Lenham Needlecraft & The Art of the Needle
Below is a small selection of some of the many and varied commissions I've worked on over the years.
I've thoroughly enjoyed working on each and every one. Please contact me if you would like to discuss a commission.
Napoleonic Dress Coat Replica
I was asked to replicate a military dress coat from the court of Napoleon Bonaparte. The design was constrained by historical samples and the detail required in the very small emblems was remarkable. The emblem above is only 6.5cm high. I'm currently a consultant on this, overseeing the quality of the embroidery.
Jubilee Church Kneeler
A German client asked me to design, stitch and make up a Jubilee kneeler, having loved the kneelers she'd seen on a visit to the UK. I changed the details making it specific to her, with relevant dates and initials. The stitched canvas was stretched before being made up.
Silver Monogram Kit
I was commissioned to design and provide in kit form a monogram for a wedding anniversary. I partly worked the design to provide photos for the kit instructions. The kit contained several choices of fabric and enough silver metal thread for three separate monograms.
Pulled Thread Lampshade
Working on a fine natural coloured evenweave linen and using one strand of white stranded cotton to create contrast, I carefully stitched each pulled thread pattern to create different ivy leaves, all flowing from undulating ivy stems made of a thin couched leather cord.
Silk Shaded Blue Sprite
This unusual design was a gift for a lady who was a modern interpretative dancer with a love of all things supernatural. The blue skin and red hair create a striking image as the body moves sensuously with the music, with the stitches following the curves of the body..
Blackwork Shaded Baby
Blackwork came to England with Katherine of Aragon. Made up of different tessellating patterns, the stitches are counted & worked on fine evenweave linen using black thread in varying thicknesses to create areas of shading, as well as omitting stitches for very light areas.
Embroidered Christmas Card
I was commissioned to design and embroider a Christmas picture by Pam atLenham Needlecraft for it to be used as the design for her 2016 Xmas cards, sent to all customers and suppliers. Techniques included applique, surface embroidery, stumpwork and goldwork.
Monogrammed Silver Cufflinks
A very small commission, but one still requiring exact attention to detail. I used one strand of stranded cotton with stem and chain stitches on satin, before making them up into cufflinks using sterling silver fitments.
Set of Daffodil Cufflinks
Two sets of cufflinks were required, both with daffodils, but different initials on each. Very fiddly to work, but do look very elegant once finished.
My client's finished work had several puckers. I was asked to make it up into a cushion and to pad it sufficiently so that all the puckers in the fabric were removed. I chose a complementary fabric for the back and made a cord to go around the cushion.
Embroidered Coats for Monsoon
Monsoon approached me to embroider little baskets of flowers on grey flannel for a limited run of children's coats. The flowers were worked in wool using French knots, bullion knots, detached chain and stem stitch.
Needlepoint Chair Restoration
This wingback chair was upholstered in very grubby needlepoint, which also had lots of holes. I cleaned each section thoroughly before then supporting the canvas, reweaving the missing warp and weft threads and restitching the design with colour matched wool. The faces of the central figures appeared after years of dirt were removed.
Antique Chinese Silk Panel
This beautifully embroidered Chinese panel had been kept in a drawer for years. I was asked to convert it into a pelmet hanging for a bed, which involved shortening both the length and width. I did this without any cutting of the beautiful antique textile.
Red Crewelwork Lampshades
A pair of matching drum lampshades embroidered in a design of flowing, stylised flowers, buds and leaves in crewelwork using Appletons crewel wool in a custom colour of pillar box red with dark blue highlights.
Silk Shaded Snowdrops
These delicate white flowers were embroidered onto pale blue silk dupion (chosen to highlight the petals' whiteness) using several shades of stranded cotton (white, ivory, cream, grey, mauve, green). Only one strand at a time was used to create the careful shading.
Handmade Goldwork Book
I wanted a different way of displaying my finished embroideries and felt this book would be an excellent medium. I made the book from scratch and used my Goldwork Leaves kit as the feature, filling it with beautiful handmade cotton paper.
Pair of Rosebud Cufflinks
I was commissioned to work a set of rosebud cufflinks for a birthday present, worked in tiny chain stitches and stem stitch with one strand of thread.
Tudor Inspired Blackwork Cuffs
Three blackwork cuffs were designed and embroidered onto linen using black silk thread to be used as props for the historical TV drama, 'The Spanish Princess', based on Catherine of Aragon.
Restoration of Altar Cloth
This is the 'before' image of a frontal from Croscombe Church in Somerset. I reattached the gold threads and the fringing where they were coming away.
White Altar Frontal Repairs
The damask fabric was very worn on this frontal, with several large frayed areas. I supported these damaged areas using conservation net and thus prevented further wear. The conservation net can be dyed to match the fabric, but that wasn't necessary in this case.
French Fleamarket Footstool
This canvas & silk thread footstool measured 1m by 60cm. Large areas had worn away & the canvas was filthy. I cleaned the canvas, matched & reworked the silk stitches, then remounted it over the original springs & padding, before applying a new cord & braid to cover the edging.
Childhood Toy: Piglet
A much loved toy, who bore the marks of this love. Piglet needed a good clean and was given tidier dungarees, a smart bowtie and new ears.
Long Tailed Tit Silk Shading
As a special birthday present for my husband, I silk shaded a long tailed tit, as he often admires these birds at the feeder. I chose a blue fabric and matched the threads to the bird, using long & short stitch, changing angle often to represent feathers & finishing off with a tiny pink eyelid.
Church Kneeler Design
I was asked to design a long kneeler for the recently ordained son of a client. I used the symbols and colours requested, combining these with musical notes and fitting the different design aspects together into the required space. Currently being worked on by my client.
Silk Shaded Buzzards
My client commissioned me to embroider a pair of buzzards circling in a summer sky. I designed and worked the pair using one strand of stranded cotton in the needle at a time, feather by individual feather. I then mounted the birds onto a piano stool.
Canvas Shaded Tulip
Using only one strand of Appletons crewel wool and 18hpi antique mono canvas, I designed and worked this canvas shaded tulip in tent stitch. I first worked a shaded drawing, before one in colour, then set the order for each section to be stitched to ensure a realistic final image.
Silk Shaded Peregrine Falcon
I'm drawn to birds of prey, and this falcon was a beautiful bird to replicate in needlework. Although small in size, a great deal of shading detail was included when working the long & short stitches that this technique comprises.
Coolie Crewelwork Lampshade
A commission involving a larger design than my usual embroidered lampshade, in the coolie style, which required me to adapt my design to fit the wider and longer dimensions.
Regency Inspired Shawl
An embroidered shawl, worked as part of the Lady's Magazine Stitch Off event, bringing together embroiderers across the world and featured in Chawton House's 'Emma at 200' exhibition celebrating Jane Austen.
Purple Altar Frontal
Another altar frontal from Croscombe Church in Somerset. This one required the original gold twist outlines to be reattached around the lettering, as well as reworking previous repairs where the rows of twist had been overlapped.
New Church Banner
I was commissioned to design and embroider part of a church banner. The brief was for three leaping fish on a red background.
Dog Club Trophy Cloth
The Maltese Dog Club needed a cloth for displaying their trophies which included all the individual names used by the breeders. I worked the club name in applique with a couched edge, and all the names were worked in satin stitch.
Victorian Child's Sampler
This sampler required gentle cleaning and some minor top darning repair work on a support fabric, before being mounted ready for framing.