Flowers for Elizabeth embroidered sweet bag: 6 – stitching the pansies, strawberry flower, and butterfly

This ‘Flowers for Elizabeth’ embroidered sweet bag from Issue 51 of Inspirations magazine is gradually coming together. I’m up to stitching the pansies now, plus the white strawberry flower, the green strawberry  and the insect in the middle…. I’ve been busy this week!

I was really pleased with these pansies. They were stitched in a similar way to the strawberries that I did last week – using layers of Satin Stitch padding first on each petal, and then a top layer of Satin Stitch outside the edges of the Split Stitch outlining. The Au Ver a Soie silk thread makes the Satin Stitch come out beautifully smooth.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Just a few Straight Stitch highlights radiating out from the centre of each flower gave them a lot of ‘personality’, along with a French Knot in the centre of each to complete them.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Then I stitched the little green ‘unripe’ strawberry, in the same way that I’d done the larger ones before.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Again, the white strawberry flower and bud were stitched with Satin Stitch padding under the top layer to make the petals nicely rounded….

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

…with Straight Stitch highlights and a French Knot centre to finish them off.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

There’s a kind of ‘Tudor Rose’ flower in the bottom right hand corner of the sweet bag. Not exactly sure what kind of flower it is, but it’s embroidered in the same way as the other flowers, in two rounds of petals.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

In the centre of the bag, on the original design by Susan O’Connor, is a moth. I don’t like moths, so I drew a butterfly instead, and then chose my own colours for it.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Here’s the whole bag front so far, so you can see how it all fits together.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Coming on nicely, isn’t it?!

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Flowers for Elizabeth embroidered sweet bag: 5 – stitching the strawberries

I am up to the part on this sweet bag from Issue 51 of Inspirations magazine that I am embroidering, where I am stitching the strawberries. I love embroidering strawberries!

I stitched the strawberry stems in chain stitch, in two strands of Au Ver a Soie silk thread, first.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

The actual strawberries are embroidered by first stitching two layers of Satin Stitch padding, in opposite directions, across the shape. Both layers are stitched INSIDE the split stitch outline.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Then I stitched the final layer of Satin Stitch just  outside the Split Stitch outline shape, to make sure I got a nice neat outline, and a gently rounded contour to each berry.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Then, using one strand of Rainbow Gallery Petite Treasure Braid, I made the cross-hatching across each berry, starting with one large cross to define the angles correctly. Then I worked out in parallel lines, about one eighth of an inch apart, in both directions.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Finally, I stitched a tiny Straight Stitch across each intersection in green, using one strand.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

I have yet to stitch the sepals, but they are done later, after some of the surrounding stitches are worked, so that I don’t catch my needle in the looser threads of these stitches.

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Flowers for Elizabeth embroidered sweet bag: 4 – stitching the stems and tendrils

This is the ‘Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag project that I am currently making, from a design in Issue 51 of Inspirations magazine. This week, I am stitching the stems and tendrils.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

There are several little curly tendrils, and each one is stitched in Chain Stitch with two strands of Anchor stranded cotton.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

They look OK just in varying shades of green……

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

But they look an awful lot better when the chain stitches have been whipped with Petite Treasure Braid in gold (shade 002).

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Next, I’ll be stitching the strawberries. I love stitching strawberries!

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Flowers for Elizabeth embroidered sweet bag: 3 – outlining the flowers and leaves

I’m starting to do the stitching on this ‘Flowers for Elizabeth’ sweet bag design from Inspirations magazine Issue 51. It requires outlining the flowers and leaves with one strand of thread in Split Stitch first, to define the areas. That’s a  lot of outlining!

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Once I got in the rhythm of doing it though, it was really nice to do – it meant that I got a lot of colour down on the fabric early on, which is always nice to see 🙂 This area is the honeysuckle flower in the bottom left hand corner.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

These are the strawberries, pansies, and large leaves – the leaves will be filled in with Long and Short Stitch last.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Once the main shapes have been outlined, the stem is then stitched. For this, I laid bands across the width of the stem, and then worked Raised Stem Stitch Band up the stem until it had narrowed quite a bit.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

The Stem Stitch is only worked under the short stitches of the banding, not through the fabric as well. It’s also necessary to use a tapestry needle for this bit, rather than a sharp needle of any kind, so that you’re not catching any of the threads of the background fabric.

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Once the main stem had narrowed, I continued with ‘normal’ Stem Stitch to the ends of the stem. This part seemed to take me ages….then I read the instructions again, and found that I had been using just one strand all that time, when I should have been using two! So, it looks nice and fine, but took hours and hours!!

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

Once all the stems have been stitched, though, the nice swirling shapes of this design become apparent. You can also see that I decided to replace the moth from the centre of the design with a butterfly. I hate moths – their bodies are a bit too squishy and ‘maggot-like’ for me! Butterflies are much better!

Inspirations issue 51 Flowers for Elizabeth sweet bag

I’m pleased with the progress so far – next, I’ll be doing the short stems and tendrils.

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