Sunday, June 25, 2017

Kitchen Towel no.3 Update

Here's the progress so far on this 3rd utility dish towel. It's been enjoyable to add a few stitches to it here and there. Might work a bit on it this afternoon if possible (after folding some laundry). What do you call your kitchen towels: tea towels, kitchen towels, or dish towels?

The design is part of this vintage Vogart above. It is Vogart 611 Colorful Fruit Motifs for Dinette or Kitchen. In fact you can see the design I'm stitching illustrated on the envelope. The towels pictured on the envelope show a blanket stitch variation on the towels' edges/borders,  so pretty! I'm keeping my vintage Vogart intact for now, so ended up getting a scan from Etsy seller BlondiesSpot. Then as mentioned on previous post, used my ink jet printer and a sheet of Sticky Fabri-Solvy (by Sulky, the product also comes in a updated packaging with the name of Stick'n Stitch) to transfer the pattern onto my towel.

My lower back/sacrum area and back hip bone started to hurt earlier today (sigh), it is really killing me. This happens to me occasionally. Already took some over the counter medicine and most likely will get my heat pad ready once done posting this blog update, and perhaps squeeze a long nap too. Leave you with the picture above, the only kind of rose (for now) in the front of my home.
Till later! Have a nice end of June!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Fruits / Utility Towel no.3

Here are the humble beginnings or the 3rd utility towel ;-).
This pattern is a design part of a vintage transfer, Vogart 611.
I have an original copy in my collection, but this time didn't want to cut into it. Later I'll take a picture of the cover so you can see the other cute designs part of this transfer (storing my collection in my kid's room closet, have to dig it out).  Long story short, ended up buying a cleaned black & white PDF copy of it from an Etsy seller. 

I used Sticky Fabri-Solvy to print my design of choice, and paste it on a kitchen towel, as you see in the above picture. Picture below shows the back. Sometimes when you are press on time, or don't feel like tracing, this is a very nice alternative if you have an ink jet printer. Although you could also use this stabilizer to trace by hand, especially if it is a very small design.

It will also work very well for dark fabrics, which are hard to see through in order to trace. I try to squeeze a few patterns in one sheet of this printable and water soluble sticky stabilizer, so as to waste as little as possible. The package cost around $10.00 more or less (on Amazon where I get mine), the price fluctuates at times. Joann stores use to carry it, but now they only have the one that comes in a roll, you'll have to cut to size. I think they now carry a similar product, precut, that is also sticky, printable and water soluble. 
Picked my colors according to the suggestions shown in the front of the pattern envelope. The scan also comes with a color copy of the transfer cover for reference. Already started working on it! Hoping to be able to work on it a bit here and there through out this week. Little ones feeling much better, so we might be out and about a bit more. Perhaps in the evenings I could squeeze some stitching time.

May your week be beautiful and that all goes as you have planned!
Until next time!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Baking Poodle / Second Towel Finished

I did it! The second utility kitchen towel is finished!
So glad, now I can move on to the third one which is already in the hoop ;-). Any guesses as to what type of vintage design is next?

This second towel is fresh from the dryer. First, I cut the excess Sticky Fabri-Solvy and dissolved it with warm water in the laundry sink. Then tossed the towel in the washer with the rest of the kitchen towels load. A bit of ironing after it dried. Now is folded and put away with the rest. Not sure if I'll start on the 3rd towel anytime soon... my kids are now both sick with high fevers and sore throats. Thankfully my older one pretty much follows this family's "sick drill" with little help, but younger one is different story... at least she's keeping to her room for the most part which helps a lot, for her age that is a big accomplishment!

Before I go, let me share a common trick for doing satin stitch, especially if you have a bit of trouble getting the satin stitches even. First, outline the area with back stitch or split stitch, then go over it with satin stitch (like in the picture above). The outlining stitches serve as your point of reference for going in and out with your needle for the satin stitches.
Oh, and for those of you that missed it, I shared this design as a freebie at the end of this post. Let me know if you get to stitch it and posting it on your blog, etc. I would like to take a peek ;-).
Until later! 

Sunday, June 11, 2017

In The Making

Wasn't able to complete my utility towel, instead will show you the one my firstborn is working on. The pattern is from the book Beautiful Stitches by Susan Bates, which I enlarged. As transferring method we used a transfer pen. My daughter offer to stitch it for my new kitchen before the move. Above is where she is at, she started this past winter and doesn't really work at it regularly.

This picture above was taken this past winter. We were still in our previous home. She was working on it in the living room. I was about to eat a piece of homemade rum cake with tea ;-), when I saw how pretty it was coming along. Gave her several compliments, put my tea & cake down to take a picture of it. Hopefully she'll finish it soon. I guess 'the apple doesn't fall far from the tree'... in this instance, not a good thing. Makes me think there's room for improvement in the way I approach projects. We as mothers have lots of responsibilities and priorities, which can definitely justify why we do or don't finish something, or where we move it in our To Do List. However little things like this do have a subtle impact in our offspring, especially as such a tender age. 

Basic, simple life lessons like: "Finish what you start", "Be on time", "Work for what you want", "Delight in the work of your hands", "Keep your promise", "Be dependable", etc. , are picked up by our kids mainly through our example... what they see us doing, not necessarily saying. Interestingly, although we most likely are very good at those simple life lessons when it comes to what we have in the top of our list(s), but forget that little things count as much to those little ones whose eyes are on us. Just my thoughts. What do you think? 
I better get going with that utility towel right after posting this! ;-)
Hoping a beautiful week awaits you!
Till next time!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

A Housewarming Gift (Part 2)

This terrible cold virus got me good this time 😷. Being sick in a new home, having to miss spiritually upbuilding meetings and activities with friends, got me feeling a bit down and nostalgic. Short errand yesterday to nearby store to get a couple of groceries/produce and back home.

To cheer myself up a bit, decided to switch the decorative towels in the kitchen today. Put down the tea I was about to make for myself (chai latte is my favorite treat) and took a picture of these two towels since I've previously mentioned about gradually posting them here. Of these two, the orange one is now hanging on my oven door with the yellow one I posted on Part 1.

The green went back in its package and put away with the others, for another day. Orange and yellow are happy colors (at least I think so) so those are the ones that made it out today :-).  
Now, to the close ups...

How pretty! The needleworker that embroidered this towel did a lovely job! Lovely color combo too! This towel was ironed by the seller, since of course, she launders the vintage linens before turning them into decorative towels... this is why the stitches look a bit squished, but still lovely and delicate. Stitches used: stem, lazy daisy (aka: detached chain stitch), french knots, and straight stitch.
Same stitches used on this orange one, another beautiful and dainty design! And that crochet edge, gorgeous! I'm feeling a bit motivated to finish my utility embroidered towel ;-), the one with the Baking Poodle on it. Haven't been able to pick up my needle these past few days despite having to take it easy. Looking down to my stitching with a runny nose,... eh, I don't think so. 
Not sure if I'll be able to pop back in for another blog post on Sunday, but if I do hopefully I'll have the utility towel done by then.  So looking forward to feeling like my good old self again. Perhaps I'm on the mend, my nose behaved while typing this post...LOL. Let you go now, hoping you all have a lovely weekend!
(I ended up having to reheat my water to make my tea 😊☕. )
Until later!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Summer Cold :-(

Yes, I'm welcoming summer with a cold... how very fun... Not!
Hopefully you are all doing well! Didn't finish the Baking Poodle towel on previous post, so here is an old picture of a finished project. 

This kitchen towel embroidered with a rooster from a Stitcher's Revolution Iron-On Embroidery pattern SR23 Folksy Farm. I blogged about this project back in October 2016 on this post. Thinking in making myself a whole juice (smoothie with no milk or added sugar), don't have any oranges or tangerines handy, but everything else is either in the fruit basket or in the freezer ;-). Yes, indeed, heading to the kitchen now!
May you all have a great week ahead! Till later!

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Baking Poodle (2nd Towel Update)

Guess what? Yes! Finally was able to do a bit of stitching!
The circumstances weren't the best, but by doing some embroidery I ended up turning a lemon into lemonade ;-). Below is the progress made so far. I modified the original pattern to fit my needs.

An injured lower back meant down time, so out my stitching came! Spent a couple of days housebound treating it.... it was so painful to walk, bend, reach, trying to sit and get up, etc. 
Much better now, thankfully! With lots of TLC, alternating between: heat pad, muscle ointment, medication, massage, and gentle movements. I'm almost back to normal! Here are a few other pictures of the progress (in regression).

Above, stitching at night with the help of clip-on-light. I was so close to be done that didn't want to stop, but my back was telling me it was enough. I'm afraid it may not be completed soon now that I'm better... you know, trying to catch up with everything that couldn't be done with an injured back. So close to be done!

At the time I had a taste for a piece of Lemon Poppy Seed cake with raspberries for garnish.. yummy!  If I bake it I'll probably eat half of it in a day or two (embarrassingly true). I never used to like the lemon homemade icing that I made, until I found a recipe online that called for butter in addition to the regular ingredients, and heating it in the microwave for (30 seconds? can't recall at this moment). It tastes great! No after taste of powder sugar... which I totally dislike. 

Stitching these french knots I hold the hoop upside down in order to be closer to that area for ease of stitching. I certainly do not bake wearing a pearl necklace ;-)... but it does gives the look of glamorous homemaking ... LOL. When seeing printed vintage advertising, it makes me wonder if ladies in the 40's did wear make up and high heels while doing chores. Do you know? 
Well, I let you go now ;-). Hoping next week will be a great one for all of you! Oh! Just in case you will like to stitch this Baking Poodle, I'm leaving it here for you ;-). Enjoy!!!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Hand Towel, Kitties!

One of the towels in my last order made it to my little ones' bathroom. I think this design could pass for a hand towel ;-).
Don't think this pillowcase design is vintage, since it's still in circulation by Fairway Needlecrafts Co. , design no.83079 Two Cats. They have it available on their website, and through other sites like Amazon, and 123Stitch.
Still it is as cute as it could be, and my little ones love it! 
They like hand embroidered items, so I'll be stitching a couple of hand towels (by request) for their bathroom... when I complete the few projects that are already hooped. 
Haven't been able to to stitch, but I think I might get a chance soon.
Hoping y'all have a nice week ahead!
Till later!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Throwback: Vintage Patterns

Wasn't able to take pictures of the new decorative towels made with vintage embroidery, neither was able to squeeze time for stitching. This is why I'm posting a little throwback to some vintage patterns that although intended for pillowcases, they will look lovely on kitchen towels as well. 

Things have been hectic with the move and all that it entails, plus I've been having a few rough days.
Thankfully every time we brought boxes we emptied them practically right away, so not that many left. Our new place is smaller and with an open concept, so it is taking a bit to figure out how to arrange certain things. I'm loving not having to go up and down stairs! My knee joints get so stiff that I look like a robot with no knee joints coming down our previous home's stairs.

Maybe by next Sunday I'll be able to take some pictures of the towels and post them, hopefully. In the meantime I leave you with these pictures, taken last year, of some of the vintage Vogart embroidery transfers from my collection. 
Hoping y'all are doing well!
Till next time!

Sunday, May 7, 2017

The 2nd Towel and Chat

Here is a peek at the 2nd towel I started. Over a week since I started it, and have not been able to continue working on it. 
So much to do when moving, no time for stitching. When I'm not packing/moving/arranging/etc., I'm having to take it easy because of not feeling well.
The area where I'll have my new crafting space will not be completed for some time, so most crafty things will stay in boxes. Some I'll be sneaking into my kids' closets ;-), like my collection of iron on transfers and my craft books, no way I'll let those sit in the garage.
No need for digging out boxes, my travel bag is full of embroidery projects to keep me busy after we are settled in. Hopefully soon! 
The weather is a bit unstable, which triggers FMS flares and arthrithis. Yes, that last one ended up showing in some of my fingers' joints, and most likely is on my knees and hips. I knew something else besides fibromyalgia has been going on inside my body, because of how terribly bad the aching can get. Medication that will normally help, does nothing for the pain. Now waiting to test for which kind of arthritis. The RA factor came back negative, a bit of a relief... although I don't know if down the line things could change. Both, my mother, and oldest sister have RA. 
Well, enough with that :-). I still have lots of things to be thankful for, so many things I can still do! My faith, family, friends, voluntary work, beautiful sunsets, baking, etc.,... and of course, I can still hold a needle in my hand ;-)!
Next time will try to post about some of the other kitchen towels from the 2nd order. 
May y'all be well! 
Enjoy the week ahead! 
Till later! 

Monday, May 1, 2017

A Housewarming Gift (Part 1/ Picture Heavy)

In my quest to have a year round supply of hand embroidered towels to display and to use on my new kitchen, the second towel is already hooped. However the ones I'm stitching will get use, so the search for decorative kitchen towels took place.

These towels are made by recycling and upcycling vintage hand embroidered linens.... they are so lovely! Showed my husband, and he gave me green light! Ordered 4 first to be able to see them up close, fell in love, 2nd order was place (arriving today). Since they are currently on sale (were 50% now 30% off), and the fact that the shop owner mentioned in one of our convos that this kind of towel might not be offered in the future, what is a girl to do than stock up on towels. 
Today I will post the four I received on the first order. Posting, not to show off a purchase, but to share the beautiful hand embroidery work of needleworkers of past generations! Also, if some of you were looking for a deal on towels then perhaps this source might prove helpful. Did you noticed the birdies beaks? She/He that stitched these birds payed attention to detail by outlining the beaks in dark thread and filling in with yellow, gorgeous effect!
These close ups let the details pop. Love me some hand embroidered eye candy! I find joy in studying the work of needleworkers of previous generations. Do you? In this Love towel, the lazy daisy stitches are gorgeous and so uniformed. The word Love was beautifully outlined in stem stitch and then lightly filled in with straight stitches in a complimenting shade. The french knots are tiny and well done. This needleworker was experienced, plus that simple crocheted lacy trim.... gorgeous! I will love to learn how to do delicate trims.
The Love towel also has a very small area worked on a different color thread,... she/he must have run out of green thread and "made do" with what she had on hand. Thrifty and resourceful indeed!
This orchid is lovely stitched as well! Love all the different shades used in the bloom, the neatly done stitches, and that dainty trim!
This towel is another example of lovely hand embroidery work! Do you see the centers of the brighter flowers... they are clustered with tiny french knots, so pretty! Plus the petals are all lazy daisy stitches, so many of them in varied lengths for a beautiful effect. I'm learning a lot from studying these vintage embroidered pieces.
Personally prefer to display towels with lovely hand work in my kitchen! It warms my heart, and makes the space cozier and homey... in my opinion.
They came beautiful packaged... so that is a plus, great for gifting.
Well, that's it for now. Later I'll show you the ones that are arriving today, and the ones I'll be stitching for use.
Hope you have a great week! Ours will be very busy.
Till later!

PS: Non-affiliated Link:
Two Girls Laughing... decorative towel shop on Etsy.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

First Housewarming Tea Towel Done!

Impromptu tea towel project, yielded fast results ;-).
Here is my first housewarming tea towel for my new kitchen stitched by me (with a bit of help!).

The pattern used is an Aunt Martha's vintage one,
called "Dishes and Flowers"- no.3200.
It all started few days ago, when my younger child asked if she could stitched a towel for me (her older sibling is working on one).
I found this pattern which is very beginner friendly, and thought 
it was perfect for my little one to give it a go.

Today she asked if she could start her towel. After a bit of volunteer work from home, and a couple of house chores, I needed to put my feet up for a bit, but not before getting the pattern ironed on to the towel, and hooping it. She was very into it, for a few minutes. Then it was nap time, she asked if I could finish stitching the teapot while she napped, and she will do the flowers once nap time was over. I agreed.

Above she is making the first few stitches.
Needless to say... I ended up finishing it. Such an easy going pattern! By the time nap time was over, I was almost done :-). Little one was looking forward to playing with her sister, she didn't mind much that I did the flowers ;-).
Sidenote... kind of nice that even though this is a vintage pattern it still ironed nicely. It took a bit longer than the newer ones I have with black ink, but still gave a very nice transfer.

Haven't touch the actual kitchen towels I have ready to begin embroidering. This was a very easy design, which served as the motivation to keep stitching, knowing that I was going to see it finished today. Simple lines, a few colors. Now I want to stitch the other designs in this transfer! I've been trying not to think much on a recent Dr. visit... this project was a much needed therapy.

Very interesting, the red ink on this vintage pattern transfers very similar as the red transfer pencil sold by Colonial Patterns. 
Do you use your vintage patterns? Do you cut your vintage patterns? There was a time I used to be against cutting them, not anymore. Hand embroidery brings joy to me, mainly the stitching,... a bit less fun when trying to preserve a pattern intact. Don't get me wrong. I totally like collecting patterns, and keeping them in good condition, but do not mind any longer cutting into them.  Totally respect your opinion if you differ ;-).
Hoping to be back next week with more needlework updates!
Have a nice Sunday and week ahead!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Anne of Green Gables and Chat

Surely you know Anne!
When I saw that Jackie drew this I wanted to stitch it right away. Jackie's blog is Via Joy, just in case you like to pay her a visit. She is a lady of many artsy/crafty talents ;-). Right now she has a freebie on her blog for a cute bunny coloring page, but it can totally be used as an embroidery pattern.

Of course with so much going on around here, it took me some time to finish Jackie's embroidery pattern of Anne.

A few progress photos just for the fun of it! I love seeing other needleworkers' progress pictures!
Below, she is finally all done!
Jackie has the pattern available on her Etsy shop.

Perhaps on my next post, I'll have at least one kitchen towel started. I'm in desperate need of 'fresh from the hoop' hand embroidered towels for my new kitchen. My time is very tight right now so I'm going to at least do one or two for now, and once we are completely moved keep working on more. There are so many cute vintage patterns out there... hard to choose! Leaning towards vintage designs of: fruits and veggies, flowers, market day DOW, baking day DOW, want to keep them kitchen related. Also have a couple of Sublime Stitching patterns I want to stitch on towels, Garden Variety and Little Blooms. Those two are ready for me to start on them, that is, if I can find the time.
Oh, on another note... I'm saying farewell to my Instagram account, and will be back to blogging when time aloud. We have a few family goals that we want to pursue. Prayers have been answered, now is the perfect time to go after those goals! Exciting times!!!
Hoping y'all have a great week ahead!

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Gladiolus Update and...

Here is my finished gladiolus! Definitely in love with stitching flowers. Embroidered flowers have a very long lifespan ;-). Plus the only bugs around are cute and harmless... like that cute bee needleminder.

Was able to complete my personal volunteering time goal for this month! Very thankful and happy for it!
(Picture below just for eye candy.)

April started with getting ready for upcoming move. Guess what was the first two things I packed? Yes, all my fabrics and craft books... LOL. All my collection of books didn't make it, sadly, no space for all of them (at least not for some time). Donating many to local library, and listed some in my Etsy shop. The link is on the side bar just in case you fancy a peek ;-). 
These pictured above are the ones I've listed so far, with a few more to come soon. Three of the listings are already gone! So grateful for that!
Well, I'll try to pop in again soon to show you another completed embroidery. It's already posted on my Instagram just in case you rather see it sooner than later :-D ! Till later, enjoy the rest of the week!

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