Last time we looked at the Secret Garden Hummingbirds, I was musing over how to embroider the feathers extending from the body right below the wing and above the tail.
When I’m in one of these Un-Stitch-To-Fix situations, if I don’t force myself to face it right away, it can become a Monumental Problem – something I loathe more and more to face, so much so that I keep putting it off. And the putting off of an embroidery project in these circumstances can lead to serious consequences, like shelving a project “for Later” – and then Later never comes.
Tell me I’m not the only one who’s experienced this! In fact, I’d bet that many of UFO’s (un-finished objects) out there in the embroidery world are primarily the result of one of two situations: 1. boredom with the project, or 2. a mistake that needed fixing and couldn’t be faced.
So I figure it’s always best to face stitching hurdles as soon as possible. Once a stitching mistake is made that keeps me from going farther on the project, I correct it right away – at the first possible moment I have to address it. I usually find that these situations that require un-stitching and re-stitching are not that big of a deal, if I just get to it.
So I got to it.
As a reminder, here’s where I left off:
For those who offered feedback on the embroidered feathers in question (thank you very much – I read each of your comments and added them to my ponderings!), most of you agreed with my dissatisfaction especially with the two feathers right below the upper wing – the dark blue one tucked right under the upper wing and the blue one right below that.
I didn’t really have much of a problem with the other three large feathers. I know some of you don’t like the combination of the blues and the greens, but before I made any decision on a different approach, I wanted to finish that lower, un-embroidered feather to get a better picture.
So first I embroidered the last feather. Then, I picked out the stitching on the two top feathers of the area, and that brought me to this point:
Now, to tackle those two top feathers.
I started with the larger of the two, so that the small one could be stitched on top of the large one.
I’m still using the combination of blues and greens at the tip, in fishbone stitch. If you’re not familiar with fishbone stitch, feel free to check out my fishbone stitch video tutorial – you’ll see it’s an easy stitch, great for leaves, feathers, and the like.
You can see how long the stitches are here, to get the right angle going into the feather.
To ease the colors into each other, I started with the dark blue, and then alternated greens and blues, gradually changing to lighter shades as I moved down the feather.
Stepping back a little from the work, here’s the finished large feather in place with just the small tuck-in left to be stitched.
Relying on your good sense and feedback, I decided to work this last little feather in a combination of the lightest threads.
I used the lightest blue-white (747) and the lightest green (964), alternating down the feather from the tip, and then gradually worked in a slightly darker turquoise-green (959) towards the body.
Overall, there it is. What do you think – do you like it better than the first attempt?
I do. I’m ok with it, but I’m going to play with an idea in there still. I’d like some definition on that lowest feather, to see if I can “lift” it over the tail. But I’ll save that for later! I really want to get on with the tail feathers…
As usual, questions, comments, suggestions? Have your say below!
If you’d like to follow along with the Secret Garden Hummingbirds project, you can find all the articles relating to this project arranged in chronological order in the Secret Garden Project Index.