Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Feeling Stabby?

Some time ago, before heading off to a sheep & wool festival, I promised my sister that I would not take up a new hobby. The new hobby she had in mind was spinning. I think she was envisioning a living room already spilling yarn and fabric off of shelves would then be stuffed to the ceiling with fleeces and batts, a spinning wheel in front of the couch. And I have not taken up spinning despite the huge temptation.

While at Rhinebeck several years ago Purlewe and I happened into the Woolen Whimsies booth. The owner was sitting in a chair and vigorously stabbing an implement into a piece of fabric stretched on a frame. I have a huge affection for all tiny tedious needlework. I was fascinated. She asked if I would like to try it and I bit. They had great starter kits for sale, but I was feeling a little strapped for cash. I took their info, thinking that this would be a great Christmas present and passed it on to my mother. Christmas came and there was no kit, disappointed.

Fast forward to the next fall, I bought the kit for my mother to give to me. I even feigned surprise when I unwrapped it.

Wrong side

So, this is obviously not spinning; I have honored my promise. This is Russian punch needle embroidery.  The supplies are embroidery threads of which I already own an obscene amount, a smallish frame and the needle tool...all taking up very little space. Punch needle embroidery looks like miniature rug hooking.

Right side
Turns out stabbing the needle repeatedly into the fabric is completely therapeutic and LEGAL! The tool is dangerous looking and fortunately there has not yet been a craft related injury intentional or unintentional.

I love how this turned out. Bet this technique would make for some really cute Christmas ornaments. Anyone have a source for primitive Christmas designs? I think all my job rejection rage and angst should be channeled into craft. I could end up with a heap of cute!

Finished embroidery

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