February 13, 2014

Challenged by embroidery with Portuguese soul - Margarida

Olá! As love is in the air, today I bring you very beautiful images that I was saving for a special occasion... And that day has come...

As you may know I write on a weekly basis showing "stitches with Portuguese soul". Usually discovering the history and tradition of embroidery in my country or showing the work of Portuguese embroiderers.

But this year I decided to try something different, too. Although embroidery is deeply rooted in our culture, it is not so present in recent craft trends... so I decided to challenge some of my favorite Portuguese crafters that usually don't use embroidery in their works, to change that at least for a day. And I'll be showing their embroidery stitches.

Pastel palette instead of traditional colors

And I definitely have to begin with Margarida. Some years ago, when I was starting my project, she was the first that gently decided to present it to the "blogosphere"... I can say that I debuted in her blog pano pra mangas...

Her blog is very popular among Portuguese crafters (but not only...) and as we would say in Portugal: she is a mulher dos sete ofícios - something like "jack of all trades". In her blog everything looks beautiful and charming... and her words are always kind and inspiring.

I'm very happy that Margarida accepted my challenge and what I like the most about her embroidery is that it says a lot about her... the colors, the motifs, inspiring words and everything planned to detail...

I asked Margarida if she could create something inspired by Portuguese embroidery but doing it "her own way"... She says that she was inspired by the hearts from Viana do Castelo and by the tradition of using words in Lenços dos namorados. But no doubt she has done it her own way...

This is my turn to present Margarida... and I leave you with her own words...

Sweet stitches

"When I think about myself and who I am, I always end up with a question mark. Not that I am a question without an answer, it's the other way around - I AM too many answers. Lately, the best way I find to describe me is by comparing me to a department store!

I'm a happy person. I'm happy wherever I am, as long as my family and friends are at a two hours flight distance and I'm surrounded by hundreds of crafty materials that can ignite my imagination.

I learned to knit when I was 6. My first embroideries are dated from when I was 7. And I made my first crochet chain when I was about 8. Yarns, fabrics, embroideries, hoops or anything else imaginable are part of my life just like carrots or peas... I'm a very lucky person to have a very talented mother and grandmothers who taught me what they know.

Many details

I love everything crafty! And as I'm also a very curious person I'm always jumping from one thing to other, trying new techniques and bringing to life what I dream of when I'm sleeping.

And then, my blog... I've been blogging for nearly 9 years. My blog is where I love to share my crafts, other talented crafters, places I visit, books I read, beautiful tutorials and some of my personal achievements. In 2011 I gave up my long term job. In January 2012 I moved to London and last August I decided to return to Portugal in order to begin another project: to be a Life Coach! Oh, and I cannot forget my plans of growing rhubarb in the hot sunny Algarve...

When Gabi challenged me to do embroidery there was one thing I knew: it had to have a heart (I've got a crush on hearts and I find them everywhere). First I thought I couldn't do it because it had been a long time since I had embroidered anything, but then I sketched directly in the fabric, chose the colors and started doing it. It was easy. I loved it and I'm thinking about repeating this experience as soon as possible."

Inspired words

Maybe Margarida forgot to say that she is romantic, too... Her embroidered words don't lie:
Amo-te no silêncio do teu sorriso... 

This time I won't translate... try by yourself to find the meaning of these words...
Have a happy Valentine's Day, inspired by stitches with Portuguese soul.


  1. Donna Childree GotlibFebruary 13, 2014 at 12:19 PM

    How beautiful. Your blog is a joy.

  2. Lovely! Every little thing in this post is just lovely.

  3. Mais uma vez obrigada Gabriela por nos fazer conhecer pessoas fantásticas e cheias de talento! Happy Valentine´s day!