Friday, January 3, 2014

Preparing a design...

As I sat out on the deck at dawn I thanked God for the gift of living up in the trees.
You see, I am a real tree dweller! 
I'm most as peace surrounded by those marvellous green leafed boughs, and to be able to sit 'up' amongst the palm fronds and the mango tree branches in my own backyard is a gift I am treasuring. So is Bob-the-dog...

And you know, coffee tastes better in the trees. ;-)

When I shared about the Elefantz Home 2014 Stitchery calendar HERE I forgot to show you some close-up pics of the new January design, "Take Time".

As I was preparing photos for you this morning I thought you might like some insight into my fabric, thread, and stitch choices, so let's begin with the fabric.
Sublime Tilda in pinks and grey....

The background fabric for the block is cream hanky linen, a variant of my usual white, and incredibly gentle on my hands when hand embroidering. I had surgery on my right hand in 2010 which still affects my fingers when I stitch through any fabric that gives a little resistance. Hanky linen saves me a lot of pain these days...

The threads used for the roses and the leaves are variegated DMC 6-strand cottons in 8008 and 8021, and the Grey thread is DMC 474. They matched perfectly with the colours in the Tilda fabric. Whenever you begin a new project be sure to choose your fabrics first, then gather threads that match - this saves a lot of stress later!

I used a variety of stitches throughout.
Two strands of thread for chain stitch, back stitch, satin stitch, running stitch, and a single strand of thread for the blanket stitch applique. For the clock stand I added a row of running stitch inside the chain stitch 'curls' so it stood out more, and a mix of colours in the satin stitch spots brought movement to the overall finish.
Running stitch around both sides of the clock applique also add depth and movement. It's those little stitch additions that bring a design to life, I think.

The verse is one I need to be reminded of all year because I'm a workaholic if I don't pace myself and remember to take time out. So very important.

 Not sure yet how I'll use this block, but as I have a penchant for 1" squares I may surround it with them and make this a cushion for my bed. The "Take Time" block measures 6" x 10".
Do you have any ideas on how it could be used?

If you'd like to make your own version of "Take Time" the pattern is in the 2014 calendar HERE.
I'd love to see your version if you do. 

Enjoy the weekend! We're in for a very hot and wet one...have I told you how much I hate humidity??



  1. What a beautiful stitchery, Jenny. Your embroidery style and colours are the perfect blend with the Tilda fabrics and hanky linen. So subtle and simple. All that's needed to make a statement. Perfect as a cushion laying around reminding us to make the most out of life. It would also be nice made into a table centre as part of a vintage vignette. Thanks for sharing your creativeness.

  2. My Godness Jenny! I envy you (good envy, not a bad one) what a gorgeous place you found this time. I'm freezing her in Canada with temperatures that keep braking records in cold weather up to -49 degrees celsius. Brrrrr.

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  4. Happy new year!
    The place where you live si gorgeous! Green and light...fantastic!

  5. The bad thing about where I live is all the steps, the good thing is that I live in the tree tops too. The good far outweighs the bad. I'm eye to eye with all the birds that visit and it is truly wonderful. Your deck looks like a wonderful spot. Hope this place is home to you for quite a while. Hugs
    PS The stitchery is delightful.

  6. I love love love your new design Jenny!!!! Gish that back deck looks so inviting.... I'm also a trees girl, after all it's where the faeries

  7. My PC got stuck!!! I was trying to say that it's where the fairies live, but seems that my PC is also away with them! ;-)

  8. Thank you for the tutorial Jenny. It is a gorgeous block. Hugs......

  9. Just beautiful, Jenny! I always feel so inspired when I visit your blog. I've tended to focus more on quilting than stitching, but this year, I'm going to make an effort to do more embroidery. It's so lovely and relaxing, and I certainly need more of both in my life. Thanks for all your lovely inspiration!

  10. It would be wonderful as the front cover on a small sketch book. I don't know if you use a sketch book, but there are times when I find it invaluable, and a beautiful cover is even nicer!

  11. Love it Jenny. Happy New Year !!!


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