“My Lady” is an interesting recent custom framing project . . .
Gorgeous • Beautiful • Challenging
(for both the stitcher and the framer)
“My Lady” as she has been aptly named, presented quite a challenge for Dana, the stitcher, and me, the framer.
Let’s start this tale at the beginning. This beautiful cross-stitch pattern caught Dana’s eye quite some time ago. She bought the pattern, put it with her “to do” patterns, then procrastinated, and procrastinated some more. Now Dana has a wonderful, talented daughter named Shelby, a grad student at the University of Arkansas earning her Master’s in art. You may remember meeting both Dana and Shelby at a Moss show for both worked at the last two shows. Shelby wanted to create a plate for her mom, and knew how much her mom liked the “My Lady” pattern.
Shelby on the left, mom on the right, both are winners in the “OMG I really did it” Category
Shelby went on a mission: to get her mom off of square “0” on this cross-stitch project she created the art plate of “My Lady” - a modern, contemporary version, almost an art-deco look - with the understanding that if I do this, mom, you have to do the cross-stitch. Well, Shelby followed through on her end of the bargain; mom had no choice; she followed through though it did take 2-1/2 years to complete her end of the bargain.
This is the “My Lady” art plate that Shelby made.
Because Dana knew this was going to be a challenging pattern, she tried to have the pattern photocopied allowing her to mark through sections of the pattern as she stitched. Problem was some of the symbols would not copy in the same color tone as the thread… that led to ripping out.
The floss was not a good quality so as she stitched, it unraveled and separated causing loose stitches… more ripping out.
She ran out of the thread that came with the pattern. Called the company that created the pattern but learned that the company had been sold to another company. It was difficult to track down the new company to get matching thread. They sent very little replacement thread; there was barely enough to complete the project.
The close up shows the details of the framing. A small shadowbox was needed to hold the depth of the mats, spacer, glass, and foamcore. You can see how the mat cut follows the line of the hat’s shape in the finished piece below.
The close-up shots will give you an idea of the detail of the stitching. Click the images to see a zoomble PDF of the intricacy of the stitching.
The fabric had a lot of stretch so it kept loosening and slipping in the hoop. Once the project was completed, it was difficult to get the hoop marks out of the fabric, and there was some fading in the fabric where the hoop had been. I stretched the fabric on a matching color matboard-lined foamcore, and that concealed the fading.
Dana is not sure what to do now that this project is completed. It only took years.
There were a number of stitches Dana had never done before including making the 3- dimensional ribbon flowers. What a challenge that was. I loaned her my box of words.
My biggest challenge was the stretching. I could not lay the fabric face-down because I didn’t want to squash the ribbon flowers, and I did not want to disturb the pearls that are on the hat as well as the lacey detail of the blouse. Good thing I have my box of 4-letter words to help out in such times.
For me? Just another day in my workshop. NOT.
"My Lady" completed is simply magnificent!
Click the image to see it even better.