I love embroidering text, and I have a long to-do list of poems and lyrics.
This ee cummings poem from a friend's wedding has been in the works for some time:
I loved picking colors for the words I wanted to emphasize. The main text is in gray, but "God", "greenly", "sky" and "yes" are each highlighted in different shades.
I also embroidered a tree's outline at the edge of the piece, then Nick helped me stretch it onto a frame:
Every year, Posie Gets Cozy releases a new set of adorable, make-them-yourself ornaments from felt and embroidery.
It was so fun making my own little gingerbread girl from one of her previous kits.
I am just in love with this little bird. And they make such great gifts!
Three of my favorite things: 1) handmade gifts; 2) embroidery; and 3) DC. My friend Lindy brought this trifecta together in a personalized map of the DC metro, embroidered on linen:
Thank you, Lindy!
When we bought our house, the previous owners gave us a very special gift: a small watercolor picture of the house. We hung it by the front door, and I love seeing it there, welcoming us home.
We've put so much into our house -- painting, planting, building, and making a home. The house is like a member of the family, so it seems natural enough to have a portrait.
My mom's house is the same way, and I thought she'd like a portrait, too. Of course, with my love of embroidery and texture, there was only one way to do it:
I edited the picture in photoshop to emphasize the outline of the house and then traced the outline onto thin, bright white cotton. I embroidered the design in green and framed it in an Ikea Ribba frame. Pale pink adds punch and highlights the roses in the front yard:
And there will definitely be a next time, because I had so much fun doing this! And I'm so pleased with the result.
I've had Friday Night Lights on the brain recently, and by recently I mean ever since I discovered this amazing show right through to last week's series finale. So I suppose it's no surprise that when I wanted to send a dear friend some words of encouragement, I turned to Coach Taylor's motto: "Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose." On the show, this is usually shouted in a burst of pre-game excitement, but I think it's a pretty good motto for life.
You can download the cross-stitch pattern here.
I hope you all had a wonderful mother's day. My mother was visiting this weekend, and it was wonderful. We had absolutely gorgeous weather yesterday for the Sheep and Wool Festival (more on that soon) and a fabulous day today walking around DC.
I always have a lot of trouble containing my enthusiasm about gifts, so naturally as soon as I picked my mom up at the airport on Friday, I was bursting with excitement. This morning, I finally got to give it to her. Here it is:
I'd wanted to do something with these lovely black and white portrait photos of my mother and my grandmother for a while, but the project really came together when I happened upon this George Eliot quote:
The photos themselves are very old fashioned looking, and I wanted the whole project to have that feel, so I used muslin -- a type of unbleached cotton with natural variegation -- for the background. I transferred the photos to the fabric using Print 'n Press paper. All you do is scan the pictures, flip the image 180 degrees (you want the mirror image of the photo), and then iron them onto the fabric. I was really pleased with the picture quality.
I did the same thing with the quote, but I ironed it onto the back (if you do this, you don't have to flip it 180 degrees) and then embroidered through it.
The only downside to this method is that you can't iron the fabric again after you've tranferred the images, so it's a bit wrinkled. In an ideal world, you might embroider first and then put the pictures on last to avoid wrinkles, but it's way too easy to make a mistake ironing the pictures on, and then all that embroidery would go to waste -- yikes! I tried ironing it with a towel over it to protect it, but to no avail. If I made something like this again, I would be very careful not to wrinkle the fabric while embroidering, and I would press it flat with a book when I wasn't working on it. I might also try stretching the cotton on a frame like a canvas to help get out the wrinkles.
Still, there's nothing more dear than the faces of people we love, so I can't help but love it, wrinkles and all.
When my friend Lisa Marie bought her place last year, she hosted a house blessing. It was so lovely -- she was surrounded by wellwishing friends, and her minister (Rev. Paul Abernathy of St. Mark's) read a little blessing for each room of the house. I loved these blessings so much I held on to them, and I embroidered the blessing for the kitchen as a gift:
I found a nice homey graphic from Vintage Transfer Finds (also listed permanently as one of my sources for materials in the sidebar) to complete the picture: