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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Dijanne Cevaal: Figure 2, King.

The second of my Dijanne Cevaal Medieval figures has been hugely enjoyable to work on. The figure was printed onto a brown hand-dyed cotton and I decided to work it in a predominantly red palette with gold highlights. I used a range of red silks for the body of his cloak and an Embroiderers' Guild overdyed red-gold stranded cotton on the piece folded over his arm.

I had originally intended to insert shisha mirrors in the circles decorating his cloak, and what looks rather like a sporran, but thought better of it when I remembered my collection of operculum (or cats' eyes.  I have collected these since I was a child and a much-loved uncle gave me a jar of them that he had collected in New Guinea during World War II. These are not from my Uncle's collection, but from a collection I bought at an Antique Fair a few years ago. I attached them using a metallic gold thread and the simplest shisha attachment method.
I treated the cloak a bit like a sampler, working each section, as far as possible, with a different Kantha stitch.

The pouch, or sporran challenged me, until I remembered a tanned cane toad skin I had bought a couple of years ago from Alison Cole. Cane toads are an introduced invasive species causing considerable damage to Australian wildlife and tanning their leathery skin seems a fitting response.

I'm pleased to have found a use for mine!

It seemed to me that the King should also have some fur on his cloak, so made it from Madeira stranded silk and Giordes Knots.
The scroll that he is holding in his hands I worked in a black running stitch, in Kantha style, using black stranded cotton.

I used the same stitch for his beard, but found a Madeira synthetic with a bit of sparkle that worked well. I beaded the crown in gold, jewelled with some coral pieces. A couple of dark purple crystal beads give his eyes a bit of regal flash.

The batik background fabric is quite spectacular with a greeny-gold lifting the red. To link it together, I used a variegated green and gold machine thread to quilt the background and some green over-dyed Embroiderers' Guild stranded thread to work a border that links it to the panel.

I think these panels are improving as I go along, and get braver at experimenting with embellishment.


margaret said...

this is so beautifully stitched

Monica said...

I love that photo of the two of them at the end there. Four will be gorgeous! I agree, this one is a step up with the range of materials and techniques. There is so much to look at! I'm really loving this project, I must say. :D