Finishing the crewel work dragonfly

This project took a tad longer than I thought it would to complete, but that has more to do with me not having the time to sit and stitch more than anything else!

Here he is, the finished piece. I much prefer the fly stitch on his right wing than the left, and the seeding stitches look much better on that one too!

all framed up front.jpg

The little centre wings (making stuff up here on the definitions of dragonfly anatomy sorry!), I think turned out OK, though again I’m more happy with some over others. I really like the effect the fly stitch has when stitched over the laid work – it gives a really lovely padding for the fly stitch.

So whilst I changed up some of the stitches recommended, I’m quite happy with the end result! His wings are more heavily defined, as I chose to outline them in stem stitch rather than split stitch, but I quite like the effect of that.

To finish him off, I decided I would attempt a bit of hoop art framing. I have this rather dodgy hoop that frustrates me when I use it as a stitching hoop, and as it was the right size for this little one, I thought why not give it a go?!

A quick internet search will reveal there are several ways out there that people have used to frame their work in a hoop. As I’m a little precious about not showing the back of my work (admittedly this one was pretty good!), I wanted something that would cover the back up. The options out there seem to be felt, fabric gathered and then whipped into place (a fabric yo-yo), or back a card and glue that on.

I discounted the last option pretty quickly. I’m hesitant to use glue, (old fashioned I know!), and I didn’t particularly like the end result in the posts I was reading. Personal preference that’s all!

As I don’t have a large felt supply, that meant I didn’t have any option left but to choose a fabric and get cutting, ironing and gathering!

Placing and gathering in the embroidered piece was the nice easy part.

The next part of gathering the backing fabric into a sensible size was a bit trickier! As my backing fabric is completely different from the calico the dragonfly is stitched on, I decided to back the entire back of the hoop in this backing fabric. So I gathered it in, and stitched it on – this could have been completed a lot neater! Again, I missed those curved needles! I really need to buy some more since the others I have had gone on an extended vacation.

And here he is, front and back, all finished off and ready to hang.

I’m keen to try this method again, and  work a way of getting it a lot neater, so I might try it with something else! Have you ever tried this method of framing? What tips do you have to share?

4 thoughts on “Finishing the crewel work dragonfly”

  1. You’ve stitched this beautifully and I love the colour combinations.

    Many, many years ago I used this type of framing for 3 cross stitch kits I’d completed, I used white felt for the backing, probably because it was an easy option. I still have them hanging in the downstairs loo !!

    1. Thanks Ann! How wonderful you still have them on display, it’s great to be able to view all that hard work daily. I might give felt a go next time I think!

  2. I’m not surprise you liked one side over the other. When we exercise each side of our body behaves differently, so it would make sense that our stitching tension would be different depending on which side/direction we’re stitching. I love the hoop finishing. I’ve been wanting to try t for a while but still haven’t found that perfect project to finish like that.

    1. Oh, I had never thought of that as a reason, as I’m frequently thinking I like one side better than another on a lot of my stitching projects – it makes perfect sense! I like the hoop finishing – but I don’t yet have another one to try it out on. Let me know how you get on with yours when you find that perfect project!

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