process, embroidery and goccos6
It's no secret that my gocco is my most underutilized crafting tools. The string art book comes in at a close second. I had conceded it wasn't going to get used and I decided it was time to list the goccos on ebay. Did I mention that I have two of them? Why I own two when I rarely use one is anyone's guess. This weekend's mission was to list the goccos and make space in the craftroom. Mr Badskirt even offered a big incentive that starts with a T and ends with an O.
I had only one other thing on the list for this week. I needed to move forward my sample piece for the Hoop Up! Stitch and Send embroidery swap. Hoop Up! Stitch and send is swap arranged by John of QuiltDad fame. John's one of the clever guys who quilts, knows fabric and can even wrangle embroidery thread. He's recently launched the second round of Hoop Up! and I quickly raised my hand.
In this swap, each person chooses their theme and then you create an embroidery piece for them. The pieces can be used in quilts, as decorative wallhoops or in any clever way that you wish. This is my first round and my first committment to embroidery since the redwork Quilt Project. I decided to choose something fun and playful that left room for interpretation. I put together this mosaic themed Roadside because I decided it capured my love of vintage and adventure, but also left heaps of room for sarcasm, bitterness and quirkiness. I'm hoping for assorted sized pieces to hang in my sewing room.
1. the donut hole, 2. Googie, 3. Googie Motel Sign, 4. LAX: Encounter Restaurant, 5. things, 6. Egg Roll Hut sign with vintage neon, 7. Googie Neon Bowl Sign, 8. Atomic Age goodness, 9. The Big Prawn Ballina, 10. Roadside Kitsch, 11. Dream world-Big Pineapple 104, 12. Goulburn Big Merino nº 2, 13. Roadside stand near Birmingham, Alabama (LOC), 14. Rusty Old Gas Pumps Outside Pete's Gas Station Museum on Route 66 in Williams, Arizona, 15. Twist Cone, Aberdeen, 16. Redwood Carwash - Googie Architecture
The first step in the swap is to create a piece for yourself that captures your theme. For me, this is always the hardest step. I have a much easier time creating something for others than I do for myself. Motivation for personal projects is generally low. I started this a few times but never quite got what I was after.
As I was juggling a concept in Word and getting ready to list the goccos, it all came together. I started with the idea of Googie inspired signs. I've always loved Googie architecture. I freehand created these rather than copy them from a photo.
Then I pushed and pulled pixels around and played with Word 2010's perspective feature until I got something I was vaguely happy with. Of course, it's not really an embroidery design, but conceptually I felt good about it. I thought maybe I could mix in appliqued fabric Then I realized I needed to print it out and trace it on to fabric to embroider. That's when the lightbulb struck... I have two machines specifically designed for this purpose! Two that I'm supposed to sell this weekend... Maybe, just maybe, I could actually use one!
A couple of blinding flashbulbs later and I was in business.
There's a fair bit of imperfection in the tracing, but I think it will add character to the embroidery. Once the ink dries, I'll be ready heat press and start stitching. I'm still not sure what clever thing I'll say but I can think of quite a few four letter words that fit in the circles at the top!
I'm really looking forward to Hoop Up! This year, I get to make four pieces for others in quite clever themes: Woodland for John, Pretty Pets and Pretty Borders, Bluebirds and Tea and People in the Neighborhood. Such inspiring ideas. Last year, I wasn't a swapper but I watched all of the wonderful designs for inspiration. I'd recommend it.
and if you're after a gocco... apparently I now have just one to sell. Email me and let me know.