Tristram wallhanging

Or not, as the case may be…

My medieval chair is really quite uncomfortable, specially when I’m sitting on it for long periods of time doing embroidery. The cushion I made last year was plain and boring, so I decided I needed a prettier one.

Applique laid out and tacked ready to sew. I’m using the lower left panel from the Tristram wallhanging in the V and A, with two minor changes.

The first change as that in the original the knight has a sword hilt sticking jauntily out from his crotch, and quite frankly it looks like he’s sporting an enormous erection. Now I can’t for the life of me think that any right minded dragon fighting professional would ride out gesturing as though he was going to pat a dragon on the head whilst waving his, erm, enthusiasm in the face of the enemy.

I mean, I can imagine a quite considerable number of World of Warcraft players would certainly get a bit of a stiffy if they saw a real live dragon, but not a well trained medieval knight.

And I really don’t think there could have been that many ye olde interwebs dating sites that had ads reading “Handsome knight, GSOH, WLTM fire breathing reptile for fun frolics and possible kink”

Or maybe there were?

Anyway, I didn’t want to be sitting on that sort of filth. Not in public, anyway.

THis actually took me longer to sew than I’d originally anticipated – three days instead of two (Am on holiday and had resolved to do lots of fun quick things as a break from big projects, hence the recent machine made stuff), mainly because the strips of gilded leather are surprisingly tricky to manipulate, specially on the corners. I did try slicing them partially through to make them bend better without twisting, but that mostly seemed to end with me slicing them all the way through by accident, so I went back to bending them carefully.

The strips, btw, are a little wobbly as I cut them all by hand. I did consult John about using his strap cutter, but he said they don’t work well in thin leather, and are a bit useless for thonging anyway. Cutting the leather was the really boring bit.

The Leather was all sewn down with the same white linen thread.

I still haven’t decided whether I like the effect or not, and I’m not sure how well it will prove to wear as a cushion, but we’ll see.

ANd the second change? Well, if you blow the piccy up you may notice that our brave knight is wearing lippy, blusher, and pale green eyeshadow. This has been nicknamed the Grayson perry cushion cos Gareth and I both decided the knight looks like Grayson in his tranny gear, so I thought, “What the hell…”

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~ by opusanglicanum on June 10, 2012.

24 Responses to “Tristram wallhanging”

  1. Lol! Funny post. He does look like Grayson Perry.

  2. !!!!!! This is amazing! Love the makeup….. 🙂

  3. Stunning as ever. I have a project I want to do – applique pillow, what fabric do you use for the applique items? Is there more than one choice?

    • it depends what style you want to do. there are some medieval examples done with silk and linen, but good english wool is easiest(the original of this was done in wool) because you can cut it and it never frays, so you dont have tto turn the edges. but from what people on the yahoo group say about washing wool before using it, it doesn’t sound like you get good english wool on that side of the atlantic, because one thing you never ever do with decent english wool is wash it, ever, end of story.

      One of the nice things about applique is you can do it with anything though – is it a modern piece or historical?

      • It’s a modern piece, but I might do an historic one some day. Tell me what you do to care for wool, silk. It’s hard to find wool here, I bought some lovely wool in Paris. Linen is also something difficult to find at times, and then it is only plain, I found some lovely plaid linen in Paris too. Wish I’d had more euros, luggage allowance and time. Ditto re shopping for fabric in London, but I didn’t plan that part of my trip well. Btw do you want pics of the Burses from the V&A? I took a few when I was there.

      • if you want it to last the best path is to wash it as infrequently as possible. iwth silk wash by hand and use shampoo or eucalan (I use baby shampoo). english wool cloth, fullered melton and worsteds, are priced according to the finish, and as soon as you wash them you loose the finish you;ve just paid a premium for – fullered wools are designed never to be washed, if they get muddy you wait for it to dry and then brush it (for dresses your shift takes the body dirt and you wash that – I have costumes that are older than some reenactors becuase I care for them the same way medieval people did). from what I hear from americans though, the wool they get isn’t the quality we’re sued to over here, but i think you can do an international order ith hainsowrths if you can afford thier prices.

        english reenactors are lucky that we have anwar, who supplies good linens at reasonable prices – I shudder to see how much some places charge, I really do

        embroidered wool if it need to be washed should be treated the same as silk

        It took me a hiwle to put two and two together, but actually I think am ok for the pics – I have most of the v and a stuff in my own files I think,. My prob with the burses is construction, not decoration. I got a book on contructing liturgical textiles but it four different designs for burse construction and I’m not sure which is period

  4. Even the raw layout is great and the finished work completed ……….Fabulous.

  5. One national treasure celebrating another. Bet he would love it.

  6. Great idea! And very beautiful result!

  7. I lolz.

  8. It looks great and I’m sure Grayson Perry will be very flattered to find himself immortalised as Tristram’s face!

  9. i googled the wall hanging, and I think you made the right choice with regards to the sword hilt. This looks wonderful! Hope it is comfortable as well.

  10. It looks just *beautiful*! So does Gareth.

    • is not gareth, its grayson perry, the transvestitie potter who won the turner prize

      JOhn gave me jenny’s book – seventeenth centruy womens dress patterns vol 1 by susan north and jenny tiramani – for my birthday. Hvae you seen it? Its full of embroidered jackets, coifs and gloves, and has really detailed close up pics of the embroidery and layouts of all the patterns – it seemd right up your street. of the 20 or so pieces examined I’d say half are embroidered(there are some quite plain and a knitted ajcket too) and the level of detail is far bettter than msot embroidery books

  11. I’ve been through your galleries and your work is absolutely amazing… very impressive!

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