Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Medieval Stars


                                 I finally decided to stitch the flag of Saint George .


I decided that the stars should just sink into the background , not to make a big thing out of them with bright colours and definitely no beads  .
I only put a little yellow colonial knot into the centre of three of the stars .
 It got me thinking though , about medieval stars and how we often see them illustrated in early illuminations .


 I,ve been meaning to do something from the Bayeux Tapestry for a while and have a proper go at the Bayeux Tapestry stitch  .
 I thought I would start with something small .


    1066 Halley's Comet - Isti mirant stella - which translated means "The people marvel of the star ".
I chose to stitch it as it is now , with faded colours , although , it is said  , that on examining the reverse side , the colours have not faded all that much .
The  Bayeux Tapestry is actually Crewel embroidery and not a tapestry at all .
The word crewel comes from the old Anglo Saxon word "cleow " which is wool fleece spun into two fine threads and then twisted together .
 Worsted means a fine smooth thread which has been spun from long staple wool . Staple meaning the length of the fibre in the fleece .
 Crewel work is embroidery with this fine wool .

Sigh, my photos didn't come out , where I show you how I do Bayeux Tapestry stitch .(boring bit  ---Picasa have stopped running and I,m supposed to change over to Google Photos which is not as good as Picasa so I,m told .  So I will go away and see what I can do and put those pictures on next time hopefully . I am not a rocket scientist ! )


 I amused myself for a long while looking at the sun , moon and stars in old illuminations .
I love the flower like stars of the illuminations of the Visions of Hildegard von Bingen .
 I love the bright colours of these 11th and 12th century illuminations .


 I bought some lovely blue linen which looked lovely on line but turned out to be too thin really for my crewel work , so I decided to use it to doodle and experiment on .
I thought I,d give this very expensive Bohin white fabric marking pencil a try . I usually am quite happy with an ordinary pencil , well a soft lead one anyway ...my pencil has nearly worn out !


                               I drew it on freehand and actually went over it twice .


 By the time I had stitched around the star , the middle circle had worn away .
So, if I use this again in the future , I can see that I should only draw a little bit at a time .
It makes a beautifully fine line though .


It is a scorching hot Bank holiday Monday . The beach is filled with happy families once again . The roads are busy with people driving from place to place .
I take my little dog out nice and early ,while it is cool ,for her walkies , usually over at Goonhilly or the woods .


Then hang out the washing and retire to the Summer house to read and paint and stitch .


Too hot to do any gardening ....although maybe later as the sun goes down .


I,m thinking and praying for all of you caught up in Hurricane Harvey . Hope the rain will stop soon and help arrive swiftly to those of you who need help and rescue .

Monday, 21 August 2017

Medieval Stars and Flags , Crewel wool , Gold threads or Beads .


Making good progress with my medieval cog ship , but have some decisions to make .


         I will come back to the waves , as I have been moved to embroider the stars .


 The stars on the seal look like little flowers , so to make them a little bit more star like , I was thinking of putting french knots in the centre .


                                           Maybe heraldic gold crewel wool ...


                                Maybe gold thread .....to give a little sparkle ?


Maybe silver thread would be better ?..maybe a little bit of silver glinting in the waves ?


                                             .... and what about the flags ?
                                      Should I do the flag on the Seal of Stralsund ?
                              Should I just keep it a neutral and just pick a colour ?


                                    ...  or do the Cornish Flag of St Piran ?
                                                   That would be fun !
                                                            BUT
         It didn't come into use until 1838..so that wouldn't be quite right ....sadly .


                                      The flag of St George would be o.k .
                   That was in use on ships at this time in medieval history , around 1340.


 Shall I stitch on tiny pearls or little shells ? Ho... hmmm ...that would make it begin to look too Elizabethan maybe ?


                            I spent a very relaxing hour playing with my beads ....


                              ....and looking through my box of goldwork threads .
                                                   I just cant decide !

Monday, 7 August 2017

Making waves !


                                                      Making waves .


                                                       The mast and sails .