Have Your Say

14th July 2023

Responses and a Recollection

In this week’s Have Your Say we’re sharing some of the many responses we’ve received to recent queries posed in All Stitched Up!, closing with a recollection about needle and thread that got everyone at Inspirations HQ doing a little wondering of their own.

In ASU #382, Kate shared a piece of stumpwork that, although completed some time ago, was yet to be displayed so Kate was hoping someone would have an idea that would liberate her stitching from storage. 

As always, the Inspirations Community provided a wealth of information, and although we received too many responses to publish individually, it turns out that great minds think alike. Of all the responses we received, many of them shared the same finishing solution, and we hope one of these might just be fit for purpose for Kate.

Covering the project with glass, whether it be an end table, tea table or trivet was the most suggested solution, as Hella pointed out that ‘it could then be viewed from above but kept away from exploring fingers’, with Cristina noting that ‘guests could appreciate its beauty and admire its details while having a pastry and another cup of tea’.

Sandra shared the solution she used after coming across a similar display dilemma she encountered with some crazy stitch pieces she’d finished – a VITTSJO coffee table from IKEA. 

‘l have displayed my piece between the two glass tables. Whilst it is quite protected, it does require a very gentle dusting with a paint brush every now and then.’

Also allowing the stitching to be viewed from above, both Ann and Alice thought incorporating the piece into the lid of a box, whether it be fabric, paper or wooden would provide a suitable solution. Alice closed her email with a few words of encouragement for Kate.

‘I do admire Kate’s work as I am so not in the same league with her when it comes to stumpwork. Well done Kate, and I hope the idea of a box lid will help you decide how to show off your beautiful work.’

Lucy suggested Kate mount her embroidery inside a box. Whilst Lucy had her box prior to laying her first stitch so was able to ‘stitch to fit’, her hope is that Kate might be able to find just the right box that will allow her to mount her piece inside.

Lucy’s Embroidered Garden

A clear Perspex box is what came to mind for both Jennie and Yvonne when they pondered Kate’s dilemma, with Jennie making mention of TAP Plastics who custom make such items in the US.

Cathy suggested attaching the stitching to a piece of canvas that could then be decorated and wired for hanging. Whilst another member of the Inspirations Community pointed us in the direction of Vonna Pfeiffer whose ‘Cube’ method of mounting stitching around foam opened our eyes to a method of finishing we hadn’t previously considered.

Perhaps a box frame or shadow box might be just what you need Kate? These allow the piece to be viewed from above if placed horizontally or easily hung on a wall. 

Ann, Christina, Jenni and Pat have all made use of these in their own time with needle and thread, making note that they’re either readily available commercially or could be purpose built by a local framer. Ann made note that if Kate was to have a box frame made for her piece, that archival clear view glass would be the perfect inclusion.

End of Shift by Ann

‘This glass is amazing and actually looks as if there isn’t any there most of the time! I have attached an image of ‘End of Shift’ that I had professionally framed, and although you can’t see it, there is actually glass in front of this piece.’

A BIG thank you has to go to everyone who took the time to point Kate in the right direction! The suggestions were many and varied and got us thinking outside the square as to how we might display our work with needle and thread going forward. Also, we can’t help but commend Lucy on one of the most beautifully designed, stitched and mounted embroidered gardens we’ve ever seen. Lucy, it would be an absolute delight to open the lid of your box to find such an enchanting scene encased inside!

And now, from responses to a recollection…

We opened All Stitched Up! issue #381 by talking about our journeys with needle and thread, also posing the question, ‘Can you recall the first stitch you ever laid?’

Stephanie emailed as she recalled what led her to lay the first of many stitches.

‘In March of 1996, I was vacationing in a Cotswolds Village when I saw something in a shop window that, because the colours and design were so harmonious, I wanted to know more about. Little did I know when I entered the shop that I was about to begin what has turned out to be a decades long love affair with applying thread to fabric.’

‘What had caught my eye was Beth Russell’s needlepoint interpretation of a William Morris artichoke design. Before that moment I’d never spent a second thinking about needlepoint, but I’ve always liked doing something with my hands so bought the kit.

Several days later, my first stitch still not laid, I was one of the last passengers to board a flight to Scotland when I realized that I had left a bag in the security area, and it contained my artichoke! The gate attendant was a tough sell, but I was able to retrieve the bag and canvas. Sometimes I wonder what would have happened if the gate agent had been a different person and I had had to fly to Scotland without the kit.

Would there have been a first stitch and if not, what would I have done with the thousands of hours I’ve spent stitching since then?!’

Stephanie, we love that your stitching journey began with two serendipitous moments. The first being a display in a shop window, that apart from its colour and design, may have never caught your attention, and the second, the (eventual) kindness of an airport employee who reunited you with your purchase. Your story has left us all wondering what we would have done with the countless hours we’ve spent stitching since embarking on our journey with needle and thread!

Join our FREE weekly newsletter All Stitched Up!

Back to top