Sunday, March 8, 2009

Life In The Wilderness, Birch Lake

Life In The Wilderness: Birch Lake, was created for my "Kindred Spirit Friend," Heather as a thank you for giving my blog a new look several months ago. Heather's blog is called "A Cherished Life". I loved it so much I decided I wanted to create something that would reflect my appreciation for her kindness and talents and would hopefully make Heather smile as much as I do when I saw the new look of my blog. I have a great love for wildlife as Heather does and we both had a special interest in a wee beaver. So this started my idea for the theme of this project, Life In The Wilderness, Birch Lake. I have never did any "Stumpwork" embroidery before so I got out my books and started playing. The above photo is my third attempt to create the stumpwork wee beaver and birch trees. Note one of the birch trees has already been cut down for its beaver dam. vbg I am truly very appreciative of, Laurette, Heather's Mum for providing me with heaps of information/photos of this area so I could create this project as close as possible to what it really looked like. Laurette, also has a lovely blog called, "Tea and Biscuits" where she showcases her poetry and stitching.. You all must venture over and have a look at her blog. I also asked Heather, never ending questions about where she lived hoping she would never get suspicious of what I was up to.

Heather lives in the Northern wilderness of SK Canada so I thought I would create my base of this project out of 100% hand dyed wool with a crazy patchwork look. I wanted the lake to sparkle so I created "Birch Lake" out of several different Angelina Fibers.

In this photo I have added the stumpwork wee beaver and birch trees. I have also added a silk ribbon cabin, evergreen tree, wild rose bush and some ferns.

In this photo I have completed the wee beaver dam by using 100% wool multi color yarn stitched down with variegated pearl cotton thread. I also used the same yarn to create the dock on Birch Lake. The wee beaver and dam is stuffed with wool to give it a dimensional look. I also used Brazilian Embroidery Floss (BE) called "Boucle" to create the path to the cabin.

In this photo I have created some stumpwork cattails with 100% wool floss, with silk ribbon stalks. I also added three blueberry bushes with wee beads for the the blueberries. Heather mentioned one time that there was a small island at their end of the lake which she liked because it stopped heavy wave action from hitting their shoreline. Hence the BE boucle threads used to create the wee brown island near the Loons. I also added lots of underbrush around the lake by creating it with the "Turkey Stitch" using two different colors of 100% wool floss.

Heather told me one time they had a bear break into an enclosure they had on their property and so I decided to add a Zuni Bear sneaking around in the woods on the far side of the lake. He was heading toward the blueberry bushes to have a good snack. I also used lots of BE Boucle flosses in this project for shrubs and grasses in the woods. I added several bead rocks along the lake shoreline.

In this photo I added several silk ribbon violets and more ferns and grasses. In this photo is a close up of the Loons I added. I have a great love for Loons and Heather told me they had 2 sets of Loons on Birch Lake. Both Heather and I love listening to their lovely eerie sounds. I searched everywhere on the Internet and could not find any Loon beads. Then in the middle of the night it came to me that I had Loon ear rings I had bought when I lived in Fairbanks Alaska. So I had my sweetie carefully take off the ear ring part and then I had my loons. I glued them onto the lake. They are hand carved by Alaskan natives.

I love dragonflies and I knew "Birch Lake" would probably have heaps of them flying around so I added a beaded dragonfly in my favorite color of pink. I also used metallic variegated Kreinik threads to create its lace wings to make them sparkle.

This is the finished "Life In The Wilderness; Birch Lake" landscape. I used simple stitches for the seam treatments for the crazy patchwork stitching because I wanted the eyes to focus on the encrusted embroidery scene of Birch Lake. In the lower right corner I put my "JG" initials using the lovely boucle floss like I do on all my work. I think it blended in well and is not really noticeable. I finished the edges of the project by using variegated green and brown 100% wool and button hole stitching it on.

When Heather open her pressie she was so happy that she called me straight away all the way from SK Canada to thank me for it. I was outside in March raking leaves off my flower beds. Yes, my prayers have been answered we are having an early Spring, at least at the moment. We chatted and chatted for sometime. It warm my heart and made me smile allot that Heather was so happy with the gift I created for her. That is what life is all about giving to others and making them happy.



Heather said...

Judy.... this is the most wonderful pressie I could have received... and I am so happy that you took pictures along the way of your work... it is wonderful to see the progress it took.

Everything in this piece of art is just as it is here. Dragonfly's are one of my favourite insects too, and we do get heaps of them... in the summer when I walk to visit my horses, they are flying around in droves, and I always look up and imagine them to be little faeries, VBG.

Thank you very much for my wonderful gift.

Miss 376 said...

Wow, this is so gorgeous and to see it at each stage. A really wonderful gift

Allison Ann Aller said...

This is utterly charming, Judy!
It has a folk art feel...or that of a magical illustration for a child's book.
I think it is perfect...and how wonderful that you were able to include all the details that are so meaningful to your friend.
Isn't that wool great to stitch through, too?

Thanks for posting this....

Anonymous said...

Your friend is very lucky to be receiving such an imaginative and magical piece of needlework.

The whole piece is remarkable, but I love each of the little elements all on their own.

Ati. Norway. said...

Judy this is soooo nice, and made with love! No wonder that Heather is very pleased with it :)

Genie said...

Beautiful work Judy, so much to see. Have a great week
Hugs Genie

Anonymous said...

This is fantastic. So imaginative. Congrats on making such a wonderful gift.


Laurette said...

Judy....It is neat to see how you put together bits and pieces gathered from me as well as Heather.I looked at this yesterday evening.Once again it is gorgeous and I know that Heather will treasured forever.

umintsuru said...

I am so impressed with your talent, Judy. This is so beautiful. All that thought into such a piece of art. Thank you for sharing the process. I would love to paint with stiches. Heather will love it, I am sure.

sparkle jars said...

This is INCREDIBLE! I'm so impressed with this piece.

CJ Stitching and Blooms said...

Hello Heather, you are very welcome for the pressie, I am so thrilled you like it and that it really reflects your home. I also love dragonflies and I am sure they are fairies too. Hugs Judy

hello Jane, Thanks for your lovely comment on my wee piece of art. Greatly appreciated. Hugs Judy

Hello Allie, Thanks you sooo very much for your very lovely comment. I never thought of it as magical but I love this word. Thank you. yup, folk art would describe it well, I think. Hugs Judy

Prairie Thistle. Thank you so much for the wonderful comments you made. Greatly appreicated. YOU are also a very talented lady. Hugs Judy

Hello Ati, Thanks for visiting and your very nice comment. Hugs Judy

Jean, Thank you also for the very nice comment and visiting my blog. Hugs Judy

Jeanne, Thanks for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave your lovely comment. Much appreciated.

Hello Laurette, Thanks for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave your message for me to read. I am sooo very happy that you and Heather enjoyed seeing my wee piece of art. Hugs Judy

Hello Wendy, Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving your very lovely message. I love painting iwth thread and I am sure you could do it too. You are also a very talented lady.Hugs Judy

Lisa said...

This is such a fun block! Like a story all on one block! Love the varied elements you used and I adore the beaver and aspen trees! What a terrific gift!

Kel said...

Amazing work

Jacq said...

Judy, This is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing the pictures with the details of how you created this piece.

Carol Lawecki said...

This block is exquisite!! What beautiful detail to the picture! You do fabulous work!

CJ Stitching and Blooms said...

Helllo Lisa, Thank you for visiting my blog. I really enjoyed creating the wee beaver and birch trees. Hugs Judy

Hello Kel, WOW thank you for your lovely comment. Hugs Judy

Hello Jacq. Thanks for visiting my blog. Nice to see you again and I greatly appreciated your very nice comment.

Hello Carol, Thanks for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave your lovely comment. You create wonderful tatted lace which I truly adore. Hugs Judy

Cathy K said...

Judy, I love this fairyland-like piece you did for Heather! The details are just fantastic. Will write you a letter...... :-) Cathy

Inge said...

Hi Judy!!

Well what can I say! It is absolutely gorgeous!!! I also enjoyed your explanation on how you made this block!! Big hug from your friend in Holland, Inge

CJ Stitching and Blooms said...

Hello Cathy, Thank you very much for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave your lovely message about my art. Much appreciated.

Hello Inge, Thank you for visiting and I truly appreciate your lovely comment. Big Hugs Judy

Solstitches said...

Judy you have created a masterpiece!
I really enjoyed being taken through the design process to the finished piece. No wonder Heather is delighted with it.
Your work is quite amazing!

Liz Schaffner said...

Judy, the landscape is amazing!
Heather is one lucky lady. Being also a Canadian I can really appreciate all the details (love the beaver!!!) Can I mention that my birthday is June 23! LOL ...a girl can try :-)

Maureen said...

Simply beautiful Judy!!

Elizabeth Braun said...

For a beginner to stumpwork, that's most impressive - well done, you!=) Hope to see more of the same in the near future....

CJ Stitching and Blooms said...

Hello Margaret, You are so sweetie to make such a lovely comment about my stitching. Hugs Judy

Hello Liz, Yes, I girl can try!!! LOL Thanks for the very nice comment about my art. Hugs Judy

Hello Maureen, thanks for visiting and leaving your lovely comment about my art. Hugs Judy

Hello Elizabeth, Coming from an expert stumpwork artist,your lovely comment truly made me smile. Thanks for stopping by my blog and taking the time to comment. Hugs Judy

Thelma said...

I so enjoyed reading each step you took for this beautiful landscape. I know Heather jumped up and down,,I would have been yelling from excitement so loud you may have just heard me from Cananda. lol Awesome work. You are so talented.

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