Saturday, May 23, 2015

Hawaii Stitching

You can see I have been very busy stitching up motifs from the new Hawaii Embroidery pattern.  I finished the Aloha and hula dancer:

and this pineapple and flower:

I used all perle cotton for stitching the pineapple.  I especially like the Chain Stitch in this variegated floss.  It really gave the pineapple great color and texture. 

I used the Fishbone Stitch for the leaves.  For the purple flower, I used Stem Stitch for the outline, Blanket Stitch for the center radials and French Knots for the center.  The petals are filled with Seed Stitch:

Here are the colors and numbers of the floss I used on these two projects.

For the aloha and hula dancer:

For the pineapple and flower:

Up next is this Mahalo with flowers and bamboo and then these tiki statues!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Hawaii Embroidery Pattern

I have a new embroidery pattern in my Etsy shop!  It is called Hawaii and it is filled with all sorts of Hawaiian-themed motifs. 

The first motif that I have started stitching is this Aloha with flowers and a Hula dancer. 

Next up will be this little pineapple and flower:

Here is a look at the pattern:

Friday, May 1, 2015

Fourth of July Stitching - Part Three

I have some progress to share on my Fourth of July stitching.  This is a 17" x 17" table topper.  You can catch up with this project here: {part one} {part two}.  Since my last post, I have finished some motifs and taken some of my stitching back out! 

I took a nice aerial shot so you can see the whole thing:

I have finished this rocket motif,  I used Chain Stitch for the stripes on the rocket, French knots above the stripes, Stem Stitch for all the outlines and the fill on the top of the rocket and Straight Stitch for the sparks:

I am almost done with this big firecracker, I am just deciding if I want all the stars in red or maybe stitch the other two in blue.   

Same with the Uncle Sam hat...lots of color decisions even with this limited color palette! 

The stitching I removed was all the blue around the star field on the flag.  I kept the ring of stars but I am still figuring out how I am going to fill this in:

I will post my progress on this as I finish - hopefully in time for the 4th of July!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

100 Stitches - Rice Stitch


Time for another 100 Stitches post.  This beautiful stitch is the Rice Stitch.  This is actually two stitches that are combined.   I don't know why it is called the Rice Stitch...I think a better name would be the Argyle Stitch!  That is what the pattern looks like to me :)  Isn't this a lovely color combination? The floss that I am using is perle cotton.  The black is DMC 310 and the pink is DMC Color Variations 4180.

This is another stitch from the Canvas Embroidery section, you can read about the different types of canvas I have been using for this category {here}.

This first stitch is a Cross Stitch.  It is worked over four squares in each direction.  To start, I came up through the fabric:

Then I counted four squares to the left and four squares above where my floss first emerged and went back into the canvas:

Pull through and then count four squares down and come back up through the canvas:

Next, count four squares to the right and four squares above and go back into the canvas:

Pull through and that completes the first cross stitch:

Just continue in the same fashion

until you have as many Cross Stitches as you want for your stitching line:

Now for the next part of the combination.  This is a series of diagonal stitches that are worked over the arms and legs of the Cross Stitches.

First, work the right side of the first Cross Stitch.  Come up through the canvas in the bottom center square of the Cross Stitch:

Pull all the way through and make a slanting stitch by going back into the canvas two squares to the right and two squares above where your floss just emerged:

Pull all the way through and now come up through the canvas two squares above and two squares to the left:

Form another slanting stitch by going back into the canvas two squares to the right and two squares below:

Next, come up through the canvas where you originally started:

This time, work the left side of the first cross stitch in the same way:

All the way across:

Here is a look at the underside of this stitch - a lot going on!

This looks complicated but is really very easy and so pretty!

This is stitch number 87 and is from the Canvas Embroidery Section of 100 Stitches.

This was the last stitch on my 100 Stitches list!  I have learned every one of the stitches from this book. 

Because I want to keep learning stitches and improving my embroidery skills,  I have compiled a list of stitches that I would like to learn.  These are all stitches that I like the look of, that present a challenge to learn and most importantly, that I see myself actually using on embroidery projects.

I will post all about my new list soon!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Triceratops Project - Part Eight - Done!

 I finished my triceratops pillow.  You can catch up with this project {here}

I am really happy with the result.  I love the embroidered motifs, the colors and the rickrack trim:

To construct the pillow cover, I cut the orange backing fabric to the same size as the front panel.  I also cut a same sized piece of white fabric to line the back of my front panel.  This makes for a nice smooth surface.

I put the front and back panel right sides together and added the lining piece on the back of the front panel and pinned all three layers together. 

Before I sewed the layers together, I hand basted all the way around.  It really kept everything smooth with no puckering and I was able to remove all my pins before sewing on the machine.

I sewed all the sides but left a open area to turn the fabric back out and to use to add the pillow fill.

Then I turned this right sides out and started filling it with fiber fill.

When the pillow had the puffiness I wanted, I hand sewed up the opening. 

This was a really simple project and I love the result. 

I have a note of caution to share that I learned the hard way. When I finished sewing the three layers together and turned the pillow cover right side out, I was shocked to see that on the vertical sides of the pillow, the rickrack was right next to the seam line with hardly any white border.  The horizontal edges looked perfect with a nice white border between the rickrack and the seam. 

So...I have learned that if you are adding a flat trim that is not going to be incorporated into the edge seams, make sure to measure the distance between the outside edge of your trim and the seam allowance or stitching line, making doubly sure it is the same all the way around. 

I had to turn this back inside out, remark the two affected seam lines to account for the width difference, sew along the new marks and then remove my previous stitching!  A lot of work I could have avoided if I had been a bit more carful with my measuring :)

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Triceratops Project - Part Seven

 Time to start sewing on this Triceratops project! 

You can read the progress posts up to this point here: {part one} {part two} {part three} {part four} {part five{part six
Since my last post, I finished the final pressing of this panel and have started to plan how to finish the project.  I am intending this to be a pillow, using this piece as the front panel.  

For trim, I remembered that I have a nice amount this wide, green rickrack.  It is the perfect matching color and I think the chunky size complements the motifs and lettering:  

I am going to use it on the face of the panel rather than inserting it into the seam that joins the front and back panel.

First, I pinned the rickrack in place: 

Then I hand basted all the way around:

I took special care on the corners, I didn't want a 90 degree angle, but a curve.  Happily, the rickrack was very cooperative!

Done!  I like the way the rickrack provides a nice frame around the motifs and lettering:

I joined the raw edges of the rickrack by turning under the top edge, and I am not pleased with how bulky it looks.  Before I actually sew this in place, I may experiment with turning both raw edges under and butting the folded edges to each other.  I think it will reduce the bulk.

I will post about how this turns out, and what I am planning for the back panel.