I don't always flaunt stuff I win, but this time I just had to. Partially because it's also a WIP as it included both a big book and an wool embroidery kit.
In the last minute I managed to send my e-mail and participate in a contest at the website Textil hemslöjd where I could win a book by Ulla Oscarsson that offers glimpses into the textile history of Jämtland and Härjedalen (two provinces in northern Sweden) and an embroidery kit for a big bridal cushion modelled after one made in the late 18th century in Jämtland. The book is called Kvinnomöda och skaparglädje, which loosly translates to women's effort and creativity/joy of creating.
Just have to show you a few pages of the book. It really covers everything from what fibres were used, what textiles were bought rather than made at home, what clothes people used through the ages, what textiles was used in the house, how they did laundry, what the embroideries looked like and what a bride wore. And, yes, it does include the Överhogdal tapestries.
|The book with the loose banner with the title on|
(Notice how the wind tried to "help" me today. Don't know what photo assistants I prefer: weather or cats...)
A very interesting book to read, even for those that like me have no connection to the region. After all, some of the history we do share in the rest of Sweden or Scandinavia -- and other parts become interesting just because of the local and regional differences.
I finished the book last night (or morning if we're being picky) so now I'm turning my focus on the second part of the prize: the bridal cushion kit.
It'll be one of my bigger embroidery projects considering it's 50 cm wide -- and the first time I work with wool. This will be a meeting between a 18th century embroiderer from Jämtland and a 21st century beader from Skåne and I will be adding my own touch to it.
That's really where I am at the moment, planning on how and where to include beads. Because it will of cause need beads! I'm not one to follow a pattern -- and everything is better with beads. Beads don't seem to have been very common in the embroidery of that time and place: I spotted very little beads in the book. It seems to have be a bit more common in other areas (like Skåne), but in general swedish folk tradition didn't really include much beading. So this project really will be a fusion between places and ages once I bead it.
One big part of the planning process is determining what beads to include: they need to match the embroidery yarns I got in the kit as I won't be substituting with anything from my own thread stash. An excuse to buy more beads? Hrmm... Maybe. I will try to do my best and see if I can't use what I already have, but this is a bit different from my usual style so bead shopping might be necessary for the best result.
Might have to make a few swatches to test bead-yarn combos first. Or just test combinations of embroidery and beading stitches. I want to do some beaded herringbone stitch. That's all I really have decided at this point.
So stay tuned to see what happens, but I warn you: I'm a slow embroiderer. This won't be done in the next couple of weeks!