Monday, July 18, 2011

A makeover for the goldfinch

Forgive my giant photos, I wanted to show you some before and after shots of the applique with embroidery and the difference it's made to the applique.
Here's my wee Goldfinch  prior to any embellishing.
Here he is after a small amount of coloured pencil shading around the yellow parts. Sandra Leichner explains how to do this on her blog here if curious minds want to know.
Doing the embroidery on the eye makes  a whole world of difference. I used simple straight stitches with floss for the highlight and three rows of sewing weight thread in stem stitch to outline the eye.
I put the thimble there in case you were wondering how tiny that appliqued circle was. I actually measured it just for you and it was 3/8" before embroidery. You can see I did the beak as well.
Isn't he just the most handsome little fella? All the embroidery is completed and he looks like he's about to fly off at any moment. The feathers and outlines are again done with sewing weight thread in some sections and embroidery floss in others. I used a  hoop to control the tension
I've also highlighted most of the flower petals and am now starting on the background embroidery.
I pinched this photo of the male Goldfinch to show you the real thing in case like me,  you don't live in America and have never seen a real one

70 comments:

Maree: said...

Beautiful Work Janet the Embroidery really can bring the pieces to life...
cheers

Barbara Budelman said...

Love the goldfinch finished.
What background fabric did you use? I would like to make one.
Thanks,
Barbara

Kayly said...

Absolutely wonderful! Keep the photos coming.

nicolette said...

The Goldfinch really has come alife! Beautiful work!

Fiesta said...

Janet, so beautiful and inspiring. what kind of pencils did you use?

Chookyblue...... said...

that is ridiculously amazing Janet......the effect is WOW.........welldone.........

pamina said...

Beautiful, beautiful bird and flower! Amazing work, Janet !

Stephanie said...

Mr./Mrs. Goldfinch was beautiful before the added detail. Now's he's so life like and beautiful.

Barb said...

I just think that your applique is so amazing....

Jackie said...

Absolutely stunning!! We have tons of Gold Finches in our trees and I just love to watch them, they are so brilliantly yellow and such cute little birds. Yours is absolutely stunning!

wendywoo63 said...

just one word stunning as said keep the photos comming Wendy

Janet said...

Beautiful. Amazing how the stitches
make it pop out.
Just lovely.

ranette said...

You must have very good eyes....lol...perfect work as usual and I love it!

Notjustnat said...

Thanks Janet, it's beautiful and realistic. Purple and yellow do go well together and a dab of orange too - Hugs Nat

Karen said...

Amazing!! You do absolutely beautiful work. Thank you for sharing.

Mary said...

wow Janet! That is so amazing....I love this! How fun to add these embellishments...it takes your applique to a whole new level! I love it :)

Pinkadot Quilts said...

FABULOUS!I can't even imagine trying to embroider that eye, very nice. I love you background fabric, French words? I really want to see the embroidery on the background, be sure to show us that too!

Linda K said...

Thanks so much for showing us the steps to bring this little goldfinch to life. As I sit here in Georgia, USA, looking out my window, there is a goldfinch sitting on the bird feeder, so I just had to comment and tell you that you have captured him beautifully.

Crispy said...

WOW he is amazing Janet!! What type of pens did you use for the shading? Gold Finches are my favorite bird and am lucky to have LOTS of them in our area :0)

Crispy

Sheila said...

Simply stunning , I love the goldfinch , they are such beautiful birds and you have captured it perfectly!

Kirsty said...

Wow! You are so, so talented! That's amazing. You clearly love what you do and your embroidery is so intricate. Just beautiful. Well done! I think the real thing must be jealous of your stunning goldfinch artwork.

Ellen said...

Amazing!

Linda said...

I'm usually not fond of birds translated into fabric, but you've really made your finch look special. I'm blessed to occasionally get to see goldfinches when I walk on a trail at a riverside park. They fly so quickly, and almost erratically, that they're difficult to see. That's what makes your finch even better... I can admire it. The coloring and embroidered detail makes all the difference between it being a nice bird and a spectacular bird. Thank you for sharing the process. Very well done, as always.

Fischtown Lady said...

Oh, Wouh! Your goldfinch looks very well! What a different! Amazing!
Greetings, Marita

Stray Stitches said...

Gorgeous!!!!!

Marjorie said...

Absolutely amazing. I so want to do this pattern...as soon as I finish 20 other things.

supermom said...

Oh WOW, what a difference... the embroidery just makes it come alive. You did some beautiful work on the gold finch and the flowers.

Dixie said...

Just gorgeous - amazing what the embroidery did. Love birds in quilts!

Nedra said...

Janet, your work is just amazing. I stand in awe.

Lori said...

Fabulous Janet!! The embroidery brings the applique to life!!

Donna~~ said...

Wow wow--wonderful!

Oops-Lah said...

Absolutely stunning! You must have very nimble fingers to be able to handle something as small as the bird's eye.

Kathryn said...

It's too bad you can't see these birds in person. We have them at our birdfeeder daily, and they are one of my favorites. Your rendition of one is just amazing.

Carrie P. said...

Wow, Janet! you did an amazing job. Well done.
I am blessed to see those little guys all the time at my feeders. I love to hear their chirps.

Janet said...

What a beautiful bird! The embroidery adds so much. Thanks for the close up photos.

Lisa said...

It's beautiful! I have to admit that I wasn't sure how that eye was going to work, but the embroidery makes all the difference.

We have tons of goldfinches--I can tell when they fly by even if I can't see what color they are. They swoop as they fly--they look like they're on a roller coaster! In the winter they turn a light green, kind of like the background of the photo only much paler.

Quilting Queen said...

Hey, that looks like the birds at my feeder...good job. Inspiring...makes me want to get back to embroidery and applique.

Annette said...

I am just in awe over how beautiful this is.

Dolores said...

This is beautiful. Thank you so much for showing us and telling us your process.

Heather said...

Fabulous! Your work is absolutely beautiful. Thanks so much for posting this and providing a link to her patterns. I think I will have to order them soon.

Thimbleanna said...

Wow Janet. He's Stunning! That embroidery makes all the difference. I wish you could see the real thing -- they're such pretty little birds. We see them all the time on bird feeders around here.

Coach Tina said...

You do such beautiful work! Thanks for sharing.

Dora, the Quilter said...

Absolutely beautiful. (I don't get to see gold finches where I live, so especially love yours!)

rona said...

Your applique and embroidery are amazing! Thanks for sharing. We usually only see gold finches at the end of spring in my area. We make a point of going out and looking for them and other migrating finches and warblers. The are are beautiful little birds. :)

Sharon said...

Beautiful, it's all in the details, and you excel at the details. I'm glad you showed a photo of the bird, makes your work even more amazing.

Doris said...

Goldfinches are the State Bird of Iowa... they are so lovely... My grandmother had a knack for attracting them with a specific feeder she used, so we always saw plenty growing up! Your applique and embroidery is beautiful!

Shirley said...

Your work is just exquisite Janet. The detail is just amazing and so full of life and movement. Well done to you.

Pokey said...

I always liked how the outlining on my old cross stitch made the work pop, and that is exactly what your finished stitches have done! Your birdy has life shining from behind those eyes, you never fail to amaze me with your talent. Hope you can keep this one from flying off the quilt!
:-}pokey

M and M plus 3 said...

Thank you so very much for showing the how to, before and after photos. I need to do the embroidery on my applique blocks I'm working on but don't always have a vision of what and where to apply. BTW- he is really handsome!

Julia said...

What an amazing difference the highlighting with the embroidery makes Janet...you have captured the little bird and brought him to life..
beautiful.
Julia ♥

taylorsoutback said...

Your little gold finch looked lovely before but then the finishing touches - especially the eye - lifts him up up and away! Just super!

Karen said...

I could swear he is real and looking right at me. You have done a stunning job with the block.

Mary said...

Love how this is turning out. The bird is beautiful.

Miriam said...

Beuatiful embellishment, Janet. The stitching on his eye really brings him to life!

Terry said...

Goldfinches certainly are beautiful birds Janet! And yours is no exception! :0)

Ann Champion said...

THe shading and embroidery have added great depth. I do believe your bird could fly off at any moment! Very well done. :)

Helen said...

He's beautiful but very different from the UK goldfinch www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/g/goldfinch/
(sorry, I don't know how to make it a link!) I love how the shading and embroidery has made him even more handsome!!

KathieB said...

No goldfinches in Australia! You must come here and watch them demolish a feeder full of thistle seed in minutes. Despite their size, they are big eaters. And sing a lovely, melodic song, I might add. Your little finch is lovely BTW...

maria rosaria said...

Che meravigkia!!!!Dall'Italia un abbraccio per la tua bravura!

Joan said...

Beautiful Janet

ulaj said...

Co za wspaniały pomysł. To jest tak piękne, że aż brak mi słów :)

EileenKNY said...

Brava, Janet, brava!! You have done Sandra proud. Are you going to do the whole series?

Cassy said...

Great work. You're very creative. Love the bird.

Cassy from Best Online Guitar Lessons

Kathryn D. Duke said...

your applique is exquisite!! what method do you use? thanks

Solstitches said...

Stunning! I am blown away by this beautiful applique.

Margaret

Sallie said...

WOW! This is GORGEOUS!!

Ivory Spring said...

Oh my, this is breathtaking! You ought to be called the Sandra Leichner of Australia!

Lisa said...

This is wonderful Janet. I will check out the link for the shading. I'm starting a Baltimore Album Quilt soon, so I'm sure I will make good use of your tips.

Quilt Hollow said...

I've been making rounds in blogland trying to catch up since I'd been ill. I have to comment on this piece....OMG!!! GORGEOUS!!!

Robin said...

Wow! The before and after really is dramatic. I mean, I thought the finch looked beautiful just appliqued. But the embellishment truly takes this little fellow to the next level! Thank you so much for sharing the photos.