Hopefully the slump is at an end, mostly thanks to a commission which meant I had to get my big girl pants on and get on with it.
Winter Blackbird II is made using a curve-pieced panel on top of which I've added the blackbird and cotoneaster branch using raw-edge applique: they are fixed in place with free-motion embroidery in Aurifil threads as I find that using the 50 wt with a sharp new needle helps prevent too much fraying round the edges. The background is made using shot cottons supplemented with some old cotton curtain lining, and metallic gold silk for the winter sun. The blackbird and branch are also sewn using Oakshott cottons - the different warp and weft colours add so much life to the fabric and stop it looking 'flat'. The blackbird's eye is a shiny black bead sewn on with a couple of stitches of Aurifil wool to add the highlight.