Saturday, March 7, 2015

CQJP 2015 March Block - Study in Chicken Scratch Embroidery

I am finally caught up for CQJP 2015 after having a slow start and then with the blocks being a little more detailed than originally planned.  Here is my block for March.  Each month I am doing a sort of study on different techniques etc.  January was use of metallic threads and February was familiarizing myself with ways to stitch on sequins.  As you can probably guess, March is a study in 'chicken scratch' embroidery.  To me aprons go hand-in-hand with this type of embroidery so I created a tiny apron for my block.  This seemed like a 40s thing too, so I tried to convey a 40s feel by adding the clothespins, buttons, lots of stitchery and not much glitz and glamour.

Connie Eyberg - completed March CQJP Block for 2015

Originally I was planning to add a pocket in the center of each block so I used a smoother fabric so items would slide in and out easier.   After playing with that idea I tabled it, at least for the time being.  The bright yellow was throwing me off, so I went shopping and chose a different fabric.  I replaced the bright, shiny yellow pieces with a more 'comfortable' fabric.  I am showing you both versions (above is the after; below is the before) of the naked block. 

This is my block with just the treated seams.  Below are some 'chicken scratch' scraps I did.

The little dress shown below is one I made for my daughter when she was around three years old.  My grandmother embroidered it.  My daughter is now in her 40s.  This border is the inspiration for the design on the apron on my CQ block.

Finally, below is a very small apron I made just a few years ago.  It was my first and only attempt at chicken scratch.  I was pretty pleased with it and always meant to try more of this embroidery.  It is fascinating seeing how changing the color of the embroidery can totally change the look of the design.  I found a photo of this heart design somewhere and wish I would have recorded where or who it came from so I could give credit where credit is due.  Same with the heart design shown above in green.

Chicken scratch has been around for a long, long time.  I have some aprons my grandmother stitched and remember her always working on her stitching.  Never did I imagine I would enjoy embroidery as much as she did.  I often wish she was still around so we could stitch together and I could learn from her mastery of the process.

I haven't decided what I am going to do for my CQJP 2015 April block.  I have a couple of projects that I have to get done before I start, so I can be thinking about it in the meantime.  We are heading a little south for the next few days, hoping for better weather although it is unseasonably warm for the next couple of days in Iowa - in the 60s.  I'm ready for spring!


Annesphamily said...

So beautiful and so talented that you are my friend! Good to see you here, I had to stop by and say hello. I am getting away from Facebook more and coming to check on blogs instead. Embroidery is such a lovely art form. I know a little about chicken scratch. This was a great post. Thank you for sharing.

Mosaic Magpie said...

I love what you have scratched out, Chickie! That little apron on the block is just as cute as it can be. I have an apron my grandmother stitched like these.

Lyn Warner said...

The tiny apron on your block is too cute! I love the pretty pink apron with the hearts too. How my 2 year old granddaughter would love those little pockets. I do Australian Cross Stitch on gingham. The origin of the name is a bit of a mystery but the idea is very similar to Chicken Scratch.