Recently, Elizabeth at Qieter Moments explores stitches again with her usual brilliance. She had just discovered a new one, raised chain stitch She has instruction in that post, and in subsequent posts lovely variations on it. I realized how similar this stitch was to an obscure German stitch I had used on my detatched chain stitch sampler. I pointed her to that posting and she did some more wonderful variations on it .
In order to complete that little debate, Iooked for the little booklet where I found that stitch. It is “Sticken-das Vergnügen” (roughly stitching-the amusement) by Wolle Rödel, a needlework store chain. The stitch is called “durchzogener Kabelstich” which translates to pulled-through cable stitch. The way it is done there it indeed looks like a cable stitch variant, but it is done more like (raised) chain stitch. This and Elizabeth’s blog are the only places where I ever saw a stitch like this. Who else did know them?
Now here is how to do it, according to said booklet. The stitch is worked in vertical rows to form a kind of raised band, to work it horizontally turn the fabric. Te lengths of the horizontal stitches can vary between barely visible and long to get a spined or centipede-legs effect. In the booklet they are longer than shown here.
You can click the photographs to enlarge them. I’m sorry, I know they are not as good as they should be, but I don’t want to fiddle with this any longer today.
First do a horizontal straight stitch, and bring the needle back up to the front right in the middle of it. Pull normally.
Now proceed by doing a regular detatched chain stitch over the first straight stitch.
Bring the needle up to the front for the next horizontal stitch in one line with the end of the little stitch tacking down the chain stitch.
The first stitch done.
Start the next stitch like the first one, bring the needle to the front in the same hole where you ended the last stitch.
Two weeks ago I managed to sneak away from work early and go see Dijanne’s exhibition at Munich. Her work was breathtaking to look at. Her quilts look great on the website, but even better for real.
But there was one thing that caught my eye. She uses lots of surface treatments which are probably not washable, such as layers of silk tops or gold foiling, and that often on pieces which are too big to be easiely framed behind glass. In the exhibition, everything was hung without frames of course. I don’t really dare to question the work of someone like Dijanne, but I would try to avoid that. In fact I’m working on a sampler that will be like this,because I did not think that much before starting it, but I have good intentions for the future.
Sometimes I wonder how careless we fiber artists are about conservational issues. More often than not, we use happiely whatever strikes our fancy without giving a thought to thinks like lightfastness or manmade materials crumbling with age. I’m as guilty of this as any of you, but sometimes it makes me think twice. Because as a painter, I was taught to only use acid free paper and the best quality paints I can get. Even there I sometimes deviated from the rules for the joy of using fancy papers and other unusual things.
What makes this problem more difficult is that information about the lightfastness and lifetime of fabrics and other supplies is sparse and hard to find, especially when it is about things like polyester organza and fabrics meant for clothes or home decor (and that’s some of my favourite materials).
For me, it’s often the coice between maximum fun and common sense about conservational issues. Or is it hubris that makes me want to work for eternity, which isn’t going to happen anyway?
Do you think about such issues? What are your solutions? I would love to read oppinions on this.
(sorry for the ranty post, and the absence of eye candy)
I’m sorry for the unanounced blogging break. Every weekend I thought I’m going to write a couple of blog posts but just didn’t. I have a stressful job, and haven’t had any significant time off for 9 months, so I was kinda burned out lately. But now I have 2 weeks off and really hope to relax and get a few things done.
I did not completely abandon stitching, I worked on my sampler a bit on the commute. The thing is 1 meter long and a bit more than one third is done now. I didn’t do any stitches exept algerian eyes, a little bit arrowhead, a little bit smyrna stitch and many, many more variants of algerian eye. I’m obsessed with this stitch and don’t care that I am. I can always buy another length of aida band and do the others….
This was planned as a mere doodlecloth, strange how rhythm and style have crept in…
I think I will eventually post closeups of all the different pattern variations, but not right now. I think I’ll put this on hold for the vacation and work on things that are less portable and save this project for the daily commute.
please click on the pic to enlarge it