Creative articles about sewing

Honesty Seed Picture (Lunaria Annua)

Honesty Seeds by Hilary Gooding

Honesty Seeds framed

Honesty Seeds framed

Some time ago I was challenged to make a piece of work featuring Honesty Seeds.  I love them and because of their fragility I went straight for the box of sheer fabrics.  This is how I made my piece.

1. From my collection of photos I chose one where I had scanned a small branch of seeds.

Scanned image of  seeds

Scanned image of seeds

2. I made a tracing of the image.

Tracing of scanned seeds

Tracing of scanned seeds

3.  Then I took this outline into the embroidery software and created the stitch-out lines.

4. Because I didn’t want to wash the piece I couldn’t use a wash-away stabilizer.  The alternative was to use a heat-away stabilizer so I had to use polyester organza – a nylon organza would melt!  The layers were hooped up and I made sure they were very tight in the hoop.

5. After stitching out I had to very carefully cut away the light brown organza from the background area and remove the stabilizer.  Here is a close-up of the seed heads.

Detail of seed heads

Detail of seed heads

6. Finally I put the piece in a box frame ( 24 cm square).  The trick was to ‘float’ it so I mounted it just under the glass. It sits about 1.5 cm above the back.  This means that in certain light I get a lovely shadow of the design on the back.

Showing the shadow effect

Showing the shadow effect

I am so pleased with the result that I would do it again and I definitely recommend the method.

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  • roscro

    This is lovely. Thanks for sharing your process. The result is most effective, capturing the plant’s translucence with your choice of materials and method of display.

  • Jan Allston

    Absolutely amazing Hilary – so delicate and I just love the 3D effect where the shadows become part of the work. Am tempted to try something similar now!

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