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Marbled White

This week’s inspiration image is a marbled white butterfly.

I took this photo last year on a walk at Martin’s Down in Hampshire. It’s one of my favourite walks and I often walk with my Dad and family here. The whole area is full of Bronze Age, Iron Age, Roman and Saxon archaeology, including the impressive Bokerley Ditch, a probable Iron Age ditch and bank, which was fortified against the invading Saxons in the 5th and 6th centuries. There are also 2nd World War firing ranges on the site. The wild flowers, butterflies and birds are spectacular here! The flowers below are milkweeds and they’re prolific in the area, in several colours. As you ca


Last year I did a Butterflies and Beetles workshop with Zara Day Embroidery, where we made a textile butterfly and beetle. I used a similar technique to create this marbled white butterfly. I traced the shape and markings onto white cotton using a window as a light box (still on the list to get!)

I layered the cotton with the tracing on top of interfacing and a scrap of needlepoint canvas to give it stiffness and then stitched the design through all the layers. I used stranded cotton in black to stitch the markings. I used scraps of fawn and black yarn to create the body, and silver wire for the antenna. I realised afterwards that I need some fine black wire for antenna in the future.

I cut the whole piece from the cloth, and stitched a matching piece of cotton on the back.

The blanket stitch I used for the bottom of the wings added a frill effect, and the back stitch along the top of the wings runs along the original stitching so you don’t see it. Last I stitched a safety pin behind so I can wear it as a brooch. Or at the moment my monkey paw plant can wear it!

Next week’s inspiration image is below. Send me photos of anything you make inspired by these images and I’ll enter you into this month‘s prize draw to win a textile pack.


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