This piece was a specific commission for a birthday present.
The client provided me with a range of photographs of Dora, out and about on walks so I was able to get a feel for the playful nature of this lovely Lab!
It was important to find out about the recipient too to ensure the colours I used would blend with their decor.
Creating the story
Where-ever possible I upcycle, preloved textiles to give them a new life.
Working from the photographs, I sourced pure wool fabric to replicate Dora's coat. As it lacked the warmth of her fur I naturally dyed it to get the perfect shade. I used a lovely green velvet and linen to provide texture in the rugged hillside.
Using free motion embroidery I created the structure of Dora, the creases, shading, areas where fur was longer and more textured. Creating her ears was fun as they were so characterful with their folds and varied textures. Doing her snout and nose was great too! This is when her personality started to come through. Then the portrait truly came to life once I added the white of the eye.
Finally I signed the piece using my sewing machine and transformed the portrait into a lined cushion. Dora looks a little perturbed about this new pet in the family!
This was a perfect gift for my sister. The detail & precision that went into the embroidery was just astounding. Beautiful work.