The first part of the Keyhole motif is now complete. It will be repeated at the bottom of the rug.
I can now turn the canvas so the long edge faces me and work on the center section of the rug. You can see the narrow path to the center part of the motif has been started. I need to do the borders for the center rectangle so I can continue to work on the background. I’ll start with the left side in the photo and then turn the rug again and work the right side.
This will be my morning project for 4 days each week. This Saturday I’ll get back to work on the Purple Heron. That bird needs feet so I can finish the bottom of the water and land areas. I also need to get busy on the right side of the bottom border. Never a dull moment here.
It’s been 3 weeks of working on this 5 mornings a week. Time to show you some new parts of the design.
The outer border has now reached the middle of the rug (the middle of those last red motifs is the actual center). Things are moving along quickly, though the photo is a little dark.
I’ve been working on the inside of the medallion a little each day, filling one little area at a time. I end each morning with at least one long length of the variegated red thread for the background. When this section of the medallion is filled in, I’ll once again turn the canvas and work on one side at a time, working my way down to the smaller, middle part of the medallion. I’m glad it’s moving along so quickly.
Another couple of weeks, and I’ll switch to just 4 days a week and spend Saturday mornings working on the purple heron canvas.
With the mandala completed, it’s time to spend time on my new rug. I’ve been working on the right side and turned the rug to make it easier.
I’ve completed the outline of the keyhole piece at the top of the rug and filled in some more of the variegated background. I can’t do any more right now because I need to complete more of the keyhole outline first. The outer border is now half done on this side. The middle of the rug is the middle of the bright red motif on the right.
I’ll turn it to the left now and work on the two borders – and the background as well. I also hope to start working on the keyhole medallion itself before I show it to you again. I’m working on this 4 mornings a week right now so progress is good each week. This will be back in 3 weeks or so.
Update: I forgot to include the photo of the whole rug so far:
It’s only been about 10 days since I showed the first progress, but I wanted you to see the start of the medallion and that beautiful variegated red thread from Pepper Pot Silk.
It’s easy for me to spend up to two hours on this the two mornings I have available for it. It’s so much fun and is moving along nicely. I just had to see how the border for the medallion would look, so that is what I worked on yesterday. And the Milanese stitch for the variegated background really stitches up fast. Everything inside the border was done in just an hour and a half!
I’m going to turn the canvas now and work along the right side – adding more motifs on the border, outlining the medallion, and filling in the background as I go. This will be back around the first of August. I hope to have a lot done by then. It’s only 11.5″ across the narrow end and 19″ along the sides. I’m going to try to get to the middle of the right side by the end of the month. We’ll see how things go.
WOW! 4 posts in one week! Next week, it’s back to the regular schedule of stitching and making more progress.
I fell in love with the Keyhole medallion and had to create a rug where I could display it. I had several borders to choose from that were from the same area of Anatolia – just East of Ankara, Turkey. I’m only using 9 colors – 2 shades of olive, 2 shades of gold, 2 shades of red, white, black, and the overdyed red – all from Pepper Pot Silk.
I choose this one, but you’ll notice that it doesn’t show a corner. And I couldn’t find this border in a rug either. So I needed to create one myself. In the practice stitching that I showed you before, I used black to divide the corner square and for the two Scotch stitches in the corner as well. When I started stitching, I decided that it was difficult to distinguish between the dark olive and the black. I changed the black in the corner for the dark red.
I’ve only spent about 6-7 hours on this so far and this is how far I’ve gotten. On the right side, I’ll finish the red motif and then do the corner on that side. It’s only going to be 11.5″ across the narrow end – only 4 repeats of the larger motif. Eventually, it should be about 19″ tall. Once I have a couple of motifs up each side, I can start on the Keyhole medallion and the background around it. I hope to have some of that to show you next time.
Until the mandala is finished, this is worked on Friday and Saturday mornings only, for 1-2 hours each day.
It’s been 3 weeks and here’s the next photo. I have completed two more motif rows and started a third one.
I’ll finish the motif at the top and then add the last motif row (after I scroll up a little more). That will leave the name to do last. This should be done by the end of the month.
These two stockings are being created for my son and his SO so they will not be for sale. They are definitely unique.
Where in the world do you start on a huge project like this one?
I’ve been staring at this on and off for several weeks. I’ve pulled lots of threads that I can use – solid colors and overdyes. I’ve been thinking about stitches. I finally decided last week that I need to pick an area and just get started on it. I didn’t want to start with the herons themselves first – too large an area. I need to ease into this. So I decided that I should figure out what to do for the green background and the gray borders first.
I didn’t want to use Basketweave for all that green, so I tried out Alicia’s Lace and I think I’ll stay with that. I did the large area on the left so I could set up the pattern and then work outward from there. I’m using 4 strands of Splendor.
Next was the gray border. I’ve tried about 10 different stitches and ripped most of them out. The three showing are Rice stitch going up the left side, couching on the left, and Overlaid Cross stitch on the right. It’s hard to see in the photo, but instead of laying Splendor and then couching it down, I tried dark gray Flair and then couched it with Splendor. It’s interesting and I like it, but I don’t like the unstitched rows above and below the Flair. That left the Overlaid Cross stitch which I really like – decision made.
I’ve done a little of the Basketweave/Tent stitches for the branches and started on the first flower. I’ve never done a flower in Buttonhole stitch before so this was a first try. I didn’t like how it was working out so I pulled the bottom half out and started again.
This is the second try at the flower today. I need to use more plies of Splendor so it will cover better and I still didn’t get all the white covered at the top, left. The center is pale yellow and I think it needs a darker yellow so it will show up better. The center is a French Knot in dark olive Frosty Rays (I like this part!). I’ve done quite a bit of the gray border (with a Rhodes stitch in the corner) and I’m pleased with that.
The mandala is getting a lot of attention in the mornings upstairs, but I’ll try to work on this a little each week. I’m in no hurry on this. I want to play with threads and stitches for the various areas and eventually work on it more. But it’s a start….