Pocketful of borders (Simple Simon)

Illustration for Simple Simon from "Pocketful of Posies"

 When I finished making all of the fabric relief illustrations for Pocketful of Posies, they were stitched onto foam core board. I added registration marks and then sent them to the photographer. Now that the book is being printed, I’m busy making the artwork presentable for their 2nd jig as framed pieces of art.  


Each picture needs a different border to match. Strong, bright colors would compliment the illustration for the Simple Simon rhyme, with its fair booths. I made side and corner patterns and cut them out of felt.  


I then blanket stitched around the outside edges of the felt pieces with some variegated thread. The Caron Collection has some great colors to choose from.  


The inside of the border looked too abrupt, so I tried some rick rack along the edge, to soften the transition.   


I chain stitched some loops, the date, and my initials in variegated embroidery floss. Since it’s hard to write on wool felt, I don’t use any guide lines for embroidery, but work free style. I decided to change the rick rack to a golden color, which set the border apart from the inside illustration. So, instead of softening the transition, I ended up giving it more definition. 


There was space for a wider border, so I put some green open weave trim around the outside. I added some dark green bias tape underneath the trim, to give more contrast and show the holes.   


There’s always a question of how busy a border should be and how many borders within borders to make, like ruffles on a skirt. It could go on and on and you could have a tiny image in the middle, with a huge border around it. Many quilts and fiber art seem to be made up of just borders, which is fine with me. 


Note: See other posts from the Pocketful of Borders series here.

7 thoughts on “Pocketful of borders (Simple Simon)

  1. Salley – I have been sharing your site with everyone I know. I am overwhelmed by the tiny detail. Every time you post another project i think I have “seen it all” – and then you post again. Thank you for delighting us with your gifts!

  2. The green border is unexpected–and looks great! Love the way you highlighted the holes from behind, too.

    Thank you for the link for yarn!

  3. Salley–I love the borders, but it’s the central green area that really drew my eye in this illustration. A few years ago, I used to send away for some beautiful hand-dyed wool felt that came in a wonderful array of softly streaked and mottled colours. I’ve been trying to use it as slowly as I could manage, but I’ve finally run out and can’t find anything comparable on the market. Do you have a reliable source for hand-dyed wool felt that you’d be willing to share? I understand if you prefer not to divulge sources, but if you are willing, I’d be much obliged.



  4. Brilliant use of that dark green to highlight the open weave of the outside border. You’re still the smartiest smarty I know. Thanks again for always sharing your bits of inspiration and ingenuity.

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