One week of working on “When Witches Go Riding” has passed, and I have quite a bit to show for it:
In the past, I’ve struggled with what fibers to use on Prairie Schooler charts. I always did Christmas charts in DMC because of the need for a true Santa Claus red. But for others I’ve used Au Ver Au Soie to mostly fabulous results. Just last year, though, Boomer stitched up a Fall piece using a Belle Soie conversion put together by the fine folks at the Attic. It turned out stunning.
When the time came to pick threads for this chart, I couldn’t get the vivid Autumn orange from that piece out of my mind. I thought, “A Halloween orange needs to glow. It can’t be flat at all or else the spirit of the season just will not convey!” The Belle Soie is variegated dyed silk, and it’s super soft and luxurious. I’d been using Belle Soie on another project, but had gotten frustrated with it. The black threads kept disintegrating while I stitched. Not cool! I decided to chalk it up to a lemon batch of silk, because Belle Soie Lasagne was the perfect Halloween orange and was simply too good to pass up.
Using the Lasagne as a starting point, I then identified that I’d need a moon yellow, a spooky black for the outlines and the cats, and a nice dark red for leaves and the house. Check, check, and check. Belle Soie had perfect colors for each of them — Butterscotch, Noir, and Cranberry. Then I found the perfect linen, a nice piece of 36 count Edinboro in a colorway called “Dirty”. (No, it’s not blue, but as we established in comments the other day, it would have been pretty cool if I had chosen a medium blue linen for this. Next time. Heh.) I was all set to leave it at that when I realized, “Oops! The chart calls for green and brown, too!” For some reason that I can’t remember, I pulled Au Ver Au Soie for those. Anyway, I was committed, at that point, to taking Belle Soie for another spin.
Fortunately, it’s turning out perfectly. The black thread is nice and strong and doesn’t pull apart at the slightest touch. Deborah at the Attic had suggested I might have had a nick in the needle that was pulling on it to make it fall apart. I think I got defective thread. In any event, this time the stuff works like a charm (provided I don’t have to rip out more than three half-stitches). It floats through the air it’s so fine and light. The color tones are subtle but striking (provided I’m careful about ending the thread when the variegation gets too wild, but more on that in a future post). The thread lies perfectly flat and even without much effort (thanks in part to the Edinboro linen).
As awesome as the fibers, colors, and design are, though, I think my favorite part of working on this project so far is that my Sanjou tortoiseshell scissors match perfectly!
Written by Pookie