Chorus of Angels

Chorus Of Angels
Chorus Of Angels

My mother and I have been planning a backdrop for some crib figures I inherited some years ago from a great aunt.

We started off by thinking about a stylised landscape (I might still do that one of these days), and then we thought about some sort of embroidered “stable” (likewise!), but none of the ideas really came together.

The crib figures are simple, and carved in wood, and we think they were bought in Germany after the war. We think that simplicity might be best set off by something really gorgeous and colourful, so then my mother designed a chorus of angels inspired by the “May Queen” design by Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh. She substantially simplified the basic design, added wings and then created two ranks of singing angels.

She’s also created a wonderful top panel of graduated blues and superimposed the text “Gloria in excelsis Deo” over the top. At the moment we are thinking about creating an ombré dyed section for the graduated panel, and couching gold and silver threads to make the framework. Then maybe using golden gauze for the lower panel, using a second layer for the capes.

As for the wings – well, detached buttonhole stitch, perhaps? Maybe in Gilt Sylke Twist, if I can get the right colours. I’m torn between a rainbow of colours, as my mother has painted them, or some other selection. Really, it will depend on what takes my eye when I get to that stage!

We want to work it on silk, and I want to be a bit clearer about what I’m doing before I get started. So it won’t be done in time for this Christmas.

18 thoughts on “Chorus of Angels

  1. The design is beautiful. I saw the reference to Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh immediately. I hope to see the finished item in time for Christmas 2016!

  2. Do keep us informed. This is quite fascinating. I can’t think up designs, so I am very impressed by those of you who can. Yes, Christmas is closer than we think!

  3. Beautiful — and such a wonderful design process. I loved reading about your plans and will be waiting to see it come completely to life.

  4. Oh my goodness. That is a simply fabulous design – and right up my street, being a huge fan of Jessie M King, MM Macintosh et al. Very excited to see how your collaborative work progresses on this one!

  5. A charming panel. I am sure you two clever folk can make something wonderful in fabric from it, but it would be lovely backdrop as a painting.

  6. I just love this design. There are so many possibilities with it. Just one angel on it’s own would make a wonderful embroidery. I will be looking forward to seeing what you do with it.

  7. Hi Rachel! This is looking fabulous!
    Detached buttonhole wings would look delightful.
    I look forward to seeing what you both decide on.
    Barbara xx

  8. That’s exquisite. I’m a Glaswegian, and really love the Glasgow School. It will be wonderful to watch your progress.

  9. Oh my… this is going to be gorgeous. I love that you and your mother are working on it together. What wonderful memories you are building!

    And thank you for sharing your embroidered version of your mother’s Christ child and parents painting on last week’s Stitchery Link Party. Both your mother’s painting and the stitchery are beautiful in their own way and each conveys a unique feeling to the viewer.

  10. How gorgeous! I love the MacIntoshes in any form they decided to create. Your mother has done such a beautiful job with this.

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