Just after I returned from the UK, I sat down and finished this beautiful piece by Nicola Jarvis. There was only the outline to finish so it was a matter of doing about an hour of stem stitch, which is a pleasant way to spend an hour!
As with all crewelwork, it’s the texture in combination with the patterns the wool creates that I love so much. When I looked at the finished piece, it’s the view from a low angle that I love the most. Nicola’s use of bold colours at the front of the bird is especially beautiful. The slightly mustardy yellow is the perfect contrast to the various blues used.
When photographed from the “top” of the bird, the green looks rich and very calm in contrast to the other colors.
The little bits of pattern that make up each section hint at a greater whole: it’s easy to imagine 5 different pieces of wallpaper cut into the shapes and carefully put together in the shape of a bird.
As I was stitching the Blue Bird, I kept thinking about the patterns the Morris Company created for their fabulous fabrics and wallpapers. The generous curves, the use of color against the plain fabric, the open spaces against the stitched spaces all combine to make the finished piece so stunning.
The stitches in each section are different enough to make the texture interesting, but similar enough to create a cohesive texture throughout the piece. Whilst stitching, I could imagine Nicola’s pencils delicately drawing the lines on the paper.
On Nicola’s website she suggests “Experience Needed” to be able to successfully complete this kit. I agree, but with a little help it is within the reach of most if not all embroiderers. I love her designs and hope to begin the Black Bird soon! Watch this space!