Peony still in progress

This is the peony embroidery, still in progress:

I’ve gotten a lot more done, but it’s still got about a third of the flower to go. I just finished dyeing the silk for the leaves/stem, so I can work on that once I finish the petals.

This is the cool part about working with silk – when you move it, it catches the light.

17 thoughts on “Peony still in progress

  1. You are just too dang talented :).

    I’d love to get into Japanese embroidery, but the tools needed to do it properly are beyond what I can justify.

  2. To do Japanese embroidery full bore, as taught by the Japanese Embroidery Center, yes they are expensive. But you can work with silk by using a frame that can be laced tightly, good needles and the silk.

    The embroidery as taught by the Center is like other Japanese ‘ways’ that I have been exposed to. Much of the training is formal and almost ritualized. But many techniques can be applied to more modern and historical European embroidery.

  3. Yeah – it seems like it’s quite an expensive hobby if you get into it all the way with the Japanese Embroidery Center. A lot of the JEC pieces don’t do it for me aesthetically – it’s like it’s been formalized to the point that I can’t feel the energy of it.

  4. I’m realizing that good needles may be one of the things I really need to invest in – I’m finding that the small crewel needles that I’m using (good ones, from Tanja Berlin, but still not “flat silk” needles) still sometimes want to cut the silk. But, usually only when I over-work something, so maybe it’s just a lesson to me to take it easier.

  5. Just beautiful!

    I need to get around to contracting you for a commission piece eventually… though no time soon as I probably can’t afford hand made, quality silk embroidery on a Grad Student’s income.

  6. Re: Just beautiful!

    :chuckle: I’m not quite up for commissions yet – this is like Embroidery #3. Maybe after I’ve got some more experience under my belt!

  7. Re: Just beautiful!

    Everyone starts somewhere, and since I don’t have the income for such a purchase, the best I could do at present is offer a trade… but I doubt your hubby or my wife would approve of that arrangement *grin*

  8. Well, I think like a lot of Japanese tradition, much of it’s gotten fossilized. For instance, Kimono went from daily clothes to this intensive ritual where you have to stand and sit perfectly straight, and if you don’t get everything perfectly aligned, it’s not right. Yes, I know, it is meant to put you in the mindset, but when kimono were just clothes, you’d see obi off center, rumpled collars, not so flat fabric, etc. etc. With formality life has been sucked out of it. Like those livingrooms that are kept absolutely perfect — they’re pretty but no one uses them.

  9. needles

    Might be worth investing in some of the handmade needles from JEC. I’ve just done a post on one of the Japanese Embroidery blogs about needles.

    You’ll probably need a 10 and a 9, maybe an 8 for finer stuff.

    Think this is looking great, well done you.


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