here) again worked on the first one with a single strand of embroidery floss. The initial foundation of chain stitch provides the plumpness (lovely word that) over which you work the stem stitch. In the middle stem I tried using two strands of floss to enable me to vary the colour a bit. I've shown the final stem before I completed the top layer so you can see how the technique comes together. I love the finished result - not because I think I've been particularly clever, but because using such fine thread gives a wonderful effect that mimics closely that silky/fibrous texture of mushroom stems. Since I worked these bits I've completed the mushrooms; the final one is shaped "fancy" fabric supplied by Kay, folded around a felt form. There are also little shapes filled with French knots to resemble the ground the mushrooms are growing from. The next stage is to stitch all these separate elements onto the ground fabric to complete the picture.
Then there's Cecil's quilt. I finished the piecing today - all now pressed and ready to layer with wadding and backing
I picked up some delightful fabric from Fabric Design in Matlock Bath. It's actually a furnishing fabric, but I thought it the perfect thing for a lady who has spent most of her life working in one of our lovely National Trust historic homes. I think the little vignettes of pastoral folk will delight her feeling for history, her pleasure in fine furnishings and her well developed sense of whimsy.
Whilst all this creativity has been going on, the garden has been settling itself down for the winter. We've been having an exceptionally wet Autumn, following a pretty wet summer and we Brits do seem to love moaning about the weather endlessly. I'm not going to do that - I'm not a great sun lover, I find constant sunshine a bit boring to be honest, much preferring the variety that comes with moisture in the air; it keeps this country green, gives us wonderful piled high clouds, the delights of shade and sunlight, rainbows, mists and mellow fruitfulness. Certainly this little fellow is appreciating the full growth and resulting seeds
as for the resident squirrels, they have been beside themselves with delight at the harvest from the yew tree