Eke Krug – Architecture – Stave churches and braids patterns

The first thing that comes in my mind with the architectural theme, are the stave churches of Norway, and the beautiful carvings with the braids patterns. The churches have a very specific style and appearance and are very old. A lot of information about it can be found on the internet: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stave_church

For several years we lived in Undredal as neighbors to the smallest stave church of Norway. While we were living there, all the stave churches in our department, Sogn og Fjordane, were restored, so it was a huge project, also in our little village.

I was invited by a friend from Undredal, to accompany her to the reopened stave church of Borgund, about an hour away from us. There was a nice ceremony with Norwegian costumes and  music.

The Borgund stave church is bigger than the one I  our village and has many more staves and carving patterns. I found a blueprint of the floor with all its staves, and a cross-sectional view of the church, which I used for my quilt, http://www.chapel-in-the-hills.org/architecture.html

The difficulty in this theme was the stencil. I thought I would find a stencil from a braids pattern, that I could use, but I didn’t. It had to look like the woodcarving used on the door of the Urnes stave church, also in the Sogn og Fjordane, here you can find a picture of it: http://www.sacred-destinations.com/norway/urnes-stave-church

In the end I bought a stencil that had the feeling of the woodcarving. And I found some quilt stencils with braids patterns that I used.

The blueprint is printed on thin lutrador, which I gave a little color with transfer paint. After the printing it is colored with a marker and embroidered by hand stitching. The beads stands for the staves of the church. The lutrador is machine stitched on a piece of cheesecloth, that is painted using iron, soda ash and black tea, using a double needle for the first time.

The stencil gave a problem by using it with paint. The lines are so thin, that they disappeared. After a lot of trying and experimenting with different kinds of paint, I finally made a photocopy of the stencil on thick lutrador, colored it with Inktense pencils and stitched it with hand embroidery.

The braids stencils for the quilting are both machine and hand stitched and the cloth is colored with Intense pencils too.

When I thought it was finished, I decided to make some stitches on the lutrador in the middle of the piece. That became a lot of stitches, but I like the result.

In the surrounding where we live now, are also two stave churches, Nore and Uvdal.

In this link you find all the stave churches of Norway: http://www.stavkirke.no/index.php?option=com_djclassifieds&view=items&layout=blog&cid=1&Itemid=131&lang=en


lutrador light and heavy weight – cheese cloth, dyed with black tea, soda ash and iron – several kinds of embroidery threads –  Inktense pencils, quilting stencils – stencil – beads – batting for table runners


hand and machine stitching – hand embroidery – sewing with help of quilting stencils – machine stitching with double needle

You can visit my blog Kleurdesign to see more of this project

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  1. carolinehiggs

    This is stunning, your use of stitch has really given the piece texture and the hand stitch is exquisite.

  2. joanbrailsford

    This is a wonderful piece, and the intricacies are really well worked. I love your use of the twisted braid designs, and I agree that the hand stitching is marvelous. Congratulations

  3. An absolutely beautiful piece, Eke! I applaud how you have interpreted the architectural braids, and the work it took to get the right shading, and I too agree that your hand-stitching is superb!

  4. What can I say that has not been said, this is stunning your stitching prowess is incredible we can all learn from this quilt. Bravo

  5. It is such a beautiful quilt ! I like the way you used the lutradur and how it worked perfectly ! of course your hand-stitching is superb, and the use of the double needle very clever !

  6. Wonderful use of materials and techniques you are to be congratulated on a wonderful piece

  7. English quilter

    Eke Thank you for introducing me to the Stave churches of Norway. I was not familiar with them. The stitching and the amount of detail you have incorporated is outstanding. I love the use of Lutrador and cheese cloth. This is an outstanding piece.

  8. What can I say that hasn’t been said. I agree with everybody. Amazing piece, beautiful hand stitching and eye for detail. Congratulations Eke.

  9. Wow! I agree with all of the comments here. I now need to visit a stave church.

  10. Wauw, you used a lot of different techniques and the result is beautiful. i agree with the comments above.

  11. What more can I add? it is just beautifully executed with a wonderful use of various techniques and different textures. The piece is stunning and I read and re-read the detail of the processes and your perserverence to get the detail right Is a great lesson in itself. I will take the time to look at the websites you mentioned.

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