When my bloggy friend, Jenclair, at Bayou Quilts and Dolls wrote about her encrusted pieces which are embroidered, I was intrigued. She mentioned that she's interested in turning some into brooches, which I love, so I decided to give it a whirl. My effort is not even close to the beauties she creates, but I'm not disappointed either.
She made a few suggestions when I commented and told her about my interest. Those definitely helped, but I'm not quite as brave as she is, so my piece is not encrusted at all the way hers are.
I started with a small circle drawn on white muslin. I embroidered simply motifs because my skills have lain dormant for many years. I really love blue, so I used a variety of blue threads.
I've made a few beaded brooches before and like those, so I planned from early on to include beads. I figured that if nothing else, I could cover any bad embroidery with beads.
I wasn't so disappointed in my stitches that I felt an overwhelming need to cover them, though. So while I did couch some beads in the center of the piece, the rest of the beads encircle the embroidery.
As is my way, once I started couching beads down, I had a difficult time stopping. I tend to drop them in even circles that get continuously larger as they are added. By the time I get to the edge of the piece, though, I've begun piling them on. It's necessary to go around the edge also.
While I used mostly blue glass beads, this brooch wasn't too particular and any bead in the vial was fair game. It just happens that there were a few purple, some green, and two or three clear beads. I love this brooch and can barely wait to wear it on Saturday at the Quilt Show.