Thursday, August 6, 2015

Red Clover

Last summer when I was working on my "Weeds" embroideries, we had a large clump of red clover down near our boat ramp.  I found tons of 4 leaf clovers from it and refused to let my husband spray, cut down or otherwise get rid of the clover patch.  It may be odd, but I think clover is a particularly pretty weed and it brings back memories of childhood Spring and Summer afternoons spent making clover crowns and jewelry.  

I got really excited about this patch of clover.  I pressed the leaves and sketched the plants.  Took photographs galore.  It actually became my evening event a few times a week to walk down and see how the clover had changed or if more had bloomed.  

With this piece, I wanted to continue my Weeds embroideries using the scrap gold thread bits but I also wanted to experiment with doing long and short stitch using a Valdani sewing and quilting thread that was variegated.  I LOVE their colors and in studying the clover it was interesting how stripey and veiny the leaves actually are. I thought maybe using this mercerized sewing/quilting thread it would give it that not-quite-smooth texture of the clover leaves and by using the variegated color it would be interesting to see how long and short would use with less control over the color change.  The small leaflets off the stems are padded with a layer of felt under the long and short.

The actual bloom is created by using a mixture of bullion knots (using a different variegated color of the Valdani sewing and quilting thread) and stretched smooth purl.  I padded underneath it with 1 layer of carpet padding and 1 layer of felt.   I wanted the bloom to be pretty dimensional.  The bullion knots and cut purl are worked the same as you would long and short layering the rows in to create even more texture.  Finally, the stem is overstretched tarnished pearl purl couched with the same Valdani thread as the leaves.