Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Story of the Purple Fur Purse

Purple Fur Purse
Story? Yeah, kind of. I had this piece of purple fur for over a couple of years now and somewhere in the last week of February 2011, my sis suggested we should make a circular purse out of it. We visited literally every several cloth store in Dharwad to get the exact purple satin cloth. Finally, we found it in the first shop we visited in Hubli.

In just 4 days in the first week on March, the fur was transformed into a purse. Wanna take a look at the stages?

Placed on a bedspread are 6 pieces of fabric –
  • Above & Below - 2 pieces of fur (the front & back sides are shown)
  • Left & Right – The reverse sides of Satin circles, on which canvas has been stuck (by ironing). Canvas has been used to give the purse some strength.
The next day, aluminum handles were stitched within the fur’s inner circles.

The fur’s inner circle has been covered over an aluminum handle and tacked in place with pins.

The loose edges of fur have been held in place and stitched around in running stitch.

This is how it looks from the front side.

The edges of satin were folded over & ironed in place. Then a machine stitch was done around the outer and inner edges.

The satin has been placed above the fur (the wrong sides facing each other). The upper edges of fur and satin have been stitched together. A running stitch has been made around the handle to hold it in place. The lower edges of fur and satin have been tacked in place using pins. The same has been done for the other piece of fur.

Once the process has been done for both the pieces of fur, they have been stitched together (right sides facing each other). Then the purse has been overturned.

Take a look at the amount of space.

A semicircular inner purse was created with another small pocket in it. And then stitched the sides of the zipper to the either sides of the fur purse.
– What a miscalculation that was:            
  • The semicircular purse could hardly hold anything – too little space.
  • The zipper stitched directly to the fur purse further restricted the space for holding contents & movement.
What next? – Dismantled it.

Next, I thought of a curved edge around the zipper. And also gave it some strength by sticking canvas. Also, the gussets were stitched to either sides of the semi-circular purse to increase space for contents.

Despite measuring the fabric, cutting it accurately & stitching by hand making sure the marked lines match– one edge has tilted towards one side – wonder why?

At this stage, the purse was lacking something.

My sis created a flower with pearls. But we still felt it lacked something. So we decided to buy an artificial flower and attach it. 

And we knew exactly where in Hubli to look for it. So we decided to carry the unfinished purse (bad decision as the purse got dusty due to the long day in the sun & sweat). We checked all the flowers they had to show on March 12th. No luck. Did not look good enough to buy. And we were finally thought I should make a crochet flower. Luckily… on our way back, there were some artificial flower vendors on the road… we casually took a look. They had a matching purple flower, fallen off a vase.

We (my sis & I): Do you sell individual flowers?
Vendor: Individual? Why? We sell a full vase.
We: (Showed the purse) We need that purple flower, which has fallen off the vase.
The vendors willing the gave the flower & checked around if they could pluck some other which matched better. They even plucked a leaf to go with it (that was sweet). We paid them some money for it….. and we had a flower that matched. But still something was missing.

Nothing was done further on the purse until April 15th (Yday night) – I stitched the flower in place and stuck 4 pearls to act as stem… That’s it… this purse was in the to-do list for too long and we had to finish it!
~ ~ ~

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Tiniest Kasuti Work I Have Seen

Uploading some pics of the Kasuti samples that Vrinda aunty has treasured, in fact rescued.

Gavanti Designs
Click to Enlarge
This is the basic work done in about a square feet of cloth.

This has a border too
Click to Enlarge

To give an idea of how detailed the border is, check the close up
Click to Enlarge

And here's a close up of the basic motif

Please Note - Each stitch is about 1mm apart and the back part of the work looks exactly like the front... we wondered where they hid the start & end thread.

A little bit of background on this -
Vrinda aunty visited one of her acquaintances, who was probably the principal/teacher of Women's Training College. She had this sampler at her place and had probably been worked by some students. Aunty treasured it as that's the best and tiniest piece of Kasuti we've ever seen.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Beadwork on Skirt

This is my first work using beads, pipes and Zardosi. Think this was done in 2001. It was a frilled skirt and the entire border was worked. Think I completed it in 2 days (I was too excited to see the finished effect).

Saturday, August 7, 2010

My First Post - For the Grannies

Whenever I think about embroidery, I picture sweet looking grannies, sitting outside their homes, in the mild evening sun with a needle, threads and a cloth to work on. Personally, I have never seen my granny embroider (she was old and eyes were weak to embroider), but I have seen my granny's works - though few with a moderate number of colors - she was very neat.

But I have come across other grannies too - Sharvari's granny (that's my sis's friend's granny). She was a perfectionist. I'll get some snaps sometime to post. I literally adore her. I can't imagine in just one lifetime she created boxes full of crochet, embroidery, tatting, knitting..... and many more beautiful works. She made me realize how little I know and there's so much to learn. And you never know it till you do it yourself. Also that things look too time consuming.... but the results are worth it. I often hear people say "You have a lot of patience" when I say "I embroider". But this granny's work, she worked stitches that were 2 or 3 millimeters long and completed works with more than a foot of embroidery work. Shravari's granny inspired me to quit being lazy & to use whatever time I can spare to work on my hobbies and also to take up everything that looks complicated!

I thought my first post should be for The Grannies Who Embroider because I came across the snap at the start of this blog. I've seen this granny just a couple of times - but I didn't know she embroiders. This work is by Dr Jayant Antani's mother. During my last visit to Dr Antani's home in Dharwad, I saw this pillow cover. That's machine embroidery and those stitches were so tiny - this granny must have been the one for minute details too!