Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Six Down, Three to Go


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Here’s a little update on the miniature embroidery project I’m working on – the “Sense of Hearing” Cluny tapestry, designed for working on silk gauze. I will admit that this past week with grades due and lots of school work to concentrate on, I didn’t work in too many 15 Minute sessions.

Instead, last night I had a therapeutic few hours of stitching with an audiobook and a cup of tea or ten. I told myself I needed the “break,” but in fact, I was really just procrastinating. It was relaxing – a good audio book, peace and quiet, no interruptions, lots of stitching, and finally finishing the 6th section of the piece. Only three more pages of charts to go! Three. More. Pages.

Miniature Embroidery Cluny Tapestry

Not that I’m really in any hurry to finish the piece… I have no idea what I’m going to do with it when complete. Any suggestions?

Miniature Embroidery Cluny Tapestry

Here’s a little size perspective photo. Those are my littler embroidery scissors (they don’t have full blades). I’m always kind of surprised at the size of the piece. I don’t think of it as “small” until I see it from far away, or with something “normal sized” next to it.

By the way, the unicorn looks pretty good from far away. At first, I didn’t like him. My favorite part of the piece so far, beyond any shadow of a doubt, is the gown on the lady on the left. I like the way the folds work.

Incidentally, I’m out of floss from the kit in every color, except the flesh tones. I ran out of black, burgundy, white, the lightest brown, and some of the blues a long time ago. So last time I went supply shopping, I picked up a skein of each color called for in the project. Unfortunately, there’s a subtle difference in some of the shades (especially in the lightest green and the lightest peach). The only place I really notice it is in the greens, so that works out well. After all, it’s foliage, right?

Ok – that’s the update on the miniature piece for this week! Do you have any plans this weekend that involve needle and thread? As always, I’ve got plenty. Whether or not they all come to fruition is another story! The pomegranate corners project is on the list, as well as a major reorganization job in one area of my workroom. And I’ve requested sunshine for the weekend…. here’s hopin’! Enjoy your weekend!


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(14) Comments

  1. The minature cluny would probably look fantastic set into the lid of a wooden trinket box or something like that. I am not sure if you are familiar with Framecraft in the UK but they sell some lovely needlework accessories. I am thinking of trying my hand at pomegranate corners this weekend also!

  2. Mary,

    Have been watching development with interest – lovely piece. Out of curiosity, did you consider contacting the kit maker for more thread, or at least to share your experience? This is why I’m reluctant to buy kits. Even if the threads are listed, between dye lots and shipping charges/delays, I find it frustrating.

    Meanwhile — stitching plans for the weekend: finish the latest in the Needle Delights Originals Color Delights series, Camouflage; get back to the “Heart Tuffet” for the latest Victoria Sampler contest (on Thea’s Yahoo group), and write up the pieces for our EGA exhibit coming up in April.

    Happy stitching!

  3. Dear Marymentor:

    With something this special, I would want to give it as a gift, (signed and dated, of course <3),,,as a memento for someone's birthday, or such an occasion. Framed maybe ? or under plexiglass as a lovely bed/breakfast tray (I'd paint the tray frame white with lots of scrollwork) …very feminine and cheery. A lovely printed flowery mat could fill in the space between the finished piece and the tray border. Forge ahead, dear Friend,,and as you have taught me….don't even mention or dwell on any imperfections. Who'se to know ? 🙂
    Judy in Pittsburgh

    1. Hi, all! Thanks for your comments! This is my lunch time hobby – checking for comments, having a good chuckle, and taking in your input. I appreciate it!

      Lots of good ideas for finishing! Tricia, your method of framing sounds neat! I love the idea of the rough-edge paper!

      Ginger – yeah, it’s a lot smaller than I realize, too. Yes, I’d definitely call it petit point. I might even go so far as to say petit petit point!

      Denise – ah, yes, the thread question. Well, actually, part of the thread shortage is certainly my fault. I am somewhat wasteful when using cotton on silk gauze. Once I’ve finished stitching a small area of color (and that color is not close by again), when I end the thread, I normally throw it away, even if there is still a little length left. I keep the threads cut pretty short, but still, I don’t like the way the cotton tends to fuzz against the silk gauze, if used too long. So I prefer to start with fresh threads. I go through more thread that way, but I think I like the results better! Your trestle stand sounds GREAT. Hurray for your hubby!!

      Good idea, Angela! I think it might end up too big for a typical needle case, though. I’m leaning towards framing. I only have one piece of my own needlework framed in my house, and I think it would be neat to see this one on the wall. But – who knows?! We’ll see!!

      Hi, Elaine! Actually, the 40 ct silk gauze is not too hard to work on, believe it or not! Especially if I have something dark on my lap (or I’m wearing dark clothes), I don’t really need magnification. But I use a magnifying light sometimes, too. It just depends! Sorry to hear about the magnolia in Inspirations 68. I’ll have to go take a look at that! You’ve got my curiosity piqued! I remember seeing the project in there and thinking it’s beautiful, but I never went through any of the directions.

      Ah, Judy, yes, framed, but for someone else?!?!? Oh, c’mon!!!! Can’t I keep something?!? Just once?!? Actually, this one is definitely mine. It’ll look pretty good in the entrance way! 🙂 As for the imperfections, you’re absolutely right. I’m trying to be a less picky stitcher. Have you noticed?!

      Hi, Joanne – the thread question – yes, I considered contacting them, but in fact, it’s more my fault than theirs. I think I tend to be wasteful with my thread! (See above). What EGA exhibit in April? Is it in the Midwest, by any chance? You sound BUSY! But it’s fun, isn’t it?!

      Off to work!


  4. The Cluny piece looks beautiful! How are your eyes doing. 🙂

    I am still working through the magnolia from Inspirations #68. The instructions are the most difficult and erroneous I have ever worked with.
    Well take that back, there was an EGA beading project designed by a left handed person that nobody I know ever finished.

    Elaine in New Mexico

  5. Morning, Mary. The thread issue is, as Joanne said, the reason I have always been reluctant to buy kits. (Not that that stopped me in any way, mind you.) How about making a book cover with the piece? I don’t know its dimensions, but perhaps a tiny book? As for my stitching plans, I am waiting for my husband to finish making me a trestle slate frame stand since none of my plethora of floor stands works with a 24″ slate frame. In the interim, I am doing charity knitting. Enjoy your weekend, Mary!

  6. M-If I had worked the project, I would have it mounted as a tapestry or framed – I NEVER recognized the size until you placed your scissors in the pic! I’m not sure I could work something so fine and small. Would this work be classified as petit point? Thanks for sharing. Happy sunny weekend!

  7. Mary:
    A friend sent me your latest post showing your work on the miniature embroidery. It is looking beautiful! Stitching a Cluny in miniature is a project I hope to complete some day.

    I work almost exclusively on silk gauze these days, although they are my own designs, not kits. I have found the best way to display them is to mat them in a specially cut white mat (I work with someone who’s very artistic and creates a one-of-a-kind mat for each piece) and apply that mat to a larger piece of 80-lb rough edge paper. With this treatment, they actually look like art prints and every color stands out nicely against the white.

    Just an idea for you.


  8. Wow! it is coming along beautifully and it is so lovely.
    A work of art for sure … I most likely would have it matted and framed. Worked with such fine thread I would not make it into something that would be handled much.
    I can hardly wait to see it finished!

  9. Mary, I agree that this is something you would not want to give away. A few years ago my husband who is a fine woodworker made a reliquary (a box to contain the ashes of a much-loved mother and grandmother). Her granddaughter had made a cross-stitch insert for the top. I am not suggesting that you make a reliquary (unless of course you need one), but a really nice box specially commissioned so your gorgeous embroidery fits would be a good thing. It certainly looks as though it deserves something special and you could put your current project in it.

  10. Hi Mary
    Your miniature embroidery project looks really great. Like your previous reader I did not raalise how small it is put against your scissors.

    I’m still practicising to be perfect I recently finished a birthday card with an M monogram that I got from your website for a frietnds birthday, I made a lot of mistakes but it turned out well’m currently working on a tablecloth making lots of mistakes but getting there. I’ve looked at a lot of your work on your website and I can’t wait to be as good as you.

    At the Church I attend I recently discussed with a friend of mine about creating a new banner with IHS with leaves & flower surround. I looked at your website and there was an IHS pattern which is perfect for the project. Thank you so much I really enjoy looking at your website and viewing your past/current projects, they are so inspiring especially for someone who is new at embroidery. Lots of ideas for the IHS project.

  11. Mary, I definitely would Not give this beautiful little work of art away. I doubt anyone else could ever truly appreciate all your hard work on this project.
    I would frame it and hang it on a wall for all to see and admire.
    Go for all your well deserved bragging rights when completed. It is truly a work of art that needs to be displayed in your home.

  12. I love love love this. I’d love to buy the pattern myself, but can’t afford 🙁
    I’d also love one of my favourite – the unicorn at the fountain – but they don’t have that one, just a few of the cluny senses series designs. But then my dream is to do the unicorn at the fountain in full glory and hang it in my living room… one day. I think I’ll be doing my own pattern for it though…

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