Monday, 1 November 2021

Beach Belles

 It is time for another Endeavourers Challenge reveal! This quarter the theme was "a newspaper headline", well didn't that provide endless scope! 

There have been lots of apocalyptic headlines in the last year or so, but I decided to go for something a bit different for the inspiration for my quilt. Like many of you, I suspect, our summer holiday this year was a "staycation", which as we live by the sea wasn't exactly a hardship :) There are no beach huts nearby, but if there were I wonder would they be selling for the record sums described by my chosen headline -  

Beach huts, of course, are not a modern phenomenon mobile changing rooms were in existence in Scarborough on the North East coast of England well before Victorian times. In the 1890's, the mobile rooms had become static and geared towards leisure rather than taking the seawater cures. 

So, I have imagined my Edwardian beach belles enjoying a stroll along the sands on a lovely, summer day in front of the newly built, colourful beach huts. 

I stitched down strips of scrap fabric for the sea and sky, with little bits of lace and shimmery net to represent the sea foam and sunlight on the water. Scraps of fabric were upcycled from my OH's redundant workshirts for the beach huts and the door outlines free motion embroidered.

The Edwardian ladies were from a FQ of fabric lurking in my stash. The fabric was brushed with Mod Podge for Fabric and left to dry, then the ladies were cut out and free-motion appliqued with invisible thread.

I was even able to stitch together several wadding offcuts for this quilt, so it was a very economical exercise indeed.

I am delighted with how this piece turned out and can't wait to see what my fellow Endeavourers have created for this challenge! You can see them for yourself here

Once again, I have to thank Catherine and Janine for organising this group, I am so thankful to have the opportunity to stretch my creative muscles for these Challenges.

Wednesday, 20 October 2021

Catching up

Well it has been a while since my last post that is for sure! Over and above all of the craziness that the world has gone through in the last 18 months, life at the home of Celtic Thistle has been more full on than most. 

Two of our sons, their partners and our two grandsons all ended up living with us over the summer as their house and country moves dragged out. With 4 of them working from home as well, not to mention an overlocker service that ended up taking 2 months instead of 2 weeks sewing was very much on the back burner :)

It wasn't a complete write off though, I managed to make these two half-zip hoodies for the boys before they arrived. First time sewing in an invisible zip! More practise is probably needed on that though :)

Before the overlocker disappeared into the black void that was a supposedly quick service (!) I whipped up a few pieces for the boys.

So we had Tractors


Seagulls (very apt for their holiday by the sea!) and rainbow submarines

Surfboards and campervans, especially appropriate when you enjoy sitting in the drivers seat of your Uncle's blue campervan!

Rainbow animals,


blue crabs,

nosy Highland cows

and parachuting penguins!

Some pirate boardshorts, first time using boardshort fabric too - very slippery! 

Jellyfish leggings! These have even been worn to school on a "Pantosaurus" day, so I think he likes them :)

Naturally there were a couple of underpants and boxers run up to use up some of the scraps! 

By the time that my overlocker was finally returned my friend's daughter had had a baby boy, so these outfits were soon hot off the needles. I had forgotten how tiny clothes for new babies are :)

It was a busy summer and we were so greatful to be able to spend so much time with our family after spending such a long time apart :)

Sunday, 16 May 2021

A Meandering Needle

 To mark the demise of our Embroiderers Guild Branch, the members were invited to swap stitched Artist Trading Cards. We were given a theme of "What the EG meant to me" and the dimensions but no other requirements. 

Being a member of the Embroiderers Guild has given me opportunities to try things with a needle and thread that I would never otherwise have had.


 I contributed to the Hardhome Embroidery for the launch of Game of Thrones Series 5 box set, (earning lots of kudos from my sons!)

entered an embroidery based upon a Hairy MacLary book into the national Page 17 exhibition,

made a fascinator for my daughter-in-law to wear to a friend's wedding and 

entered a local craft show competition with a canvaswork piece made for an exhibition and came 2nd! 

So, I decided that my theme for the ATC would be exploring stitches as that is what all of these opportunities have given me. 

I used a piece of a curtain fabric sample for the background of the ATC and gathered together some odds and ends to incorporate into the piece. My intention for the piece was to create an impression of a garden border of blowsy flowers on a lazy, late summer, sunny afternoon. 

As well as using stitches that I was already familiar with through the pieces I have previously created thanks to the Guild, such as French Knots and Chain Stitch, I also wanted to explore new to me stitches too. 

Having recently purchased Sharon Boggon's "Creative Stitches for Contemporary Embroidery" I didn't have far to look to find some new stitches to explore :)


 The green stitches climbing up the left of the card are Pistil Stitch, to suggest stems and seedheads bowing gently in the breeze. The open circle on the right hinting at an overblown flower is Padded Satin Stitch and the pink fronds of the fern like element in the middle is Up and Down Buttonhole Stitch. The pale pink flower shape you can just see in the top right is Whipped Long-Tail Chain Stitch. Can you tell that I really enjoyed letting my needle wander with these new stitches? 


So, this is my homage to the opportunities that membership of the Embroiderers Guild has provided me and to the many new experiences that I have enjoyed during my membership. Hopefully, the new textile art group that is planned to replace the Guild in my area will be just as stimulating and inspiring!


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