What Are You Stitching

2nd December 2022

Having been inspired by Denise Forsyth’s A Slice of Life, we searched our What Are You Stitching? files to find other stitchers who, like Denise, had crafted projects that were anything but two dimensional.

Sue Duke

‘I’ve completed Aurora and Autumn Leaves, which are both from Inspirations issue #97. I’m thrilled with both!’

‘I love doing embroidery. Although it takes time, if I just put aside a small amount each day, it eventually gets completed. I always have a few projects on the go at one time. The smaller projects are great in between the larger ones, as they boost your confidence to keep plodding on with the big ones.’

You should absolutely be thrilled with both projects, Sue! They are beautifully stitched and skilfully constructed. We have a soft spot for projects that are equal parts form and function and these definitely fit that description.

Colleen Lopez

‘I just finished a tea cosy for my mother’s 82nd birthday. I live in Massachusetts and my mother lives in Ontario, Canada. My mom was born in Ireland, and I used the tree of life to represent her birth whilst the landscape scene depicts the beautiful countryside in which she was born.’

‘I thought pouring a little piece of myself into my needlework to let my mom know how much I truly love her was the best gift. Although she loves the cosy, it’s a challenge to get her to use it because she thinks that it is too pretty!’

‘I started stitching when I was about 10 years old, and as my mom guided me through the patterns and stitches, I have very fond memories of our time together. I have done the same with my girls who are 14, 16, and 19. I tend to stitch with a purpose in mind, usually an event or a particular someone. Stitching is something that I find peaceful to do.’

Colleen, you have absolutely poured yourself into your mom’s gift! Not only have you plied your time and talent but designed a very personal piece to remind your mom where she came from. Although she may not be using the tea cosy for its intended purpose, we know she’ll always admire it fondly.

Sarah Kerkin

‘I love poppies and cornflowers and was very excited when Elisabetta Sforza published her book, ‘In a Wheat Field’. I made a heart-shaped sachet from the book, stitched on raw silk and stuffed with lavender.’

‘It was so much fun to stitch. I especially loved the use of cast on stitch to give the poppies dimension. I added a square knot tassel to give the sachet weight, using colours from the embroidery.

I made this as a housewarming gift for a very dear work friend and it now has pride of place in her home.’

Sarah, your project is instantly recognisable as one of Elisabetta’s and we love your addition of the tassel. The sachet was a thoughtful gift and will be a lovely addition to your friend’s home for years to come.

Jacquie Harvey

‘I was eight when the Queen was crowned, and as we were lucky enough to have a television, I was able to watch her Coronation. It was a very cold day and even then I wondered if the Queen was warm, particularly on the drive from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey. 

What a moment it was when she got out of that glorious golden coach! I immediately fell in love with the Sir Norman Hartnell dress she wore and was even lucky enough to see it on display in London not long afterwards.’

‘To celebrate her Jubilee, I wanted to make a miniature dress – which measures just 20” (50cm) high. The Queen insisted that an emblem from every country in the Commonwealth be included on her Coronation dress. Unfortunately, I didn’t have that much room so had to limit the design to just four from the UK.  

However, there is a hint of a New Zealand fern, on behalf of our daughter-in-law, whose family lives there. I used silk sateen fabric and thousands of beads and sequins. The quilting was done by hand and the floral design painted on. Apparently, the Queen loved the dress and wore it several times more on her journey around the Commonwealth, shortly after the Coronation had taken place.’

What a fitting way to celebrate the Jubilee of a much-loved royal. Now that we’ve lost Queen Elizabeth II, your dress will be a lovely reminder of a life well lived in service of others. The dress is beautifully designed and its execution is flawless, especially given its diminutive scale. Thank you for sharing that with us Jacquie.

When you pick up needle and thread, do you think in two or three dimensions? Do you decide on the finish before embarking on a project or consider the construction once the stitching is complete?

Whether you stitch in two or three dimensions, plan the finish before picking up needle and thread or decide once the stitching is finished, we’d love to see what you’ve created. Simply email news@inspirationsstudios.com with photos of your work along with a few details of your journey with needle and thread.

Join our FREE weekly newsletter All Stitched Up!

Back to top