Question: What kind of sewing machine did you learn to sew on, and, what kind of machine do you sew on now? Mine was a Singer, and still is!
Chrysanthemum Tea- by Christen Brown
This piece started with a scrap of commercially embroidered fabric, which I used for the teapot applique, and a few pieces of the border. I found a a hand-dyed perle cotton in pin, yellow, and green, and used this for my color pallet. I chose silk fabrics in those same colors. I added trims, appliques, buttons and lots of embroidery stitches.
Question: What is your favorite sewing tool? Mine was a pair of metal “snippy scissors”.
Gentle Lady’s Needle Keep- By Christen Brown
This little sewing kit is crazy pieced with vintage and new cotton fabrics. The embellishments include grosgrain ribbon, and vintage and new buttons. The needle keep and pincushion are made from felt, and stitched with grosgrain trim. The embellishments include felt leaves, a ladybug and vintage and new buttons. All of the embroidery was worked with perle cotton, cotton floss or seed beads.
Question: What fabric do you like to sew with? I like to sew with silk, and cotton.
Melted Crayons by Christen Brown
Tiny bits of precious silk fabrics were crazy-pieced onto four foundation squares and strip-pieced onto four border strips. These blocks and strips of wildly displayed color were bordered with black silk fabric, satin ribbon, and rayon cord. The embroidery was worked with border rows of black buttonhole twist, and the decorative and detail stitches were worked with a variegated Valdani perle cotton. Vintage and new buttons details were stitched down with perle cotton and rayon floss.
Question: I like to sew strips, and straight seams. What do you like to sew?
Sizzle and Pop by Christen Brown
This is a strip-pieced base comprised of Hoffman and hand-dyed batiks as well as cotton floral prints. The lines and seams are embroidered with beaded stitches, with buttons and sequins used for additional embellishments.
Question: What was your favorite garment that was hand-sewn, and who sewed it for you? Mine was a yellow A-line dress that my mom made, and I wore white go-go boots with it. Nancy Sinatra sang my theme song!
Glamour Girl by Christen Brown
This piece started with the fun print that was used in all four blocks. I loved the colors that were used and found additional fabrics in both stripes and prints in those same colors. I also incorporated a few precious strips of vintage batik fabrics. The piece is embellished with rick rack trim, grosgrain and novelty ribbons, embroidery, beads and sequins, and novelty buttons.
Question: Who did you learn to sew from?I learned to sew at home, by helping my mom, who made all of our clothes. I also had a great Home Ec. teacher in the 7th and 8th grades.
Scraps and Leftovers, by Christen Brown
This monochromatic color palette combines a very subtle blend of colors: cream, sand, tan, and brown with a dash of black, brass and silver. The fabrics are all scraps from other projects, with leftovers of ribbon, lace, trims, appliques, and zippers for embellishments. I literally emptied the sewing box in search of buckles, safety pins, snaps, and hoops and eyes. I combined these with vintage buttons, charms, and other ephemera. The quilted and embroidered stitches were all worked in perle cotton thread. The pin in the center was from an original Shirley Temple doll.
If you know my work, you know that I sneak a spider and a web into many of my creations. I am in awe of the beauty of a spiderweb, but deathly afraid of real-life spiders! In recreating a spiderweb, I try to capture the beauty of the delicate woven structure. However, when I embroider the spider, I try to create a more whimsical version to somehow confront my fear!
Thank you for looking, and Happy Stitching to you all!
These are a few necklaces that I have made with buttons.
This necklace started with the wonderful wrapped metallic gold center piece given to me by a friend. The necklace base is made from silk rouleau and rayon cording wrapped and curled into an entwined pattern. The beads, buttons and extras are attached at random, using a free-form peyote technique.
This is a technique that I call “train tracks”, the buttons are attached through two layers of silk rouleau. The beads and charms are added on after the buttons.
This necklace started with a base made from ruched velvet ribbon. The buttons are made from abalone and muscle shell, jade, turquoise, and other materials. Seed beads and larger beads were used for the dangles.
This necklace was made using a right-angle weave pattern, the base is comprised of seed beads, pearls, and buttons made from muscle shell.
This necklace started with a base made from ruched velvet ribbon. The buttons are made from glass and metal, seed beads and vintage glass beads and charms were used for the dangles.
Hope that you enjoyed looking! Happy stitching! ~Christen
This is a sampling of the flowers that I created for a class that I call Lace in Bloom. Several of the flowers are made with individual petals that are made from a “magic web” technique that I created using Solvy. The other flowers are made from a length of lace. All of the laces were dyed with ColorHue dyes. Fun, fun, fun!