Tag Archive | buttons

Autumn Jewels

These are a few of my favorite necklaces, these were all made using a ribbon or silk cord for the base. Vintage and new buttons, beads, charms and other ephemera were used for the embellishments.

Happy Stitching! ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 30

Question: Is you 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.

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 18

8″ x 8″

Charmed Square by Christen Brown

This small square was pieced with a few leftover squares from a Moda Charm pace, the rest of the squares were used in Paris Flea Market. I added two complementary fabrics to complete the nine-patch design and borders. The border row stitches were worked in one color of perle cotton #8 to straddle each seam. The decorative and detail stitches were worked in five colors of cotton floss, and two colors of seed beads. The color and stitch changed depending on which side of the border row they were stitched. I used three colors of glass buttons and charms and added brass buttons as an accent color.

This piece can be found in The Embroidery Book by C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 13

Question: Do you like to work with solid color fabric, or prints?

9 1/4″ x 9 1/4″

Cogs and Gears, by Christen Brown

This piece is a variation of the project Blowing Bubbles from my book Beaded Embroidery Stitching. I used a printed piece of felt (shown right), for the base, with the embroidery following the design of the print. Vintage and new buttons were used to add color and focal points.

This piece can be seen in my book Beaded Embroidery Stitching, by C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 11

13 1/2” x 10”

Rustic Americana, In memory of 9/11/2021 by Christen Brown

The base of the flag is made from a faded plaid fabric and a left-over bit of blue fabric. Vintage navy-blue seam binding highlights the stripes, and perle cotton #8 was used for the embroidery stitches. The states and future additions are represented by a collection of heart and star buttons, both vintage and new that were made from a variety of materials.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 10

Question: How do you choose a color pallet for a project? I start with the fabric, and work from there.

13″ x 13″

Beautiful Beaded Blooms by Christen Brown

This project started with two colors of moire fabric, and a cotton print that came with a bounty of an array of greenery options. I paired the foundation pieced block, with lavish amounts of embroidered beading, vintage buttons and charms to create an opulent-looking wall hanging that hints of an earlier era.

This is a project in my book Embroidered and Embellished by C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 9

Question: When you are stitching a pattern, do you strive for perfect seams, or do you cover up what was not perfect? I strive and strive, but often I end up covering up what I think is not perfect.

14 1/2″ x 14 1/2″

Paris Flea Market- by Christen Brown

The four 9-patch blocks are comprised of a Moda charm packet, with a border of bleached muslin. I actually did piece all of the corners perfectly, however I found these wonderful vintage charms to put into each section. Oh well, at least you all know now that the squares were perfect.

The embroidery was worked in three colors of perle cotton, the border row stitches in one color, the decorative in a second color and the detail stitches in a third color. I used this in many of my embroidery classes as an example, and eventually the muslin border was covered in fingerprints. So, I added another border of mother-of-pearl buttons to cover up the prints.

This piece can be found in The Embroidery Book, by C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 8

Question: When you work with a pattern do you follow the instructions, or do you interpret the instructions to fit your vision? I usually have a casual disregard for instructions, and created within the minimal parameters.

Our House is a Very, Very Fine House- by Christen Brown

This piece started with the idea of creating a foundation-pieced house, usually you see this shown using day-time imagery. I wanted to show this at night, so that I could use my vintage Bakelite and celluloid star buttons. The border is comprised of a Moda Charm Pack. I was happy to finally use the wooden cat-shaped buttons, as well as the many other vintage buttons from my stash. The embroidery is worked in perle cotton and cotton floss, both solid and variegated colors.

The piece can be seen in my book, Hand Embroidery Dictionary by C&T Publishing

Happy Stitching, ~Christen

National Sewing Month

Day 7

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? I usually work with what I have on hand, then go to the store for additional materials.

17 1/2″ x 16 3/4″

Eastern Influences by Christen Brown

This piece started with the small scrap of fabric that I used for the center. It had been sitting in my stash along with the print that I used in the border, waiting just for the right project to come along. Additional fabrics were a machine embroidered cotton, and plain black cotton. Glass seed beads were used for the embroidery, along with vintage bugle and hand-blown glass beads, and nail heads. Vintage buttons are sprinkled throughout along with large glass beads and charms.

This piece can be found in my book Beaded Embroidery Stitching by C&T Publishing.

Happy Stitching, ~Christen