Chapter 9: Arrival


18th January

Back, right side with Black vinyl stitched down

Back, wrong side



Chapter 8: Along the Way





I won’t do a paper mock-up of the whole cushion, as I need a cushion pad, so will need a lining/toile anyway.   I am making full colour cartoons for the front and back, so will include them.  (Some of the photos are not as good as they could be due to the lack of natural light).

Digimax A50 / KENOX Q2

Paper mock-up/pattern

Digimax A50 / KENOX Q2


This is a map of the sestrieri (districts) of Venice, plus the Arsenale (Naval yard – pale blue) and the Isola San Georgio Maggiore (orange).  I resized the pattern, as it was too small.


These are outlines of ferri (the metal pieces on the bows of gondolas) in different fabrics, sizes and colours: 1 Silver leather, 2 Black PVC; 3 White organza; 4 & 8 Black organza; 5 Silver rayon; 6 & 7 Grey organza.  (Supposedly, a gondola mooring in the mist).

I actually like this design better than the one for the front, but it works better in monochrome than colours, and would not work as well with the curtains.


Dye & Fabric

Dyed fabric (actually dark green)

Applique fabrics

Janet stuffing the cushion pad

Blurred photo of half-stuffed cushion pad

Cushion pad in the chair


Depending on how you look at it, I was lucky enough to be meeting a group of fellow embroiderers in John Lewis for coffee at this point, so I took the whole lot with me to get some opinions.  The result was that I bought some more dye, went home and microwaved some more fabric.

Bondawebbed back

Pinned to curtain

Front 1

Front 2

They thought the yellow was too yellow, and I thought the reds were the wrong colours, and we all thought the prairie points didn’t look connected.  There is enough of the dyed green fabric to make prairie points, and the colours of the stitching will show up better.  I mixed a sunflower yellow and a beige to tone down the yellow, and used a ‘rosewood red’ for the red.  I also juggled the colours about, and prefer the second one.


Stitch samples

Free machining: feather and granite stitches.

Right to left: white soft cotton; gold, red/green/gold, gold threads from the Goldwork box, and gold crochet thread using the couching foot which I haven’t really cracked, but it’s easier to cope with than cable stitch in some ways.  Far left: crochet thread (easier to wind onto a bobbin) using cable stitch for the stitched open shapes on top of the applique.  I was told that the white was a bit hard, although it did stand out, which was the idea after all.

Prairie points 1

Prairie points 2

I think the prairie points will have to be green, and the machine patterns chosen very carefully, with the second one down, the joined circles are too wide apart.  Also, the idea of making the points look like the Arsenale wall don’t really work, and it seems a pity not to use them as they are.

13th January

The aperture needs to be wide enough for the cushion pad to fit in, and the piping will be on the front only.  The Prairie Points will not obscure the aperture.  I hope that is sufficiently clear.


The two large shapes, numbers 1 & 2, will be quilted, using both Trapunto and corded methods.

All the shapes will be reinforced using matching threads and zig-zag stitching.  A silver machine pattern (on the right) will be added where the wiggly lines are, and straight stitching as further shadow.

Front with applied shapes

Photocopy of front

Digimax A50 / KENOX Q2

The backward ‘S’ shape is the Grand Canal: Granite stitch in metallic and random cotton

Free machining: Feather stitch and straight stitching in analogous colours.

The Granite stitch between the applied shapes is two different random threads on top of a random gold metallic.  The right hand one is a better match.

17th January

Paper and fabric shapes

To identify, number from 1-7 starting at the top:

1 Silver leather

2 Silver organza

3 Black organza

4 Silver polyester

5 Grey organza

6 Silver organza

7 Black vinyl

There are five different sizes of gondola pattern, and I can cut more of anything if required.  I think the yellow applique would benefit from some feather vermicelli (silver or light grey?)