Sharing a common thread with those who love the art of hand embroidery

I cannot count my day complete
'Til needle, thread and fabric meet.
~Author Unknown

Hi, and welcome! The whole purpose of this blog is to share my passion for hand embroidery. I love hand embroidered linens throughout the home and I am always busy designing and stitching. This blog is to show what I am designing , working on, and dreaming about, and to share the love of embroidered stitching along the way with you! I love to hear and to see what others are creating. Enjoy your visit and please feel free to comment or email me if you would like to do so!
Kathleen

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The prettiness of variegated embroidery floss

shows up really well on this shirt that I have just finished embroidering. 

To achieve the look and feel I wanted,  I stitched  with various skeins of variegated floss, cutting the strands at different color and shadings

and working the stitches in the areas I wanted certain colors to be


This is such a light and cheerful transfer and I wanted that feel in the embroidery

I embroidered the shoulder and upper arm, by opening it and  lying it  flat

so that when the shirt is worn, the embroidery will be seen both in the front and back of  the arm and shoulder, 

with one side panel embroidered in the front.  Sweet , simple,.........and pretty.
don't you think?

my next project is this somewhat "vintage" coat........possibly from the 80's but in "like new" condition...........
when I saw it hanging in a thrift store window............in the hot sun.......
It seemed to plead with me..........." I need embellishment"
It needed to be rescued before the sun ruined it.
It is made of wool with a satin lining...........if feels so soft.
Although the red typically makes it a "holiday" coat..........I am not embroidering 
traditional holiday design onto it...........no
I have a whole lovely idea forming for this pretty coat.
I hope to be showing you ...............soon
So tell me............what are you creating??

Monday, April 18, 2016

Oh, give me the country! where grass is green;
      Where the roses bloom with satiny sheen;
      Where the modest violet lifts up its head,
      As on it the warmth of the sun is shed:
Give me the country! where all is serene;
      Where the air is pure and fragrant and clean,
      And noise of the city is far away;
      Where gaiety thrives through each night and day.
God made the country, so lovely and fair!,
      Its wide open spaces for all to share;
      Where joy and contentment each one may find
      If he, earnestly, seeks for peace of mind.
Gertrude Tooley Buckingham, "Give Me The Country!" (1940s)

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Working With A Difficult Embroidery Transfer

I may stray from my needle once in a while to create something else in another medium, ............as in my last post......
but only for a short while...........
and then......I pick up my needle and do what I love the most.......
embroidery! 
This is a portion of a shirt that I am currently embroidering on for a dear friend.

I love the variety of butterflies



dragonflies

flowers, and leaves of this particular transfer. 
The fabric of this shirt is easy to embroider on............

This is also another shirt I am embroidering for my friend, but the print fabric is not so easy and not so cooperative. 


I wanted a particular rose transfer for this shirt, but because the transfer had black lines and the shirt itself is black plaid..........it was extremely hard for me to see the transfer.
If you have this same problem, but you still want to embroider a shirt ........or on fabric like this........

be very patient, sit in good light, and take a white or bright sewing thread and work a running stitch over the entire design.
( I have tried white transfer pencils, but the marks often fade away after much handling)
It takes longer to mark it with running thread, but you will then be able to see the transfer distinctly and it will stay while you handle it. 

You can then begin to work your embroidery
Depending on how you work your embroidery stitches.......you will not have to remove the running thread......as the floss will cover it........
however, if you do see the running thread through the embroidery,  carefully snip the running thread, avoiding the embroidery floss and pull out with tweezers. 

I think this came out very well 

and somewhat pretty

but as you can see, it is still not as vibrant and does not stand out as much as I would have liked it to.
In saying this.........make sure your floss colors do outshine the fabric pattern of the shirt.
So tell me.......have you ever had a difficult transfer or pattern to work with?

Sunday, April 10, 2016

I have always loved rocks...............

we hardly went to the movies for entertainment, when I was young........drive in theaters were more popular than indoor theaters in the 70s for my family at that time.............
my mom and dad loved to go to lakes.........not just for fishing, but just to go and to enjoy the outdoors.
On various trips to the lakes.........or even days when they just wanted to " get away"
my brother and I would find ourselves in the back seat of the family car.......... traveling down some dusty
gravel laden back road while our mom and dad talked their usual chatter with each other,  enjoying the pleasant drive.
At least once on the back roads, the car would come to a halt and our dad would say
"let's go hunt for rocks"
This was one of my favorite times on these trips.. 
We would walk the barbed wire fenced,  hard packed road in search of  pretty and unusual  rocks,
sometimes running across a horned toad or lizard and taking time to pick a handful of blossoming wildflowers.
Once home, we would place the rocks into a flower bed/rock garden.

Those times have stayed in my heart and memory throughout all  of my years
and in different areas on the grounds here..........
there are rock gardens that I have made.........under a mesquite tree in the woods,
along a beautiful large cactus growing on the meadow........
and along the house flower beds.
I pick a few up at a time on my long walks with Sohpie ( my dog)


Sometimes I want to make things with them....
garden paths to my greenhouse and pond...........

sometimes I like to make pictures to place along the rock gardens

and lately........I have made wall hangings.
Mine.........are a little primitive.......but I don't want to copy others....

I want to make what I love......and what comes to mind. 


When I see different rocks, I start picturing in my mind, how they could be used.

You can find so many inspirational ideas on what they call
"rock art" on Pinterest or other websites.......
 and then go find your rocks........which are pretty and odd shaped 
or you can buy them, 
which have beautiful colors and uniform shapes for the perfect design
and then.......create you own things.
I love to find them, although they may not be the perfect shape for creations,
they work for what I want .
No matter on how you get your rocks...........take time to enjoy finding them and then take a really good look at their beauty.


Sunday, March 13, 2016

Another denim jacket

I have now embroidered..........this one is for a dear friend.
When I got together with my friend to put together some ideas for this jacket,
she wanted embroidery on the front, 

and the back.

She wanted flowers and one of my "favorite spiderwebs"

and I added some more cheerful flowers

on both front panels.

She loves butterflies

For the back she liked the idea of a Southern Belle.......the collar on the jacket......for some reason......made me think of a lady with a French poodle.......
my friend also liked that idea......
so I combined both.......

I then added a flowering trellis

I took a lot of time embellishing the lady's umbrella, collar, 

and bottom dress.

The French poodle was mostly worked in
"French knots" what else?

I asked my friend what is one of her favorite scripture verses........
for her........... Psalm 118: 24 " this is the day that the Lord has made, rejoice and be glad"
I took the word rejoice to signify the scripture and then made a ray of sun above it.


I titled this jacket.........Southern French
I then added my own embroidered label to the inside and off it will go to my friend next week.
So tell me..........do you have a favorite scripture verse?
I would love to hear!
*****If you love meatloaf..........I have a recipe with a new taste instead of the usual tomato sauce topping.
This has a brown sugar, cranberry/orange sauce and is wonderfully delicious.
The recipe and the story of the author of the cookbook it is from is on my cooking blog



Thursday, March 3, 2016

March brings breezes loud and shrill,
Stirs the dancing daffodil.
Sara Coleridge (1802–1852), 
"The Months," Pretty Lessons In Verse, For Good Children

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

When life throws you scraps.............

make a quilt
author unknown 

I titled this quilt.......
" My Cup of Cheer"