You know how one thing leads to another?
Our first “outside speaker” at the East Yorkshire Embroidery Society when we ventured onto zoom was Elizabeth Almond, who talked to us about blackwork. I told her that years ago, I made a sampler of the UK, by tracing a map of suitable size from my school atlas, and sellotaping a piece of graph paper behind it to make a chart. She said “I do encourage you to have another go. There is such a lot you can do.”
Yes, right. Along with all the other textile things I’m going to do when I have a moment…
But then I saw a picture of a clock on Pinterest. It was quite nice, but I was sure with a bit of thought I could do something I liked more. Cue more “research” time, looking at books and Pinterest, mostly adding to the list of what I’m going to do when I have time rather than refining my clock design. Blackwork chess boards came up a lot, which is no surprise. A chessboard gives lots of nice even shapes ready to be filled in, so they are a good excuse for blackwork.
I was going to make a chess board years ago. My ex was a keen chess player (North Yorkshire Police champion for many years, no less), and he thought it was a brilliant idea. But we couldn’t work out where to put it, as the only sensible place for it was occupied by his beautiful wooden board. So I played other games instead.
Then it occurred to me that there is no reason why I couldn’t get back to that idea. Then my eye was caught by the Lewis queen who sits next to my screen. So I spent my Christmas present money on a Lewis chess set, and made a board to fit them.
Here is the result:
I’m now working on a blackwork solitaire board to go on the other side. I’m, planning to play on that using the pawns.