Botanical Embroidery

I received Yumiko Higuchi's newest book Zakka Embroidery as a Christmas gift, and from the moment I opened it I couldn't wait to start stitching. Yumiko is an incredible artist and creates the most beautiful designs. If you haven't seen her work yet, be sure to.

I pulled a couple different flowers I liked from the "Floral Pattern" in the book and came up with this little motif. I embroidered with wool and then made it into a project bag. I finished it off with a tiny pom-pom made out of the same wool I used to embroider.

My Weekend Projects (Jan 26/27)

I spent a lot of time in bed with the flu this weekend, and was able to spend a little more time than usual playing with yarn and thread. :)

My mother-in-law brought me back this gorgeous yarn from her visit to Turkey a couple of months ago, and I've been dying to start making something with it.

I was playing around and started making these little doily/coaster type rounds. At first I thought I may make a couple tea coasters and then as I kept crocheting I was enjoying the beautiful variations of colors that were developing and I just kept going. I'm not sure what I will be doing with these yet, maybe make a blanket or a pillow, but I thought I'd share how pretty they are with you.

I've also been working on this fun embroidery pattern by Pam Garrison. I love being able to choose whatever colors I like and mixing up the stitches. It really is a cheerful and bright pattern. :)

So that's what I've been working on lately. Looking forward to playing some more this coming weekend.

Until next time...

Lady by the Bay

Pink Christmas Coat Ornament

I wanted to make a special ornament for my granddaughter's first Christmas this year. I made this little pink Christmas coat. I want to make a life-size one now because it's so cute! I saw lots and lots of different little coat/dress ornaments on Pinterest and such. I don't have a pattern, but I drew inspiration from all of those lovely pins on Pinterest.

I just freehand drew the outline of the coat and then cut out a collar and pockets. I'm sorry I don't have a pattern, but if it helps I've included the little cutout drawing I did. :) I have lots of buttons, so I just picked a few that looked cute on the coat. You could totally do french knots with ribbon or yarn, or anything like that.  All embroidery was done with two strands.  Blanket stitch was used for the outline of the coat, center of coat, pockets, and collar. Backstitch was used (in red) on the collar and pockets. I just made a little sort of star/snowflake on the pockets by making a plus sign and then an X over that.  Real technical, I know. ;) When I was all done, right before I finished all the outer stitching, I stuffed a little poly-fil in there.

I saw some that had little mittens hanging from the arms of the coat. That would be really cute, especially little knitted or crocheted ones to add another texture. I thought a little scarf would be cute too, but, of course, didn't make one. And finally I saw some ornaments that hung on little hangers. I actually purchased the wire to make a little hanger and by the time I remembered I had already stitched the neck closed.  Next time.

Materials used:
Pink felt
Embroidery needle
DMC floss (pink) 3713
DMC floss (red) 817
Miscellaneous buttons

I embroidered her name and the year on the back with one strand of each color.

Here are some closeups.

And finally, here is my little cutout drawing.

Happy Holidays to everyone! I hope you have the most wonderful Christmas and a very blessed New Year!

Until next time...

Lady by the Bay

Matryoshka Doll Ornament

I'm really starting to get the hang of this embroidery thing, and I'm loving it! I found this cute little Matryoshka doll ornament on Pinterest and thought I'd give it a try.  Here's how mine turned out. I'm giving them as gifts for Christmas.  How cute are they??  And they're not difficult to make.

I sewed the flower part on a little crooked on my first one. Oops!

I'm having so much fun making these and can whip one up in about an hour from start to finish.  I also embroider the name/year on the back of each one for the person I'm making it for, like in the tutorial.

Happy Holidays!!

Until next time...

Lady by the Bay

"LILY" My First Hand Embroidery Project

I love creating things, whether it be crocheting, sewing, painting, scrapbooking... the list goes on.  I've always been interested in embroidery but had never given it a try.  Recently, I was scrolling along through Pinterest and saw this and immediately fell in love with it and had to figure out how to make it.

I found the blog post with the pattern here.  Everything was so clear and seemed easy enough that I felt I could give it a try. So I ran to Joann's (any excuse will get me there) and grabbed what I needed to do this project.

Once I got everything sorted out I then had to learn embroidery.  I noticed on the pattern that there were seven different stitches I had to learn. Eek!  SEVEN!!  I was determined though.  I headed over to YouTube, found a few videos, but they were confusing or poor quality, or I just plain couldn't learn anything from them.  Then I found Wendi Gratz of I don't know what I would have done had I not found her.   Her videos are SO good!  Thank you, Wendi! :)

Two days later I was finished with my project.  I worked on it here and there over the weekend.  I was actually sad when I was finished and didn't have anything left to embroider, so now I have to find a new project.  Embroidery is definitely something I will continue to do.

My notes regarding the pattern:

I obviously traced the pattern of the girl, but I wanted my granddaughter's name at the bottom instead of "thread," so I freehanded that.  Some of the colors I used are different than the pattern.  I will list the colors I used below.  My granddaughter has dark brown hair with auburn highlights, so I used one strand of E898 to put those in there.  I combined colors for the headband instead of using just one color.  And for the word "lily" I added one strand of the next color I was putting into the gradient, and would then go to two strands of one color, then add in one strand of the next color (4 purples) until I got to the beginning with the lightest color.  I hope that made sense!  I used split stitch instead of back stitch throughout.

Colors I used:
Hair: 3371 with E898 highlights
Headband: Combination of 961 and 3713
Eyes: 3371
Mouth: Combination of 221 and 961
Face: 3713
Shirt: 894
Skirt: 961
Tights: 894 and 414
Boots: 413
Needle/Thread: 310
LILY: 550, 414, 209, 210

My Instagrams as I was going along...

Now I just have to decide what I want to do with the finished project.  I haven't decided if I want to frame it, make it into a pillow, etc.  I'll have to figure it out before Christmas though, as I want to give this to my granddaughter.

Until next time...

Lady by the Bay