Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Naming designs the Jacobean way

So you’ve come up with new designs, sketched and drawn them up, chosen colours and embroidered them, all the while referring to them in your mind as Jacobean 1, Jacobean 2, Jacobean3… But then you get to the point where the embroideries are nicely mounted and ready for photographing, the patterns are being drawn up and you now need proper names for each of these designs.

Sometimes it takes a while for the penny to drop, sometimes the names come to you almost instantly. And although I do often like going with straight down the line, call it what it is kind of names, at times I like to challenge my inner wordsmith and indulge in a little wordplay.

As you may have guessed by now, the imminent new designs I’m talking about fall under the banner of Modern Jacobean – contemporary designs and colours, but still using traditional Jacobean embroidery stitch techniques.

A quick flip through some of my older Jacobean and crewelwork books brought up project names like Arabesque, Baroque, Heraldic Gold, Ascension Balloon and Springtime. Generally quite grandiose names with a whiff of old English about them, which makes sense knowing that the style became popular in England during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I.

In keeping with this theme, I was interested to see if I could take the idea and come up with contemporary versions to go with my Modern Jacobean designs. And I think I managed alright. How do Burnesque, Shylock, Oakenfold, Regality and Sweetsong sound? Look out for the new patterns in the next week or two.

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