Norma's Needleworkz

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Out With the Old and In With the New

An appropriate title I thought to finish up some "old" bits of stitchery before beginning a new year of stitching.

Oh, about 25 years ago I was a charter member of the local quilt guild as well as the state quilt guild (gave memberships up when hubby's health began to deteriorate). During the time I was a member of the local quild we had some very nice workshops with well known teachers. This first photo is the result of one of those workshops. Can you see the idea of fall folliage trees????

We had to cut strips 1 1/2" wide and then in appropriate lengths to piece a picture of a favorite scene. Fall is one of my favorite seasons and so I pieced a scene as viewed from I 64 on Afton Mountain on the way to visit a sister-in-law and her family who lives in Charlottesville, Virginia. The idea of showing this as well as the next photo came about because on one of my groups .... StitchMAP ..... there was a thread about fall stitching. I had completely forgotten this piece and so had to go dig it out. Thought I'd share it here with the idea of possibly making a cq wall hanging sometime in the future. My StitchMAP sisters were very enthusiastic about this becoming a cq piece. I'm just not ready to work on it yet.

This piece was also a local guild workshop and was pieced using Jenny Byer fabrics. Since this is supposed to be a ship (flowered print) in full sail I can really begin to see a sea cq ..... wonderful possibilites here. Just have a few WIPs ahead of this one but may begin working on this one in a month or so.

From time to time I do a few commissioned pieces such as knitted Christmas stockings. This is the back of the one I did this year.

And here is the front.

In 2008 I was asked to complete a Christmas stocking that had been started by a knitter that had died during the year. The lady I knitted the stocking for was so pleased with the end result that she asked me to do this one for 2009. I have been commissioned to do two for this year.

Do your see all my thread goodies? On my HBT (Here-Be-Tatters) group I participated in a thread exchange. We were supposed to send 10 yards of a thread to five (or possibly six) people along with a favorite pattern or other small tidbit (no tatting involved). Several of my swappers sent beads and the little snowman tin (had fudge in it) is such a handy size to carry a shuttle, some thread and small scissors. It will fit in my purse just fine!!!! Several sent more than one thread and as you can see one swapper sent a full ball of thread. I also received several patterns. All the threads I received (except for the ball which is one of my favorites) were new to me and I'm looking forward to trying them all! This was really a lot of fun and I look forward to doing this again.

Previously I had shared some decorative "braids" in my bobbin lace that I was playing with on my own. This is the last of those braids, number 7, and I used DMC size 50 thread. The pattern is found in INTRODUCTION TO BOBBIN LACEMAKING by Rosemary Shepherd. This is one of two beginner books I'm trying to go through on my own as my teacher has in mind certain things she wants me to learn and I'm eager to try everything she wants me to do. What I'm doing for myself is using a variety of threads and fully grounding myself in the very simplest of patterns. I still need to build up my self confidence where bobbin lacemaking is concerned. Some techniques I try I go full steam ahead because the fibers are comfortable to handle. To make true bobbin lace you need very, very fine thread and I'm a bit hesitant .... no, I'm a whole lot hesitant when it comes to those very, very fine threads .... they sometimes need a magnifying lamp to even see them!

Just the week after Christmas I decided to try a different beginners book and even add beads to some bobbin lace.
Bookworm bookmarks .... hee, hee! Can you see their "beady" little eyes? According to Beginner's Guide to Bobbin Lace by Gilian Dye & Adrienne Thunder "this book describes the techniques needed to lead you step-by-step, through simple pieces that will give you practice in handling the bobbins and introduce you to a range of stitches." Well I knew the basic stitches and have had practice in handling the bobbins but this book uses a wide range of threads, such as size 8 perle cotton for the bookworm bookmarks, and even some yarns. The projects in the book that call for yarns don't seem to be calling me to do them. Using size 8 perle cotton makes the lace very dense .... even the half stitch "worm" on the right and to me bobbin lace is airy ... so the remaining pieces in this book that call for size 8 perle cotton I will use lace weight thread instead. BTW I'm not wild about using size 8 perle cotton for bobbin lace making .... a little too slippery, slidey for me although it does have a nice finished look. I also did one of these bookworms out of size 20 crochet thread (not shown in the pic). The thread thickness is about the same as the 8 perle cotton but the end result is consistant with a densely woven fabric .... not lacey looking at all. These bookworms are for my granddaughters who love to read.

My first completed needlework piece for 2010! This is a piece I really had some "fun" with. The first time I worked this piece I really had trouble turning corners and so asked my teacher if I could do it again.

This time she wanted me to play with the patterns and no two sides are alike .... a great learning "example" for my notebook. I still have to work on the finishing. The first time I had my teacher to guide me and this time I tried it on my own reading directions from my "textbook" The Technique of Bobbin Lace by Pamela Nottingham. The finishing was really fiddly to do but I wanted the piece off my pillow so that at my next lesson I'll be able to start something new. I don't know what my next piece will be and I have a few bobbins to empty. Guess I'd better get started on them.


At 1/02/2010 08:15:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Norma, your fall trees is awesome, I love it and as the girls say YES it would look fantastic Crazy quilted:):)

Your bobbin lace is coming along so nice. My Grandmother does bobbin lace work. She sends me then sometimes, so delicate. Your book marks (book worms) came out great!

Ann Flowers

At 1/02/2010 08:26:00 PM, Blogger Jenny said...

Nice work on the bookmarks Norma, and on the handkie edge. It's been a while since I turned a corner, must have another go. Hugs, Jenny.

At 1/03/2010 12:10:00 AM, Blogger Guzzisue said...

lace is coming on beautifully :-) well done

At 1/03/2010 12:41:00 AM, Blogger Jane said...

Your piece of lace is stunning. I hope you continue to enjoying your new skill

At 1/03/2010 11:14:00 AM, Blogger NormaH said...

Thank you Ann. I appreciate your comments and your visit.

At 1/03/2010 11:18:00 AM, Blogger NormaH said...

Thanks Jenny. I feel much better about the corners. Now I need to work on the joinings.

At 1/03/2010 05:58:00 PM, Blogger Ruby said...

I enjoyed all your work you showed today. I like the ship piece as a CQ. Still don't have a pillow for my bobbins but I'm gathering supplies and knowledge a little at a time! Interested in your comments on different threads. I was wondering if I could use some ebay acquired crotchet thread for bobbin lace. With my eyesight I'd be hesitant of the finer thread too. :)

At 1/03/2010 06:44:00 PM, Blogger NormaH said...

Hi Ruby! Yes you can use crochet thread for bobbin lace. It just won't be as delicate but will help you see what you are doing.

At 1/04/2010 02:27:00 PM, Blogger Amy said...

You are moving forward so quickly in 2010 Norma! That is great! I love everything you showed pictures of! Thanks for sharing!


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