Tuesday, June 28, 2016

A Design Contest!!

Lacet flowers (A Poesy Casket Toy Kit)
Thistle Threads is sponsoring a design competition around ‘casket toys’ of the 17th century.  During the study of English embroidered cabinets, a preponderence of small needlework objects have been found both in boxes in private and public collections.  Many of which are highly similar and fall into catagories of smalls that may have been schoolgirl exercises.  They parallel the types of objects that needleworkers favor making today: needlebooks, small purses, tape measures, needlekeeps and pin keeps.  In addition to the traditional shapes that these items bring to mind, a wealth of other unusual and delightful forms exisit such as bellows, grape purses, poseys, small animals, tiny gloves, and stand-up figural, floral, and animal arrangements.

While there are many techniques used in these pieces, two are found quite often and haven’t been explored to their fullest and most creative extensions.  The first is the use of a narrow flat braid (lacet) to construct floral poseys, animals/birds, and other items where it would be more expedient to sew together the lacets than needlelace a piece.

The second is the use of a wire frame that is then covered with wool batt and wrapped with a
Expanded gilt bullion around a silk covered wire structure,
this is the close up view of a snake
decorative silk or cotton thread and then covered with an expanded bullion, purl or check thread in silver or gilt.  

The competition is based around the use of one of two materials:  2mm Lacet or any gilt or silver bullion, purl, or check thread.  Bias will be given to those which show some use of the techniques described above somewhere in the object.
The objects need to fit inside a casket that Thistle Threads sells and can be afixed if that is central to the design.  A series of blogs startign July 1st, 2016 on Thistle Threads site will help to show techniques and examples for you to draw upon.

There are two needlework nibbles that show these techniques for your reference.  It is fine to use the objects in the needlework nibbles (snake and pansy) as well as the Lacet Peacock class piece and/or Strawberry Posey kit in the contest as long as they are only a part of the entire design. 

The contest entries are due on December 31st, 2016 so there is plenty of time to get thinking and making!!  

Check out the contest PDF for full contest details.  The blog will spend the next few weeks going over inspiration items and techniques that can be used in the contest.


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