16th June 2015

Behind A Project: Anne Griffiths’ Embroidery Hoop Art

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To show the process behind some of our favourite projects,  we’ll be looking behind the scenes at how they come to life, from sketch to stitches. Here, we’re watching an embroidery hoop art piece by Anne Griffiths evolve.

At Oekaki World, we love that free motion embroidery creates such vibrant and different pieces in everyone’s hands. It’s not just the projects that differ though, but the methods too!

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Behind The Stitches

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Every good project starts with an idea – and every good idea should be sketched! Just like the sketch above, an ideal project plan should indicate fabrics, techniques, colours and layout to help you create your finished object. Here, Anne has even experimented with possible colour variations down the side, and marked out where the variable width Oekaki function of her machine will come in handy!

Planning out your work well beforehand can be a very useful tool for complex pieces such as this embroidery hoop art. We particularly like the detail used when marking out the free motion embroidery, to help ensure the final look of the piece will work as planned.

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Once the sketch outline has been transferred to the background fabric, sewing begins! It’s always important to consider what needs to go down first – here the fabric and embroidery that make the birdhouse will later have elements added overlapping them. They need to be in place below the other fabric and stitches, and so they’re put into position first.

The text of the piece also has to curve correctly to ensure it fits within the circle created with embroidery hoop art. This too is marked out ready for further stitching later – good planning Anne!

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Once background details and any outlines are completed, the details can be filled in with the free motion embroidery and smaller appliqué. There have been some colour changes from the original sketch – it’s fine to experiment and improve on your piece as you’re working! Don’t be afraid to try something new with every piece of your sewing.

The lettering is filled in with a neat, dense free motion stitch which really stands out, and the change of the birds to blue colouring gives a nice contrast to the piece. Although it my look a little rumpled, even the very best of free motion embroidery will need a good press when finished!

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The Finished Embroidery Hoop Art

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There’s nothing more satisfying than displaying a carefully crafted piece once it’s finished. We love the use of embroidery hoops to frame textile artwork, and this piece certainly benefits from it! With good planning, patience and practice, another beautiful piece of textile artwork is born.

If you’re as much of an Anne Griffiths fan as we are, perhaps you’d like to learn more about her work, process and life. Why not read our interview with her for more details, or visit her website to see the full array of her spectacular work.


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