Since I realized this is not the most common type of stitching here's a bit about it. According to Jane Nicholas, the teacher I learned the technique from; Stumpwork is a style of Raised and padded embroidery that has its origins in the seventeenth century. It incorporates a charming array of motifs - exotic flowers and fruits, insects and animals - all worked as delicate sculptural forms
This is the start on my second piece, my first done in the class with Jane, and its from her book Stumpwork Embroidery (check it out, the images on the front and back cover are beautiful) It is a design of flowers and berries with a dragon fly all done in shades of white and cream. The technique itself is not too challenging, its more tedious than anything, the biggest difference thing is the needles, they're SHARP! It uses straw/millners needles as well as crewel and chenille. The technique follows traditional embroidery and incorporates padding and wires to add dimension to the work. Above is my base fabric, this will be the finished piece. The blackberries are done on a seperate piece of fabric and cut out and then attached to the main fabric.
This is one of the pieces for the detached flower petals, the wire is covered in fabric and you stitch a buttonhole stitch over it to hold it to the muslin. Then its filled in with long and short embroidery. Its then cut out, and together with the rest of the petals they are attached to the main fabric so the flower comes up off the fabric. This one is destined for frogging however, I used spendor and its got a kink to it that is keeping it from laying as smooth as I'd like it.
My LNS was right there for me though. This is silk they brought back from Portugal and it looks absolutely fabulous. I wish they had more colors in white/cream, I'd have gotten them but they only bought a few back from their trip to see how well they went over.