Embroidery: Seriously, I Have Too Many Issues


I don't like to reveal too much personal information about myself on this blog ("HA!" laughed every reader who read even one of my medical history posts), but I wanted to make an embroidery piece for my new cubicle, and suffice to say, I work in the magazines/journals industry. And I'm a mess of a human being, so the natural choice for my piece was the phrase:


I mean, it's perfect. But I didn't want just typography, so I googled vintage Vogue covers to provide a background for the phrase. When I came upon the following issue from Feb. 1, 1964, I knew I'd found the winner:


If my internet research is correct, the model is Wilhelmina Cooper and the photographer was Bert Stern. Unfortunately, the phrase I'd picked wasn't going to work with the Vogue title being at the top of the image. I needed it to be at the bottom, so I moved the lettering down and added the rest, with the photo 'behind' it:

I loved the blue of the model's coat, so I picked varying shades of blue for everything but the title itself:

Then I filled in the letters and got started on the face:

To use the full number of strands of black thread for the mascara, the lashes would have been too thick, so I removed 2 or 3 to allow more lashes to fill out the eyes. It's tough for me to figure out how to fill in faces this big, so I decided to leave her skin 'empty.' 

The flowers in her hat were done free-hand by me, which will come as no surprise once you see them. My flowers are sporadic, diverse, and not really in keeping with the laws of the physics you would expect of flowers in a hat shape. 

I decided to start from the bottom sides, and use black centers for the pistil/stamen, like a poppy, in keeping with the original image. 

I tried to keep like-colored flowers away from each other, but didn't always succeed. And I tried to keep to a pink-red-coral-purple-light blue-white motif, also to keep to the original. 

And then the last flowers were complete!

The only issue was that the first three words seemed kind of hard to read. You could make them out, but the colors are a little too close to the flowers. I really like it, but if people can't read it fairly easily, it defeats the purpose of the words altogether, and I could have just done with model and her hat. So I outlined everything but Vogue in black. It makes it much easier to read, even if the black is a little harsh next to all the colors. I also added the outline of the model's coat.

Overall, I'm really pleased with the result, and love seeing it now on my cubicle wall!

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