metallic thread


I don’t usually have this much bling on my quilts, but “Bobbin, the Bold” is going to practically glow in the dark by the time I’m done.

Gold paint, metallic threads, and lots of crystals should complete my fairy tale illuminated manuscript.

I have to say though, working with metallic threads can be a pain. Even good ones shred occasionally, especially when you’ve been sewing for more than 8 hours and your needle is getting dull.

Still, I managed to stitch around all of my corner filligrees, scrolls and tool appliques before the thread gave up.


Art Under the Microscope: Threads

How exactly was the gilding of tapestries done in the 16th century? These microscopic images reveal all.  

These images show the warp and weft threads used to create a background detail in the Triumph of Bacchus tapestry recently exhibited in “Woven Gold: Tapestries of Louis XIV.” 

Viewed from a distance (like when the tapestry is hanging high up on a wall), the combo of the crimson silk with the gold threads looks like a bright copper, and here we can see all the separate colors and textures that build up that look.

Triumph of Bacchus, design overseen by Raphael, ca. 1518-19; design and cartoon by Giovanni da Udine. Brussels, workshop of Frans Geubels, ca 1560. Paris, Mobilier National, inv. GMTT 1/3.  Image © Le Mobilier National. Photo by Lawrence Perquis

Art Under the Microscope is a series that features, well, art under the microscope, as photographed by our conservators to better study and preserve our collections.

The Ultimate Slytherin Quilt

It’s done.  Actually, it’s been done for weeks, it’s just too big (100″ x 116″) to take a picture of in my house, so we did it tonight in my husband’s photography studio.  

The sky behind the manor is snow-dyed by hand by yours truly.  I drew and then pieced the manor and the grounds using Cynthia England’s Picture Piecing technique.  I also used that technique for the peacock’s body, and then I couched eyelash yarn for the tail (over and over and over), as well as creating flounces for the dimensional feathers (look closely!  It’s 3D!).  The bottom M, crossed wands, vines, and ivy, I drew and then appliqued.  The crest feathers of the peacock as well as the Malfoy M are embellished with Swarovski HotFix crystals.  The picture doesn’t really do it justice; they never really photograph right…but they sparkle plenty.  I like to think of them as understated bling.

I designed the blocks for the piecing in the big borders with EQ5 quilting software and yes, I had to design every single one, 12″ x 12″, 12″ x 15″ and 12″ x 18.”  The software mostly make the geometry of a quilt like this easy.  The corner blocks are called Hunter’s Star, for those of you who are not quilters, the pieces for which were cut on an Accuquilt GO!Baby.  I drafted the Edwardian script for the four Slytherin traits, cut out each, and appliqued them on using silver metallic thread (Superior–expensive, but worth every penny) using a 90/14 topstitch needle (huge needle, huge eye).  

I drafted the Old English letters for the banner, cut each of those, and appliqued them on, after I had hand dip-dyed the ends of each piece to get the illusion of depth (also used black and gray pieces in the banner to enhance that as well).  The snake was also done with the picture piecing technique and has 1,200 pieces in it.  Lastly, I quilted the entire thing on a HandiQuilter Infinity 26.  I rented time on a machine 90 minutes from my house and she was nice enough to let me close up on the last night, at 2:30 in the morning.  I got home at 4 and saw 3 opossums, 2 deer, and a raccoon on what I can only describe as a dicey ride back.

The name of the quilt?  “Bad Faith.”  It’s going to be shown next week in our local show.  I hope to show it nationally, of course, but for now it’s in our own Guild Show.  After I show it, I’m not sure what its fate will be.  More pics:



Forest green boyfriend cardigan ✶ Vintage silk shirt ✶ Velvet embroidered clutch ✶ Burgundy velvet skirt {similar here and also here} ✶ Patterned tights {similar} ✶ Vintage monk shoes and velvet ribbon ✶

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Do you have particular tones of colours that you just can’t resist? With me, it’s this exact shade of forest green - not too teal, not too bottle green, just right. I’d been wanting a cardigan/jumper in this particular shade of green for ages, so when I saw this one on Boohoo, I just snapped it right up even though it’s a size M/L from the straight size section! And I’m so relieved to say that it fits perfectly, just how you’d want a boyfriend cardigan to fit, with that wee bit of bagginess that makes it look so cosy. Calling all inbetweenies, if you’re roughly my size (UK 18-20, US 14-16) and you’ve been looking for the perfect forest green cardigan, here it is! And if you’re in the US, it’s only $16 on the cyber monday sale! 

My clutch is also from Boohoo - isn’t the embroidery delightful?! I don’t know if you can tell but the golden thread is metallic and catches the light like a dream. It’s the perfect day to evening bag for winter. I don’t know what it is about dark florals that always gets my attention, but I just cannot imagine autumn/ winter without them. You’ll see that I’ve also incorporated some of my other favourite autumn colours into this outfit - namely mustard and burgundy - so I’m pretty much wearing all the fall shades at once. It’s hard to go wrong with this colour palette! What are your favourite shades for cold weather dressing? Do you love dark monochromes or would you go all out in a riot of colours as well? Let me know in the comments!


Halloween Dalek - Merged two designs together:
Happy Cupcake Plush (body)
Robins Design (cape & bats)

Started: 2014
Completed: 2015

Fabric: Sparklies; Dark Goddess; 28 count Opal Brittney (evenweave)

Changes: ! charted my own DMC colourway for the body on MacStitch
! cape - Madeira Metallic Thread No. 10, Colour 315
! bats - Rainbow Gallery: Fuzzy Stuff (left) & Wisper (right)