I've been spending time lately looking around on Instagram, seeing what people are doing with their embroidery and fiber arts. One thing I'm seeing all over are the woven wheels - chunky style. They look too fun not to try, so I thought I would make a short tutorial about them while I was at it. They are easy and effective.
It's not necessary, but I like to draw a circle with a stencil and mark the middle point, then mark points around the circle for 5 spokes. If you draw a circle, draw it smaller than you want it to be, and make your spokes extend out beyond the circle, so the circle line is hidden. For a chunky wheel, use all 6 strands of floss on the needle.
Then make 5 straight stitches for the spoke. Bring up the needle near the center and start weaving around, over and under the spokes. Keep on stitching to fill the spokes. Don't pull too tightly on the thread as you work. The layers of floss will slowly build up.
I've done quite a few rounds, so it builds up the form, makes a nice raised stitch. You can work with long lengths of thread for this, and if your thread runs out, bring it down under the woven wheel, and start a new one. When you're satisfied, fluff the threads a little.
I've added a few fronds and leaves free-form to make a nice finish. I've used fly stitch, detached chain, french knots, and straight stitches.
A few ideas for variations: Add some french knots or beads to the centers of your wheels, use 2 or three colors when weaving, experiment with the number of times you wind the thread around the wheel to make flatter or chunkier stitches.
What a busy stitching week it's been, and it's not over yet! There is still time to work on more projects before it's done. This will be the second finish of the week. It almost makes up for last week's lack of finishes.
These colors were truly a pleasure to work with, so warm and soft.
All these projects are learning experiences - the designs, the colors, the stitches. Embroidery really offers limitless possibilities to explore, so keep on stitching, keep on working to express yourself because there is no one else like you, and the world needs your perspective.
Nothing wrong with being a day late as usual here. I'm working on two projects, although one is on the sidelines while waiting for more crewel colors.
My new dragonfly stumpwork is getting all the attention while waiting. The camera pretty much hates focusing on the fabric when there is too much dimension, so I've done the best I could with some closeups!
You get the idea anyways, better photos coming soon! I'm pretty much ready to work on the leaves and dragonfly wings now.
I've also got a picture of the crewel squirrel. I've got to about getting better photos. It feels like my phone does better photos than the system camera, which is admittedly a little old now.
This project I really, really like and can't wait to get the rest of the wools in! Better pics of this will soon follow for this one too!
I've hopped on with Instagram! My id is theflossbox, of course. I'm totally blown away by the fiber artists out there! Such amazing stitching! It's such fun browsing all the great work out there. I think I'm going to do a series spotlighting some fiber artists on this blog. Soon..soon. So much to do these days. :)
These were all so much fun to make! I love pulling them out now and then to look at and think what else could be done. They're a great chance to test out the needles and creativity. What I've made is only a start for what can be done.
Here is another one of the embroidery patterns I created with people new to stumpwork in mind.
These little insects are probably the most fun to stitch! For this project, I took the help of Trish Burr's book, Color Confidence in embroidery, which is a really great resource. I'll say more about it later because book reviews are something I've been meaning to do on this blog for a long time. (It wouldn't be a surprise to hear that I have piles of embroidery books and magazines, I hope!!) For this project, I really wanted to try some colors that I don't usually work with and this book helped a lot with that! I have already used it quite a bit and I am sure it will see much more use in the near future!
In the works this week, a new crewel project. I have to order new colors, so I think it will end up sidelined while I wait for them to get here, but here is a little peak at it.
I've worked on this til my finger hurt from pulling the needle, but I'm really happy with this so far.