The February block for my Crazy Quilt Journal Project is
completely embellished and sewn into a pocket on a tote bag.
(This is a photo heavy post.
You may click on any photo for a larger view.)
The set was donated to an auction to raise funds for engineering scholarships. There are over 34 hours of embroidery and beading in this block. The octopus was created with the use of a Stitcher's Revolution Sailor's Delight Iron-on Transfer.
I have a confession. The tote bag took about 4 hours longer than anticipated to assemble. (Tip: If using polyester straps, take extra care when ironing your nearly completed tote bag. You might be a little quicker ripping out all of the seams to replace the partially melted straps and sew everything back together than I was, but I would love to save you the trouble!)
A buttonhole stitch created with 3 strands of DMC #4050 floss embellished the first seam.
After all of the embroidery was completed, I added Mill Hill Petite Glass Beads #42027 to the seam with a strand of DMC #225 floss.
Note: When adding beads, I secure each bead to the block. On a piece that will be functional, this is particularly important. If one bead is snagged and pulled off, the other beads will still be attached to the block.
For the 2nd seam, I back stitched across the seam with size 5 DMC #796 perle cotton. Then I added fly stitches between each of the backstitches.
A wavy line of fish embellished the 3rd seam. Using 2 strands of DMC #67, each fish was made with a detached chain stitch for the body and 2 straight stitches for the tail. I began by tracing a line on the back foundation fabric and then added the fish.
When the block was sewn to the pocket lining fabric, the stitching held the floss more firmly in place. And when the pocket was stitched onto the block, another seam held the thread in place (as seen in the photo above), so it should be quite secure.
Using size 8 DMC #125 perle cotton, I followed the traced lines with a whipped chain stitch. Flowers were added to the vines with sets of 3 detached chain stitches and a small straight stitch using size 8 DMC #48 perle cotton.
The 5th motif was also created with Sharon B.'s Crazy Quilt Templates. This time, I used size 5 DMC #4045 and the barred chain stitch to create the vines. Flower sequins held into place with size 10/0 Beaders Paradise Rose seed beads completed the motif.
Feather stitched sea vegetation was added with a strand of size 5 DMC #4125 perle cotton.
French knots created coral with 3 strands of DMC #52 floss.
Sea stars were added next.
The one on the far left was created with a whipped wheel stitch using a strand of DMC #437 blended with a strand of DMC #3772 floss.
The bullion stitched sea star near the anchor was made with 2 strands of DMC #4120 floss.
The one beneath that was made with a strand of DMC 3778 blended with a strand of DMC 3779 floss.
The whipped wheel stitched sea star to the left of the net was made with 2 strands of DMC #4130.
To help tack the net down and protect it from snagging in the future, I put a sea star on it. This one was created with 2 strands of DMC #48 and 5 bullion knots.
While adding the sea stars, I was careful to leave space for the anchor. (Adding the anchor first would have made it more difficult to work the bullion knots and the whipped wheels.)
The anchor pendant was attached with clear quilting thread.
Next, size 5 DMC #5283 silver metallic thread was couched down to create a rope/wire holding the anchor.
Three small jellies were added with a strand of DMC white floss.
Split stitches were used to create the body outlines and satin stitches filled the body in. Tentacles were created by couching a strand of white floss down with tiny straight stitches.
Random fish were added to fill in the remainder of the block using 2 strands of DMC #90 floss.
Motif 1 completed:
Three seed beads were then added to complete the seahorse motif.
Thank you so much for stopping by and making it through this fairly long post!
The Crazy Quilt Journal Project (CQJP) is a personal challenge to complete a crazy quilt block each month that measures at least 8- by 8-inches. You may read more about CQJP 2017 here and see blocks others have created here.
Posts related to this block and my CQJP 2017:
CQJP 2017 February Motif 2: Octopus - here
CQJP 2017 February Motif 1: Seahorse - here
CQJP 2017 January Block - here
Every step of my CQJP 2017 progress is shared on this Pinterest board.
I sometimes add sneak peeks of my work on my Instagram account and my Hand Stitched Treasure Facebook page.