Thursday, May 23, 2013

Revisiting the Old

I have always tried to keep my hands busy. As a child, my mother introduced me to many of the fiber arts. I learned to crochet, making caddywumpus creations like a yellow, asymmetrical scarf that was unwearable. There was also a brief fascination with latch-hook, and I loved my potholder loom. I made myself clothing and even studied with a Vogue designer for bit in my early teens. But the medium I chose the most in my early years was counted cross stitch and embroidery. I made many samplers as a youth filling up my parents' walls. My mom would select an image, and I would get to work. I even made Dave a stocking for our first Christmas together that incorporated a vintage Santa Claus. That stocking was the last piece I stitched. I no longer felt the needlework love. I moved on to knitting.
In the past few years I have felt drawn back into the world of embroidery. A friend of mine made amazing pillowcases and dish towels. I was inspired, but still not motivated to pick up a needle and thread. Then this past autumn, I bought Aine a sampler set. She had been wanting her own needlework project. While checking out, I threw a little something for me into the cart. This purchase kicked off my new habit. (I even bought another one from this shop for my niece's birthday earlier this year).
I let the sampler sit while helping Aine with hers. She took off stitching each of her ornaments. Meanwhile I kept knitting and making holiday gifts. Finally I started the sampler in between projects earlier this year. Although I enjoyed the process, it required a bit more attention. I didn't like how my lettering appeared and played with a couple different stitches. Finally this week at the park, I pulled it back out. My goal was to finish it by our close date. It is now complete and ready for a frame and new home. I am so pleased with the outcome. I am gearing up for more needlework. Yesterday I spent an inordinate amount of time browsing etsy looking for new samplers. I am dreaming of my own designs too. My next project may be finishing the holiday ornaments I purchased years ago from Alicia Paulson.
Accompanying my embroidery fervor has been bits of Dar Williams. The kiddos and I love her music. We have also been listening to audiobooks. Our current audiobook is the The Spiderwick Chronicles. It is a favorite with the older two. It can be a bit scary, but it spawns loads of fairy and magical creature talk and exploration.


  1. your embroidery looks great! i've had the itch to do some embroidering as well and thought maybe, just maybe, i should brush up on some stitch techniques so i've subscribed to the sampler that dropcloth offers. then maybe i'll feel brave enough to tackle those ornaments i've purchased from alicia over the years!

    1. So good to know I am not the only one with ornaments sitting here. I did actually cut them out a few months ago, but alas they sit. I was tempted by the dropcloth sampler. Are you pleased with them?

  2. i am so excited about this new project. your sampler turned out so nice, in fact i ordered that one myself, along wit the peacocks and the red and white holiday sampler (cae was wanting to try it out) so i will be picking your brain at park soon. :)

  3. I really want to try some emroidery but the concentration it requires puts me off. plus i cant hang anything on my walls. phooey

  4. Love hearing your fiber arts story!
    Your piece turned out so pretty. I love embroidered sayings. I embroidered a quote from my little guy and make it into a pillow for my mom for Christmas. It was something he had said to her that she just loved. Made such a fun gift.
    Audio books are great. We have not been able to make it though the Spiderwick Chronicles. Still too scary & strange for my gal. Someday.
    Thanks for joining in the sharing! So fun!

  5. Anonymous12:30 PM

    My roommate in Boston introduced me to Dar Williams. While sometimes her more soprano-ish voice bothers me, I LOVE "The Babysitter's Here." Makes me cry.

  6. Anonymous12:31 PM

    My roommate in Boston introduced me to Dar Williams. While sometimes I dislike her soprano-ish voice, I completely LOVE "The Babysitter's Here."

  7. That sampler is beautiful! This makes me want to pick up my floss and needle again.
    I had never heard of Dar Williams. Thank you for sharing with us.

  8. I *LOVE* Dar Williams! I listened Honesty Room every night when I was knocked up with Brennan.

  9. Wow - this is just beautiful! I keep wanting to try my hand at embroidery but then I think "Do I really need another hobby right now?" There's just so much to do and so little time!