Friday, March 30, 2007

New stash and drying bunnies

I got some new stash this week. I got the Drawn Thread "Spots of" seasons which were a birthday gift from my dear online friend Joanne. She sent me a gift certificate to a shop which she introduced me to about a year ago. I wanted to get something that would remind me of Joanne even after I had stitched the charts. Joanne and I often talk about the seasons especially our love of the autumn and winter so this seems the perfect thing!
I ordered the next two LHN/CC thread packs also. If you are looking for a really good online cross stitch supplier I can really recommend Mary Kathryn's . She is a really friendly lady who gives wonderful service.
My bunnies are sitting on a baking rack drying now and it looks like it will take them sometime to dry completely.

My 2nd "procrastination" project

Here is the 2nd of the things I am doing for my "procrastination" challenge. I started this bunny garland last year just before Easter. As the holiday came too soon, I did not finish it and those little bunnies hung almost finished on my design wall in the quilt studio for the past year. I had to stitch the last two bunnies together.
They were then soaked in a coffee bath and are now drying on a rack. My next step will be to add the buttons and whiskers before attaching them to a ribbon or wire. I will not be able to show you more of this finish until later as I will be away for the weekend so check back with my on Monday or Tuesday for the finish.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Project bag

For March and April, we are doing a procrastination challenge on my stitching list. It does not even mean finishing a project, but getting out something you have been putting off and working on it.

I have a couple of things I want to do for this challenge. One was to get out this stitched freebie that had been sitting in a basket with the fabrics waiting to be sewn into a project bag. I am so happy that I finished it and wonder why I did not do it long ago! It only took me a couple of hours and now I can use it for my small stitching projects like my monthly pinkeeps. This is much nicer to hold my stitching than a plastic ziploc bag, isn't it?

The sewing basket and pincushion were gifts designed and handmade by my sister many years ago as a Christmas gift. As my sister passed away a good number of years ago, these are items I very much cherish.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Some new finishes to share

This weekend I started a few new projects and these are the finishes. My April pinkeep is one with a fun theme ~ the kids rhyme 'Rain, rain go away; Come again another day'. I love the backing fabric which is from the Aunt Grace series of 1930s quilt fabrics.
I also made two wool felt hedgehog pincushions. Meet Napoleon (left) and Harry (right)! Harry is going to live with an online friend. Napoleon is living here with me as he was the first one I made. My husband gave him his name quite by accident. He asked me why I was making Napoleon's hat when I was starting to sew it together. The name stuck!

Friday, March 23, 2007

Vintage sewing accessories

These photos were taken back in 2005 and I have added a couple of items to my collection since then. We have been talking about loving to collect scissors on my stitching list and I thought it would be fun to put these photos on my blog. This pair of Sajou scissors is a reproduction and I love the way they are packaged so much that they are still in the original box!
In 2005, this was my current collection of embroidery scissors. I have more now but am also making fobs to 'dress' them.
These items include a celluloide needlecase and child's fan, a bone and an ivory crochet hook, a bone bodkin, a bone spool holder, an antique bone tatting shuttle, an antique ivory carved needlecase, antique bone and ivory stilettos or awls.
Some vintage hooks and eyes along with reproduction needlebooks. It is fun that these are once again being produced.
I now have a large collection of darning wool on their cards. This is a vintage item from the 20s/30s/40s here in Holland.
Finally, a few of my large collection of lacemaking bobbins. Each pair comes from a different area/country.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Working with wool felt

I am loving working with wool felt more and more. I decided yesterday evening that I wanted to try to make a pincushion I had seen on a blog. I had been admiring this pincushion for some time and she explains how she creates the flower. I decided to give it a try and had it completed in just a couple of hours. It was fun to put together. You can see the original at:
heart_felt.html#comment-64023632 .

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Clothespin bag

This book, "The French~Inspired Home", is so beautiful. I bought it a couple of months back when it first was published and did not regret it. It is full of inspiring photos and ideas. There are a few patterns in the back of the book also.
One of those patterns is for this adorable clothespin bag. I am turning my bedroom slowly into something more vintage looking and decided to make this little bag. I pulled some fabric from my quilting stash and here are the results. I just love it! To see another wonderful result, look at my friend Lynda's beautiful blog: . She is an amazing seamstress!

A 'stitched' little wooden box

My friend Margaret now has her own blog at . She just shared a photo of her beautiful version of Chocolate Shoppe from our SAL. She mentioned wanting to perhaps put in on the top of a tin that used to contain chocolates. I wanted to show her the finished product on one I did on top of a wooden box. It is just like making half of a pinkeep. Good luck Margaret and I cannot wait to see yours finished.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Happy birthday Mom!

A very happy birthday to you Mom!

This day is a blessing as it gave me not only my mother but a good friend too!

I love you and wish you a day full of happiness.

Painting "Mother and Daughter" by K. Iatras


There is lots of talk of hornbooks once again in the stitching world. I thought it would be fun to share mine with you. I stitched this up as part of a hornbook exhibition for one of my stitching lists back in 2005/2006. I used various alphabets from old Sajou charts and created my own design. It is stitched on unbleached 28 ct. linen 1/1. My step father made the hornbook for me. The black trim was given to me by a friend and I think it is leftover from her making her Dutch national costume. I had lots of fun planning it all out and stitching it.

It was also great fun to read about hornbooks and their place in history. You can read more about them at:

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Needlework verse

'O what great need there is indeed
To make good use of time
That thou mayst find true peace of mind
Now in thy youthful prime.'

~~ sampler verse ~~

Painting "Gold Embroideress" by Vasily Tropinin

Friday, March 16, 2007

Displaying pinkeeps

This week I went shopping for a day with a friend and finally found a low enough basket to use for my pinkeeps. They look really cute in it but it will not take long for this one to be full.

I am trying to become inspired about making some changes in my quilt studio to make it really me. It is a very functional room but doesn't speak to my creative soul. It has not really become my room since I moved into that space. I want to place either some shelving or a small cupboard above my pine desk (which I love) to display the items I love. This basket will eventually be there too.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Needlebook finish

Here is the second part of my quilt group's theme project. They have 4 small paperpieced quilt blocks they made back in February. The first one was used to make a scissor fob and now two further blocks are being used to create a needlebook.
This is the back of the needlebook. This block is called 'Friendship Ring' and the front block is the 'Pinwheel Star'. By clicking on the photos, you can enlarge them for much more detail.
Here is a photo of the needlebook laying open so you can see both blocks well. I sewed a tiny piece of silk cord as a loop and sewed on a little spool of thread button to close the needlebook.
There are four 'pages' in the book to hold the needles most quilters use. There is a page for size 12, 10 and 8 'betweens' and then the last page is for 'sharps'.

These photos are taken on a background of a piece of Cyprus lace which was given to me as a gift from a very dear friend Angela. I really loved this gift and it looks so pretty with my fabrics that I will display it together on a tray. Thanks so much for you thoughfulness Angela!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

My finished Chocolate Shoppe

Well, I am thrilled to say I just finished my Chocolate Shoppe pinkeep. It is chilly here tonight and I have been sitting by the fire watching home shows on TV and working on this. I left the 'Colonial Sign' portion of the design off to make it more suitable for a pinkeep. I am really pleased with how it has turned out and it will be a nice addition to my Valentine's Day pinkeep next February.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Chocolate Shoppe

I have been doing so much hand quilting lately that I am not quite finished with part 3 of our Chocolate Shoppe SAL. I should have it completed and start work on finishing it as a pinkeep this week. I will be leaving the 'Colonial sign' portion of the design away which I think will make it look nicer as a pinkeep. Tomorrow I send out the 4th and last part of the SAL and will be looking forward to seeing their finishes too!

Don't the tulips really make you feel like spring has arrived? We found a bulb farmer near our cottage in the north of Holland who sells bouquets of tulips for an amazing 2 euro each (or 3 for 5 euro). We will definately be going again this weekend to get some more.

Sampler verse

"Happy the maid whose artless mind

In works of innocence can find

Amusement and delight

The landscape on this canvass lay

By which the blended colors may

Give charm and please the sight"

Verse from an 1826 sampler

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

March/St. Patrick's Day pinkeep

Here is the results of the finished pinkeep I stitched up over the weekend. I used a piece of green Debbie Mumm fabric on the back with leaves. The ribbon is a new find among Easter decorations in a shop which is tiny flowers and then of course, I had the accent bow and green glass headed pins in my stash.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Scissor fob finished

Each January, I change the theme for my monthly quilt group. For 2007, our theme is sewing and quilting history and facts. Our project this year will be making various items used for sewing. They first in this project is a quilted scissor fob. Here is the sample I just made for tomorrow's meeting.
They were all given some small paperpiecing patterns to sew last month and we will be using them in the projects in the coming months. This one is made from a crazy quilting patch. I sewed a small scissor button on to embellish it as well as the ribbons and bows.

Weekend stitching project

As you probably remember, I am attempting to make a pinkeep for each month/holiday this year. This weekend, I stitched up this cute free design by Rainbow Gallery . I love it as it not only is for St. Patrick's Day but also celebrates the start of spring. Check back tomorrow when I hope to show you the finished pinkeep.

Needlework verse

Consider well some by past days
On former Times reflect
And see if thou in all thy ways
Are truly Circumspect

~~ from a 1760 sampler ~~

The Seamstress
by Charles Baugniet