Tuesday, September 25, 2018

The Needlepoint Project Process Pics

I love process pics when others post them, but I get too excited about the work and usually don't want to interrupt to take pictures. With the needlepoint project, though, because I looked at it so much and worked so slowly, I managed to take pictures fairly regularly. You'll notice the orientation vary; it's because as with when I work on paper, I kept turning the canvas around and looked at it from all directions.
After Day (or Evening) 1, and I already had stitches in two different directions.
Saturday morning, after three sitting from memory, late June.
Sunday morning
Monday morning
 Tuesday morning
 Tuesday afternoon
Thursday morning; I wished I had another pic before this as I worked quite a bit each night this week.
Friday morning
Monday morning
Thursday morning
Saturday morning
A few Tuesdays and one sitting later. I've grown super eager to finish this quickly and wash, wash, wash. Late July.
Wednesday afternoon. I see two distinct styles, the multi-layers in my mixed-media/screen print mode vs. the curvy but flat areas in my weaving mode.
Saturday morning, August 4
Thursday morning; it's starting to look "messy" as a whole, with some earlier focal points disappearing, (more so in person,) while I can't stop adding saturated, "fussy" areas to create interest, which makes the whole messier. I blame this on working more and quickly, and looking less.  When I look, I'm seeing, deciding, and confirming, without realizing I do these. And I've learned about each color so much, how they look during day/night, how they react to each other.
Friday afternoon, from memory. The distortion of the overall fabric, caused by stitching in different directions, is more evident. I can't wait to wash this; I wonder if it will improve the shape.
Monday morning. Larger color patches offset the overly fussy patches. I like the way they look even though they are boring to work. Oh, but how I've completely drowned out the simplicity I aimed for in the early days.
Wednesday morning; I think it's safe to say I've done more than half, maybe closer to two-thirds. For the first time I took out a whole patch, too, because the simultaneous contrast is so different between day and artificial lights.
Friday morning.
A few Mondays later.
Tuesday morning. I feel as though I'm now filling in the gaps rather than connecting areas of interest or even trying to create focus/background areas. This is where an overall plan would work better to create an attractive piece as a whole. Funny how it looks more finished in real life; I'm already thinking of a plan for the next project.
A couple of Mondays later, almost mid-September. There are many places where the two different directions meet, which makes some corners not clean/sharp and parts of the canvas warped. Also, colors are selected to avoid adjacent patches being the same, rather than for their own merit or better combination.
The next Tuesday morning. Interesting how, in picture, some areas look bigger than in real life.
Wednesday morning. The top left quadrant in this photo is very warped because of the two directions. I wonder if it will wash out.
Thursday morning. Two more evenings to go?
Tuesday morning, and more like three or four evenings to go.
Sunday afternoon. Stitching was done on Wednesday, and I eagerly weaver-finished it. The problem was, the glue on the masking tape spread all over the surface and back in that finishing, so I solicited help on Facebook and consulted the dry cleaners and the pharmacy. Though giving it to the dry cleaner would have been the easiest, because much weft in the canvas came out, I resorted to soaking it in white spirits, (dry cleaning fluid,) in a plastic bag. Because it had "spirits" in the name, I thought it was alcohol so I hosed it down. (it didn't; these are oily spirits,) and now it sits in the shade drying.
After hanging to dry overnight, on Monday morning, the fabric felt dry enough, no portion sticky to the touch, not as stiff as I imagined, and not smelly, so I put it through a gentle vinegar bath one last time. I saw one spot where a little bit of what looked like glue appeared in a small clump on A-side, none on B, so I gently wiped it off with a paper towel. After the vinegar bath, it smelled like dry cleaning inside a plastic bag and vinegar, but hanging outside it's not too bad. There is virtually no margin on the horizontal sides as wefts keep coming unravelling. 
Tuesday. Steam pressed one last time. It has a slight smell of dry cleaning, (like dust?), slight whiff of vinegar at times; the texture is not as stiff as I imagined but limp compared to regular needlepoint. The starch in the canvas be completely washed out by now. There is so little "margin" my option for  use is limited. And it's very warped in every direction. Most definitely not the last project, but in future I shall work with greater margin and just cut off the darned masking tape.

It's been an interesting and unpredictable three months plus, not always fun but usually exhilarating, and an experiment in heck of a lot of looking and so much less working.

The end.


  1. Wow, I love this experiment and project process piece of work! like art! - Zannnie

    1. Thanks, sweetie. I'm starting another.


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