The Grass was Greener

I don't know these women, though they are related to me. The two columns of distance and language prop up our stranger-hood. My grandmother, pictured on the far left, emigrated to the United States from the Czech Republic in the 20s (she always called it Bohemia).

When I added this photograph to my computer library the software tried to identify each of my great aunts and my grandmother. It made me think about my original intentions with this piece.

Babi was an adventurous sort with definite opinions. She would launch into Czech when she wanted to make her point known to my father. He would nod and smile.

I've spent the past couple of months with their images, experimenting with embroidery. My fingers are punctured and calloused, my neck a little stiff, and my eyes a bit fuzzy from the strain of looking at all this detail.

I learned about the right needles to use (very sharp with larger eye), how the fabric reacts to hand stitching as opposed to machine stitching and which thimble I prefer (see below).

I regret not having a fatter batting in the sandwich, I may try wool next time. I tried to use an embroidery hoop but the batting and double layer of fabric was too thick and the frame got in my way. The inset linen frame around the edge was a supreme challenge that taught me a lot about how not to cut 45 degree joins when you have a limited supply of perfectly edged linen. (no need to go into detail, you get my meaning)

My favorite thimble has a silicone bottom and a metal top. The silicone clings nicely to my middle finger. I love that the photo program sees a little being in it.

So, now I am done with these women. They live in my memory as a strong and stalwart group.

I think that they, too, would put a bandaid on before applying the thimble so as to be sure that it stays on.