Thursday, August 6, 2009

Shopping cart is now available!

I'm so excited to announce that I've activated the shopping cart feature! This blog is now officially a boutique. I currently have 3 items listed for sale. If you are interested in a product shown in previous articles, and you do not see it in the items available for sale, please leave me a comment. I will be adding more items to the shopping cart, and figuring out how to incorporate a "custom item" form. Thank you for your patience, and thank you for visiting!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Small purses

The idea to create small clutch style purses evolved naturally while I was making the tote bag pockets. I decided to try embroidering a piece of stitchable fabric and lining it with a contrasting cotton. Embellisments range from different thread textures to use of beads and grommets. The first 2 pieces are now available for purchase directly from me; the third was a gift sent to a friend.

Cranberry Floral - small irridescent beads are the stems and the "grass" under the flowers - lined with a cranberry/ivory floral cotton - the embroidery was inspired by the fabric. Stitched on hand-coffee-tea-dyed (by me!) fabric.

Asian-inspired turquoise and black - satin turquoise floss is juxtaposed with metallic silver floss to create an organic, textural flowering branch. This piece is lined with black twill, and is now SOLD!

This third piece is another example of my passion for creating custom designs for specific people. As I stitched this piece, with every intention of listing it for sale on Etsy, I was reminded of a good friend of mine. As the image emerged, it became clear to me that it "belonged" to her. I personalized it with her initials. This is also lined with black twill, and features a hand-made beaded toggle clasp. The stitching is "black cherry" satin floss and silver cotton floss on black evenweave.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Finishing stitchery

One day, about 3 years ago, my husband was watching me stitch, and asked me, "What are you going to do with all these things?"  I'd collected quite a few little pieces of Hardanger - I was inspired by the form and the simplicty, and kept myself busy stitching.  I didn't have an answer for him.  That's where the idea of making appliqued pillows arose.  But I'm a practical person.  I like things to be beautiful and useful.  So I started thinking about making bags.  For Christmas 2008, all the women in my family received tote bags.  Each bag was made of a sturdy, solid color material, with a fun, patterned accent fabric.  Each bag also featured an embroidered pocket, inspired by the accent fabric.  I had so much fun choosing the fabric for each recipient, and designing the pockets to not only complement the fabrics, but to also reflect the recipients' personalities.  Here are some examples:

Open Wreath, with purple swirl

Faith, Hope & Love, with pink & yellow plaid

Little Treasure Clock face design (not my personal design, modified slightly) with tan "bamboo"

Pinwheel with multi-small floral - colors pulled out in the embroidery are the aqua and lavender.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Beadwork - strung necklaces

I'll confess - I'm a craft snob. I think if I know how to do something difficult, then I shouldn't bother with something simple. I resisted simple strung necklaces for a long time because I thought they were beneath me. And then I discovered beautiful lampwork beads, and very cool funky wood pieces - and you can't weave with those! Maybe I just had to find the right kind of beads to inspire me! (I've also been known to cut apart jewelry I find on sale for the beads!)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Beadwork - wire and bead jewelry

It seems a natural progression from weaving bead bracelets to working with wire - wire stringing, wire wrapping, and wire shaping. I find twisting straight pieces of metal into intricate shapes to be a very soothing pastime. For my wire-worked pieces, I generally create my own clasps. So here are some of the things I've created using wire, pliers, jigs, and larger beads:
Starting with pearls - instead of knots between, gold figure-8s
Jig-shaped links between pearls
Jig-shaped links between black 4mm bicones
Jig-shaped links with royal blue 4mm bicones
Matching bracelet
Jig-shaped pieces with red 3mm rondelles (this also has a matching bracelet)
Wire-wrapped bezel around an 8mm iridescent pearl, with a wire-wrapped bail
"Figure-8" bracelet with lavender cube beads
"Figure-8" bracelet - finer gauge wire, and fire-polished 3mm rondelles

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Beadwork - seed bead weaving

I started working with beads when my first child was 1 year old. It was Christmas time, and we didn't have a lot of money for gifts for family members. So I decided to make grandmother's bracelets for my mother and mother-in-law. They were hideous, but they were made with love! Around the same time I discovered all the things that could be done with seed beads. I made Christmas cards with beaded designs on the front. And then I started visiting web sites, and I taught myself seed bead stitches, and started making all kinds of things! Check out a few of the things I've made by weaving beads. (I've included the stitch-type, for those of you who are beady types.)

Snowflake ornaments (circular flat net)
Candle sleeves (3-bead net)
"Crystal Waves" bracelets - right-angle weave
"Butterfly" bracelet - right-angle weaveSpiral Rope chain bracelets

Friday, April 10, 2009

Cross Stitch completions

These are not my personal designs, but believe me, it's my work!

Pray Without Ceasing, Janylynn Designs - this was the first kit I picked up. I started in June 2004, completed in June 2005Emma's Garden, designed by Marilyn Leavitt-Imblum (Told in a Garden, Lavender and Lace), completed November 2007
Unknown designer - this was an Egyptian themed round robin - One side was stitched by the round robin members. The large motif I stitched, then I attached the 2 pieces to create a WIP bag, completed and finish-finished summer 2008
Biscornu #11, The Floss Box freebie, finished for the Tiny Treasure Exchange Biscornu exchange, March, 2009
Dove Love, Alessandra Adelaide Needlework, completed March 29, 2009
Ask Me About My Grandkids, Lizzie*Kate snippet, completed April, 2009