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Tips and Tea on Tuesdays

On Tips and Tea on Tuesdays, I will cover a topic and hopefully provide you with some tips that will be helpful! And just as an afterthought, tea may occasionally be a cup of Joe!

tangerine zinger tea

Tea today is Sangria Zinger, a combination of tangy hibiscus, blood orange, pineapple, and additional citrus flavors. Doesn’t the color look so pretty here, in my vintage daffodil china cup? This is one of my mix-matched sets, with a beautiful floral saucer that lost it’s mate. They don’t match exactly, but I think that the colors blend well, and they seem happy teamed together.

Speaking of color, do you sometimes struggle putting colors together? Me too! So what do I do to address this hurdle, so I can get down to stitching???

Close-up Pistachio Moss

Pistachio Moss, is a gallery piece that you can see in my new book, Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New, by C&T Publishing. This piece was a bit of a challenge, and became a large growling monster, as I gathered my materials. I was working with small bits of fabric, and finite amounts of lace and ribbons.

Pistachio Moss Beginnings: the colors seemed to be disparate, the fabrics and beads were contemporary, but the threads, ribbons and buttons were vintage looking. So, what did I do?

Tip: Begin at the Beginning

This is the print that I used for the border of the piece. Conveniently, the manufacturer provided a color section of all of the colors that appear in the print. I started here, because sometimes greens can be a challenge for me. Another great tool that I suggest for you to use, is Stitch Palettes, you won’t be sorry!

Once I had my color palette selected, I found anther fabric that matched the first. Then I chose colors that matched and blended with the two fabrics, to use for the remaining materials. Before I stitched the base, I dyed the center section of silk fabric, the appliques, some of the silk bias ribbon that I used for the flowers, and all of the vintage laces.

Final Tip for Today: In my new book, I have included directions and tips on dyeing with Colorhue dyes, in the chapter Altering the Past. I also made a video introducing the book, and you can see this piece “up close and in person”!

Happy tea drinking and stitching to you! ~Christen

PS: If you have any questions or thoughts, just leave a comment! See Tips, Tricks, the Basics, for more helpful ideas.

Tips and Tea on Tuesdays

On Tips and Tea on Tuesdays, I will cover a topic and hopefully provide you with some tips that will be helpful! And just as an afterthought, tea may occasionally be a cup of Joe!

Tea today is green tea, which is brewing in my little two-part cup, a gift from Diane, a friend and student. I am working on the project that is in the background, for a future post, but I wanted to share a preview, because the materials and the embroidery examples are part of today’s tips.

As I am sipping my tea, I was looking at one of my favorite pieces, Sweet Dreams, below. The center section was a gift from Christine, also a friend and student. This piece is featured in the gallery section of my new book, Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New, by C&T Publishing. The focus of the book, is to show you how to use and incorporate the variety of materials that you have in your stash. The projects and gallery pieces feature fabrics, linens, hankies, lace, appliques, ribbons, trims, threads, buttons, beads, and ephemera.

Close-up of Sweet Dreams, even I am amazed sometimes at how much embroidery and embellishments you can fit into one area!

Often my students ask me how do you know what stitch to put where, or what stitch to use. I say to start with the stitches that you like, or are familiar with. Once you get a project under your belt, then branch out and try new stitches, and new ideas. The chapter on Embroidery and Embellishment Stitches, has a great selection of stitches using a variety of threads, ribbons, buttons, notions, and beads.

General Tips: Where to Embroider

This is an excerpt from the chapter Stitching Creatively, which also includes specific tips, and hand-drawn embroidery suggestions for each of the below ideas.

  • Seams: The embroidery stitches can be worked on either side of a seam or straddling the seam. Begin with a continuous border row stitch, then add decorative and detail stitches.
  • Ribbon: The embroidery stitches can be worked over the edge of the ribbon, through the ribbon, or on the outer edges of the ribbon. You can also add decorative and detail stitches.
  • Lace: The embroidery stitches can be worked into the open areas of the lace pattern or along the outer edge of the lace.
  • Rickrack: The embroidery stitches can be worked over the trim or between the curved wave edges of the trim.
  • Hankies: The embroidery stitches can be worked around the outer edge, over the edge, or in the inside portion of the hanky.

Happy tea drinking and stitching to you! ~Christen

PS: If you have any questions or thoughts, just leave a comment! See Tips, Tricks, the Basics, for more helpful ideas.

Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New, Book Promotion: And the Winner IS!

I have a new book coming out in March 2023, Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with The New. The emphasis of the book is to create something new from your vintage and new stash of fabrics, hankies, table linens, doilies, laces, appliqués, trims, ribbons, threads, buttons, beads, notions, and more.

Watch my YouTube introductory video, How to embroider and embellish your stashed treasures.

And the winner of my blog post was Anne Davis!!!! Congratulations to Anne!

Please check out these past posts, to read more about the book.

Happy Stitching! ~Christen

Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New, Book Promotion: Day 6

I have a new book coming out in March 2023, Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with The New. The emphasis of the book is to create something new from your vintage and new stash of fabrics, hankies, table linens, doilies, laces, appliqués, trims, ribbons, threads, buttons, beads, notions, and more.

Watch my YouTube introductory video, How to embroider and embellish your stashed treasures.

Book Blog and Social Media Tour Details

The following hosts of the blogs and Facebook pages listed below, are offering a chance to win a free copy of the eBook. Visit each listing on the day of the tour that they are hosts, and enter the drawing for a chance to win!

Today you have a chance to win at Christen’s Creations, right here! Here are the details:

Please leave a comment to enter your name into the drawing to win an ebook of Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New. The contest on the blog will run for 48 hours, beginning today, March 25, 2023 ending on March 26, 2023. The winner will be chosen randomly and will be notified after the contest is over.

Please check out these past posts, to read more about the book.

Round Robin Groups

To help me promote the book, I asked a few good friends to participate in a Round Robin Group block exchange. So, what is a “Round Robin”, and how did this project get started? I asked each artist to create a 10”- 12” pieced square, using any type of fabric and color combination. The construction could also include doilies, laces, or ribbons, and then the embroidery and embellishments stitches included in the book. Once the block was created, they sent the block to the next person in the group, including the threads and embellishments that they wanted to include on their block. Then the block traveled on to the next participant in the group, and then back to the owner.

The participants of the second Round Robin Group, are artist, teacher, and author Diane Herbort, and artist and teacher Chris Vinh of Stitchesnquilts, team with their longtime friend, artist Nancy Karst. Diane and Chris have taught for, and all the ladies shop at their favorite craft store, Artistic Artifacts, where many of the fabulous fibers used in these blocks came from.

Here is Diane Herbort’s block. Her block began with a collection of black and white fabrics patterned with dots and stripes. She had a vision of a crazy quilt with bright, colorful flowers. In the center of the block is an appliquéd vase embellished with strips of the tapes used were used to make Battenberg-style lace. She embellished the crazy-pieced sections with vintage lace, rickrack trim, cotton and new rayon trims. Her block traveled to Chris Vinh, then to Nancy Karst.

The block is now back with Diane and she says: “I was really pleased with the stitching and embellishing that Chris and Nancy did and how they used embroidery and beads to add to and elaborate on the prints of the fabrics. It was easy to entrust my vague idea to two talented friends and just see where they would go with it.”

If you would like to read more the details of each block see the original post that I wrote, Creative Embroidery, Round Robin 2, The Virginians, for C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching! ~Christen

PS: Don’t forget to leave a comment, in order for you to be entered in the drawing, Good Luck!

Embroidery Extravaganza

VIRTUAL LIVE EVENT: Thursday, May 11th, 2023 at 9 am (Pacific Time)

RECORDING: Available May 14th with no expiration

Embroidery Extravaganza!

The Embroidery Extravaganza is an event where artists come together in a live, virtual event where you choose your own stitchin’ fun adventure. In each session, you get to choose from 3 40-minute workshop options to learn about crewel and free-form embroidery, basic embroidery stitches, getting started with the art of modoko (kogin motifs), machine embroidery tips for success, and so much more! After the event, you get lifetime access to recordings of all workshops — that’s over 8 hours of #howto content!

Embrace all things embroidery with 11 embroidery artists and instructors! Embroidery Extravaganza is a live virtual event with skill-building and lecture-styled workshops to put needle and thread to cloth with confidence and creativity.

I am the keynote speaker, and I have a beginning class on Silk Ribbon Embroidery. If you click on this link, you will save $20.00!

Guided by embroidery experts, you’ll learn how to:
● Use luxurious silk ribbons and basic stitches to create one-of-a-kind pieces- ME!
● Discover your personal stitching style and unleash your inner innovative spirit
● Stitch stunning samplers and motifs using the basics of crewel embroidery and free-form embroidery
● Hack your sewing machine to play with machine embroidery
● Choose the best fabrics and colors to make your dream embroidery projects come true
● Learn the art of modoko (kogin motifs) to create beautiful patterns


Let’s talk extras…

  • Get 8 hours of instruction in 4 hours with the magic of technology!
  • You’ll get lifetime access to the event after it wraps for your viewing pleasure
  • During the live event, you’ll be entered to win a HUGE giveaway
  • Get a virtual swag bag when you attend live
    For more information and to save $20 on the event follow my link.

Happy Stitching to you All, and hope to see you at the Embroidery Extravaganza live event! ~Christen

Upcycle it With Embellishments

I am happy to say that I am now a teacher for C&T Publishing online learning platform, Creative Spark! I have a new lecture, Upcycle it with Embellishments.

Upcycle Pre-Loved Clothing and Accessories

With trends like “thrift flipping,” where people find unique ways to repurpose secondhand goods, learning to add embroidery and embellishments to fabric is a key skill in transforming dull or out-of-style finds into unique wardrobe staples. In this online course, I will show you how to give your current wardrobe or thrift store finds a unique look with hand or machine-stitched trims, embroidery, and vintage treasures. I hope to inspire all of you makers to reimagine your preloved and current stash.

Download the handout and follow along with the video and demos. I show you how to take an old tie to create a rose corsage; create new embellishments with unused jewelry parts; add lace, yo-yos, buttons, and pins; and cut a doily to make a lace appliqué. In each demo, you’ll learn essential embroidery and ribbonwork tips and techniques, such as knowing what dyes and glues to use and when to use them.

What you will learn

  • Add embroidery stitches to enhance a design or repair damage.
  • Sew on a collection of buttons or use vintage jewelry to add interest or a theme.
  • Turn an unused item like a tie or lace table runner into something wearable.
  • Hand or machine stitch lace or ribbons to the bottom edge of a vest or jacket to extend the length or to add interest.
  • Hand stitch ribbonwork flowers, doilies, and lace to add a feminine touch, hide a hole or a stain, or add design interest.
  • Your Course includes access to videos, downloads, the Creative Spark private community, and discussion with your instructor. Your course content does not expire.

Bonus

+ This course includes a 9-page handout to refer to throughout the course. The handout includes instructions for a few projects as well.

Sign up for Upcycle it with Embellishments!

Happy Stitching and Thrifting to you! ~Christen

Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New, Book Promotion: Day 5

I have a new book coming out in March 2023, Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with The New. The emphasis of the book is to create something new from your vintage and new stash of fabrics, hankies, table linens, doilies, laces, appliqués, trims, ribbons, threads, buttons, beads, notions, and more.

Book Blog and Social Media Tour Details

The following hosts of the blogs and Facebook pages listed below, are offering a chance to win a free copy of the eBook. Visit each listing on the day of the tour that they are hosts, and enter the drawing for a chance to win!

Today you have a chance to win at Sew Crazy For You and Stitchesnquilts.

Don’t forget to hop on over, and good luck!

Round Robin Groups

To help me promote the book, I asked a few good friends to participate in a Round Robin Group block exchange. So, what is a “Round Robin”, and how did this project get started? I asked each artist to create a 10”- 12” pieced square, using any type of fabric and color combination. The construction could also include doilies, laces, or ribbons, and then the embroidery and embellishments stitches included in the book. Once the block was created, they sent the block to the next person in the group, including the threads and embellishments that they wanted to include on their block. Then the block traveled on to the next participant in the group, and then back to the owner.

The participants of the second Round Robin Group, are artist, teacher, and author Diane Herbort, and artist and teacher Chris Vinh of Stitchesnquilts, team with their longtime friend, artist Nancy Karst. Diane and Chris have taught for, and all the ladies shop at their favorite craft store, Artistic Artifacts, where many of the fabulous fibers used in these blocks came from.

Here is Chris Vinh’s block. She started her block with a fabric bundly of oeverdyed kimono silks, and pieces them with a a Wonky Log Cabin ruler for Jean Ann Wright. She collected a variety of Painters Threads and fibers, along with a rust dyed crochet lace doily and other ephemera from her stash. Her block traveled to Nancy Karst, and then to Diane Herbort.

The block is now back with Chris and she says: “I was thrilled when I received my block back, to see what Nancy and Diane had added! I’m not sure there is anything I could add at this point! I will most likely finish this as a small quilt.”

If you would like to read more the details of each block see the original post that I wrote, Creative Embroidery, Round Robin 2, The Virginians, for C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching! ~Christen

Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New, Book Promotion: Day 4

I have a new book coming out in March 2023, Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with The New. The emphasis of the book is to create something new from your vintage and new stash of fabrics, hankies, table linens, doilies, laces, appliqués, trims, ribbons, threads, buttons, beads, notions, and more.

Book Blog and Social Media Tour Details

The following hosts of the blogs and Facebook pages listed below, are offering a chance to win a free copy of the eBook. Visit each listing on the day of the tour that they are hosts, and enter the drawing for a chance to win!

Today you have a chance to win at Epida Studio.

Don’t forget to hop on over, and good luck!

Round Robin Groups

To help me promote the book, I asked a few good friends to participate in a Round Robin Group block exchange. So, what is a “Round Robin”, and how did this project get started? I asked each artist to create a 10”- 12” pieced square, using any type of fabric and color combination. The construction could also include doilies, laces, or ribbons, and then the embroidery and embellishments stitches included in the book. Once the block was created, they sent the block to the next person in the group, including the threads and embellishments that they wanted to include on their block. Then the block traveled on to the next participant in the group, and then back to the owner.

The participants of the second Round Robin Group, are artist, teacher, and author Diane Herbort, and artist and teacher Chris Vinh of Stitchesnquilts, team with their longtime friend, artist Nancy Karst. Diane and Chris have taught for, and all the ladies shop at their favorite craft store, Artistic Artifacts, where many of the fabulous fibers used in these blocks came from.

Here is Nancy Karst’s block. Her block started with a handkerchief that had a delicate crochet edging. She then added an indigo-dyed doily and topped that with a vintage yo-yo and button. The four wool vases in the corners were created from a vase design, from the Embroidery Stencils Darling Motif Collection, by C&T Publishing. She I embellished the block with embroidery stitches, vintage peach and green silk-covered snaps, and rust-colored bird shaped beads. Her block traveled to Diane Herbort, and then to Chris Vinh.

The block is now back with Nancy and she says: Wow! Diane and Chris made the piece zing, adding touches I love. Their beautiful stitching added a gentle swirl to keep the eye moving around the center doily.”

If you would like to read more the details of each block see the original post that I wrote, Creative Embroidery, Round Robin 2, The Virginians, for C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching! ~Christen

Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New, Book Promotion: Day 3

I have a new book coming out in March 2023, Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with The New. The emphasis of the book is to create something new from your vintage and new stash of fabrics, hankies, table linens, doilies, laces, appliqués, trims, ribbons, threads, buttons, beads, notions, and more.

Book Blog and Social Media Tour Details

The following hosts of the blogs and Facebook pages listed below, are offering a chance to win a free copy of the eBook. Visit each listing on the day of the tour that they are hosts, and enter the drawing for a chance to win!

Today’s host, Kitty and Me Designs, had to be canceled, but you still have four more chances this week.

Don’t forget to hop on over, and good luck!

Round Robin Groups

To help me promote the book, I asked a few good friends to participate in a Round Robin Group block exchange. So, what is a “Round Robin”, and how did this project get started? I asked each artist to create a 10”- 12” pieced square, using any type of fabric and color combination. The construction could also include doilies, laces, or ribbons, and then the embroidery and embellishments stitches included in the book. Once the block was created, they sent the block to the next person in the group, including the threads and embellishments that they wanted to include on their block. Then the block traveled on to the next participant in the group, and then back to the owner.

The participants of the first Round Robin Group, Washington to Oregon to Texas were founder, artist, and teacher Lynn Woll of Create Whimsy, and her friend and colleague Chardel Gibson Blaine, an artist, teacher and owner of Flying Goat Studio, who teamed up with my friend of many years,  Patti Medaris Culea, a fiberar and cloth doll artist, teacher and author.

Here is Patti Medaris Culea’s block. Patti loves drawing people, and decided to draw and color a woman gathering flowers in her garden. Using a crazy patch design, she sewed various pieces of silk dupioni, and vintage laces from her stash, one of which was a piece from her great-grandmother’s tablecloths. Her block traveled to Chardel Blaine, and then to Lynn Woll.

The block is now back with Patti and she says: “This was soooooooooo much fun. Loved the work that Chardel and Lynn did on my block.”

If you would like to read more the details of each block see the original post that I wrote, Creative Embroidery, Round Robin 1 Washington to Oregon to Texas, for C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching! ~Christen

Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with the New, Book Promotion: Day 2

I have a new book coming out in March 2023, Creative Embroidery, Mixing the Old with The New. The emphasis of the book is to create something new from your vintage and new stash of fabrics, hankies, table linens, doilies, laces, appliqués, trims, ribbons, threads, buttons, beads, notions, and more.

Book Blog and Social Media Tour Details

The following hosts of the blogs and Facebook pages listed below, are offering a chance to win a free copy of the eBook. Visit each listing on the day of the tour that they are hosts, and enter the drawing for a chance to win!

Today you have a chance to win at Create Whimsy, Facebook.

Don’t forget to hop on over, and good luck!

Round Robin Groups

To help me promote the book, I asked a few good friends to participate in a Round Robin Group block exchange. So, what is a “Round Robin”, and how did this project get started? I asked each artist to create a 10”- 12” pieced square, using any type of fabric and color combination. The construction could also include doilies, laces, or ribbons, and then the embroidery and embellishments stitches included in the book. Once the block was created, they sent the block to the next person in the group, including the threads and embellishments that they wanted to include on their block. Then the block traveled on to the next participant in the group, and then back to the owner.

The participants of the first Round Robin Group, Washington to Oregon to Texas were founder, artist, and teacher Lynn Woll of Create Whimsy, and her friend and colleague Chardel Gibson Blaine, an artist, teacher and owner of Flying Goat Studio, who teamed up with my friend of many years,  Patti Medaris Culea, a fiberart and cloth doll artist, teacher and author.

Here is Lynn Woll’s block. She started with a square of linen, a green fabric doily with a multi-color crochet edge and a smaller crocheted doily. Inspired by Mandalas, she attached the green doily onto the linen, then stitched the smaller crochet doily into the center. Her block traveled to Patti Medaris Culea, then to Chardel Blaine.

The block is now back with Lynn and she says: “Who knew that two vintage doilies could create such a peaceful embroidered work. I find the piece calm and comforting and plan on finishing it as a small wall art piece.”

If you would like to read more the details of each block see the original post that I wrote, Creative Embroidery, Round Robin 1 Washington to Oregon to Texas, for C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching! ~Christen