Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Sampler and books

I mentioned yesterday that I am beginning a sampler for my nephew. Here it is: Autumn Leaves from Friends in Stitches. I have two nieces and two nephews. Years ago when a niece was about 10 I made a Dawn Lewis sampler "Touch Your Dreams" that really reminded me of my oldest niece. It had pretty stitches, lots of glitz, and a lovely verse and I thought of her the whole time I made it. So I got it framed and set it aside for her. Then a couple of years later I did another sampler (no idea the name or designer now) that had more masculine colors and I added a verse about tiny acorns-mighty oaks. And I kept thinking about my oldest nephew. So I had it framed and set aside for him

So when my niece graduated high school I gave her the sampler. I think she liked it. When my other niece graduated, I just couldn't find the right sampler so I did an art book for her. Then when my oldest nephew graduated high school, he got his sampler. He was a bit quizzed (and I also gave money to all, which is a much more realistic gift), but I think he liked it. All of the kids have a pretty good sense of family and history. So now it's time for the last to graduate. I've had this pattern set aside for a while but am finally getting to it. I found some hand-dyed linen with tones from charcoal to rust on butternut-color linen and I gathered up some threads.

As usual for me, I changed the verse. I've written my own poem, a haiku that I plan to use. I may, in fact, stitch on the paper rather than cross stitch the words. We'll see. I'm not good at counting, especially not on 32ct linen. I got the edges overcast and the center and two sides basted and am ready to go. Yesterday I enlarged the pattern so I can actually see it to count it.

But last night I was back at work on Liberace and got a lot done.

I also mentioned yesterday that while procrastinating this weekend, I was reading: Here are a couple of the books I spent time with.

Embroidery and Colour by Constance Howard is a library book that I borrowed after reading about it somewhere recently. I've read it before but it was great to review. It's about a lot more than color theory and has a lot of great design ideas and exercises.

Gardening with Silk and Gold by Thomasina Beck is just a pure joy. While she takes you through centuries of gardening and embroidery styles, it's the amazing pictures that make it so enjoyable. There are paintings, engravings, embroideries, details. It's one of those books I keep going through over and over.

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