A Christmas Rose by Betsy Morgan

27th October 2023

It was once said that the two most dangerous days of your life are the day you are born and the day you retire. We’ll let you do your own research into that controversial thought, but what we can tell you is that needlework artisan Betsy Morgan has never looked back after she retired from teaching – and most importantly she is still alive to tell the story!

In fact, this week we’re celebrating the extraordinary new piece ‘A Christmas Rose’ that Betsy designed exclusively for our book The Design Collective | Christmas. 

Besty is most famous for her counted thread embroidery designs, which are so spectacular she has her own two-volume book series called Willing Hands. Yet since retirement, Betsy has expanded her technique repertoire and began experimenting with a range of different stitches – one of the privileges one has with more time on your hands.

With A Christmas Rose, this is the first time we’ve seen Betsy design a piece featuring counted embroidery, stumpwork and goldwork all beautifully incorporated into one design.

If you are not familiar with The Design Collective books, each project includes a backstory from the designer explaining their approach and raison d’etre for their project. On page 27 of Volume 2 | Christmas you’ll read about Betsy’s favourite hymn and all the symbolism she has incorporated into this piece.

The end result is a gorgeous hanging ornament, featuring a pink hellebore with raised petals and Ghiordes knot stamens sitting atop a hexagonal base with a background design of leaves worked onto cream linen. 

Then there is that spectacular gilt pearl purl, six-pointed star and the fabulous tassel made from light old gold DMC no.12 perlé cotton.

Be it an elaborate gift tag, a gorgeous addition to any Christmas Tree, or simply a tassel to add to your home décor for display year-round, A Christmas Rose is another magical project from Betsy Morgan who is proving to us all that some of our best work is still ahead of us.

Make Your Own | A Christmas Rose

Step 1 – Purchase Project Instructions

A Christmas Rose by Betsy Morgan is an ornament with a stumpwork hellebore and gold star worked over a background of counted thread embroidery.

Printed Books

The Design Collective – Christmas

Step 2 – Purchase Ready-To-Stitch Kit

The Inspirations Ready-To-Stitch kit for A Christmas Rose includes everything* you need to re-create this hexagonal ornament: Fabrics (unprinted), fusible interfacing, interlining, wire, card, embroidery threads and needles.


A Christmas Rose – TDCC Kit

*Please Note: To cater for flexibility of purchase, instructions are not included with our kits. For step-by-step directions on how to create this project, please refer to the book.

Join our FREE weekly newsletter All Stitched Up!

Back to top