Friday, 5 February 2016

Everything Stops for Tea!

Still enjoying my little embroidery projects, I worked this in just a few evenings.  Whilst I do prefer my projects to have a practical use, a small panel does make a nice gift if you know someone who would appreciate something handmade. And of course you can make it personal to that person. I know quite a few people for whom this one would be perfect!!! I'm sure you do too. :o)

You could of course put the panel in a frame but I saw this way of hanging a project on Claire's Sweet Birdy Love blog last year and wanted to try it. It was a steep learning curve and I made a few errors along the way - including trapping my thumb in the wire cutters! But the next one will be better, not least because I'll buy wire that is easier to bend. I used a wire coat hanger and it was very difficult to work with.

And inbetween times I'm working these little patches that will eventually turn into a baby quilt I have planned. I much prefer having more than one project on the go as it stops me getting bored - but then of course there is the danger of nothing getting finished!!! But knowing there is a definite recipient out there and a definite time scale is an incentive to keep going, so I'm not bored yet!

I used these little drawings for my patterns.  Some of them have been slightly altered so they would fit into the square patch.  Designed by my favourite embroiderer Priscilla Mary Warner in the Dryad Press  leaflet Embroidery for the Nursery.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

I've squirrelled it away....

I finished a little gift for my friend to give her friend. Apparently they have a squirrel thing going on between them so I hope they both like it. I like making zip purses - they are so useful for storing bits and bobs. This one is big enough for pens and pencils.

I found the squirrel design in an old Dryad Press leaflet entitled Embroidered Dresses for Children. Its written by one of my very favourite embroiderers Priscilla Mary Warner and features five sweet little girls' dresses decorated with embroidered motifs 1950s style. This gingham pinafore is my favourite. Sadly I fear no little girl would submit to wearing such an outfit nowadays. 

And if you read my last post, you might like to see the finished autumn leaf panel. I really enjoyed working it. A quick and easy project that encouraged me to carry on with another gift using embroidery - a small pram/car seat quilt. Already started it!! :o)

Photographed on yet another dull and grey day - even outdoors doesn't produce a particularly good image at the moment!  But we do have the occasional sunny day, for example last Friday was beautiful! I sneaked off by myself to walk on the beach.

Hmm, a shell embroidery is floating around in my head - perhaps nearer the summer!

Sunday, 17 January 2016

Colour for a Grey January

Here we are half way through January already and not a project finished! However I have finished the first stage of my first stitching for the first month. I don't know about you but I've always thought of the months of the year in colour form and this year January is definitely grey. However I wanted something more colourful to start the year and decided on an Autumn theme (and why not!). And that meant I could use the pieces of old (mainly Welsh) wool blankets I've been collecting. 

Its quite a simple design - simple shapes and easy basic embroidery stitches. I haven't decided on the finished product yet.... could be cushion, lap blanket, wall hanging, but I won't be putting it behind glass as I love the raised texture of the appliqued leaves.

The next step is backing and I think there will be simple quilting. I'm adding a layer of cotton batting between the blanket and grey flannel backing.

I used vintage threads to embroider too. Some are labelled for crochet, some knitting silk, and some for embroidery. I like that all the materials I've used, except the batting, are reused/recycled.

I've already got two more projects planned - both using embroidery in some way. A friend has asked for a gift for her friend featuring a squirrel and there is a new baby on the horizon to stitch for. I'd like 2016 to be my year of embroidery but we'll see how it goes.

Love to know what your New Year projects are.... and perhaps see a photo or two when completed!

Friday, 1 January 2016

Happy New Year!

Here's another old card I picked up along the way somewhere. Galleons are often seen on greeting cards of the 30s and 40s and I never could understand their significance but this New Year message says it all I think. So Happy New Year to us all and I hope 2016 will bring a peaceful end to at least some of the world's troubles - sadly I doubt it!

But to all us crafty types we can at least hope for a creative year ahead and perhaps a new string to our bows! Not sure what mine will be yet..... so much to choose from.

Friday, 25 December 2015

Thursday, 24 December 2015

More Origami

Still got the paperfolding bug..... I think its going to be my thing in 2016! Really love these stars I learnt how to fold here on the Homemade Gifts Made Easy blog. There are video and photo tutorials. They are so nice I'll probably leave them up after Christmas.

There is one other star I want to learn and haven't worked out very well yet. Its the German paper star made by folding long strips of paper. My sister moved to a new job in Berlin this year so I'm hoping to decorate her Christmas gift with one tonight. I'll show you later if it works out. This is what they are supposed to look like!

Froebel Star - German Christmas Star
Here's the source:

Finally I'd like to send all my lovely followers (and especially you fantastic few who regularly send me such kind comments) this wonderful old Christmas card (I think its 1950s) I found on ebay a few years ago. LOVE IT!

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Jingle all the way....

I've been rather obsessed by bells this Christmas season - almost everything I've made has had a jingle added! There are lots of bells on these snowflakes I've made to hang in the window.

I saw these Pierced Snowflake dies from MFT (My Favorite Things) on the Make the Day Special Blog and really liked what Jenny had done with them. There are lots of snowflake dies on the market, and I do have a few, but these are really pretty and even though I often have difficulty with larger dies on my ancient cuttlebug, these cut perfectly and even the tiny dots around the edges are well defined.

As usual I've used cereal box card. Yes, all these really are cut from just cereal boxes - there is no top layer of fancy paper. As snowflakes are, of course, symmetrical I cut two for each and glued them back to back. As soon as I've glued each shape I quickly put it under something heavy to keep it flat and well stuck - a pile of magazines is perfect as you can put two or three between each magazine with a big pile on the top.

The white card comes from a rather expensive cereal I always buy when its on offer, but I really like the natural card too. You'd probably pay quite a lot for "Kraft" cardstock in a shop or on line so before you assign your empty grocery packets and boxes to the recycling bin I'd advise you to take a second look - you never know what you'll find inside!

I've joined the snowflakes together with jumprings and added the bells with jumprings too so that they stay loose and jingle nicely. The one with red bells has a couple of beads added too. A bit of wire or twine would do just as good a job if you don't have jumprings in your stash.

They don't have to be joined together though, they are just as pretty on their own. But of course I still couldn't stop myself adding a bell or two! :o)

Just realised the background in that photo looks a bit strange! No, I haven't shut the cat in the cupboard - its a bottlebrush fox waiting to be released and put on the Christmas tree! However I have to admit Titch is finding it difficult to get a comfortable spot for her naps amongst all the chaos that is my Christmas crafting space!!!


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