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National Sewing Month

Day 30

Question: Are you looking for inspiration, a little kick start, or just some eye candy? I have a few books that may help you on your creative journey, may that be a long and happy one!

Here is a re-cap of National Sewing Month 2022:

  1. September 1, 2022– Question: When did you first learn to sew, and who was your teacher?
  2. September 2, 2022– Question: How do you design a project, do you start with a plan or do you let the materials tell you what and where they want to be?
  3. September 3, 2022– Question: What type of piecing do you like to do?
  4. September 4, 2022– Question: When you choose a fabric, what are you drawn to, do you like to work with solids or prints, or hand-dyed or batiks?
  5. September 5, 2022– Question: Do you like to recycle old clothing, or use something in an unexpected way?
  6. September 6, 2022– Question: What type of embellishments to you like to work with on your projects?
  7. September 7, 2022– Question: Do you plan out every detail, or do you approach your work with serendipity?
  8. September 8, 2022– Question: Do you like to make and sew your own jewelry and adornments?
  9. September 9, 2022– Question: Did you know that the wooden spools that you have in your stash may be 50-100 years or older?
  10. September 10, 2022– Question: Do you have a favorite pincushion, or two?
  11. September 11, 2022– Rustic Americana, In Memory of 9/11
  12. September 12, 2022– Question: When you design a project, do you sometimes think, hmm I like that, but I want to try it in another colorway or design?
  13. September 13, 2022– Question: Do you plan out a project, with bits and pieces of paper lying around the workroom with your notes, or do you use a dedicated book to keep track of all of those ideas?
  14. September 14, 2022– Question: Do you name or title your projects, and how do you choose those names?
  15. September 15, 2022– Question: Do like to work with felt?
  16. September 16, 2022– Question: What sewer does not have a favorite pin or needle keep?
  17. September 17, 2022– Question: Do you sew functional forms for the home, or do you like to create whimsical additions?
  18. September 18, 2022– Question: Do you like to crazy-piece, but sometimes find the sections so small, that it is hard to embroider every seam?
  19. September 19, 2022– Question: Do you like to embroider over a pattern or print?
  20. September 20, 2022– Question: When you embroider a piece, do you like to use free-form images or do you use stencils?
  21. September 21, 2022– Question: When you create a strip-pieced base, do you embroider the seams, in the seams or over the seams?
  22. September 22, 2022– Question: What sewer hasn’t heard of the Sunbonnet Sue?
  23. September 23, 2022– Question: Do you sew functional forms or do you like to create fabulous frivolities?
  24. September 24, 2022– Question: Do you like to add lace to your creations?
  25. September 25, 2022– Question: When you are working with a group of fabrics, how do you decide what colors to use for the embroidery stitches?
  26. September 26, 2022– Question: What kind of sewing machine did you learn to sew on, and, what kind of machine do you sew on now?
  27. September 27, 2022– Question: When you see a hanky used in a project, do you ever think of Rhett Buttler’s comment to Scarlet: “Never, at any crisis of your life, have I known you to have a handkerchief.”
  28. September 28, 2022– Question: Do you ever hold on to a piece of fabric, and think, someday, I will use that?
  29. September 29, 2022– Question: When you buy a charm pack, do you often find that there are prints that you think, hmm, how did those get included in here?

I hope that you have enjoyed this month, and have found some inspiration within these pages.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

Day 21 of FLOWERS GALORE!

Day 21 of FLOWERS GALORE!

Jean Jacket

This is a jacket from my UPCYCLE-IT program. I took a jean jacket that I bought at the thrift store for $5.99 and embellished it with the sample and prototype flowers from both of my ribbonwork books, Ribbonwork Gardens and Ribbonwork Flowers from C&T Publishing.

Ribbonwork Gardens a book by Christen Brown

Happy Stitching, enjoy~ Christen!

Jacket full of Ribbonwork Gardens and Flowers

I also just finished embellishing this jean jacket that I found at a thrift store. The front and back panels are embellished with the leftover ribbon flowers that I have made over the past three years for my two ribbonwork books: Ribbonwork Gardens and Ribbonwork Flowers, by C&T Publishing. Here is a complete list of all my books.

jean jacket with ribbonwork flowersI included a variety of flowers and leaves from my books, in additions to some prototypes that I just liked, but didn’t get into either book.

jean jacket embellished with ribbonwork flowersHere is a closeup of the front, and then the back.

ribbonwork jean jacket

ribbonwork jean's jacketHappy Stitching my friends, and may your gardens always bloom! ~Christen

Friday’s Favorites: Mother of Pearl part 5

Friday’s Favorites finishes off the month with Wearable Art and Collage Art pieces that I have made which included mother of pearl, Tahiti and brown mussel shell buttons.

mother of pearl buttons, collageLothlorian Twilight~ Collage Art

collage of wearable art with mop buttons

silk ribbon embroidery with mother of pearl buttons

Days of Wine and Roses~ Wearable Art

collage of wearable art with mother of pearl buttons

heart shapes covered in MOP buttons

Pearls From My Heart~ Collage Art

Creativity opens hearts and minds, share your talents with the world because we all benefit.
Enjoy- Christen

Friday’s Favorites: Butterflies

Group of Butterflies

Group of Butterflies

Friday’s Favorites today as you can see is all about butterflies, a few moths may have crept in here and there, but their shape is just as lovely. I love the shapes, colors, and variety that you can find both in real life and in the wonderful things that I can use in my art such as charms, buttons, beads and lace.

embroidered butterfly

embroidered butterfly

Here is a variety of just those things, whether they be sequined or beaded; carved from bone, jade, or mother of pearl; whether they be copper, brass, gold, or silver; enameled or painted I love them all.

The necklace in the middle as you may imagine is called Enchanted Butterflies and is worn with the ensemble Madame Butterfly this embroidery here is from the sleeve of the jacket.

Speaking of Madame Butterfly we were lucky enough to watch a simulcast performance at the movie theater of the taped version from a Met performance. WOW is about  all I  can say except for truly amazing!

I'm NO Wallflower

I'm NO Wallflower

This is a close-up of the work on the jacket called “I’m NO Wallflower.”

Here we have a copper and brass butterfly pin, a brass charm and a paper mache butterfly charm. These are all sitting amongst ribbon flowers and silk ribbon embroidery. Even the background fabric which is a Hoffman print is strewn with happy butterflies flying free.

Butterfly Jewelry

Butterfly Jewelry

These pieces of jewelry are made from vintage sterling reposse charms that I believe are from China. I think that these are probably moths, but they are lovely and detailed. I glued a pin back onto the larger charm and wire wrapped the beads for earrings.

A Mid Summer Night's Dream

A Mid Summer Night's Dream

This close-up is from the jacket of the ensemble called “A Mid Summer Night’s Dream“.

The jacket is crazy pieced in sections which are later stitched together on a foundation piece with ribbon.

Each section is embellished with silk ribbon and traditional embroidery stitches using cotton, silk and metallic threads; ribbon worked flowers and leaves rest here and there and are adorned with vintage sequin appliques, vintage and new buttons, glass charms and beads. Here the butterflies take form in dyed lace appliques, metal charms and glass beads.

We have also planted many Lantana and bougainvillea plants to entice these wonderful colorful ephemeral flying beauties to our yard. Fly free, love what you do and see you next Friday. Enjoy- Christen

Donna Reed’s Tea Party- collaged jacket

Donna Reed's Tea Party- jacket

Donna Reed’s Tea Party- jacket

Embroidery, a needle art that I learned at the age of seven from my mother is a skill I continue to develop and is the technique of choice for many of my creative and artistic expressions. The first embroidered item I made still in use to this day is a short handled tote bag that my mother designed as a project for my Bluebird group.

This jacket is comprised of two card table sized tablecloths, one large rectangular cloth, and many napkins, tea towels appliques and additional pieces of embroidery that I have been collecting for years. This is part of the Donna Reed’s Tea Party Ensemble.

My favorite piece is the card table sized tablecloth with the large flowers shown in the front center corners. The embroidery for each corner was stitched in four different color combinations.

The large tablecloth, probably vintage 50’s early 60’s, was embroidered with a pink vase and colorful flowers in several sizes. The cloth did not survive a red wind dinner party and was promptly discarded to the thrift store. Lucky me!

After all of the pieces were attached to a muslin base, I added in satin ribbons to hide the seems of these sections. I then added additional embroidered details with traditional embroidery stitches with left over strands of floss and on the ribbons.

The collar is made from a wonderful cotton print from the 50’s, which was our old bird cage cover. The lining is made from additional embroidered items, a linen fabric that was left over from my kitchen curtains, and other cotton prints.

Happy Stitching! Christen