Sunday, 4 November 2012

Hand embroidered cushions

As promised in my previous post... I'm going to share some of the things I've been working on for the last little while... the things that I will be taking with me to market.

You may remember ages ago I was experimenting with embroidery thread here (scroll down to end of post)... well the thread was indeed colour-fast and I did actually make up two prototype cushions way back then... then other things got in the way and I was only able to turn my focus back to this recently (with a bit of help from my mum who has been doing the embroidery for me).

Above are the two prototypes I did back in June (now with labels added in)... they are both from my eco-friendly Greeting Card designs - the cockatoo (top) and kookaburra (above).

While I like them alot I felt the thread was perhaps a little too thick and so when I went to Spotlight recently I bought these new embroidery threads:

Don't you just LOVE the colours! They remind me of south America for some reason... they conjure up images of the people of Peru... the Andes... I'm really liking these colours and they are colour-fast as it says so on the label, so no testing needed.

Anyway... they are being used for very Australian designs and not anything south American as you might have been led to believe... here are the works in progress and the results:

I don't yet have an 'Australia' greeting card but next print run I'll probably add it and maybe some more new designs... but I'm so happy with these cushions. What do you think?

I'm really into embroidery and velvet at the moment and you will see the latter feature in some other cushions and possibly other products.

The cushions themselves are made from the hemp / organic cotton base cloth that I use for printing and the velvet trim is actually organic cotton velvet. I purchased a small quantity of this and some organic cotton corduroy from overseas quite some time back. I experimented with printing it but it turned out to be a nightmare for the printers due to the way velvet is made... the cut edges shed all the short fluffy velvety bits and as they use adhesive to keep the fabric in place on the table it gunked up the table which is not a good thing... so that idea was scrapped.

I probably won't be getting the velvet from the same suppliers for two reasons... distance and selection of colours. Their colours are not ones I am drawn to and having found the exact same colours that were in my head, here in Australia (but no doubt made overseas) I am going to work with those for now. Although they are cotton velvets they are not organic cotton velvets and believe me... the trail of research and communication for this elusive fabric is very extensive and has been going on for well over a year (on and off). As I will only be using it for trims I have to accept this is the best option available to me now and will only work with cotton velvets and not synthetic ones.

Anyway... they'll be in  my online shop(s) soon and may eventually be available wholesale.