Update on the Crock of Gold – a definite milestone reached

Finished Shadows

Finished Shadows

It’s been a month since I posted about the Crock of Gold Hoard, and that is due partly to the intervening holidays, partly to the continuing Saga of the Tennis Elbow, and partly because I am really not good at all when it comes to large expanses of long and short stitch – or indeed any other stitch!

The shadow in the interior of the pot is done very simply in long straight stitches, because I know I will be adding chipwork there, so I want to avoid giving myself too much to stitch through. If I can find a “tarnished silver” or bronze purl to use, that will help to make the whole thing “read” properly, with the odd untarnished chip to sparkle and catch the light.

Texture Of Background

Texture Of Background

This picture shows the effect of the seed stitches. Although they’ve created a nice grainy background, the scattered seed stitches have slightly “flattened” the colour variation in the background fabric. That’s rather a pity, because the gentle changes in shade were rather attractive.

Detail Of Finished Texture

Detail Of Finished Texture

There is always a silver lining, however, and this gave me the opportunity to add a little more detail. The basic seed stitches were done in the same colour as the sticks, using two strands of stranded cotton. For the additional textures, I added “drifts” of tiny seed stitches in a darker shade, using a single strand of stranded cotton, and and then another scatter of them  in a slightly more golden shade.

Completed Seed Stitches

Completed Seed Stitches

I’ve been wondering whether the looming chipwork might have been making me slightly nervous, because I have been saying that I can’t do the chipwork until the rest of the embroidery is done, and somehow, I’ve found myself adding other layers of embroidery that must be done.

If that’s the case, I think I have now run out of excuses. I need to make sure that no guide lines are showing, re-stretch the fabric, which is sagging slightly, and then screw my courage to the sticking-point.



  1. Mmm, yes. Large expanses of the same stitch are really what’s holding me back on two or my three projects! A little variety is a good thing!=)

  2. coral-seas says:

    Great to see some progress on the Crock of Gold. I hope this signifies an improvement in the elbow department.

    The shadows look great now, as does the seeding. I think the additional darker stitches and golden stitches restore the texture very nicely.

    If you cannot find any pre-tarnished purl to use, I think that you can get a tarnishing solution.

    You will be fine with the chip work, it is like seeding only closer and with purl instead of thread.

    I think that I am made a little differently from most people, I quite like repetative stitching, I find it very relaxing but I agree that starting a long repetative task can be daunting.

  3. Penny says:

    FABULOUS!!! I love the texture — it truly looks like sand beneath the basket. This is just gorgeous. To be able to do this work with a painful elbow is quite wonderful!

  4. Penny Berens says:

    Oh, yes, long and short stitch is way too disciplined isn’t it! As Penny said…this is fabulous.

  5. Carolyn says:

    This piece is now aquiring depth and texture, looks great.

  6. karen says:

    love the detail and precision that you are investing in this….

  7. ladyfi says:

    Those shadows are amazing! Well done.

  8. It looks fabulous!! What a pain (!) that your elbow is still bothering you

  9. Alex says:

    The seeding is really effective and after all your agonising about the shadows, I think they’ve turned out very well indeed. This really is looking stunning. Can’t wait to see the chip work start!

  10. MeganH says:

    Love what you’re doing. And soon it will be tarnishingly brilliant! (that’s a bad pun about the chipwork).

  11. Oh, my dear Lady Macbeth, I’m sure you will not fail! 🙂

  12. Susan says:

    Bring on the chipwork! That’s going to pull everything together nicely. You did a great job with the shadows…the shapes are perfect! xo Susan

  13. Action Ma'am says:

    This was a lovely present to receive and the tools will doubtless be very useful once I get started. I just wish Father Christmas had brought me some time! I have two projects in the queue – a tablecloth and a cushion – but scarcely the time to stitch up a dropped hem or sew on a shirt button. Sorry Janice, no new blog. It takes me long enough to catch up with my reading. If I produce something blog-worthy I’m sure I’ll find a way..!

  14. Terrie says:

    Amazing look, looks like 3D. Can’t believe stitching or embriodery can make such wonderful effect. You’re fabulous.