This weekend’s spoils

This weekend’s spoils

Happy Monday.

I estimate I stitched for about 21 hours this weekend. I call that a good one, aching wrists, swollen handed obsessive that I am. Here’s some of what I have to show for it:

Made a little partner to go with bucktooth, this time a 3/4 view. 

As you can see I was less heavy handed with the colour choices as the previous, so the shading has worked out nice and subtle.

This little guy will definitely make it into the new Mother Eagle jewellery collection (I will make an announcement about that soon). Tune in tomorrow for a couple of reworked versions that will be making the cut too.

Back to the drawing board

Back to the drawing board


I just had a lovely 4-day Easter break. We ate, we slept, we did the traditional bank-holiday-Monday trip to Ikea with the whole world and their children. Good stuff. The best part was I got a new chair! Are you excited? I can tell that you are. No seriously, I was starting to get back and shoulder (and neck and hand) problems from sitting on my sofa for 8 hours at a stretch sewing, and really in the interests of wanting to keep on doing that for the next 40 years, I thought I’d better get a good chair. 

Here’s what I’m doing right now:

Little magpie in bullion knots.

Mini stumpwork toadstool. This is worked in aplique, french knots, tiny bullion knots, chain stitch and satin stitch.

Following the Death Cap I wanted to get back to making more miniatures for the jewellery collection. My mum had donated to the cause once again with a perfect-size roller frame and also a stack of very old (1950s) and very soft heavy cotton pillowcases. The perfect thing to be soaked in Yorkshire tea and covered in little art works. This is truly wonderful fabric to work on actually. Heavy and even and smooth and with a story to tell. Of many sleeping heads over 70 years. If pillowcases could talk.

Vintage needlework goodies

Vintage needlework goodies

Finally catching up with myself today after an ‘out of sorts’ kinda week. Spending the day designing new jewellery motifs so will be back to sharing my work in progress soon.

In the meantime, thought I would share some amazing vintage embroidery guides and pattern books given to my mum recently. Obviously I love looking at all the designs, but the really fascinating thing is the social window it provides, and how obviously important needlework was in the home back then.

Sit back and enjoy, stitching geeks.

These magazines are from the 40s:

Look at the too-cute ads inside:

And these French guides from DMC and Recko, also from the 40s and 50s. Lots of upholstery designs and sampler alphabets:

And this one which is 100 years old!

Look – claimed 99 years ago!:

Full of lovely traditional Crewel designs, very simple instructions (assumes you knew what you’re doing) and hand-coloured plates:



Death Cap

Death Cap

So much learnt!

Here’s a brief summary:

  1. Dyed the Salamanca fabric in tea and backed it with cotton

  2. Raised stem stitch band in cotton (twice)

  3. Bullion knots in cotton

  4. Needlelace (Single Brussels stitch) in cotton

  5. Padded felt slip in wool viscose and cotton padding

  6. Brick stitch in Crewel wool

  7. Detached woven picot in cotton

  8. Couching in cotton

  9. French knots in cotton

  10. Lettering in backstitch and skull in padded satin stitch in cotton.

The afterglow of successful creation. I’m basking right now.