Saturday, October 24, 2015

Spot printing and embroidering over it.

When I started this outfit in the past, I decided to do a plain camicia with embroidered neck and cuffs. I embroidered them with a pattern of griffins and mermaids taken from Giovanni Ostaus' Perfection of Design. While I love the cuffs and collar (and they still haven't found their way on to a camicia yet,) I think it is wrong for the outfit. The original plan was to have this be my Disney Challenge dress and to have the dress read as Ursula the SeaWitch. Therefore I was going to have the underdress be more purple and less pink. Since I'm going back to having it read like the portrait, the deep purple and green in the cuffs just seems a bit stronger and more noticeable than what I want to go with the pink painted on gold I'm now planning. Therefore, the new plan is to do a camicia with little spot motifs embroidered in gold.
As I'm currently playing with block printing, I think I will use the blocks to transfer the design and make certain it is consistent. This is an approach used in the 16th century. There are some examples of printed fabrics sold by printers for embroidering on. The two in the V&A show a variety of patterns. One is spot motifs that could be for embroidered slips or they could be used as is on a shift. The Vand A also has a smock with similar animals embroidered on it.  The other extant example is a coif that has been printed with flowers to shape with the printing visible. There is also a matching panel with the same design
that has been embroidered with black thread in a speckling stitch with added spangles.  

My plan is to use a small heartsease (pansy) stamp all over the linen for the camicia and then go back in with gold to match the spot motif in the portrait. It isn't quite the same pattern, but I like heartsease and they were a popular embroidered flower in the period (one of Elizabeth I's badges as well.)
I also happen to already own the cute little pansy stamp pictured first. I purchased it from Blockwallah on Etsy.
Using a supply already on hand wins in this case. Although I have to admit I am very temped by some of the cute animals in the extant panel. Or possibly a seeblatt.
I do have a small heart with some interior detailing and I may use that alternating with the pansy for the cuffs and collar. Or, possibly something more geometric. I'm going to have to do some tests to see what I like. I figure the spot printed camicia will make a nice project to work on at events, sort of like the little printed cross stitch kits I did as a kid that were my first exposure to embroidery.

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