Monday, July 6, 2015

An Embroidery Design Giveaway


Just got the idea today that I'd post some things from my sketchbooks.  The book pictured above is one of several I have....and I've chose a mixture of drawings to share with you.  I'm calling it a ''Giveaway" because you have my permission to use these....just please give me and my blog credit if you do.
Feel free to copy and enlarge and you can share with friends if you wish.  (And, no, I'm not mailing them out.)


Any number of embroidery stitches may be used here...the bow, for instance, could be done in Satin Stitch, or Outline Stitch, or Back Stitch...oddly, even in small French Knots.


The Vine I would do in Stem Stitch and Lazy Daisy Stitches...the leaves are so small on the vine, you could even use three or so Straight Stitches to make the leaves.  You get the idea, I am sure.


Feel free to enlarge to any size, but you should know...if they get too large, they just aren't as pretty.


You can use a Spider Web Rose Stitch to make the flowers in these two hearts.  Or, French Knots to turn them into regular flowers.


 I love the flower coming out of the heart....you can make the heart larger if you'd like.


I've done those little birds in Outline Stitch many times.


I guess you're going to get two of these!


 I think this heart design would be so cute embroidered on paper to make a greeting card!
 You could leave off the outside line if you wanted.


There's that bow.  I love making them....if you don't want to Outline Stitch it or Satin Stitch it, you could take some narrow bias ribbon and Couch it on the background fabric with French Knots placed every so often.   When I do that, I tie the bow first, then pin it in place to Couch.


 Oh, be still my heart!  I LOVE little delicate embroidered Vines like this.  I would probably use one strand of DMC Floss....or #12 Perle Cotton for these.  But, you can suit yourself.

If you don't have a sketchbook of your own started, you might want to take that on...or, it could just be a notebook where you store patterns like these you have gathered from other sources.  It's nice to have something to look through when you are trying to come up with a new project, or want to add a bit of embroidery to a quilt or other project.

So...from ME to YOU....Free Patterns, my Giveaway to you this summer!  ENJOY!!!

from Bird Nest Cottage,

Until next time,
♥♥♥


Friday, July 3, 2015

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY! Celebrate with a Flag Quilt


HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!!


If you have visited this blog before, then you've seen this quilt several times, but I'm hoping you will still enjoy seeing it.   I made it for a class, way back in 2001.   It measures 24 inches x 36 inches. 


 It was pieced together on my Bernina sewing machine, but the applique and quilting were done by hand...my favorite way of making quilts, for now and always.


If you look closely, you can see the 'feathers' and curving lines of the quilting stitches.  Since it is a flag, I wanted some movement in the quilting design. 


 Don't ask me how long it took to quilt this little flag quilt, as it's a little detail I don't care to know, so I don't keep track of the hours.  If I actually kept track of that kind of thing, I'd probably never make anything.  I prefer to enjoy the process and realize that it 'takes a long time.'  Actually, every quilt I've ever made was stitched in little short segments of time, squeezed into whatever else I had to do in a day.  Just like everyone else.  On occasion, I TRY to keep track of my time, for instance, if I intend to sell something I've made....but, really,  I love the process of making something out of a bit of fabric and a needle and thread, so it's all a labor of love on my part, no matter how long it takes.


 More stitching.


And, a bit more.  This photo is kind of blurry...so sorry.  I have to say, and I haven't said it in a very long time...when I am quilting, I take one stitch at a time.  I don't put a lot of stitches on my needle and then pull them through the fabric.  I never could get the hang of that, preferring, instead, to do it my own way.


I love the fabric I chose for the back of the flag.  Just a gorgeous piece of fabric.


I like the stitches on the back to look almost as good as those on the front...if you can tell from this photo.  You do remember I'm very obsessive-compulsive, right? Yeah.  It's a burden.


And, now, the quilt label.  Written on a very hot summer day.  I ironed the fabric to a sheet of freezer paper to keep it nice and smooth as I wrote, something I've been recommending for years.  And, there you have it....my flag quilt. Loved making it back then....and sharing it with you now as I celebrate the 4th of July.
 
  

 And, out front....Old Glory...a beautiful sight here at a different home, under different circumstances, but, as always, waving proudly. 

LONG MAY SHE WAVE!

Have a very Happy and Safe 4th of July weekend America!!!

from Bird Nest Cottage

Until next time,
♥♥♥






Monday, June 29, 2015

Searching for Heart Rocks


So here's a story about my continuing search for Heart Rocks.  It really is an ongoing thing.  And, you should know that my son says I see heart rocks because I want to see them, not necessarily because the rocks I find look like hearts.  Remember that as I continue.....

Last Wednesday, mid-morning, I was outside watering some plants....deadheading some flowers, getting some sun, pondering the state of the world, and just 'doing my thing.'  I had the phone out there with me...and sure enough, my favorite son called.  Now, I was out on the patio....and it just so happens there is a pile of rocks sitting there, rocks that I removed from one of the flower beds last week with a shovel.  They are waiting there for me to get rid of them.   I'm standing there, talking on the phone....and I just happen to look down at my right foot for some reason...and there, right next to my foot, staring right up at me, yes....side by side....TWO Heart Rocks!!!  Talking to Scott....who thinks I interpret all rocks I find as Heart Rocks,  I say to him - "OMG!  I see two heart rocks right by my feet."  "Oh, I'm sure you do," he says, laughing.  "Oh, I really do," said I.  He doesn't believe me. So, I took them in the house, washed them off, took a photo with my iphone...and sent it to him.  "Oh, I guess you really do," he said, surprised.  Yes, indeed!  Right there they are in the photo above.  I think I know a heart rock when I see it!!!  Well, most of the time anyway.


So, a bit later in the morning, I make my usual trip to the mailbox.  My sidewalk and driveway are made of concrete with millions of little stones embedded in it.  As I made my way back up the sidewalk, I looked down as something caught my eye....could it be?  YES.  A Heart Rock.
For sure.  At least, my 'interpretation' of one.  Can you see it here?  


 How about a close-up...see it now?  Sure you do.  Look closely, you might find others...I know they are there if we look hard enough.


 Now can you see it?  Well, ok, it's not a perfect heart....this one has a little chip on it's shoulder, but I see a heart anyway.


I'm feeling lucky, so decide if there are hearts in the sidewalk....there must be some in the driveway.  I launch a search.  And, wouldn't you know.....YES....see it?


 Right there.....almost a perfect one.  Do you see?


And, there....another one!  Not close to perfect, maybe one like my son thinks I imagine as being a heart.


 And, another???


 Kind of a misshapen heart here....but it still looks like one to me.


 And, finally, one more.  My neighbor across the street...I would call her elderly, but she's only five years older than I, so I won't go there...well, she called my cell phone....and asked what I was doing in the heat, walking around all bent over, did I lose something?  Oh, dear.  I said, "No, I haven't lost anything, I'm finding things."  "What things?" she said.  I said,  "I'm finding Heart Rocks embedded in my driveway."   I think I'm fast becoming the 'weird' resident on this street.  And, there really is no chance of me changing anytime soon.  I really did enjoy my "search" and I'm sure you'll hear about it if it happens again.


Until next time,

From Bird Nest Cottage
♥♥♥


Thursday, June 25, 2015

Remembering 48 Anniversaries and Celebrating the 49th Today!


 Happy 49th Anniversary, Richard

"LOVE IS A PROMISE, LOVE IS A SOUVENIR, ONCE GIVEN NEVER FORGOTTEN, NEVER LET IT DISAPPEAR."
John Lennon

 

Today is our 49th Anniversary. 

Rather than be sad he's gone, I choose to be so very happy he was here, so I'll  remember with gratitude, love and joy.  "The old navy man" would often come into the house (or my studio) with a bouquet of 'everyday flowers' in his hand, sometimes he'd have put them in a vase from the pantry, and sometimes there would be a tiny bouquet freshly picked from the yard somewhere, delivered in his bare hands.   He always gave me flowers on our anniversary, but actually, these little impromptu flower gatherings were always my favorites.  So, yes, today I'm remembering.....

 from Bird Nest Cottage

Until next time,
♥♥♥

 


Sunday, June 7, 2015

My Latest Finds


This week I visited a couple of my favorite flea markets, plus a brand new one.  These activities always boost my mood and I had a great time walking and looking around.  So, I'm going to show you a few things I found to bring home.  First will be this quilt.....although it's not really a quilt...more like a summer coverlet, as it isn't quilted and the edges are finished. 


 It's made of a very thin fabric and is quite soft.  I think it's batiste, but I'm not sure and I also think the thread it's embroidered with may be a rayon thread, as it's shiny.  I couldn't resist buying this because, as you see, it's a basket and I'm particularly fond of embroidered baskets.  I removed the pillows from my bed to give me enough room to spread this out for a photo.  There is a lot extra fabric at the bottom of the coverlet and plenty on each side also.  This is a Full Size bed.  I think it would make a great curtain for a big window and also a terrific shower curtain. 


The basket itself needs repair...I think a total re-do of it is in order, but all the rest of the embroidery seems to be ok.


Look at all the ribbon...so graceful and quite beautiful!


What do you think?


I LOVE it!!!!


Now, what do you see?  French Knots, of course.  Always a favorite of mine!!


Lovely!


The colors are quite nice too.


SEE!


So delicate looking!


 This is the ruffle that finishes three sides of the 'quilt.'  So nice!


 And, here again.  Lucky to find it, I do believe!


 Here are some of the other things I found....


This little chest of drawers....I have one exactly like it, but as I have appreciated it and used it for so long...decided to get this one too.  I try and never pass up something as useful as anything with shelves, doors or drawers...they always mean STORAGE!  And, then, there is that silver pincushion.


It has wool, the lower part of a ruffled piece of linen, old buttons and that sweet key sewn to it.  Couldn't resist!!


This is a little pewter sugar bowl.  I loved the shape and thought I'd make a pincushion from it in my own style.  Love the handles!


 A box of hand-embroidered hankies.  So sweet.  The squares and rectangles are appliqued onto the linen and there ARE more French Knots!!  Still in the box with an 'Embroidered by Hand" tag still attached.


Adorable!


Seven quilt blocks...$1.00.  


 Several pieces of lace, all different.  I'm a fool for those! These were removed from pillow cases.


 Pretty as can be...


Closer view.


The one on top is knitted.  I'm always amazed at knitted lace!


 A piece of linen marked for embroidery...I'm sure for use with wool thread, as in Crewel Embroidery. Then, there is that silver box.  I'm going to do something special with that little item.  You'll see.


A closer look at that marked linen and also a crocheted linen piece...in a rectangle with the lace at each end.


 There is a bag of really 'weird' fabric.  I think it's for upholstery, but not sure.  It reminded me of punch needle work....and doesn't have the background filled in yet.  Would be great to use in a tote bag.


One of two hankies...pink, wouldn't you know.  One with Satin Stitching, quite nicely done...


And, a delicate pink linen one with pretty pink lace.  A few old-fashioned stones and beads added.  Only on one corner though..I expect it was never finished.


I also found this very cute wire basket...just fine for an assortment of pretty hankies!


 Four cute little primitive type little pillows...for $3.  I'm sure these were made from a piece of yardage...I just love the graphics!


Well, like I said, never turn down anything you can store things in, so this box caught my eye right away....there are 42 little segments in this drawer/box.  A great thing for buttons, beads or whatever small items you 'hoard.'


 These are the cutest buttons!  Tiny rectangles and I'd never seen rectangular buttons with the holes on the diagonal.  Love 'em.

And, that my friends is my favorite thing to do..."hunt and gather" out there in the 'fleas' then come home and sort the 'loot' spending time imagining what I can do with it all.  And, then, sometimes...actually doing it!
Sound familiar to you?

Until next time, 
♥♥♥


The Bird Nest on the Ground Studio

The Bird Nest on the Ground Studio
Right in My Backyard

A Bit of Heaven

A Bit of Heaven
An original designed wall quilt with my vision of heaven on earth.