Author(s): Hazel Blomkamp
Whether you refer to it as crewel or Jacobean, this free form of surface embroidery has been around for centuries and is still popular amongst needle artists today. Because of the nature of the fanciful objects and the tradition of using a large variety of stitches in one project, it lends itself to endless creative expression. In this book Hazel Blomkamp uses a wide selection of materials to update techniques and inspire embroiderers to explore whilst working loosely within the confines of crewel work styles. She shows needle artists how to be creative with fabric, threads, beads and alternative stitches, borrowing techniques from other forms of needlework, and still producing a product that is typical of the crewel or Jacobean style of embroidery.The original designs include: Projects including beads and metal threads to add sparkle and texture to your work. Monochrome embroidery making use of a variety of threads and beads, all within the same colour range. Techniques employed in needle-made laces with designs defined by means of texture. More traditional embroidery including shading and satin stitch and the many variations of trellis couching to provide texture and interest. The completed embroideries are displayed in ways that are not only decorative, but are useful in the home.
If you are a fan of Jacobean stitching, or Crewel work as it is also known, you will love this book which presents a new slant on this traditional method. The author draws on the variety of stitches and surfaces available in Crewel work and updates the technique by using creative approaches to this traditional technique. Her use of metallic threads, beads and needle-made lace techniques bring new creative methods of stitching to an old technique. There is information on stitches which are beautifully illustrated, suggestions for threads and suitable beads, plus rich decorative illustrations of projects. She borrows techniques from other forms of needlework and integrates them beautifully into the traditional designs. Satin stitch, shading and variations on trellis couching are all well known methods and the author also uses these to create textured surfaces to enhance her projects. This book would appeal to the traditional stitchers who wish to develop their techniques to create sumptuous surfaces without loosing the richness of the Jacobean tradition.-Megonline.co.uk It is nice to see someone pushing the boundaries of traditional crewel work. Also known as Jacobean, this form of embroidery has been around for hundreds of years. Hazel's work is definitely traditional but has a twist, in that she uses materials not traditionally associated with crewel work. Her projects also use beads and metal threads and techniques used by lace makers. Great projects in this book. I very much like the way the projects are used in cushions and for useful additions to the home. Not sure about the comments on the Chinese, if I had been the editor I would have deleted that. Daylight lamps are surely the answer to embroidery and eye sight problems. Good instructions and photographs.-Yarnsandfabrics.co.uk/crafts In her new book Hazel explores the use of a variety of materials with the addition of beads and metal threads, to inspire more creative techniques, whilst maintaining a recognizable Jacobean, or Crewel, style. Beautiful coloured photographs show the detailed stitches, and full instructions guide the embroiderer through each project step-by-step, with suggestions of uses for the finished work. This book is highly recommended for the traditional stitcher, or anyone wishing to try a more contemporary approach to this most popular form of embroidery.-East Kent Embroiderers' Guild
Hazel Blomkamp has dabbled with all the needlecrafts since childhood. When her children were babies she developed a passion for embroidery to break the tedium of life with toddlers, using it as her evening reward for having got through the day with her sanity intact. Her children are now young adults and she still embroiders in front of the television every night. She has been designing for the past 18 years. Preferring to design projects which appear to be traditional, she pushes the boundaries by introducing other forms of needlecraft into traditional techniques, exploring further in everything that she does. Along with designing, she runs a busy website from home. She teaches at her home studio, in Pietermaritzburg, KZN, and travels throughout South Africa and to Australia teaching embroidery and fine beadwork. She is a regular contributor to South African and Australian embroidery magazines and is a columnist for South African Stitches Magazine.