Thursday, February 13, 2020

try try again...

in which our plucky heroine makes a second beginning...

I intend to do a modest amount of SCA sewing for myself this year, to use some of the fabrics I have on hand, to decorate the fabrics with block printing and embroidery, and to look a bit more at some historical styles I've not yet attempted. My current efforts will be to create some Russian/Slavic clothing, because I love the bling, particularly the temple ring ornaments, because I can indulge my embellisher's heart with trimming the cuffs, necklines, hemlines and suchlike in various ways, and because I would very much like to use the embroidered neckline and cuffs from my elevation gown on some clothing I can wear nowadays.

Last week I started on cuff trim for a rubakha (a linen underdress with extra long sleeves, that are pushed up along the forearm for a sort of ruched effect; I've enough thin white linen on my fabric shelves for the project, though I will need to piece some of the fabric on the body). I am wanting to use what I have rather than buy more new fabric.

some trim motif sketches

My first attempt at the cuff embroidery was not entirely successful...

metallic floss on silk ikat, 1" wide
after beginning working on sleeve cuff embroidery (above) I'm thinking, looking more closely at a better scan of the line drawing, that the foliate shapes *between* the arches are done with a different technique than the arches themselves. (arches appear to be done in something like an outline stitch, see below)

I am considering three different options for the foliage: block printing with metallic ink, applique with metallic leather, or actual metal plaques (or I could fill them solidly with embroidery). My inclination is to go for block printing, because I have the supplies on hand, because my other plans for this particular set of clothing are more an interpretation than a specific reproduction, and because it is significantly faster than fill embroidery. I know, because I did a set of collar, neckline, and cuff trim for Marya's elevation.

So, I'm starting over on my decorative trim for my rubakha. My new plan involved a combination of block printing and metallic embroidery, possibly in addition to some seed pearls. I was very pleased to recently find just a few more of the small spherical brass buttons from India, which I will use for the cuff closures.

corbie and foliage blocks 1" tall, embroidery sample,
metallic block printing ink sample, tiny buttons, silk ikat

February SMART goals (x=extra)
1 one pelican head restrung grey beadspaper recycling
2 second pelican headdial tone regainedfrontyard prunings
3 xbra elastics renewed bag to Goodwill
4 x
- -
5 xx -
6 x x
7 x x
8 x x x
9 x
x x
10 x x x
11 x x x
12 x x x
13 x x x
14 x x x
15 x x x

today's gratitude - I am grateful for the random treasures in my unsorted stash boxes, which sometimes turn out to have just what I need. I thought I had used all the remaining metal sphere buttons on the Marya project in 2018, and was not particularly keen on the thought of DIY options. This uses up yet another bit of stash, (and the shirt they came off will be turned into a kitchen apron for wee Kestrel)


  1. Beautiful ideas and notions. Its really great how the resources you need are there (or you are creative at using them??)

  2. You have the ideal combination of ingenuity, diverse supplies, and a wealth of knowledge in so many different artistic areas. Every time you do one of these multi-media or multi-disciplinary projects I'm amazed at how it all comes together. I can't wait to see this trim when you're finished!