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Thursday, November 30, 2017

STITCHERY JOURNEY, PART 4

Now that the basic stitchery book is finished, the fun part begins.  The inside should contain all the necessities that a stitcher needs to accomplish her stitching tasks.  It's fun to think about all possible ways to gain this very thing.  For this one, I chose a pincushion, a thimble holder, ribbon to attach your scissor, and a wool folder to hold needles (with no "ouch" factor).   I like to thread several needles in different colors of thread to be ready for use as I stitch.
So----from the day I gathered supplies and ideas~~~~~~~~It went from this:
 To this!  As you can see, I did not use all the initial choices.  I wish I could tell you the thrill it gives me to see the finished product and how different it is from the images I had in my mind.  I could never think of all the possibilities of the finished product from the very start.  Each addition spurs another and so on and so on.
 
The pincushion gave me the most problems.  I tried many ways to make it and many ways to attach it but in the end ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


 the best way I found was to cover it.  I had a small walnut shell stuffed pin cushion that was just the right size.  I wrapped it in my chosen fabric, folded it and sewed the folded ends underneath, then stitched the ends down.  I wrapped the ends with antique lace and stitched it in at the same time --
ALL DONE.


This is the best pic I took of the pincushion placement and stitching.  Before I stitched I played with placement of other things.  Here I had placed a needle folder made of wool to the left and began to design the front of it.  The scissor keeper and thimble holder would be on the right.


For the thimble holder, I placed a piece of 1/2 inch wide elastic inside the fold of my chosen sunflower fabric and stitched closely to it using my zipper foot.  The length of fabric?  I did not measure, but made it plenty long to go around my thimble plus some.  Making first and trimming afterwards is always my motto.  Bigger and longer is easier to deal with.  I hope that makes sense. 



I stitched across one end (left pic) and pulled the other open end elastic (right pic-see the elastic peeking out?)  until I gathered it enough using my thimble as a guide.

When my length was right I trimmed the edge with pinking shears.   I stitched the two ends together leaving the seam to the outside and to stitch it to it's appropriate spot in the stitch book.
The addition of the thimble holder was a sort of challenge because it seemed to get lost on the "page" so to speak.  My solution became a sunflower where I added the thimble as part of it.  the stem and leaves are wool.  Embroidery stitch is buttonhole and the leaves have a chain stitch vein.  The sunflower is wooden.  You'll be surprised what you can find in your stash of stuff is you make up your mind not to buy one thing.  My stuff is awesome!! ~smile~

See how lost the thimble was looking?  Something cool had to be thought of.
 s
Scissors--- I placed the ribbon in the place I thought appropriate and tacked it down enough to try it out.  I had to move it a time or two before I got it right.  Nothing much else to report about this--very simple.

The needle folder/holder is a great way to protect your needles from grabbing onto other things in your book.  Somehow seems they seem to do that if you don't enclose them some way.  Also, threads creep and crawl!

 AI small sign, hand stitched, announcing it's contents.  A button added for cuteness.  I had this darling birdhouse button that just seemed to scream, "USE ME, USE ME!  The pole is small vintage rick rack wrapped with green embroidery thread.  The edge needed definition so I accomplished that with large rick rack.



The little label is just a square of muslin and a hand written  message.  I used a fine point Pigma Pen, then stitched it down with a running stitch.  Ragged edge is my style.  Simple and ragged~~

 The closure is ribbon around a precious button.   Perfectly useful and a lovely final addition.

  


It's been such a pleasure doing this tutorial as I worked on a project I so totally enjoy!  I appreciate your close attention!  I appreciate your finding some part of my life to benefit you and your little section of the world.  JOY is something all of us seek.  Little things in life is where most of it comes from.  If you don't find JOY in small things, you may not find very much.  I find my total JOY comes from my LORD and SAVIOR, JESUS CHRIST.  If you haven't found HIM, my prayer is that you will very soon. His Word says you will find him if you look for Him with all your heart, soul, and mind.  The place to look?  His Word--the Bible.  It is totally alive and will come alive in your inner most being, your soul.  He is life and brings life, Forever life which is where I find my JOY.  This world brings many many sorrows, but in the promises of Jesus Christ, I can still have ultimate hope and JOY!  If I don't come back before Christmas, Please remember to look for HIM this season.  Without Him there would be no Christmas. 
If you read my blog and enjoy any part of it, I surely would appreciate a comment.  It's the only way I can know you enjoy it.  I don't get paid for any part of it, just love giving a gift to you from me.  If you want to encourage me to do more, just leave me a nice comment.  

Love to all !

MOLLY

Monday, November 6, 2017

STITCHERY JOURNEY, PART 3


Sometimes, the artistic side of me is so slow.  Seems I just think about it so much more that I do it--
But the thinking part is the part that makes me put myself into a project I guess.  I come from a long line of seamstresses/quilters.  I know it's a God given talent.  It's a yearning to make my life and my family's life something special.  It's more than decorative, more than cute, more than pretty, more than useful.  It's making something that no one else would make exactly the same way.

When I left you, I was doing the decorative work on the front of my Needle Book.  All stitching that needed to be done before the back was added so that back stitches could be hidden from view safely between the front and the back. 
 My next step was to add the back or inside background fabric---my canvas for useful additions and beauty to look upon as I (or someone else) stitch.  I decided that sense the back could not be quilted together with the front that I would attach it with Steam-a-Seam Lite.  It's the same sticky backed fusible web that I have showed you before.  You cut out your shape, It sticks to your fabric.  You peel off the backing paper leaving the fusible web.  Then you press it to whatever you wish.  It's lite so it leaves everything as would be without it.  No thickness and is still bendable and flexible.
Because the top had been quilted there was a small difference in the size.  I simply trimmed away the excess fabric of the back, then-------
 come the pocket ends.  The ones you were not to trim.  Remember those? 2 1/2 inch pieces of fabric folded in half.  As you can see, I chose an antique lace and stitched it along the folded edge.   Here they are still untrimmed.

  I laid them in place and pinned them to both ends.
 The binding will be the next step.  It will be attached sewing through several layers.  I decided that to keep all layers snugly together that I would stitch the corners just outside the stitching line so I could relax as I stitch the binding on. 

Guess What???  Now you can trim!  Above picture shows that we are ready for the binding! 
Cut 2 1/2 inch lengths of your choice of binding fabric.  Enough to go all the way around plus extra.   How much extra?  Hummmmm.   Honestly I just know that I cut at least an extra length.  The way I put my binding together uses up extra fabric, but makes it look so much nicer!
 This is the way you sew the pieces together.  Enlarge the pic so that you can see where to start sewing and where to finish.  It's the tiny V that forms from offsetting the fabrics as you lay them together.  You can draw a line or simply keep your eye on your destination.  I have learned that through the years.  It just works.  Keep your eye on where you are sewing to and you will sew straight there every time.  Go ahead--draw the line--I know you want to.  -smile-

Here you can see that I am sewing straight toward the V offset point.  My snips are pointing it out for you.
 If all is done as I instructed you when you straighten out your sewn pieces they ill be straight with a diagonal seam.  This distributes the bulk and your stitched on binding will be beautiful. 
 If all looks good, trim the seam to 1/4 inch. 
 Fold your long strip of binding in half and press it.  You can use some spray starch if you want to make it nice and crisp so it will hold it's shape.


 Here is what your diagonal seams should look like inside your pressed binding strips.
 It's time to stitch your binding on. Your can stitch it on the top or back.  I stitched to the back so my hand stitching would be on the front.  If your hand stitching is not so good you might want to machine stitch to the front. Stitch slowly and keep your seam at 1/4 inch. 

 I am now finished stitching the binding on, I have pressed it to the front and I will begin hand stitching the binding down on top.  I use a slip stitch.  Hiding your thread is the name of the game.
Go here if you need instruction.

Your first sneak peek of the finished product.  Next time we will be adding all the goodies to the inside.  I promise it won't be long as I am almost done.  I love the way the binding fabric frames the sunflower fabric.  It's a day in the country!!  If you haven't been sewing along with me and want to start now---do it--choose those fabrics that are "YOU".  Maybe you can catch up before the finale!  Your gonna love the ending.  It's the part that always gets me.  See ya soon, sweethearts!

Would love a comment or question!!!

Molly 












Sunday, October 15, 2017

Stitchery Journey, Part 2

Oh my--I am so sorry!  I never intended to be two weeks between posts but life does get in my way.  I am not sure at this moment that I am ready to post "Part 2" but thinking I might make it happen.  

Steps of construction are very important.  When I don't have a pattern before me, I can easily get ahead of myself and be sorry as I must unsew.  This is not a word to anyone but me? Spellcheck certainly does not recognize it but you and I know it happens.  I decided the next step would be the quilting but I couldn't decide to quilt all 3 layers (top, batting , and backing or lining) because I will be attaching not only the doily with the Stitchery to the top, but plan on adding more embroidery and possibly buttons and ribbons and a closure.  I decided to stipple quilt the top to the batting --attach the doily with Stitchery, embroider and add buttons and then add the lining.  On the lining I will add pockets suitable for my embroidery threads and a couple of wool booklets to keep extra loose threads and needles.  The last step will be to attach the front and lining together with the binding.  Not to worry if you don't get it at this point.  
The picture above is the process of stippling the front and lining.  Stippling is fun to me but I'm sure there may be some of you who have a big ? On your forehead right about now so let me if that's the case, just quilt in some way with straight lines.  About 3 rows side to side will be great!  Get this done before my Part 3.  You and I both know you have plenty of time ! 😜


Remember that I trimmed my Stitchery to the size I wanted for it to fit in the middle of my doily.  I decided to frame it with a piece of my lining fabric.  I used Heat and Bond light to adhere them together and to the doily.  Then came some of the most fun!  Choosing embroidery threads and stitches.  As you can see I   auditioned many colors then decided on black.  It's kinda like outlining a coloring page.  Black just made everything pop.

The stitch is the controversial Buttonhole/Blanet stitch.  Love it for edge stitching.

I'm pleased with finished look.  There are many stitches that could be used.  Try something new--Make It Your Own.  That's my motto.

In case you get ready for more before I return, I want to get you started on the inside pockets.  From my extra front fabric I cut a couple of strips 4 1/2 inches wide.



Fold them in half and press.  The pockets will go on each end of the lining.  This will be a great opportunity to use some kind of trim. I'm partial to antique lace and tatting but hey-vintage rick rack would be precious too!  Here I have pinned them in place but I  did not trim them.  I will be unpinning to apply my choice of trim. You can prepare your strips with trim and pin them in place and more instruction will be in part 3. Just wait to trim them.  Trust me!

The above pic show you better how I left them.

I have been working on my pin cushion for the middle but things did not work out the way I wanted so it will present itself in part 3.  I will tell you that crushed walnut shells are great for pincushion fill.  I got a huge bag for $10 on Amazon.  Questions can be ask in the comments although I don't have any proof that anyone is reading this much less actually following along with me...... 😁
Doesn't matter--I'm having all the fun!!!

REMEMBER GOD LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!

MOLLY


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