Sunday, November 30, 2008

Whew! Another purse is done!

About the purse: 

The finished size of the purse is 4 1/4 inches wide by 4 3/4 inches high.  The sides and handle are needlewoven, the drawstring is 8 strand round kumihimo cord and the lining is linen.  I used aurorasilk fine 2-ply silk dyed by my friend Renee in three colors:  fustic (yellow), fustic with brazilwood (orange) and brazilwood (red).  The ground fabric is 24 count linen congress cloth. The pattern is one of the fill patterns from the Hildesheim cope charted by Master Richard Wymarc.

I am very happy to have finished this little purse. Now that it is done I can start working on the next item on my list. It will be a scissors case and it must be finished before 12th Night.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I finished some embroidery and learned that my cats like Cheerios

I had a ziplock plastic bag of Cheerios cereal in my work bag for snacking on my breaks.  Last night I came home from work and put my work bag down on the floor next to my bed.  Today I discovered the bag of Cheerios lying in the hallway outside my room.  The bag was chewed and torn and there were Cheerios all over the hall.  Silly cats, I already knew to keep sourdough bread double bagged or in a cupboard, but cereal, too?

The determining factor in the size of my new purse was the amount of yellow thread on hand.  The person who dyed the thread I am using is out of yellow so I used up what I had and made the embroidery as big as I could.  I thought it looked really small but it is the same size as the first pouch I made.  This time I decided to make the eyelets for the drawstring before stitching up the sides.  It is much easier that way.  Hopefully this holiday weekend I will find the time to finish the whole thing.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I came across the Exhibition catalog for this exhibit at Historiches Museum Bern earlier this year.  The exhibit will also be held in Brügge next year.  It covers the time of Charles the Bold of Burgandy (1433-1477) and there are many wonderful objects.  Everything in the catalog is the finest example of its type from painting to metalwork to embroidery.  The embroidery is too fancy for my taste; it feels unapproachable.  I did especially love two items in the catalog and they are shown here:  the marvelous purse and fantastic red doublet (or whatever this is called in this period; I don't know much about correct clothing terminology).  I absolutely LOVE the shiny red silk!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Progress on new purse

I started this purse a few months ago and my lack of excitement about it has slowed down all my embroidery.  I have resolved to not start another project until I finish this one.  Since I promised something (that I haven't started) by 12 Night, I need to get cracking and finish this project.  I'm sure when it is done I will like it, at least I hope so.  The pattern is one charted by Wymarc that I haven't seen executed.  It doesn't work well in small areas, a purse is the smallest item I can use it for unless I work it on super fine thread count.  I am using my favorite 24 count linen congress cloth.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

More from Kroos... now in COLOR!

On November 1st I posted a black and white picture from the Kroos book.  Thanks to Chris Laning of the Paternoster blog, I now have the same image in glorious color.  Enjoy!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

German counted satin stitch box! Color photo!

So much for posting more Wienhausen images next.  I was going through my files and found something I had forgotten:

Here is another photo find.  It is a reliquary from the end of the 13th Century (Maasland?), 3.5cm high, 6cm diameter.  The image is from a book called Ferne Welten - Freie Stadt: Dortmund im Mittelalter (Distant Worlds - Free City:  Dortmund in the Middle Ages), ISBN-10:  3-89534-617-9, ISBN-13: 978-3-89534-617-0, published 2006.  I found this book in the library; it is catalog of many varied items and only a few textiles, one of which is this charming box.  It is counted satin stitch, in color, and has a turk's head tassel!  It must be fine stitching for such a small box!

The box top looks like part of a tapestry or something that was cut down to make the box lid, perhaps something that was partly damaged?  It is sad to think about how many wonderful examples of textile artistry are gone forever, yet how many more still exist but are not known to many?  I love finding and posting pics like this because I feel that the more people see them, the better.  

Friday, November 14, 2008

Another German Tapestry... the Thomas Teppich from 1370

From Kloster Weinhausen comes the Thomas Teppich, embroidered wool, circa 1370.  This image of the full tapestry is from the book Meisterwerke der Niedersächsischen Kunst des Mittelalters.  I have some other scans of tapestries I think are more interesting, but this one is color and the the other ones I liked are black & white.

The detail picture is from the same tapestry but published in a different book, Kloster Weinhausen by Horst Appuhn (ISBN 3-9801316-0-2).  I actually own this one so can scan from it at will, instead of traipsing over to the library.  This book has 72 photographs (many in color) in addition to the German text.  The photographs are of textiles, the exterior and interior of the kloster including many wonderful wall paintings, furniture (chests), stained glass, sculpture, illuminations, etc.  I'm sure I'd learn a lot if I read German, but I get what I can from the pictures.  I'll have to start learning German in my spare time... heh, heh, heh...

One of the things I love about the Weinhausen book is the variety of things included in the photo section.  It is easy to see the continuation of the design aesthetic in everything that was made there, from the wall paintings, painted furniture and sculpture, stained glass, illumination, metalwork, and needlework.  If I were going to design an embroidery somewhat based on embroideries of the time I would also use these other objects as design inspiration. The wall paintings are especially inspiring to me.

I have scanned several examples from Weinhausen and will post those next.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

German tapestry from 1200... another image from my library scans

I recently received some nice feedback from people who liked my posting of historical needlework photos that I scanned at the university library.  Work has been keeping me busy lately so I haven't been back in some time, but looking at these scans again does make me want more.

This is from a book called Meisterwerke der Niedersächsischen Kunst des Mittelalters by Horst Appuhn (1963).  The caption on the tapestry dates it to Halberstadt circa 1200.  The larger picture is The Tree of Jesse from Hildesheim, also circa 1200.  Sorry about the larger than usual file sizes but when I made them really small they were very pixelated.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

More from Kroos

It has been almost a month since I posted and the reasons are many. Much of my time and energy went into making my Halloween costume and decorating my house (I was queen of the spider-infested graveyard). Also I have three projects going at once. Right now I am working on finishing the dress I am going to wear next weekend. Meanwhile, here is another photo from the Renate Kroos book.

The book lists it as dating to 1400 and held in Hannover, Kestner-Museum Inv. Nr. WM XXII, 10. It is 90 by 245 cm (35.4 by 96.4 in). I like it because it has so many patterns.