I added free motion machine stitching to the distant shore. Whenever I start FME on a landscape, I always think that the first few areas where I have stitched look like it’s too much. But I keep going and usually, once more stitching is added, the initial lines don’t feel excessive.
The next step was to stitch the rocks across from the tree. I considered adding some stitching into the foliage above the rocks but decided to leave it as is.
Then on to stitching the tree. I added the dark bits to the trunk and stitching through the felted paper was a breeze, no problems at all either by machine or by hand. The dark branches were added next and then decision time on how to add a few more leaves. I considered needle felting some smaller leaves on the dark branches but then decided I would hand stitch the leaves.
I then hand stitched leaves on to the dark branches using hand dyed lace weight wool thread and detached chain stitch. I added a few bits of grass at the bottom of the trunk as well.
The miracle is that I found a backing fabric, stitched the felt to that and then wrapped/laced the piece around matte board so it’s ready to frame. Since the piece is small (matte size 8″ x 10″), it went quickly and now I have two pieces ready to take to the framers. This piece counts for the year long tree challenge for spring. I have to think about the summer one as it wouldn’t really look different than spring, a few more leaves perhaps?
The winter birch piece is also ready for framing. I used a darker gray hand dyed fabric for the winter birch as it felt “colder” that way. Now on to the next landscape as the gallery wants me to replace the one that sold last month. (Doing a little happy dance!)
This is the piece that sold called Remembrance. Yay!
I made more tulle trees in the same manner with dark green and navy blue tulle. In theory, it seemed like a good idea to overlay these over the black tulle trees. But then when I did that, the trees were just a mish mash and you couldn’t really see them. So I decided to just use the black ones.
Here are the black trees with the birch in place before I stitched them down.
I hand stitched them down with a dark variegated thread and used feather stitch. It added a little bit of green but nothing you could see from a distance.
Then I moved on to the birch trees on the left that are in the background. I hand appliqued the silk paper birch trunk in place and then free motion machine stitched the branches. I want the branches to overlap and not appear all on one “level” so that is why I am stitching each trunk and branches separately.
Here is the progression of the stitching on the background birch trees. This always takes longer than I think it should. But I did like alternating between hand and machine stitching.
Here I am auditioning the foreground trees over what I have stitched so far. I think I will probably stitch down the background birches on the right side first but I do like to see how the overlapping trees affects the piece. I am also trying to decide if I should attempt adding more snow to the picture. What do you think?
I’m always up for getting two things done with one piece. So I decided to create a winter themed tree picture that I could prepare to take to the gallery which has sold three of my pieces. (Yay!)
I found a piece of nuno felt in my pile of felted stuff that seemed perfect for a wintry background. Since I had just finished framing The First Leaf, I immediately thought of birch trees again since the years challenge is to create the same trees in different seasons. So birch trees it is.
I cut the birch trees from my remaining silk paper and got the placement how I wanted it. I need to make more silk paper for my spring and summer birch trees. But this seemed a little ho hum. The plan is to add branches with free motion machining but I still thought it needed more. The left background felt like perhaps there were some pine/evergreens in the distance. Perhaps I could enhance that?
So I added some layers of tulle in vague tree shapes on that side. But it wasn’t enough contrast and the tree shapes were getting lost. What to do?
Here’s the start of the next idea. Burn the tulle into tree shapes with a wood burning tool. This is just one of the colors of tulle I am planning on using. I will still be layering the tulle but hopefully, this will give a bit more emphasis to the shapes of the trees in the background without overwhelming the foreground trees. Once I have the evergreens worked out, then it’s on to some stitching.