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Sunday, April 01, 2007

Easter Temari

I've probably started this way too late, but today I've finally started making some Easter temari. I've made quite a few of the regular round balls, but this is a first for an egg shape.

First off, wrapping the foam egg was much more challenging. Having some quilt batting to pad the egg a bit helped, but once that was covered, the threads kept wanting to slide. When I finished wrapping, I ended up having to get extra thread to tack things into place, so they wouldn't slip.

It's also the first time I've used a white base. I know I haven't made it anywhere near as thick as I would've liked, but I simply couldn't see the gaps. For the next one, I'm going to wrap a layer of yarn before the thread and see if that makes a difference.

Once wrapped, I divided the egg into 8 sections, then found the equator, in the same manner as for a ball. Marking the 8ths with pins in the center was different, though, as the circumference is not the same. A second strip of paper was used for that. For this egg, I chose a pale pink metallic thread (3 strands of 6) to mark the divisions, making sure to go back and tack down the crossovers at each pole. I debated tacking the equator as well, but decided against it. Normally, I would leave the equator pins in place while stitching, but the thread tends to catch on them. It meant the thread tended to slide around, but it was easy to see where it needed to be pushed back to.

For the wider base, I decided to mark the centre points of the stars farther out from the pole (the green pins), then marked the outer distance for both ends the same (black and yellow pins). For the narrow end, I planned to place the points as close to the pole as I could, so there was no need to mark anything.

Working the pattern went much faster than I expected, even with the rayon floss (the full 6 strands). That was another change I made. For the Easter eggs, I wanted the high sheen that the rayon gives. It's very slippery to work with, and had a tendency to tangle and twist back on itself. Not something I'd want to work with very often, though the effect was quite lovely.

The only modification I made from a simple star pattern was in the middle. After laying more metallic thread for the obi and tacking it down with pale yellow, I felt it was a bit too open, so I added the large crossed threads as well, which were then tacked down at the obi to keep them from sliding out of place.

For the wide end, I chose a bright blue and red. I normally would not have used the flash to take these pictures, as I hate how it reflects back so horribly, but I no longer had good light when I finished this. The flash does show, however, how much of a sheen the rayon thread has.

After stitching everything up to the yellow crosses, I used the metallic pink to add stitches at the pole for a star. Once it was done, I passed through to the obi and tacked the yellow crosses in place with the same thread.

For the narrow end, I chose a more muted blue to go with the green. It's almost a silvery blue that worked quite nicely with that shade green. As a whole, the pattern is busier than I favour, but I think it turned out quite nicely.

I have a total of 6 foam egg cores, but right now I'm not sure that I'll do that many. I'll probably do at least four, but we'll see. It depends on how much time I have for it, as I've picked up some basic new wax resist supplies (to replace those still packed in a box in storage) and will be dying blown eggs. We'll be dying cooked eggs using other methods as well - by the time Easter over, I think we're going to be pretty sick of eggs! LOL

Final say: This project definitely isn't for someone just starting temari, but I wouldn't say it requires a lot of experience first, either. The pattern and stitching is extremely simple, but the materials aren't. The egg shape has its own challenge when wrapping the base, and it also limits the choices in pattern - which isn't necessarily a bad thing. *L*

The rayon thread in particular is difficult to work with, compared to ordinary embroidery floss or pearl cotton. As well as being slippery and easy to tangle, I found that the threads didn't pull through evenly, and I'd have to carefully pull on each strand separately to find which ones were bunched up. Also, a lot of extra thread needs to be pulled into the wrapped thread to prevent the end from sliding out when starting a new thread. Keeping the length of end thread hidden under a white base is also a bit of a challenge, as the colour is easily seen through the white. At the narrow end, I was sometimes able to simply pull the needle through the entire foam core to hide the ends.

1 comment:

The Travelers Journal said...

They are turning out beautiful! I need you to come here and show me step by step how to do these :) I think I am going to get a book too, just to see if I can get the hang of these. I would definitly start with the round ones first.

I haven't been on the computer much. I am hoping to get a update this week!