Thursday, 20 December 2018

Back to School

And back in time.

Do you remember the Chalet School stories by Elinor M Brent-Dyer? I had never heard of them until I met Jane-Beth, who has a large collection. The first book in the series, and there are many, is called "The School at the Chalet". I have not read the book, but I did like the cover. It has a deceptively simple design, with a mellow water-colour feel to it. In fact I liked it so much that I wondered if it would translate into needlepoint.

I worked on this from June 1998 to March 1999 and probably spent as much time creating the chart as stitching. I found the most difficult part to chart was the clothing on the two figures. It took a number of attempts to get the folds and wrinkles in their dresses close to the shading of the original. Selecting threads to maintain the feeling of water-colour was not easy either, particularly on the "white" dress which, after long consideration was really shades of blue.
The canvas is 18 count, the yarn is two strands of Appletons Crewel wool. The picture is worked entirely in tent stitch and measures seven inches by eleven inches.

The Chalet School books have a large following, including embroiderers. Soon after completing this I was fund raising for the National Osteoporosis Society. One of the ways I raised money was to sell charts through the magazine run by Friends of the Chalet School (who also own the copyright to the cover art).

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