I have a new book coming out in June this year. .
Called 'Crewel Intentions' it will be published in South Africa by Metz Press. At the same time, it will be published in the rest of the English-speaking world by Search Press. So, that includes Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United States of America and the United Kingdom.
As its title suggests, it continues the theme of my last book, Crewel Twists. That traditional Jacobean or Crewel embroidery motifs are empty canvases waiting to be filled with anything that inspires you. It uses stranded cottons, satin threads, perle threads, cordonettes, metallics, beads, crystals and absolutely no wool.
Along with up to date materials, the techniques featured in the designs are diverse and different. In Crewel Twists I used, along with crewel stitches; bead embroidery and needle lace techniques. Many of these stitches are used in Crewel Intentions and I have added Brazilian embroidery stitches, stumpwork techniques, a nifty way to add flat back crystals to your hand embroidery, and most important of all, some really interesting needle weaving.
I spent many hours investigating the world of loom weaving and, having done that, converted those techniques for use in embroidery. Apart from adding a whole new category to my repertoire of stitches, it has been absorbing. It is so fascinating to watch your efforts develop into a tartan or a check, a gingham or a houndstooth, or even a texture that resembles twill.
Eight projects provide the vehicle for the techniques and, like my last book, have been made into useful objects.
The first is worked on Dupion silk and is mounted in a small sherry tray. It is fine work and the weaving stitches are a lot less complicated than they appear. I will be teaching this project at Beating Around The Bush in Adelaide during September/October 2014.
The second, worked on Hopsack, is a large project and is mounted on a round footstool. I will be teaching this project at Koala Conventions in Brisbane during June and July 2014.
Designed specifically to be mounted in a music box, the third project is worked on Dupion silk. It is a small, quick project that should appeal to those with limited time. I will be teaching this project at Beating Around The Bush in Adelaide during September/October 2014.
Inspired by the colours in English bone china, the fourth project is worked on a linen/cotton blend fabric and has been mounted with handles on the picture frame, so that it can be used as a tea tray.
Also worked on a linen/cotton blend, the fifth project has been designed to form the face of a mantel clock.
Another project designed with the busy person in mind, the sixth project is worked on Dupion silk and mounted in a small paperweight, although the lady who has proof-stitched the project for me is going to make it into a pouch for her mobile phone.
Project number seven has the needle woman in mind. It forms the front cover of a large needlebook, guaranteed to accommodate many needles and pins.
Inspired by the colours in an African autumn sunset, the final project has been mounted with handles on the picture frame, so that it can be used as a drinks tray.
For embroiderers who want to mount their projects in the same objects as I have, a buyer's guide at the back of the book gives you the links to where they can be bought. From Australia, the United States and England, all of these accessories come from reputable companies.
Still at the layout and proof reading stage, the book has not yet gone to print. Although I don't have an exact date, publication will be in June 2014. Like Crewel Twists, it will be available on Amazon, Kalahari, through Leisure Books, the Book Depository, your usual embroidery book suppliers and, of course, from me. Because of my contract with my publishers, I will stock the Metz Press edition, so will only be able to supply those of you that live on the African continent. If you live anywhere else, you will need to look for the Search Press edition. The Book Depository is a good place to start.
With the publication of Crewel Twists and the increased traffic on my website, we discovered that www.hazelblomkamp.co.za was not as user friendly as we would like it to be. My Geek is hard at work designing a brand new website which, without compromising its security, will be simple and very easy to use. We expect it to come online in the next month or two and we will be asking all of you who are registered to confirm your username and password. You will receive an email from us when that time comes. .
And finally, Crewel Twists which is available in English, Afrikaans and Russian, is in the process of being translated into French. The anticipated launch of that edition is August 2014.