I received a “wish” from my daughter-in-law recently, for a proddy broach in the style of a prairie lily. I was quite flattered and more than delighted to see what I could come up with.
Not being a prairie girl myself, my first task was to google prairie lilies to see what they looked like.
Aha, much like the day lilies I have growing in abundance in my yard. (…..well will have growing if spring ever arrives)
With only six petals, I felt I’d better use blanket weight wool so it wouldn’t be too flimsy….but my supply of blankets is non-existent, and in fact all I could find was one piece of beige that I’d rejected in other projects because it was too heavy.
OK. I could make this work. What dye(s) would magically transform this blah beige into a vibrant orange. I looked through my charts and decided to try mustard, golden yellow, cantaloupe. and orange.
I dyed a little test strip of each colour….and….
got this…..top….mustard….too dark and too red 2nd down….cantaloupe……YES!
3rd down……orange ….too dark bottom…..golden yellow…..too yellow, but with possibilities
I dyed two pieces with the cantaloupe (OK), and two pieces I dyed golden yellow, then dip dyed them sideways on both edges with cantaloupe. These were my favourites. They would have some shading and yellow in the throat.
I began with a test flower.
….and just laid out the petals on my desk to get an idea of the outcome. 6″ was a bit too big, so I cut down all of the petals about 1/2 “. Of course fixing one problem just presented me with another..cutting them down made them also narrower. I need enough backing covered in the centre to attach the pin and hold the whole thing together without it showing through to the front. Not having the option of adding more petals, I made skinny “lily-leaves” and placed them between the petals.
….then ….out with my trusty “Tacky Glue” and on to the finishing. First I glued the ends of the leaves under the petals.
…then the backing. Many people sew the broach pins to the back, but I choose to purchase the ones that have a sponge sticky pad. I use a hole punch and pop my pin through the holes, then glue the backing and pin to the back of the flower (staying within the backing circle) The pin sticks to the back and absorbs the glue holding it in place securely. I’ve found if I use something to spread the glue evenly (like a ruler, old credit card, or piece of heavy construction paper) it makes a much smoother backing.
…a day to dry, and I’m ready for the final step……cutting off the excess backing. I do it from the top so as not to cut into the petals or leaves by mistake.
Finally I use a black fabric marker around the edge to make that white backing edge less obvious.So tomorrow….into the mail and off to Regina, where my wonderful clever and talented daughter-in-law will have a prairie lily (the symbol of the Saskatchewan NDP party) to wear on her lapel as she begins door to door canvassing as the NDP candidate for Regina Pasqua in the upcoming provincial election. Thank you Heather for allowing me to have a weeny teeny part in your exciting campaign.