Creating Calm

bonnieg

Bonnie’s Home, Sweet Home project

Do you find that making things occupies a part of your mind that calms everything down and transports you to a different “zone”? I know I do. And I’m so happy when you enjoy the soothing act of creation too.

Here you see a creation by Bonnie who lives in Juneau, Alaska. This is her version of the Home, Sweet Home Tutorial. Her handwork is beautifully done and the excellent machine stitching on the ground gives me great ideas.

jensbird

Jen made this version of the Rare Songbird project from my book, Joyful Stitching. I really like her thread color choices and the ways she’s stitched the bug and grass. It’s so good to see how others interpret a design and make it their own.

Thank you, Bonnie and Jen, for sharing your artwork with us. I hope you had many soothing hours with needle and thread.

A Gentle Fabric for Stitching

stitchingonwool1For those of you who love to hand stitch, I highly recommend hand embroidery on wool. Thread glides smoothly through the cloth, no hoop is needed, your hands are caressed by the fabric, and knots (if you use them) hide in the bulky fabric. It’s a rich, gentle fabric ideal for hand embroidery.

Cut out wool shapes with sharp scissors and attach them to the background fabric with a pin or tacking stitches.Usually I stitch a Blanket Stitch around the edges to hold the shape in place.

stitchingonwool3Here you see that the Blanket Stitch in red has a second thread (green) whipped through the top edge of the stitch to give more definition to the outline of the shape. I’m also experimenting with stacking Fly Stitches to make leaf shapes using a variegated size 8 thread called Lettuce. Although the Fly Stitches are stitched closely together, it is easy to stitch through the wool.

tracytrevethanwoolMy favorite source for colorful wool is hand dyed by Tracy Trevethan. The Wooly Ladies also carry wool suitable for hand work as do many of your local quilt shops. In the Rare Songbird project from my book, Joyful Stitching, I use a hand-dyed wool for the background. And many of these free tutorials on my Rare Songbird project from my book, Tutorial Page use their hand dyed wools as well. Give it a try. Your hands will thank you!

Who Won the Book? And Your Prize

joyfulstitchingandplant

Thank you for celebrating the longevity of my plant and the publication of Joyful Stitching. Both have survived a year under my care. Hurrah!

And hurrah for the winner of the give-away of Joyful Stitching: Ellee. I hope you enjoy the book.

 

housingdeptpatternBut wait, there’s more! I’d also like to give you all a gift and thank you for visiting my blog. Please click here to download a PDF of this pattern: Housing Department.

How to Celebrate with a Give Away

 

joyfulstitchingandplantIt was a year ago that this lovely plant along with the first copy of my new book, Joyful Stitching, arrived at my house. You’ll be happy to know the plant is still alive. It’s a miracle!

And in celebration of keeping the plant alive for a year, I’ll be giving away a copy of the book. Just leave a comment below and you may be the lucky winner. I’ll announce the winner on Monday.