Dreams of Amarna – preparing the background

Map of the dig site at el-Amarna

Map of the dig site at el-Amarna

I prepared a transfer based on the map used in the book. It was easy enough to scan it, flip it, and then print it out ready to be traced over using transfer pencil. Very dull, and oh, I ached after I had finished making the transfer. It doesn’t matter where I set myself up to do this sort of thing (living room floor, dining room table…), I always end up uncomfortably placed and aching somewhere or other.

Does anyone have a solution to that?

Still, once the transfer is transferred, the fun can begin!

I’m using a sandy coloured dress-weight linen, and a variety of closely matched threads. The design needs to stand out enough to cope with being surrounded by bright images on a faience-blue background, but I don’t want it too strong. There may be a lot of unpicking and re-stitching involved here.

The panel is quite large – more than eighteen inches across – so the picture I used to create the transfer looks much more grainy at this size than it does in real life. I’m hoping for greater clarity when I start stitching it!


  1. karen says:

    I found that working on things like this is best done on the ironing board, it seems to be the perfect height for me.

  2. Lady Fi says:

    You’re going to stitch that? amazing…

  3. Action Ma'am says:

    The ironing board idea sounds good. How about coming up for air from time to time and stretching out the muscles you have been using, then doing a full cool down stretch at the end of the session?

  4. That looks like a fun project! 🙂

  5. Janice says:

    I’ve also been using the ironing board for this sort of work, but have never done anything as large as this in one go. As far as I’m concerned this preparation stage is just DULL and something that has to be got through before the fun parts can begin…!

  6. Dianne Nunn says:

    I love the idea of this. Is it for a special purpose?

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