Wonky but finished, number two.


I’ve finished my second needlepoint. It’s veered around just as the first one did, and will need blocking. I have no idea how to do this but will have to learn at some point. I am avoiding at the moment, well, until I absolutely have to do it.

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It’s around 50 x 50 cm. I changed the colour plan as I went along, as I am discovering that what works with paint and collage doesn’t necessarily translate into yarns and needlepoint in the same way.

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I’ve started the next one, which is a sort of partner to this one.

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This one is 50 x 50 cm too. Here’s the collage and the canvas.

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And above and below, the wool, linen, cotton, and bamboo yarns I’m going to use.

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And this is how far it’s progressed, below.

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I’m wondering if the blue is going to happen with this piece; as I work on it it seems to be saying not.

8 thoughts on “Wonky but finished, number two.

  1. I’ve blocked canvaswork by stapling it face-down (straightened out) onto a padded board, and then steam-ironing it and leaving it for a couple of days.

    If you work it on a frame, it won’t skew so much, but it also won’t be very portable, and I know some people really hate working on frames.

  2. Thank you, all tips gratefully received! I do have a frame which I may use for bigger pieces, but like to work on my lap in front of the tv, so obviously such poor behaviour eventually makes extra work!

  3. Thanks Phil, the pink was particularly pleasurable to work with. I’m keen to make a monochrome piece, but everything moves very slowly with this sort of work, so I’m having to learn how to slow down the idea flow too. Frustrating!

  4. Way back in the 70’s when I was working as a nanny in Canada, one of my fellow nannies worked for a lady that taught needlepoint so of course, we all had a go at making a sampler during the year I was there. It was the only piece I ever finished (hence my admiration for your approach to this) and I remember that mine needed blocking because I just worked it in the hand all the time. All I can recall is steaming the rear of it and tacking it to a frame and leaving it for a few days to ‘set’. I made a cushion with mine and lost the will to live whilst making it. Perhaps if I’d been doing it in vibrant pink I’d have carried on with more … but I suspect not. Will leave you to push the boundaries of needlepoint Steph and I so admire that you’re on number three already without concern that numbers one and two will be blocked OK. You really do work without a parachute don’t you? I envy that!!

  5. Needlepoint seems to have that effect on quite a few people, it makes watching paint dry feel like living dangerously! I always seem to choose labour intensive ways of making work, it’s always been so, but not by choice, it must be in the genes.
    Also in the genes must be a reckless disregard to the finer points of finishing a piece when I’m more interested in enthusiastically starting the next, as you have noticed; necessity will force me to confront this situation in the near future [yawn.]

  6. I’ve been having a little giggle to myself reading this and the comments – for what it’s worth, a frame may help, but I use one and still produce very wonky work (although I also use loose-weave canvas, so I’m setting myself up for wonkiness from the start). I’ve never successfully blocked anything – most pieces get put straight onto the shelf so I can start the next piece, which I’ll have been impatiently incubating for the last few weeks of the previous one. When the time comes to show them, you’ll find a way that works for you – necessity being the mother and all that… (I’ve become quite creative, and it helps not having any ‘perfectionist’ hang-ups 🙂

    Needlepoint is definitely in the genes, no sane person would choose to do it. My way of dealing with the overflow of ideas is to paint them – I think it’s good for your eyesight to flit between the two from time to time.

    Love the vibrancy of your work – it zings. Happy stitching x

  7. Any, I’m really pleased that using a frame isn’t the solution, as unless I make a very large piece I like the convenience of the lap/sofa/TV interface! I’ll have a go at blocking them, but I’m still trying to decide what next; I don’t really want to frame them.
    It is a good idea to have two practices on the go. I seem to be making artist’s books and needlepoint, not planned partners, but it works for me. I love the idea no sane person would do needlepoint. Is the abandoning of a needlepoint an indication of sanity? The world is full of them it seems.
    Happy you like the colour, thanks!

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