June 30, 2012

New Embroidery with Vintage Patterns - June Stitch Along - RoundUp

Hi, everyone!  Just reporting for my monthly stitch-along round-up post!  Each month in the New Embroidery with Vintage Patterns group on Flickr, we have a stitch along.  This month there were two themes:  (1) "One pattern, many stitchers" and (2) Stitcher's Choice.

(1)  "One pattern, many stitchers"  After a casual discussion in our NEwVP group, many people thought it would be fun if we all stitched up the same vintage embroidery pattern.  We thought it would be neat to see the similarities and differences in our floss colors and stitch choices.  Prior the start date of our June stitch-along, I chose about a dozen patterns from Hoop Love that I felt were "summery."  The majority decided this was the pattern they all wanted to stitch together.  This darling, sailing kitty is shared by Flickr member, just-a-mere -- thank you!  It is Vogart #102, Gay Kittens and Puppies for Everyday Use.

Sailing Kitty



June 2012 Stitch Along, Smooth Sea
from Flickr member, oneplaidaunt
photo replaced on 7-23-2012, stitchy spelling corrected

Come Sail Away with Me
from Flickr member, experimentl

Sailing Kitty Quilt
A mini quilt stitched up by our group's founder, Mom Walds Place

Sailing Kitty for the June SAL
Close up of lovely hand-quilting details

Kitten
from flickr member, happyluludaze



(2)"Stitcher's choice" For those who weren't smitten with the kitten, this theme was added so participants could choose any vintage embroidery pattern they wanted to. It may sound fun to be able to stitch up anything you want, but with the overwhelming amount of vintage patterns to choose from, it can be an overwhelming decision to just pick one!


June Stitch Along - stitcher's choice
This was my contribution to the June SAL, this is from Vogart #7125, Animated Fruit for Kitchen Towels

June Stitch-Along finished! Life Anew, Design 2068 DOW pattern
from Flickr member, giddy99 this part of a DOW (day-of-the-week) vintage pattern set that has been identified as "design 2068" (not sure of the company who made this pattern.)

Vegetables of the Nation Embroidery Pattern
And Flickr member, loves stitching, has been busy this month! The potato-man is a vintage McCalls pattern, Vegetables of the Nations.

Vegetables of the Nations Embroidery  Pattern
from loves stitches, vintage McCalls pattern, Vegetables of the Nation

vintage vogart
from loves stitching, this cute poodle coming back from a trip to the grocery store is from a vintage Vogart pattern, specific pattern number and name not known.

I invite y'all to come by and join our group New Embroidery with Vintage Patterns group on Flickr. In addition to the photos added to our group's photo pool each month for our stitch alongs, there are many other stitcheries (not related to any stitch along) added to the photo pool frequently -- people just have that itch to stitch!

And don't forget about our SUMMER OF VINTAGE STITCHY LOVE CONTEST! There is still plenty of time to enter -- the deadline isn't until July 20. It's going to be tons of fun and there are tons of prizes! Read all about the contest here.

June 28, 2012

DIY Pouch tutorial

Festival Pouch DIY Tutorial by Lova Revolutionary at Wild Olive Blog

This lovely felt pouch by Lova Revolutionary just caught my eye - hop over to Wild Olive to download a simple template and get stitching. I love the almost Navajo look to the design, for a rather serendipitous reason which I'll share with you guys in about a week or so... ;) Enjoy!

Try the Tutorial!

June 26, 2012

May Stitchalong Wrap-up

Oh no!  Some of you may have seen this post accidentally go live in its draft status a few days ago.  My apologies to all of the talented stitchers whose work below didn't get a "proper" post.

If you're like me, you've been amazed by all of the amazing pieces being done this month as part of the June stitch-along.  Although it's a bit late, I wanted to look back to the May stitch-along and quickly wrap up with some of the great projects that have been added to our Flickr pool.

As a refresher, we offered up June Jessie of isewcute's adorable A Little Curtsy Goes a Long Way embroidery pattern.  In addition to stitching along, I challenged everyone to incorporate their stitchery into a finished good.  Previously, we saw Gemmabelle's corduroy tote bag and Aimee's pillowcase skirt.

A quick search of the MayStitchalong2012 tag in the Flickr group returned a bunch more projects that are sure to appeal to your sweet tooth!

First up is Jennifer of AllThingsBelle's coin purse with an Alice in Wonderland vibe.  In her blog post, Jennifer links to the tutorial that she used to make the zippered pouch.  Check it out if you'd like to make one of your own!

Feeling Stitchy - May - Embroidered Top
Pouch by Jennifer

Amandine (Grow_Wild) also made a pouch to hold her fabric.  I love how she used a patterned fabric to achieve a bit of shabby chic style.  And check out those fill stitches ... WOW!

stitch along fabric bag
Fabric Bag by Amandine

In the "what a perfect use of this pattern" category comes Ella of LaWhimsy's adorable little curtsy doll.  She describes more about her inspiration and her process on her blog, May I Leave in Stitches.  Are you as inspired as I am to make one of these for a little girl in your life?

MayStitchalong2012 Posing with Me
Doll / Pillow by LaWhimsy

You've just got to love the look of stitching on natural linen, and Heidi (HeidiMakesStuff) used it to perfection when making her little heat pack, which she filled with lavender and rice.

May Stitch Along 2012
Heat Pack by Heidi

And finally, I wanted to share two completed pieces that incorporated fabric coloring to really bring our little girl to life.  Take a peek at how Eve-Marie gave her striped socks and a patterned apron -- I love to see the customization!

A Little Curtsey Almost Done
Stitched by Eve-Marie

And Kensie took the pattern to the next level by stitching a background and creating an entire scene.

May stitchalong
Stitched by Lovely Kensie

Thanks to everyone for sharing your wonderful work with us.  Just because May is over doesn't mean you can't still stitch up this cute pattern -- and when you do, be sure to add your photos to the Embroidery Flickr group.

June 25, 2012

Handicraft for Girls: Doll Quilt Pt. 3

Hullo! Here's a little work in progress and pattern no. 3 for the doll quilt.

The instructions said to do it in running stitch, but I decided to do the face in hands in backstitches so it will stand out. I plan on doing this to the other patterns as well. The running stitch was done with 3 strands embroidery floss and the backstitch was done with 2 strands polyster sewing machine thread.


If you are just catching up on these posts now, this is Part 1 and Part 2. For now, I will leave you with Pattern no. 3. Happy Stitching everyone!



June 24, 2012

Patterns: Bustle and Sew Magazine

Where shall we Adventure?


Bustle & Sew has a monthly ezine full of embroidery patterns and other crafty goodness. I particularly like the two reworked vintage patterns coming up in July's magazine (out 28 June). There's this gorgeous machine embroidered, colourful applique pirate ship and this beautiful seasonal lady.

Summer Lady

Summer Lady by Bustle & Sew

And then that's not even starting on the original patterns in store for this month's magazine, too!


June 23, 2012

June Stitchalong update

You guys are really knocking this stitchalong out of the park!

June2012 stitchalong

A mere week after sharing the June stitchalong pattern, this breathtaking version by Pumora appeared! I almost fell out of my chair, it is so gorgeous:

June 2012 stitchalong: narwhale

She was good enough to share a bit of her stitching process with us:

The narwhal was a love-at-first-sight motif so I simply had to start it instantly. Looking at the picture I had the vision of french knots as sea foam and the blue fabric. The colorscheme came quite naturally when googling narwhal photos. I liked the contrast between the very dark upper side and the almost white belly.

It took me about 4 evenings to stitch it all up. I found a fine denim fabric cut from a men's shirt which had the right shade of blue for a background. After transferring the pattern I colored the waves with a blue crayon so the darker blue of the waves would blend in and not pop out that much. I used 5 shades of blue, white, light beige and gold to stitch up everything. There weren't so many stitches inside the whale at first, but sometimes my hands don't want to stop and fill everything. It's kind of hard for me to stop and say ok that's it, no more stitches or it get's overloaded. 
The text for the parchment is still missing and I can't decide yet what to insert there :/

I think we need to click through to her finished image and suggest a phrase so she can finish that beauty! :)

Next up, I love the deep contrast in this dark blue color scheme, as stitched by Aimee:
june stitch along: narwhale

LaWhimsy did an adorable version, with the scroll banner paying homage to her stitching skills... :)

JuneStitchalong2012 ~ Fin

I've been stitching along pretty steadily on my Narwhal - using sea foam greens, light teals, off-white and light gold colors:

my narwhal so far

I was inspired by all the texture I've seen in everyone's embroidery lately, so I filled my stitching in with tons of stitches. It's been great fun so far!

There's still plenty of time to download the pattern and post your progress. Remember to tag your pics "JuneStitchalong2012" and add them to the Flickr group. I'll do a final roundup with my finish soon!

Week 1

June 22, 2012

Book Review: Twisted Stitches by Phil Davison

Today I'm going to take a break from the technique books (I know I tend towards those) and go with a pure pattern book - a modern cross stitch book if there ever was one...

Twisted Stitches by Phil Davison
[Amazon link; Indiebound link]



"Alternative" cross stitch patterns - which I'll define here as pretty much anything that makes people go "Really? THAT'S a cross stitch pattern?" - are still sadly few and far between in the traditional dead tree publishing world. Phil, of Urban Cross Stitch fame, made a digression from the web to the benefit of all streetwise lovers of cross stitch.


The patterns have been divided into four groups, which I'll paraphrase into: stuff to frame, stuff to decorate, stuff to give and stuff to wear. Whose house wouldn't benefit from towel edged in stitched barbed wire? Which teenage lover of all things twilight-y wouldn't kill for a cushion with a vampire kiss? Personally, I still can't go past the sugar skulls, and the severed finger needle case has me strangely fascinated. The projects are finished in a variety of ways - pictures, cushions, bookmarks, key rings, clothes - and there are brief instructions and templates for finishing them included.


The patterns range from small and quick to large and complex, so there's something for the patience level of everyone. All the patterns are provided with a DMC key only, so if you prefer (or only have access to) Anchor, you'll have to do the conversion yourself. The larger patterns are included as extra printed sheets in a pocket in the back cover, which is a nice solution and easier to work with on a big project. My primary quibble with them is that I find they're still printed fairly small and that the symbols aren't necessarily easy to read. The visual complexity of some of the patterns, with a large amount of colour shading, means that there are a lot of scattered stitches - so you'll need to count, count and count again in order to save yourself from unpicking small errors.

For offering something unusual, quirky, weird and wonderful to the cross stitching world, Twisted Stitches deserves full props. The technical aspects of small printing and scattered stitches brings me to knock off a mark, but if, like me, you've been desperate for a dose of the devious in your thread adventures you should definately grab yourself a copy.

June 21, 2012

Women in Viana do Castelo Embroidery

Olá! This week I'll be talking about embroiderers coming from the North of Portugal.
Viana do Castelo embroidery (named after a town in the Portuguese Minho region) as we know it was born in the beginning of the XXth century. Before that there was a tradition of beautifully embroidered women's costumes worked by peasant needlewomen.

Fabíola
Traditional Viana's Costume, by Rui Silva
The peasant women from Minho created their own patterns, mainly inspired by nature, by what surrounded them and captured their attention, not to mention love, whose symbol, the heart, they never forgot. Although inspired by what surrounded them, they assimilated and reproduceded it in their own way, with art, without hesitation, with determination, and based on tradition.

In 1917, Gemeniana de Abreu e Lima gathered some of those embroideries and adapted the patterns used to suit the home, with main focus on the tablecloths, aprons, curtains… She organized an exhibition showing these peasant embroideries that was a true success and many attribute this moment to the birth of modern Viana do Castelo embroidery.

Gemeniana de Abreu e Lima, in 1917. Photo from CEBVC
The genius and generosity of this woman were crucial. She recognized the beauty and artistic sense of peasant embroideries and brought them to an urban market, providing these women not only the recognition for their work but also attributing an economic meaning to it.

These were times of war, the First World War, and many women were alone with their children while the men were fighting. And Germeniana had this in mind when she began this work that soon obtained broad recognition even abroad. Some years later there was already a vigorous embroidery industry.

The embroidery of Viana became a source of income for many families in the rural areas – and in urban areas too. The companies distributed the pieces and threads by embroiderers, usually women living in villages near the city of Viana do Castelo. The embroiderers executed the embroideries in their own homes, occupying the remaining time from their other activities, often working for different companies. When the work was done, the embroiderers went to town, where they delivered to those who ordered.

In her isolation, the Minho woman transmitted joy, love and feeling to personal and daily use objects, like the costumes that characterize this region or the cloths that cover their tables. These peasant women beautifully combined embroidery as an earning source and the pleasure of creating art, in the long evenings of the village, in the sunny days of spring sunshine or in the soothing shadows of warm summer afternoons.
Old postcard representing Viana embroiderers, from here
Endowed with a true artistic sense, they show it chiefly in the way they decorate their gala costumes… The Minho needlewomen have their inventive powers so well developed that they prepare their own designs. At the most, they keep in a box small paper patterns of all the traditional motifs such as hearts, crosses, keys urns, clover leaves, ivy and oak, flowers of various shapes, birds, etc. and even the shuttle of their hand loom serves as an ornamental motif. (1)


I loved getting to know this woman that in a time of crisis was able to bring to light the amazing ability of other women and create something new and beautiful. And I also loved to know how peasant women adapted their art and creativity to new demands... I believe that nowadays we would call it "innovation"...
These days we are facing a severe crisis in Portugal and we need many more of both of these kinds of women...  I hope this may be an inspiration to them!!

I was almost forgetting our Portuguese class... Today it's difficult to choose the words... I'll choose the words that I read more often to characterize the work of these women: beauty and artistic sense... "beleza" and "sentido artístico"...




* I wrote this post after reading the books I've already talked about in my other posts, here and here and this document about Viana do Castelo embroidery.



June 20, 2012

Way Back Wednesday

Vintage embroidered pillow top

Just-a-mere found this unfinished embroidery piece that she believes was meant to be a boudoir pillow. The little details are too perfect for words. Her face is so sweet. I love the tinting of the flowers. I'm not sure what year I would place this piece-maybe 30's? What do you think?

June 19, 2012

Tutorial Tuesday


Happy Tuesday, everyone!

I have a tutorial round-up for you all this week. I found a few of these tutorials by happenstance and love how colorful they are. They look like fun, too. Hope you give some of these a try!



The cross-stitch stool with directions and more photos from This Little Street.



Patterns and stitching instructions for the Toadstool Cottage and Mushroom House from The Little House by the Sea.



Complete directions for Hydrangea stumpwork over at Di Van Niekerk.



Sweet Dreams embroidery pattern and pillowcase tutorial over at Nana Company.

Hope you enjoy!

June 18, 2012

Handicraft for Girls: Doll's Quilt Pt. 2

Hullo! We are now on to the second embroidery pattern from the Handicraft for Girls book. For those who want to catch up and make this doll quilt, check out Part 1



It does not state in the book which cultures these costumes are from, and since it is a school instruction book I presume that the patterns were reflective of the other lessons. Thus, they probably did not feel the need to elaborate. Maybe it's that vagueness that makes old books written in the language of their time so romantic and mysterious for some of us :-) 

Have a happy stitchy week up ahead!  

June 17, 2012

Patterns: There is no chameleon



How clever is this? I love any excuse to embroider on patterned fabric. You can buy this clever pattern (which just happens to be multi-lingual) from Pumora here.

June 16, 2012

The Summer of Vintage Stitchy Love CONTEST!!!

design 7391 sample 5

Hi, everyone!  This is Beth from the New Embroidery with Vintage Patterns group on Flickr writing my Feeling Stitchy post a bit earlier than usual to share some exciting news with my fellow stitchers:  For June/July, we're doing a contest in the New Embroidery with Vintage Patterns group!

Contest begins Wednesday, June 20
Category winners announced Wednesday, July 25
Grand prize winner announced Monday, July 30
Door prize winners announced Monday, July 30


How to Enter:

Join the group on Flickr New Embroidery with Vintage Patterns to enter the contest and to find the full details and rules.

Three Contest Categories:

  1. Summer Theme- any vintage embroidery pattern that captures the meaning and spirit of summer for you.
  2. Modified Pattern - Want to make a vintage pattern your own by altering it, go ahead! Just make sure to follow the extra directions.
  3. One pattern, many stitchers - show us some stitchy fun with this fun pattern shared by Flickr member, doe-c-doe.  Pattern source:  Capper's Weekly Needlecraft, design 7391.  

design 7391 sample 5



    Judging & Door Prizes:


    The judges will select one winner from each category so there will be a total of 3 category winners!  All 3 will receive prizes from our awesome and generous prize sponsors (see below)!  Yay!  Then, from the 3 category winners, all of y'all will vote (via an online poll) for a Grand Prize Winner and he/she will receive some amazing prizes (see below), hurray!

    There are also door prizes so everyone who participates in The Summer of Vintage Stitchy Love Contest has a chance to win something terrific!

    Prizes provided by:


    Pattern Bee Colonial Patterns Wild Olive
    Sublime Stitching DMC-USA
    Missouri Star Quilt Coompany Turn of the CenturiesMidvale Cottage Etsy



    Category Prizes:

    Grand Prize:
    • The Grand Prize winner will receive a box of loot from DMC!
    • Kathleen from Midvale Cottage is donating an uncut, vintage Vogart embroidery pattern for the Grand Prize winner!
    • Sarah, co-founder of Missouri Star Quilt Co., will be donating a set of 3 natural tea towels.

    Door Prizes:


    Be sure to join the New Embroidery with Vintage Patterns group to enter the contest and to find the full details and rules. Check back in with the New Embroidery with Vintage Patterns group on Wednesday, July 25 to find out who the three category winners are and to learn how to cast your vote for the Grand Prize winner which will be announced on Monday, July 30 -- door prizes will be announced this day too! Don't miss the big contest re-cap post here on Feeling Stitchy, on Saturday, July 28! Get those needles threaded and start stitching!