box of birds robin

More than half the robin is sewn and I’ve already sorted out threads to stitch a blue tit simply because I’m enjoying embroidering birds at the moment.

I don’t want to use the traditional stumpwork needlelace method to make three dimensional branches for the birds to perch on so I’ve sorted out a few bits and pieces to try something different.

Bis Sis’s Wip 5

Finished at last.


Big Sis’s wip 4

Another update on my progress with Big Sis’s wip. Not much more to do now.


Big sis’s wip 3 and a gift

A small parcel was ‘tossed’ through our letterbox today. I say ‘tossed’ because it landed at least three feet away from the door and the definition of ‘tossed’ according to one online dictionary is “to throw lightly or with a flourish, especially with the palm of the hand upwards. I can’t quite visualise the postman delivering mail with a flourish but that aside, I think ‘tossed’ is one of those words that deserves to be repeated several times, after which it somehow ceases to have any meaning at all.

Aaaany waaaay…. A big thank you to Big Sis who sent the parcel which contained fancy swanky thread snips. I hadn’t long ago bought replacement snips for about £1 but found them difficult to balance under my thumb due to the narrow blades so I added thumb supports of a sort. I used plastic tubing cut open lengthwise, rolled it around the base of the blades and secured the tube with duck tape. It worked surprisingly well and the snips were much more comfortable to use. My scrap length of elastic landyard kept the snips handy but I’ve been surprised that I haven’t yet snipped myself or my clothing when bending from a seated position to pick up something up from the floor. The new deluxe snips are designed to be hung around the neck when the very secure cover is on but I can see me putting the snips down on my work area and later expecting to find them hanging from the neck cord but they are bright enough to (hopefully) be found quickly.


Latest Footpath to Quarndon wip work done – a few distant fields, trees and hedges.




Big Sis’s wip 2

This post is to prove to Big Sis that I have been working on this. I also stitched most of the wall and the gate posts a while ago but then I got involved in dressmaking again so it was put to one side for a while more.  I picked it up on Wednesday evening thinking that stitching it might spark some ideas for a new embroidery project and it did! But you’ll have to wait for that. The tree was quick and fun to do.



Big Sis’s wip

I added a few stitches yesterday and then thought that I ought to take a piccie before doing any more. I’ll post again as I do more to it so that Big Sis can see that it’s not just stuck in a cupboard!

The office I worked in twenty years ago had organised a coach trip to a stitch and craft show at the NEC in Birmingham and as Big Sis was visiting me at the time, we took the opportunity to go. She bought this Footpath to Quarndon Rowandean kit and I bought Barbara and Roy Hirst’s book Raised Embroidery. I have to own up to always wanting to stitch this. I think I badgered Big Sis into buying it, saying that it would be quick to stitch. Quicker than twenty years anyway! I haven’t given up on my own thirty-odd years old wip in case you were wondering. I keep it near and add some more stitches now and again so it too will eventually be finished – promise!

footpath to Quarndon

felt embroidery

While I was stitching this teapot piece I remembered that the last time I did any major piece of hand embroidery on felt was in the ’60s. It was a cushion cover and the theme was Beatles related although I now can’t visualise the finished article. Probably just as well. Tea is more my line of entertainment these days.

The pattern comes from Summertime Sampler by Erica Kaprow which is a set of quilting templates for “colorful wool appliqué”. Had I read the blurb on Amazon properly I would have realised that I wasn’t buying a book as I had thought but I like the colourful designs and they can be mix-and-matched so I expect I’ll use a few more of them. The hand stitching is easy and with my new headlamp (a gift from big Sis) I can stitch for hours in the evenings without disturbing JP’s tv viewing pleasure.

I used stem stitch for the leaf veins and the ‘steam’, and buttonhole stitch for appliquéing the pieces to the 12″ x 12″ background.

felt embr2

How not to do it

I’ve been out of my workroom for nearly a week whilst I helped or hindered (depending on your point of view) with the interior painting and subsequent cleanup of a coffee lounge, and now that I’m looking at the photos of this container which I made last weekend, I don’t know why I thought that grouping six triangles together would result in a three-sided base. I was so determined to get such a shape for the base that the last triangle had to morph into a curvy kind of parallelogram. One part of my brain had been telling me all along that I’d gotten my maths wrong but I ignored the shouty messages and that is why my latest pot base is not a fabulous zig-zaggy triangle, unveiled and waiting to have plaudits showered upon it and me but this poor pathetic excuse in whose company the word triangle has no right to even be hinted at. Four would have been a good magic number of small triangles. Or even just one. Lesson learned and I’ll have a little chuckle each time I look at this one. Once it’s filled with things, the base isn’t seen although the eyes are then drawn to the wonky hand-winding of the double woollen strands. Hmmm.





floral request

I was recently asked to make more fabric flowers so over yesterday and today that’s what I did. I think I’m better at making them than photographing them!



scent-free garden

I’ve been making these flowers since yesterday and plan to make more but floral arrangements are few and far between in this household so a trip to the local charity shops might be in order to find a suitable container together with a book on flower arranging!