Really awesome. :) Liked your little dancing bear too. ;)