4.13.2009

fresh from the Makery: embroidered summer constellation flashcards

After last week's project I wanted to do something else with embroidery, specifically employing the oddly satisfying French knot. Naturally, I thought of toying with pointillism, but embroidering a crafty remake of, say, Seurat's famous Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte would probably take a little more than the week I give myself to complete each of these projects. I suppose I could work on something more ambitious on the side, but in the meantime, I had to think of what else I could use the stitch to create. Other than sprinkles and confetti, the little knots also reminded me of stars so I thought it would be fun to embroider a few constellations.


As usual, I wasn't sure exactly what to do with the embroidered paper but as (I thought) I had a couple more of the artist trading card holders similar to the one I used for the first Makery project, I thought I'd make a small set of flashcards. Since I had only one sheet of this dark blue paper on hand I had to come up with a way to select just a few constellations and went with seven summer star patterns.


Each of the seven cards is backed with a white card printed, in matching blue ink, with the name of the constellation embroidered on front. Unfortunately, when I went to package the finished cards in the ATC holder, I discovered that both remaining holders are cracked, so I put the set in this plastic sleeve instead.


Can you tell I'm not totally satisfied with this week's project? The embroidery was fun and I'm happy with the way the constellations turned out but I've noticed I have a tendency to design projects that are functional in some way. Like how I plopped last week's felt "cookies" on note cards. I'm never sure if I should just get over it or try harder to come up with project ideas that folks can use in some way. And I suppose flashcards are functional, if you want to learn seven of the constellations you're likely to see on a clear, summer night. If that's the case, leave me a comment on this post and your name will be entered in the random drawing I'll do at the end of the week to determine the lucky recipient of this project.

Meh. I think I need a nap.

10 comments:

Meredith said...

I already cleaned house last week, so I am not entering, but I did want to comment on your amazing French knots. I tried to do those for a crochet project. It is so hard! I finally just gave up and bought buttons to use as eyes :)

RBG said...

Thanks, Mer! The French knot is tricky - I watched many an online tutorial in preparation for last week's project. And I still can't quite figure out why I enjoy them so...

BTW, I sent your package this afternoon :)

java diva said...

I understand your turmoil about if projects created should be functional or not.
Rebecca, this is a great idea, especially for kids! If you made it a kit with the constellation holes punched out, the embroidering would help the kid learn the constellations quicker by the hands-on. (Sorry, I'm a homeschooling mom). You could easily market this to homeschoolers. I think this is a great idea...once again! ;)

RBG said...

Hey Java Diva, great idea! I'll give that some thought for the version that goes into the Etsy shop...

Auntie Kay said...

Great work. I too love the French Knot - they are really not that hard once you get the hang of it. It, unfortunately takes practice. I did an couch pillow in french knots. I made it for Grandma Loder who knows where it is now. Would be nice to have it back I guess. I love the idea of flash cards for school kids. I will pass on this one I just do not know what I would do with them in the MH. Love ya

Anonymous said...

Compliments on the flash cards! I've been working on ideas for teaching the constellations for a Girl Scout Observational Astronomy program I teach here in Jacksonville FL. Some of the girls will come out to the dark sky site and learn the real thing in the dark. Others will not. I'll be passing this idea along to the troop leaders who have groups who prefer the indoors and the occasional peek through the telescope. Sorry for the anonymous comment, didn't have time to figure out the identity thing. Ted Treiber

RBG said...

Awesome! It's great to read that the idea will be put to some good use! They were a lot of fun to make and I did learn something :) Enjoy and feel free to pass along the idea/link.

Anonymous said...

I need something like this for my wedding - the tables will be named after constellations...

Rebecca Bird Grigsby said...

That's a great idea! Congrats :)

joyceann said...

I totally want to do this on the corner of a baby swaddling blanket made of jersey knit merino wool (here in NZ)!
A friend had her baby 3 days ago and I'd love to gift this with the southern hemisphere winter solstice constellation, Pleiades - "Matariki" in Maori. ...But the solstice is tomorrow morning, so if I can't learn the French Knot well enough to complete 7 knots overnight, then I'll have to research simpler star/knot techniques.