Sometimes I try something different and it works. I like it and the change is good. Other times it’s clear from the beginning that it isn’t going to work. And then, more rarely, I try something different and think it’s better but when I go back and look at it again, decide that it hasn’t worked as well as I thought. That’s what happened this time with the leaf you see below.
I was pleased with the black trellis and gold purl crosses when I first finished this leaf. As time passed, I became unsure about the black and gold outline thread – it was too thin in comparison to the outline threads used in all the other leaves. It didn’t have enough body or presence.
This kind of work is relatively easy to remove without damaging the fabric so I did just that and began again.
I used gold passing thread for the outline of the leaf, as I have in most of the leaves on the cap. I used the black and gold thread as the trellis, where the thinner thread works better than when I used it for the outline. Then I used short pieces of black purl to fill the center of the squares. I was imagining they would look a bit like French knots. Except they didn’t. The pieces of purl aren’t all the same size and it’s VERY difficult to get them to be the same size because the pieces are minuscule. Teeny tiny. For the same reason, it’s almost impossible to get the pieces of purl to be in the exact center of each square, which drives me nuts!
So, out comes the black purl and I’ll be putting back in the crosses using gold purl. I sure hope it works!
On to a more successful motif – the rose at the top of the cap. Each petal is outlined in gold purl and then alternate petals are filled with chip work using either smooth or check thread. The contrast in texture is just right and it’s not too gaudy. The centre is filled with black check and the triangular areas between the petals will be filled with black purl laid over felt padding. (That’s the plan unless it’s just too fiddly on such a small scale!)
The four leaves on the prototype currently look like the ones below. Shortly, the black purl will be removed and gold purl crosses put back on the bottom left leaf. Even as I look at this photo I can see it looks sloppy and messy. Really NOT OK!
Here’s the design as far as it’s been completed. It’s hard to see how it will look completed, since all the veins, the bunches of grapes and the curlicues are still to be done.
And, just outside the bottom of the photo, there’s a border still to do. Perhaps there’s more work than I thought…However, it’s going to be pretty flashy when it’s finished with all that gold glittering!