Mother and Child

I embroidered this version of Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s Mother and Child in 1998. I don’t know how large the original red chalk drawing is but my version is 4.5 x 5.5 inches. In the drawing, the mother might actually be sewing something but it wasn’t possible to say for sure from the greetings card that I used as my source. I had forgotten that I gave her a piece of needlelace. I’m not even sure that the fountain in the background is part of the original either.


not quite done yet

Two more pots/baskets/bowls, whatever you want to call them. The blue and white one has a hinged lid and reminded JP of a snake-charmer’s basket.


orange dish

snake charmer basket

I’d sue otherwise

If these little houses were built from bricks and mortar I’d sue the architect, but since they’re only figments of my imagination constructed during twenty or so minutes of somewhat jerky hoop movement under the sewing needle, I don’t need to. Free-motion embroidery, on polycotton fabric, approximately 4.5″ x 4.5″.  I thought the Juliet balcony in the last one would be an excellent selling point although the roof would need to be re-attached to make the place watertight!

cottage house

wonky house

tall house

Sunday stitches

The tissue holders are now made and I prefer the one with the children on it. I used sew-in interfacing on the blue fabric and lined it with quilting cotton which has given it a little more substance than the birdy one. The birdy version was lined with more of the outer fabric and is much softer. The pouch itself seems a little baggy but if I’d made it any smaller it might have been difficult to put the tissues into it. Because I hadn’t measured exactly where to place the children (duh!), they didn’t match up equally to the edge when folded in so I made that one as an open pouch but I think it’s much better and it shows off the lining nicely.




The floral panel was made to liven up the front of an otherwise extremely boring lightweight canvas shopper. I ironed freezer paper onto polycotton fabric then cut them to A4 size before printing the design in greyscale. I stitched it to a larger piece of identical fabric so that there would always be fabric in the hoop as I moved it around when free-motion embroidering. Trimmed to size when finished and edged with some satin ribbon. Something to do on a wet and windy Easter Sunday!



I left the seed pod in Watercress for this morning when I could use the magnifying lamp to assist with the needlelace, finished it, took some photos and then realised that I’d forgotten to do the two small needle-woven leaves at the bottom of the stem but they’re done now. The next one to do is Coriander. Bet you can’t wait!


hot day photographs

A few days ago I noticed a large thistle plant near my home. I didn’t manage to photograph it until yesterday, by which time it had been chopped down, hence the faded colours in the images below. I placed the cut portion against the hedge to take the photographs. I was on my way to keep fit class with time to spare so took the other photographs along the way.

faded thistle

thistle bud

thistle purple

sick tree

sick tree bark

bad hair day

hello sun



feathery fronds

I wish I knew the names all these plants/flowers/trees that I photograph! If you know, share the knowledge!

Inktense trials

I bought a set of Inktense blocks last week and have been playing with them on and off since then.  The blocks are watersoluble ink and can be used as is or with a wet paintbrush or sponge. I tried colour-washing the leaves using what was left on my brush from colouring the stone wall and then tried to do the same on fabric. The process definitely has great possibilities. White isn’t included in the tin unfortunately but on another doodling piece I successfully used a white oil pastel crayon instead.

Inktense washesI was playing around with some fancy machine stitches on the border but they don’t show up well on this image. Really must decide what to do with all these bits and pieces I’m stitching these days…