Bead embroidery

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Linny t Posted: Sun, Feb 27 2011 6:48 PM

I've been itching to do some bead embroidery so I did this this weekend.  I drew the feather onto tissue paper, basted my fabric to muslin, basted the tissue feather  drawing to the fabric/muslin and then started beading.  I'm happy with it, although now that I look at it in this picture, I can see a couple of areas that I will straighten out.  I've had this feather in my head for a couple of months, ever since I saw an embroidered feather with beads on it.  I'll add it to the fan piece from the Valentine discussion and I'll be well on my way with my CQ. 

The spine is gold bugle beads, I think 7 mm.  The "spots" on the feather are 4 mm bluegreen AB bi-cones and I think size 11 clear AB seed beads with 2 mm flat peacock blue sequins around them.  The gold beads are just seed beads and the rest is a single strand of gold metalic colored embroidery floss of the DMC variety.  I used silver beading thread to apply the beads and sequins.

It went quick, except for the sequins.  I got the sequins online from Cartwrights.  I don't know how it is where you live, but here the only sequins I can find locally are colored, large and cupped.  They are okay and all, but if you look at any professionally made gowns with embroidery on them, the sequins are flat and the wedding gowns have clear flat sequins.  Cartwrights sells every kind of sequin you can imagine and probably some you haven't ever thought of.  Next time I use these sequins though, I'll use a magnifying glass, lol.

Has anyone done any bead embroidery?  I'd love to hear about it.  Would anyone be interested in seeing how to do bead embroidery?

 

 

Linny T

 

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Stephanie replied on Sun, Feb 27 2011 7:02 PM

Linny,

This is breathtaking!  I am a huge fan of peacock designs and their feathers. Thank you for sharing this and for listing the link to Cartwrights and bead sizes, etc. It is so helpful to a beginner like me to know what to look for. I want to learn everything.LOL

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Linny t replied on Sun, Feb 27 2011 7:06 PM

Thanks, Stephanie.  I forgot to actually link the website to Cartwrights.

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Diane replied on Sun, Feb 27 2011 11:28 PM

Linny---this is so beautiful.  I have done beading on the embroidery stitches and it adds alot to the quilt.  I will post some pictures when my computer is fixed.  I am having problems with the imput port.  I have also used the gold and silver tread but have made nothing as beautiful as your feather! I love the sequins too.

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Linny t replied on Mon, Feb 28 2011 11:06 AM

Thanks, Diane.  I can't wait to see yours.  I hate computer problems...such an inconvenience. 

 Have you done Goldwork, or do you mean embroidery with metalic gold thread?  I've done some work with real gold threads.  It's an expensive hobby, so I don't do much.

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Diane replied on Mon, Feb 28 2011 12:18 PM

I use regular metalic gold and silver color thread-----I have never used real gold thread! Do you happen to know how long the metalic silver or gold thread continues to look good?

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Linny t replied on Mon, Feb 28 2011 12:26 PM

I don't really know, but none that I have done have tarnished yet as far as I know.  I use it on my applique stuff all the time and that looks good still and it gets washed (by hand).   I don't have anything I haven't given away that has it on it except I have an embroidery at home that I did in 2009 with gold colored cording that I got at JoAnn's for about $ .35 per yard and it still looks good.  I'm at work now, but I'll post a picture of it when I get home.

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Linny t replied on Mon, Feb 28 2011 8:32 PM

Here's the embroidery I was talking about.  This thing has been handled, washed, pressed,washed again, pressed again and been bumping around my sewing room since I made it 2 years ago.  I have not been gentle with it either, although it was hand washed with very mild detergent and soaked more than washed. The gold is still as vibrant as when I first did it.  The satin stitch at the base of the tree is the same as the wisps in the feather, just a different color.

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Diane replied on Mon, Feb 28 2011 10:05 PM

Wow-----that tree is truly beautiful and has held up well.  Where do you get your ideas and how did you learn to do this work?

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Linny t replied on Mon, Feb 28 2011 10:32 PM

Thank you, Diane.  I'm self taught.  When I see something I want to do, I research it and do it untill I'm good at it.  The internet is full of people that are great at things and want to tell about it.  There are tons of books out there.  Some are lucky enough to have needlwork clubs in their area. 

As far as ideas, they come from everywhere.  A good place to start is getting pattern books.  These are books with motifs that are just line drawings, without color.  This tree came from 4000 Flower and Plant Motifs, A Sourcebook by Graham Leslie McCallum.  I found it on sale at Hancocks and the price was right.  I've never been sorry I've bought a pattern book.  I scanned the picture into my computer and printed it onto a printer fabric sheet.  I didn't want to spend a lot of time developing a pattern, so this was the quickest way to go.  I pressed it to set the ink and just started stitching.

Really, it's just like with quilting.  As you find new stitches and techniques you want to try, you find a pattern you like that would fit that technique and do it and see how it turns out.  When I did this one, I wanted to try goldwork couching.  Before I invested the $ in real gold threads, I tried it with something cheap and comparable in size and texture.  This tree took about 20 yards of that gold cord!  My DH said he wanted me to enlarge it and make it from real gold.  When I told him how much $ it would be, he said he liked this one just fine, lol. 

Linny T

 

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Sharon replied on Mon, Feb 28 2011 11:48 PM

Diane:

Wow-----that tree is truly beautiful and has held up well.  Where do you get your ideas and how did you learn to do this work?

Linny,

I can't say it any better!

Toledo, OH

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Linny t replied on Tue, Mar 1 2011 11:14 AM

Thanks, Sharon.

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Diane replied on Tue, Mar 1 2011 12:40 PM

Linny----What kind of thread do you use to do the beading?   I have used clear nylon thread and it worked well.

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Linny t replied on Tue, Mar 1 2011 4:12 PM

I use beading thread designed for seed beading, like peyote stitch.  Glass beads sometimes have sharp edges inside that cut into the thread over time/handling, so I'm careful of what I use.  Thread designed for seed beading is strong and resistant to friction wear. 

I probably worry too much about little things like this, but hey, it takes a lot of time to sew those little things on.  I want them to stay there forever.  In 50 years will they still be there?  I don't know.  I'm sure I won't live long enough to find that out.   None of mine have fallen off yet, that I know of, and I haven't always used this thread. 

 

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Linny,

And I thought the feather was breathtaking. This is just stellar. Your choices of the gold cord, and the green and pink and beads you used made this absolutely stunning. Do you have a project plan for this work of art?

   

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