Archive | September 2021

National Sewing Month

Day 30

Question: Is your art influenced by other works of art? YES is my answer!

12 1/2″ x 13 3/4″

Misty Blue Hills by Christen Brown

This piece was created with a printed upholstery fabric that I had for many (many, many) years, that I used for the center, because of the great coloring and lines. I pieced the simple border with blue and creme colored printed fabrics. The embroidery stitching follows the pattern in the center, using the blanket and fly stitches netted, along with the chain stitch double, chain stitch cable, chain, herringbone, feather, stem, linked bullion, stem/outline fern, open chain, portugese knotted stem, palestrina knot, string of pearls, coral, running stitch whipped, snail trail, and scroll stitches. The detail stitches were the French knot, bell flower and stacked bead stitches. I used a Sashiko style of stitching on the border fabrics. Many vintage glass, metal, shell and celluloid buttons were used for embellishments, along with two bone dragons.

I wanted to show you the comparison of the two pieces that influenced Misty Blue Hills (first image). The second image is vintage purse, made from a beautiful piece of fabric with tiny bead embellishments. The third image is the very famous piece titled “The Great Wave off Kanagawa”. This is a woodblock print, that is also known as The Great Wave or simply The Wave, created by the Japanese ukiyo-e artist Hokusai.

This piece is the cover and can be seen in my new book Hand Embroidery Dictionary.

Here is a recap of the month, may you find inspiration! Happy Stitching, ~Christen

  1. September 1, 2021– Question: Who did you learn to sew from?
  2. September 2, 2021– Question: What was your favorite garment that was hand-sewn, and who sewed it for you?
  3. September 3, 2021– Question: I like to sew strips, and straight seams. What do you like to sew?
  4. September 4, 2021– Question: What fabric do you like to sew with?
  5. September 5, 2021– Question: What is your favorite sewing tool?
  6. September 6, 2021– Question: What kind of sewing machine did you learn to sew on, and, what kind of machine do you sew on now?
  7. September 7, 2021– Question: When you design a project, do you like to use what is in your stash, or do you prefer to go to the store and search for materials?
  8. September 8, 2021– Question: When you work with a pattern do you follow the instructions, or do you interpret the instructions to fit your vision?
  9. September 9, 2021– Question: When you are stitching a pattern, do you strive for perfect seams, or do you cover up what was not perfect?
  10. September 10, 2021– Question: How do you choose a color pallet for a project?
  11. September 11, 2021– Rustic Americana, in Memory of 9/11
  12. September 12, 2021– Question: Do you sew functional forms or fabulous frivolities?
  13. September 13, 2021– Question: Do you like to work with solid color fabric, or prints?
  14. September 14, 2021– Question: Do you like to applique, if so, by machine or hand?
  15. September 15, 2021– Question: How do you choose a name for your project?
  16. September 16, 2021– Mystic Twighlight
  17. September 17, 2021– Variation on a Theme
  18. September 18, 2021– Charmed Square
  19. September 19, 2021– Lady Bird’s Bzzy Garden, and Lady Bird 2 by Christen Brown
  20. September 20, 2021– Psychedelic Balloons
  21. September 21, 2021– Big Leaves
  22. September 22, 2021– California Dreamin’
  23. September 23, 2021– Sand Pebbles
  24. September 24, 2021– Darling Motif Sampler
  25. September 25, 2021– Question: What sewer does not have a favorite needle keep, or pincushion.
  26. September 26, 2021– Question: What sewing enthusiast does not have a lot of precious scraps, that just can’t be thrown away?
  27. September 27, 2021– Wild Persimmons
  28. September 28, 2021– Question: What form of piecing do you prefer?
  29. September 29, 2021– Question: Do you plan out every detail, or do you approach your work with serendipity?

National Sewing Month

Day 29

Do you plan out every detail, or do you approach your work with serendipity? For this piece, I did a bit of planning, so that the metal frame could take a prominent place amongst the pieced fabrics.

13″ x 11″

Midnight in Paris by Christen Brown

This wallhanging is crazy pieced with cotton solid and printed fabrics and vintage laces. The embroidery was worked in silk embroidery ribbons (4mm and 7mm), silk perle, perle cotton, and cotton floss. Vintage buttons, beads, an antique metal frame, and charms were used for embellishments. A ribbon border with beaded details showcase the piecing and the frame.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 28

What form of piecing do you prefer? I really love crazy-piecing, simply because you can use the pieces and scraps that you have on hand, and the pieced lines provide a variety of opportunities to embroider and embellish.

Victoriana 1 and Victoriana 2 by Christen Brown

These two pieces were stitched using the same fabrics, and are almost identically pieced together. I was going to make a purse, but decided that two small wall hangings were more desirable. The embroidery stitches were worked in silk embroidery ribbon, perle cotton and cotton floss. Beads, charms and buttons were used for the embellishments.

You can find these two pieces in The Embroidery Book by C&T Publishing.

The Crazy Lady Victoriana by Christen Brown

This piece was made using the same fabrics as the above two pieces, with the addition of several vintage silk ties and their lining fabrics. I created this piece while I was teaching a class titled the Crazy Corner. I enjoyed adding in all of the embellishments such as a birds nest, fabric yo-yos, and ribbonwork flowers.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 27

13 1/2″ x 13 1/2″

Wild Persimmons by Christen Brown

This piece started with a crazy-pieced base of silk and cotton fabrics, which was machine quilted in a random spiral pattern. A rayon cord was couched down with seed beads to create a pattern. The embroidery and embellishments that follow the pattern are vintage plastic and glass buttons, sequins, glass seed beads, and large beads.

This piece can be seen in my book Beaded Embroidery Stitching.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 26

What sewing enthusiast does not have a lot of precious scraps, that just can’t be thrown away?

3 1/2″ x 24″

Ivory and Lace by Christen Brown

This is my Scrap Roll, which is a project featured in my book, Beaded Embroidery Stitching. This piece does capture and keep all things feminine. The base is comprised of a collaged scraps and bits of lace, hankies, appliques, ribbons, buttons, beads and more. This project is embellished with both bead embroidery and bead woven stitches. The base is a painted wooden spool, adorned with lace, beads and a button.

3 1/2″ x 34″

Pansies and Sunflowers by Christen Brown

This is a slightly simpler version of the Scrap Roll (above). I used larger buttons, appliques, and rosettes, as well as wider trims for the base. The roll is embellished with bead embroidery. The button flowers have a floral wire stem, and are clustered together to create the center and base for the roll.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 25

What sewer does not have a favorite needle keep, or pincushion. Here are a few of mine:

Some of these are classes, some were shown as examples in book, all are used and loved.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 24

Hand Embroidery Dictionary by Christen Brown, C&T Publishing

Darling Motif Sampler by Christen Brown

This crazy-pieced block gave me the perfect opportunity to embroider the stencils from the Darling Motif Collection, by C&T Publishing. I loved being able to use the variety of stencils here, and the pieced sections were easy to work around. I suggest using basic stitches like the outline, stem, chain, backstitch, straight, lazy daisy, and French knot stitches when highlighting a shape or object.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

Winner of the Hand Embroidery Dictionary GIVE-AWAY!!!

The Winner of the eBook from my blog is Elaine, (in North Texas), CONGRATULATIONS!

A Special Thanks to Jo Avery, Elizabeth DeCroos, Alish Henderson, Laura Wasilowski, and Alexandra from C&T Publishing, for helping me out with the tour. CONGRATULATIONS to the winners on their blogs!

Here are the post entries for the tour:

Monday September 20, 2021: C&T Publishing,

Tuesday September 21, 2021: Jo Avery, 

Wednesday September 22, 2021: Elizabeth DeCroos, 

Alish Henderson: Jamie Chalmers (@mrxstitch) • Instagram photos and videos

Thursday September 23, 2021: Laura Wasilowski, 

Friday September 23, 2021: Christen Brown,

If you are interested in buying a copy of the Hand Embroidery Dictionary, you can check it out here on the C&T Publishing website.

Happy Stitching~ Christen

Hand Embroidery Dictionary GIVE-AWAY!!!

Hand Embroidery Dictionary


The main goal of the Hand Embroidery Dictionary, and of my work, is to teach and pass on this wonderful needle-craft, of free-form embroidery. In this book you will find 500+ stitches, grouped into 16 categories. 505 stitches to be exact, not counting the variations upon variations, tips, and suggestions!

Some of the stitches you will find familiar, and some will be new to you, as many of the stitches I created myself. The stitches include individual, continuous, compound, composite, hybrid, grouped and plaited. Also shown are seed and filler stitches, netted stitches, laced stitches, and overlaid stitches.

Stitch Families

To help you become familiar with the stitches, I have compiled the individual stitch family first, followed by the continuous stitch family that uses the same or similar form. For this purpose, I decided to create three additional individual stitch families, the barb, fleet, and capped stitches.

  • Straight Stitches: 23 stitches
  • Outline Stitches: 36 stitches
  • Knotted, Woven and Whipped Stitches: 28 stitches
  • Lazy Daisy Stitches: 36 stitches
  • Chain Stitches: 34 stitches
  • Barb Stitches: 30 stitches
  • Blanket and Buttonhole Stitches: 52 stitches
  • Fly Stitches: 42 stitches
  • Feather Stitches: 50 stitches
  • Fleet Stitches: 22 stitches
  • Cretan Stitches: 30 stitches
  • Cross Stitches: 37 stitches
  • Herringbone Stitches: 31 stitches
  • Capped Stitches: 19 stitches
  • Chevron Stitches: 24 stitches
  • Embellishment Stitches: 11 stitches

Give-Away Details

For a chance to win a free copy of the eBook of the Hand Embroidery Dictionary, please leave a comment below. You can tell me what your favorite stitch is, or how long you have been embroidering, or even why you would like to win the eBook.

Official Rules: Giveaway will close on midnight September 26, 2021, PST. Winner of the eBook prize will be notified by email within one week of the giveaway closing.

Tour Dates September 20-24, 2021

Here are the previous post entries, each participant gave their own take on the book.

Monday September 20: C&T Publishing,

Tuesday September 21: Jo Avery, 

Wednesday September 22: Elizabeth DeCroos, 

Alish Henderson: Jamie Chalmers (@mrxstitch) • Instagram photos and videos

Thursday September 23: Laura Wasilowski, 

Good luck and Happy Stitching~ Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 23

Sand Pebbles by Christen Brown

This piece started with a beautiful vintage lace applique, backed with a sand-colored cotton fabric. I embroidered the piece with several colors of Wildflower threads from the Caron Collection, then embellished the embroidered and lace sections with vintage and new glass beads, and jewelry findings. I bordered the outer edge with a piece of Hanah silk ribbon, and a few hand-blown glass beads.

You can find this piece in my book, The Embroidery Book by C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen