Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Traditional Monograms



I am often asked to design monograms. People have many expectations when they ask me to work on such tasks and it can result in great embroidery and yet sometimes not. The task can be extremely time consuming and I really work to research past examples from a large resource I've put together over the years, but sometimes one's initials do not make good embroidery.





My favorite monograms have an ability to look like a graphic design first, a monogram second. These are tricky but so rewarding to make when possible. A client and friend has the same three initials - three J's as his first, middle and last name and it is difficult to find a plan that pleases him. The above monograms were created using historic graphics by my expert digitizer and friend Jerilee Auclair. Her hand with these beauties is remarkable.

The blue monogram above was created for Michael Hampton, a designer of the team of AD100's Thomas Pheasant, Inc. Michael has an amazing gift for creating wonderful architectural drawings and watercolors. He has a blog that focuses on his work, please click "Michael Hampton Watercolors" to take a look. The monogram below I digitized for my good friend and designer Brenda Fox Wilson for a client. It was used as upholstery on a bench at the foot of a bed.




I utilize established monogram programs that are available to the embroidery community and I also digitize my own. Many of my monograms are large - about 10" - 14" high and wide, and I have even created 18" high Roman Numerals for chair backs which were really wonderful. The trick with large letters is determining a way to articulate the graphics in thread so that one can create interesting stitches and cover the area of the letter. A combination of pattern stitches along with satin stitches is often the way I handle the project when doing pillows, chair backs or bench upholstery. The above photos are some examples of my custom work that I feel worked beautifully.

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