April 27, 2014

My Rag Doll winner!

Floral doll from My Rag Doll

Thank you everyone for your entries into the My Rag Doll giveaway! The random number generator has spoken .....

And we have a winner, Sandy!

I will pass on your email Sandy to My Rag Doll's publishers, so that they can get your contact details. Thank you again to the publishers of My Rag Doll.

Hi, I'm Jo - I feature new embroidery patterns Sundays on Feeling Stitchy. I also post on our Twitter and Pinterest.

Is there a new pattern you'd like us feature? Email me!

April 24, 2014

Between Portugal and Scotland on the tip of a needle

 Olá! The Scottish panels are finished and already safe in Scotland!!

Since the beginning, we had in our mind that we should "impregnate" both panels with our Portuguese embroidery soul... And that was the reason why we decided to choose, as much as possible, the stitches that are the most traditional in our regional embroideries... And that ended to be a great decision... 

All the great choices belonged to Méri Almeida and Sofia Amaral M who led this giant effort of many embroiderer volunteers.

At the center of both panels, to fill in the cask, the most popular stitch from Castelo Branco Embroidery was used: "frouxo" stitch (frouxo means "loose), Castelo Branco Stitch or Oriental stitch - different designations for the same stitch profusely used in this silk embroidery but that ended being perfect in wool embroidery. Agulhas da Meri suggests this link about this type of embroidery that can be called laid-work.

But there were many others... Like the Portuguese stem stitch decorating the end of the cask on the Lisbon's panel or the four corners using four different stitches from Castelo Branco's embroidery. 

At some point the embroiderers from Lisbon noticed that the wool yarn would not be enough to finish the four corners as it was supposed to. There would be slight differences in the colors... What seemed to be a problem, ended in such a great opportunity to enrich the panel... And four different stitches ended up decorating each corner of the panel, illustrating the richness and beauty of our Castelo Branco embroidery. Beginning bottom right and going clockwise we have:  rede torcida (twisted net); pé de galo (cocksfoot); velhinhas (old ladies); crivo fingido (pretended openwork) (note: the designations in English  are literal translations and not the real name of the stitches).

It was a very simple pattern, but at the end we had a beautiful panel, so balanced with the stitches' choice for the center and the corners...  

Lisbon's panel and its four Castelo Branco's corners

And the same effort happened in Oporto. The bullion knot, (ponto canutilho) very popular in many Portuguese embroideries from the North of the country and the "soul" of Guimarães Embroidery, beautifully filled in the white wig and one of the Castelo Branco's Stitches brought color and texture to the vine leaf. The choice for the bushy mustache was brilliant: the velvet stitch, from Guimarães Embroidery, was everything George Sandeman needed... And the Grilhão Stitch (Palestrina Stitch), very present in Caldas da Rainha Embroidery (and in so many others...), was perfect to fasten the mast of the Rabelo's boat. 

Portuguese embroidery on a Scottish design, two countries on a panel.

We ended this journey between Portugal and Scotland on the tip of a needle celebrating with Porto Wine... and we are already feeling saudade, such a Portuguese "mood"... 

Wine Port, Portugal and Scotland, a journey on the tip of a needle...

Don't forget to check the Scottish Diaspora Tapestry, once each day new panels are arriving from all around the world with incredible examples of beautiful wool embroidery...

April 22, 2014

Tutorial Tuesday

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

It appears that Spring has reached many of us, and I don't know about you, but the Spring cleaning bug definitely bit me! In organizing all my sewing and embroidery supplies, I quickly realized that I needed some labels. I am happy to share this tutorial with you for jar labels that can perk up your supply containers and help keep everything organized.

Supplies needed for these labels:

- felt in 9x12-inch sheet
- embroidery floss, hoop, and needle
- wax paper in a 9x12-inch piece (artist tracing paper or tissue paper works, as well)
- 28- inches of ribbon (maybe more if your containers or jars are large)
- Craft glue or a glue gun (I used Aleene's All Purpose Adhesive)
- Pinking shears or decorative scissors that can cut through felt
- Tweezers 

The text pattern I used is available for you here. If you would like more words for your labels, I created these in a word document at font size 50.

Step One: Print the text pattern and transfer it to the wax paper with a fine tip marker.

Step Two: Place your felt in an embroidery hoop and attach the wax paper to it using a long running stitch. 

Step Four: Using 3-ply floss and a backstitch, embroider through the wax paper. Your stitches will create the perforation that will make it easy to pull the wax paper away once complete. 

Step Five: Once the words are stitched, cut away the running stitch used to attach the wax paper and begin gently pulling it away from the embroidery. Tweezers help to pull away the smaller pieces in the middle of the letters. 

Step Six: Once the words are complete, use pinking shears to trim around them to create a rectangle. Make sure to keep the  rectangle large enough to cover the width of the ribbon. Cut blank felt in the same size as the felt with text, to use as a backing.

Step Seven: Measure the ribbon around the jar and over lap it by an inch. Trim the excess away. Then cut this ribbon piece in half. 

Step Eight: Place the end of each ribbon piece on each of the short edges of the blank piece of felt. Around 1/2 an inch overlap is good. Then place the embroidered piece of felt on top. Pin through the layers of felt and ribbon to hold together. 

Step Nine: Take a needle threaded with floss, and pull in between the pieces of felt to hide the knot, use a running stitch to attach all the pieces together. 

Step Ten: Wrap the label around the jar, holding it taut. The ribbon will overlap in the back. Add a dab of glue to hold it in place. 

Step Eleven: Repeat the above steps to complete all the labels and you are on your way to Springtime organization!

Hope you enjoy and are able to give this tutorial a try!

Have a great Tuesday!

Hi, I'm Kristen! I am a lover of all things stitchy and crafty. I have been sewing for as long as I can remember. My grandmother taught me how to sew Barbie clothes when I was young and I have been sewing ever since.

You can find me at Bobbypin Bandit, on Instagram, and my Etsy shop.

April 18, 2014

Giveaway and review: My Rag Doll

The publishers of My Rag Doll have very kindly sent Feeling Stitchy a copy of My Rag Doll to review. My Rag Doll by Corinne Crasbercu of Made in France fame, shows you how to make a traditional rag doll, how to customise its hair, embroider a range of different faces and how to make a whole wardrobe of clothes, shoes and accessories.

I like how many different clothing options there are, from more traditional dolls in pretty dresses to the more themed bride doll (which I think would make a great wedding gift), ballerina doll (perfect for a ballet obsessed girl) and fairy doll. All the dolls in the book are girls but there is a dungaree pattern and I think you could probably adapt the hair and face embroidery to turn one of the dolls into a boy if you wanted to.

The book is gorgeously photographed and I loved how the various fabric options were displayed however there are no pictures or photographs of the actual steps in making the dolls and clothes and I think these would have been useful for people who are new to making this type of toy. I definitely plan on making one of these dolls (I was planning to for this review but unfortunately time got away from me) but I think, for me personally at least, there's going to be a fair bit of Googling for instructions on how to tea dye fabric and videos for making the hair, as both techniques are quite new to me and I'm more of a visual learner.

If you would like an opportunity to have a go at making some of these heirloom toys, leave a comment below, the closing date for entries is midnight on 25th April, UK time, the competition is open internationally.

Hi, I'm Jo - I feature new embroidery patterns Sundays on Feeling Stitchy. I also post on our Twitter and Pinterest.

Is there a new pattern you'd like us feature? Email me!

April 16, 2014

Mistress of Mess

Mistress of Mess Embroidery
I cannot believe that LittleLixie nailed my  personality so well. What? Don't judge...So, this may not have been made for me, it definitely captures my attitude toward creativity. I love the lettering and the woman in the piece. Wear that Mistress of Mess with pride!

April 8, 2014

Tutorial Tuesday

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

Spring and Easter time is upon us. There are so many darling tutorials with bunnies and Easter eggs, that I felt a round-up was appropriate to share with you this week. 

The embroidered face on this bunny clutch is too cute for words! Head over to Sew Together for this darling tutorial

Sedef over at Down Grapevine Lane has an awesome tutorial for a french knot bunny! Change up the color of floss to match your decor and it's instant hoppy.... I mean, happy!

If you are in a rush, have no fear, these embroidery hoop Easter eggs come together quickly. Visit Crafting a Green world for all the details.

I love that this bunny looks like he is peeking out over the edge of the embroidery hoop! Gwenny Penny has put together the tutorial that comes with the bunny template. I think her appliqué is fantastic, but her bunny template works well as an embroidery pattern, too.

Don't forget to revisit our tutorial from last year for an embroidered Easter basket. It's still available for you to use!

Hope you enjoy and have the chance to put some, or all, of these together!

Hi, I'm Kristen! I am a lover of all things stitchy and crafty. I have been sewing for as long as I can remember. My grandmother taught me how to sew Barbie clothes when I was young and I have been sewing ever since.

You can find me at Bobbypin Bandit, on Instagram, and my Etsy shop.

April 4, 2014

Sarah Williams poem

Sarah Williams stars poem
Stitched by aimee d

This gorgeous poem by Sarah Williams, as stitched by Aimee is just amazing. I am so moved by its simple beauty, and how just a few buttons and one color of thread can be so lovely. Beautiful work!

Hi, I'm floresita, editor of Feeling Stitchy. I'm an avid stitcher, knitter, and crafter. You can see more of my stitching on Instagram and my blog. My vintage transfer collection is on Vintage Transfer Finds.

Feel free to email me with any ideas for the blog!

April 2, 2014

Blue Bird Brooch

Blue bird brooch
I have always suspected that Blue Birds were very distinguished. Klaudia Wisniewska proves my theory with her absolutely stunning Blue Bird Brooch.  I can't decide which I love more, his little tuft of hair or his smoking jacket. You can see other beautiful pieces from Klaudia on her Flickr feed.