So, week five was the week before the Superbowl and while I'm not a huge football fan, like so many people I get sucked into the drama of the championship, and of course I had to root for New Orleans. I've only been there once but I do have a tenuous connection with the city due to all the hours my dad spent there when he was at LSU.... that counts, right?
I've been wanting to get away from the flowers and also continue with my use of materials I have on hand - that wasn't a specific goal, but damn - I have a lot of craft supplies around here. Might as well use what I've got, right? I decided to do some embroidery on a t-shirt and after discarding a few dumb ideas, I decided that a tribute to the Saints in the form of a fleur de lis was going to be it.
This little project was almost a bit of a fail. I was sure I had a light grey t-shirt that could use some jazzing up. I was also sure I had some iron-on stabilizer in the craft stash. I was wrong on both counts. I still haven't found that t-shirt, and I must have hallucinated the stabilizer.... So, plan B, I knew I had a darker grey shirt that had an oil stain on the front that could stand to be covered up a bit.
I printed a fleur de lis, tried on the shirt in front of the mirror for placement, and traced it with a transfer pencil. Then I ironed the design onto the shirt.....
Yeah, kind of hard to see, but I've got sharp eyes. The real issue here? The oil stain I wanted to hide is on the LEFT side. D'oh! I had a mirror image moment - I guess I really should have pinned it in place.
Oh well, the stain isn't that bad and it's too late to do anything but stitch on! I decided to just plunge in and do it without stabilizer or hoop, since the fabric is a pretty thin knit and I didn't want to distort it. I had lovely floss in purple and gold....
And I plunged in, careful with the tension so stitches were even and had a bit of give. I heart stem stitch!
I kept it simpler than I had originally planned - the gold looked garish against the darker t-shirt, so I called it finished after I did the purple outline. I actually really like the subtle contrast, and it doesn't scream "New Orleans" so it's more versatile to wear.
Here's the only decent photo I got - the lighting in my apartment is so awful it's really hard to get a decent shot:
All in all, I'm pretty proud of this work! It's really even and not distorted. It was tricky but not impossible - the lack of contrast between the fabric and the design was harder to deal with than the tension, but as long as I had good light, it wasn't too bad. I used 6 strands, but I really prefer 3 or 4, I think. If I had used fewer strands, I probably would have been able to be more detailed.
And in case you were wondering, I finished it in plenty of time to wear while watching the game to its thrilling conclusion :-) Lucky shirt, indeed!