Monday, May 12, 2014

Vintage Embroidery

I am totally head over heels for this Garden Party quilt from  The Gentle Art of Stitching. I stumbled across it on the author's blog and immediately went looking for a copy of the book. The original used vintage embroidery pieces. I could absolutely see putting together a family member's bits of work into one heirloom quilt...if I had a stash of family pieces to use.  I could also see hunting estate sales and the Goodwill bins for damaged and stained pieces, if there were going to be estate sales in my immediate future.   

That bit of embroidery on the left was up in the sewing room. It must have come from a scrap bag of fabric, which makes it the perfect candidate for this quilt except for one problem. I can't stand it. It's too bright, and the stitching is too clunky. (Apologies to whoever made it and then donated it to the thrift store, but we've all got different taste, right?)

I've been playing with different possibilities, trying to remember what bits of embroidery might be up in the sewing room and decide whether or not I'm willing to use them for this project.  Then I came up with what seems like the perfect plan. 

I love vintage embroidery patterns. I keep coming up with cute ones that I want to stitch, but how many dish towels does one family of six need? And do I really want to expose a lot of handwork to the danger zone that is my kitchen?

But what if I started embroidering squares with the intention of someday putting them together into a quilt like this one?  I've got floss from my cross-stitching, and muslin, and some white pieces feed sacks that I've been saving just because they were feed sacks. 

I'm linking up to Design Wall Monday.


Ramona said...

Oh my Goodness!! Thank you so much for sharing the link to the Garden Party Quilt. It is stunning! I want to head out right now and begin collecting embroidered pieces. Your idea of embroidering your own is an excellent idea, too. Beautiful!

Rhonda R said...

That is a beautiful quilt. Thanks for the link. I feel myself inching to the slippery slope of a new collection!

Marly said...

Thanks for the link to the garden party quilt. I was wondering what to do with the drawerful of table cloths embroidered by my mother as I don't want to throw them away.
As for that piece of embroidery with colours too vivid for your taste, how about dying it. If it's not too big you could try dying it with tea, or coffee. In her book "Crazy quilt handbook" Judith Baker Montano has a section on dying lace and ribbons to give them an antique colouring.

Carol Swift said...

Thanks for the link to that gorgeous quilt! I love the idea of using old embroidery pieces to make a quilt. :O)

Heather said...

What a neat idea. A wonderful way to rescue embroidered bits that have gone past their first life and are ready for a second. I think stitching new squares is great, as you say, how many tea towels do you need.

Jessica Hadden said...

I love rescuing hand stitched bits, love 'em all!

Bits of Stitching! said...

I too have the book and will like to make a similar project one day!


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