Saturday, December 29, 2007

Friendship Block Finished

Here is the 6 inch Friendship Block for Wendy all finished! I love it!
I added gold beads to the tatting at the bottom, and a couple of gold beads to the leaflets on the ends of friendship. On the upper left I added ribbon stitch leaves to family and some Hen & Chicks tatting with red and gold beads added.
To the center I created a rose motif using melanie roses, spiderweb roses, and ribbon stitch buds in red, yellow, and pink. Then I added in stem stitch stems and ribbon stitch leaves, and very last I added some glass leaf beads.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Friendship Block Progress

I started working on this block some more, to finish it as a gift for my friend Wendy.
I started by adding green single strand DMC floss in feather stitch in the lower left, to which I added 4mm yellow ribbon stitch flowers and green size 15 beads. Then I added a bit of tatting just to the right. I've had this bock on my back burner for a while thinking it over and today I had Tea using my Royal Albert teapot and I was admiring the rose motifs and thinking they would make wonderful SRE motifs! I know Wendy loves that pattern too and the combination of red and yellow roses so in the lower right I started with a full yellow rose which I used 4mm silk ribbon starting with 3 colonial knots for the center and I worked twisted stem stitch around and around to make the rose. Then I added a nice 4mm red melanie rose for a side view and then I added pink rose buds trying out different things for different sizes using ribbon stitch. Then I used the fade-away pen and drew in foliage and then embroidered it in with stem stitch and ribbon stitch leaves. I also added a filigree butterfly to the green patch.
Then I had the idea to do a red and yellow sweetheart rose under friendship with ribbon stitch leaves around and I added 2 metal butterfly beads above.

I think this block is coming along nicely!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Mr & Mrs Pillowcase Gift

Here is the replacement set for the puckered You & Me set, since these were a Christmas Gift I wanted to wait to post until after Christmas! They were done using a single strand green DMC floss in stem stitch and size 15 seed beads that are double stitched into place. I just love the crisp result! Here is the pattern for the MR/MRS set.
I did send the You & Me as a "bonus" set since I know they will love them anyway, but wanted to send a nicer set too.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Ornament for Wendy

The ornament I made for my annual church ornament exchange went well! I was happy that the ornament was "stolen" three times (white elephant style). Wendy had wanted the ornament but didn't end up with it so I told her I'd make one just for her! She's just so sweet and such a wonderful friend she deserves one of her very own! Wendy was also planning on making one but didn't get it done in time...SO she's going to make it just for me! We talked about it and want to make a tradition of exchanging hand-made ornaments with each other every year!
So for me a new tradition has been born, every year I'm going to make an ornament for our tree, the exchange, and for Wendy!
I've always wanted to make a silk ribbon poinsettia ever since I saw This Link. And the one that Carol-Anne did last year! Also I've seen the one Wendy is making and it's a red thread painted poinsettia. The poinsettia is made using 4mm silk ribbon and bullion-tipped lazy daisies. In the center I added gold lined size 15 seed beads, and around the poinsettia I embroidered fine gold fly stitch fern. After I sewed the ornament together I added a bead tassel using Swarovski crystals, and size 15 seed beads in clear and gold lined. I made sure on the back of the ornament is MA'07 for future reference.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Green and Purple Bouquet Brooch

Here is another brooch! My goal was to add 3 new brooches to My Etsy Shop, so I finished this one this afternoon. It may seem fast but really I just focused on doing them since I know I won't have time to work on anything in the coming next few days! On average it takes me 2-3 hours for each of these.
For this brooch I used a mossy green silk fabric, and then added darker dusty purle 7mm sweetheart roses and then some dusty pink 7mm sweetheart roses. I also added 4mm dusty wood rose sweetheart roses. Then I took some dark green silk chenille and added colonial knots all around for greenery and a bow!

Soft Bouquet Brooch

I also made another Brooch last night before bed, so I just took photos and put it up in My Etsy Shop! For this design I tried to be more free with my placement and just started by putting 3 yellow sweetheart roses off to the side and then added feather stitching in variegated green thread. Then I added in some rose buds in 7mm ribbon stitch, with 4mm green ribbon stitch. I added a Melanie Rose in 4mm ribbon and then some bullion tipped lazy daisy leaves. After all this I felt the feather stitch area was a little weak so I added size 15 seed beads! Then I added a glass flower to the center, and it seemed complete.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Rose Heart Brooch

Tonight I thought it would be nice to make another brooch for My Etsy Shop since I finished all my Christmas projects! I'm going to be making a few more too, are there any requests for colors? My natural tendency is for the pinks!
I made it by drawing a heart and filling in the shape with alternating darker/lighter pink 4mm silk ribbon sweetheart roses. Then I added 2mm silk ribbon leaves in ribbon stitch. I used Dupioni Silk overlaid with Lace for the background. The colors seem a big strong in the photo, they really are a bit softer, funny how the camera does that!

Embroidery on Baby Clothing

I've gotten a few questions on how I made the embroidered baby t-shirts so I figured I'd create a tutorial to help out.
  1. First I buy either some onesies or t-shirts but really any baby clothing would work (this also works for adult clothing)
  2. I wash the clothing in order to preshrink it.
  3. I iron-on a design I would like to use. You can find iron-ons in many places like here, you could also create your own by printing out a pattern and using iron-on pens and trace it to create an iron-on pattern. Here is a list of free pattern links. There are other methods of transferring patterns, like tracing the pattern using a light-box or window and a pencil, or other fabric marking tool.
  4. If the fabric to be embroidered is stretchy I cut a piece of Cut-Away Interfacing to cover the area to be embroidered and baste around the edges to hold it in place. If it is a non-stretch fabric I skip this step.
  5. Next I use a small hoop and DMC floss (you could use Perle cotton as well, or any color-safe thread) and embroider the design in any way that I think would look nice. Here is a link to a free embroidery stitch library, and Here is a link to a free embroidery video library. Here is a list of my favorite embroidery books. I prefer to use a knot in my work but some don't think it is the "correct" thing to do. Do what you would like or think is best, I enjoy using the Quilters knot because it's nice and neat and can be as big or small as you prefer. I've never had a problem with knots being scratchy.
  6. After the embroidery is finished, I cut and remove the basting and then trim the cut-away interfacing near the embroidery.
  7. Last I wash and dry the item and sometimes if needed I'll iron the back with the front face down on a towel.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Embroidered Baby T's

I bought a set of baby t-shirts and embroidered on them. I used a lightweight cut-away stabilizer that I basted on the back, embroidered through it and then cut it down to around the embroidery.
First was a little monkey! He is mostly backstitch in 2 shades of brown with 2 strands floss. His banana is satin stitched in 2 yellows, and the branches he is sitting on are 2 shades of green using 2 strands floss and the stem stitch.
The little skateboarding dog is done in stem stitch using 1 strand floss for all the colors.
Last I did the Noah's Ark, and since I was getting a little bored of using the backstitch and stem stitch I only used them for the giraffe, bunny and bird. The giraffe has pistil stitch for it's horns, the bird has some buttonhole stitch for it's tail. The elephant is done in split stitch as well as the Ark. The bear is done all in 2 wrap french knots to give him a fuzzy look. The water is done in the whipped running stitch, which gives it a little extra ripple, I should have done the whipped backstitch for a more smooth look but I figure it still looks neat with the ripple effect to the waves.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Few Small Tatting Projects

I made another necklace using This Pattern from the Palmetto Tatters Guild web site using the same thread and beads as the last one.
You can find this snowflake pattern Here. I just changed the size of the thread to a size 10 Flora and used large silver-lined clear beads, so that instead of earring size they'd be small Christmas ornaments. Since the Flora thread is more stiff and the motif's small, all I did was block them and didn't need to stiffen them.
I'll just count these as one project for the 25 Motif Challenge.
#19 of the 25 Motif Challenge

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Scarf for Bekah

I couldn't resist these scarves are just too cute! I just had to make one for Wendy's daughter Rebekah. Bekah just loves to be a princess and also loves soft silky things, so I just know she'll love this!
The 'R' was stitched in 4mm pink silk ribbon in split stitch and using the same thread for the sweetheart rose, and adding light green lazy daisy leaves.

Sweetheart Rose Video Tutorial

Sweetheart Rose Tutorial & Tips
Also known as the combination Colonial Knot Running Stitch Rose or Fargo Rose.
  1. My hand positioning is what works for me, it may not work for everyone so try out different things and find what works for you.
  2. Keep practicing, at first it can feel "all thumbs" but after doing so many you get a feel for how to do them.
  3. Be careful not to stab yourself, go slowly and gently, if you start to get frustrated take a break and come back to it later.
  4. If you have trouble learning with 4mm silk ribbon try using 7mm, the running stitches will be a little further apart and it might seem easier to handle.
You can also veiw the Sweetheart Rose Tutorial on YouTube

Scarves for Little Girls

I did another quick project for a couple of little girls at church. I just cut 2 strips of a soft silky fuzzy minky type fabric. I washed them so the fuzz won't be shedding from the edges. Then I took an awl and poked holes and then a dental floss threader and pulled strips of yarn using 4 different yarns and tied it. I used pink eyelash, white eyelash, white hairy, and cream fuzzy yarns.
For each girls monogram I just used 4mm pink and light green silk ribbon.
Purity's Scarf
I embroidered the 'P' in stem stitch and added a sweetheart rose and lazy daisy leaves.
Wisdom's Scarf
I embroidered the 'W' in split stitch and then added a sweetheart rose and lazy daisy leaves.
Wisdom is a lot younger so the scarf might be too big but I figure if not this year than she can wear it next year.

More Gifts

Motif #18 of the 25 Motif Challenge
I tatted up this flower in some variegated magenta Rubi thread with seed beads at the tips and turned it into a pendant using the same thread for the necklace and silver tone findings. The pattern for the flower can be found Here at the Palmetto Tatters web site.
Here's a look at the gifts together.
I did a very simple design on this shirt, who says it has to be extravagant to look beautiful and embellish clothing? So I just did a very small vine dripping from the neck. The stem was 1 strand DMC floss in stem stitch and then I added straight stitch leaves in 4mm silk ribbon. I also added a small fire polished Czech glass flower bead with a magenta seed bead for the center.
I think it gives the shirt a nice touch.
Here's a look at the back. I just used a tiny bit of cut-away interfacing since the shirt is really stretchy.
Here is another gift for a couple in our church, I just love doing onesies for babies! The whole frog is using backstitch and colonial knots! Then a little stem stitch and lazy daisies for the small dragonfly. Oh and I backed the whole motif with a soft lightweight cut-away interfacing.

Friday, December 07, 2007

CQ Purse Finished

I've finally finished the Purse!!! It was a little difficult with the bulk of embellishments and then the added bulk of straps to sew around but I got it done using a zipper-foot so that I could get right at the edge easier. I added pink with green ribbon for the handles, the green tie was reclaimed from a garment's straps for hanging, and the green cord I added for an extra long strap so she can put it on her shoulder or around her body. For the lining I used the same shiny bright green satin I also used in piecing the blocks, and I put iron on interfacing to the lining for extra stability.
Here is the before of the blank blocks.
Here is a look at this side before sewing it together.
And here is a look at this side before it was sewn together.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

CQ Purse Side Two Finished

Here is Side Two all finished! Click Here to see Side One and Here to see the blank blocks.
I tried to keep in mind to be free, creative and fun for this block. I really wanted to try things I don't normally do, and put into effect more of what I had learned in SharonB's Encrusted CQ online class. I tried not to over think things and try too hard, just go with any idea that seems good.
The first part I did was the heart with hanky corner and teacup with a 7mm silk ribbon sweetheart rose in the center. I cut and folded a small corner of a vintage hanky to make it look like a napkin or tablecloth underneath the vintage teacup jewelery finding. The finding had a hole through the middle of the cup and I was able to pass a needle through it enough to make a sweetheart rose in the center. Then I thought it needed a tad of green color so I used a lighter green to run through the lace heart applique with a bow. Last I put in some feather stitching in 1 strand delicate YLI green silk floss.
Here is an angled close up so you can see the teacup a little better. It looks like a stamped or embossed pattern on the metal that was used, very pretty.
In this section you can see some tatting I added to the fuzzy center that was a hen and chicks pattern in the variegated green coats&clark cotton sewing thread. The thread was so difficult to work with I only got about 3 and a half repeats before stopping, and since I saved that little bit I figured it would be put to good use on this block.
Above that is a half buttonhole wheel in a gold color with fushia lazy daisies and straight stitches with a pink size 15 seed bead between each wheel. Then I added a clear-lime sequin with size 15 green seed bead to the centers of the wheels.
To the left of the half wheels I did a simple feather stitch in orange and added ribbon stitches in yellow 4mm silk ribbon.
On the seam above I tried out a new stitch for me...the Cretan stitch. I really enjoyed it, I was surprised how simple it was! I will for sure be using it again. To the arms of the stitch I added ribbon stitch leaves and then alternated bead flowers with size 15 seed beads in the centers.
In this section in the lower right I added a heart in green seed beads, and to the seam I used the herringbone stitch in orange floss adding yellow and pink sweetheart roses, orange pearls, and orange ribbon stitches. Then to the yellow roses I added 3 green straight stitches and to the pink roses I added fushia lazy daisy with 2 straight stitches.
Above that seam I used a triple feather stitch in green floss to which I added yellow ribbon stitch buds with three size 15 seed beads at the base and then added size 15 seed beads alternating opaque yellow with a clear frosted yellow.
Between those two seams I needed something so I added a lace butterfly with yellow silk ribbon in straight stitches to add color and a pink floss flight path.
Finally in this section I added to the pink/green fuzzy seam some amber rectangular beads in a straight line (kinda goes wavy but that's ok).
To the large green patch I added a bit of lace, to the lace I added some large flower sequins with seed bead centers and a pink ribbon along the bottom. At the seam I used the blanket stitch alternating long-short-short-long, and added leaf beads on top with sweetheart roses and orange seed beads.
In the lower left I stem stitched a heart in orange 4mm silk ribbon then added a knot flower in pink and yellow, a few ribbon stitch leaves, and to that I added a heart bead.

Now on to sewing the purse together!

Hilarious Vlogger

Hi all recently I was referred to a vlogger (video blogger) who is SO funny! I just had to share. The comedy is good clean fun, and I've watched all her vids, they really crack me up.
The site is Happy Slip, and she is on YouTube.
Here is one of her videos that won 2nd place on YouTube's 2006 Video Award.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

This Year's Christmas Tree

Hi all, I finally got my tree up and decorated for this year. Every year I try to do it a little differently, but a few years ago I settled on a certain color scheme of gold, red, white, and crystal. Sometimes I get new ornaments, and add those in, and sometimes I leave some out some years and add them other years. Do any of you do that?
Here is a close up of a few of my favorites, just recently have I received some sentimental ornaments, a few years ago a lady in my church gave me the large round one with the spray of beads at the top (at bottom of photo) and when I put it on my tree I think of her. Then above that is a crazy quilt stocking that Lillian made for a swap, that I received. It's now one of those special ones too. Then this year I added the misshapen one I just made, and it will bring with it memories of making Christmas gifts and ornaments of this year as well as other memories that are still to come.

I hope everyone has a Wonderful Christmas!!!

Friday, November 30, 2007

CQ Purse Blocks Side One Finished

Yesterday I concentrated on finishing up the first side of the CQ purse.
The night before I had stash tryouts, where you go through everything and see if it would work, and got a few ideas to do. I did do most of the ideas too.
Here is the overall block, I really enjoyed having fun with brighter colors I was going for a "floral playful victorian" feel. When I think of my friend and how she loves tea time, roses, sparkle, and fun lively colors, this is the result.
I added heart sequins with lime seed beads to the seam I had already done. Then I finished the roses, added some leaf sequins then I added a tatted flower I had made and saved. I added beads to the center of each of the flowers too. Last I added in stems, leaves, and some feather stitch with some fine YLI green silk floss. I just love the YLI silk floss, each strand is more fine than DMC cotton floss, it's so lightweight, and it's pretty easy to work with.
I added some tatting in a simple rings only edging I had made out of some variegated coats&clark cotton sewing thread, which is smaller than the average size 80 tatting thread. The thread was hard to work with (it would get sweaty too easy therefore make closing rings hard and I'd end up breaking the thread) so just this simple pattern was all I could do using it.
I then added alternating lighter and darker orange flower sequins with orange seed beads, also added 2mm silk ribbon leaves in ribbon stitch.
Below that I added feather stitch in the same sewing thread I used for the tatting, and put a butterfly on top.
I also added a cameo, it's plastic and I had my hubby put a hole on the top and bottom to sew through. I think he did it with a hot pin. I added light pink sweetheart roses around the cameo and then gold ones. Then I took one strand amber DMC floss and embroidered fly stitch branches and putting an amber bead at the bottom.
I added a line of sparkly green bugle beads to the inside seam of the fuzzy center piece.
Up top I stitched in wavy lines chain stitch in some variegated green cotton perle thread, put straight stitches of silk ribbon at the overlapping spots, and added lazy daisies and straight stitches in one strand matching DMC floss. Then I added the orange buttons with orange seed beads.
I added a large very light green button with a heart sequin and lime seed bead, and then put the feather stitch in the amber DMC floss along the seam, adding lazy daisy petals in orange DMC floss and bright pink size 15 seed beads.

Now on to the second block!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Hand Made Ornaments

Every year the ladies in my church have a Christmas ornament exchange so I decided I wanted to try and make one this year. These are not the best photos of the ornaments, but the best I could get they are tricky to photograph.
The first ornament I made in a circular shape but it got a little misshapen so I knew I would keep it for my tree and try for a nicer looking shape with another ornament.
The first ornament I used red velvet and made white spiderweb roses with Swarovski crystals in the centers. I added fine gold metallic thread in fly stitch fern, and a few larger Swarovski crystals. Then I hand sewed the ornament together, with a large round Swarovski crystal at the top with the loop, stuffed it, and beaded with tiny clear size 15 seed beads, and various sizes and shapes of Swarovski crystals. This photo doesn't really show the bit of misshaping that was happening but I whip-stitched around the edging so it looked more like puckering all around and giving a nice gathered result. Still not perfect roundness, but good enough for my tree. I love it and I learned from it! On to the next ornament!
For this ornament I used a dark green satin that has a heavier feel too it and I chose a square shape, since I felt I could control the outcome of a square better than a circle this time. Again I chose 3 white spiderweb roses with AB Czech glass beads in the center, then I added the fine gold fly stitch fern thicker this time. Then I used some larger red beads in 3's for berries and created bead and sequin "holly" leaves by putting sequin, bead, sequin, bead on the needle then coming back down skipping the first bead and going through sequin, bead sequin. I thought it gave a nice sparkle and 3D effect and looked a little like holly leaves. Next I added a red bow and couched it on with size 15 clear seed beads, hand sewed the ornament together using the same red ribbon for the loop with a large round Swarovski crystal at the top. Then I stuffed it, sewed it closed and then beaded the bottom with clear size 15 seed beads and various shapes and sizes of Swarovski crystals. I love the result and feel it's worthy of the exchange! I made a little tag that says how it's made so the recipient knows it's not a generic run-of-the-mill ornament. Also on both ornaments I embroidered a small MA '07 in the back side in the same fine gold metallic thread I used for the fern.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Update on CQ Purse

Just thought I'd put up what I've done so far on the CQ purse I'm making for a friend. I haven't gotten too far yet. Sometimes I just like to put things on my "back-burner" and work on other projects so when I pick it back up I have fresh eyes and sometimes new ideas. I left off with one seam treatment of herringbone stitch with sweetheart roses in 4mm and tiny ribbon stitch leaves in 2mm silk ribbon. Then I added the amber rectangular beads to the other end. I had put in the spokes for spiderweb roses when I got sidetracked.

SharonB's Take it Further Challenge

Just thought I'd pass along some info on SharonB's new challenge for next year, the Take it Further Challenge. I think it's going to be really fun, but I'm not committing to it since I tend to not keep up with things like this. Still I will keep up in reading about it and jump in and participate when the inspiration strikes! What I love about the challenge is that it's not just for embroiderers or crazy quilters it can incorporate any medium or format and is going to have more flexible choices. (Do ya hear that tatters? This challenge can include you too!) I encourage you to go take a look and see what it's all about.