2011-2012

On this page, you’ll find all of our creative postcards. Enjoy browsing our creative embroidery collections – if you have questions about our group or want to know how to start your own creative postcard group – post a comment and we’ll get back to you.

Happy stitching!

September-October

Our September-October postcards were based on this photograph of a stunning Severn Sunrise.

This photograph resulted in some very impressive works of creative stitching and art. Here is what Kim had to say about this photo:

I had a couple photos I was looking at but I always came back to this one. As this is the start of a new swap, I thought this would be very representative of the beginning of our journey. I took this just outside one morning. I was captivated by the strong colour that morning. We have many beautiful sunsets as well, but that wouldn’t fit here right now.

Can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with….have fun with Severn Sunrise!

Sue

Here is Sue’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Sue’s words:

Where I ended up and what I intended to do are actually miles apart.

I had decided to play with transfer paints, pastel and water colour pencils. I started off well. I painted lots of pieces of paper and left them to dry. Whilst they were drying,  I decided to tidy up in my studio. In this process I found a piece of warm and natural that I had dyed a peach colour. I then thought I would make more mess and started needle felting Severn Sunrise! This what I sent to Sandra!

What I did was add some pink roving and some purply roving to the peach background and felted it all down with a little yellow and white for the sun. I didn’t think it was vibrant enough so I added some pink chiffon as a top layer.

The trees were added with some wisps of black roving.

I then free motion stitched the trunks and branches for the trees to give more definition. I added a few rows of bluish stitching in the sky and I was done.

The transfer papers were still not dry. I have actually put those  together for a background but have got no further than that. I probably will save this for some other project.

Kim

Here is Kim’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Kim’s words:

I hope everyone has been enjoying the fall. The colours are just beautiful.

Since my card has arrived safely, I get to share with the rest of you.

Like I said when I posted the photo, the colour is wonderful. I decided that I would needle felt for this card. I had some bright roving just right for this. After needle felting the sky, I added detail for trees. I have
done some needle felted landscapes, so the trees are the characteristic of that style. I then added some finer details with some wool thread.

Can’t wait to see everyone’s card!

Happy Stitching!

Mary-Wyn

Here is Mary-Wyn’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Mary-Wyn’s words:

It was – twigs from the tips of the branches from the birch trees in our back yard. Small plastic circle from the dollar store for the sun put on with the “shisha” stitch. Don’t know where the inspiration came from except from the sun and doing the shisha is fun….

Anna

Here is Anna’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Anna’s words:

When I looked at the photo, I thought “bargello.” The catch was, I had never done any bargello. So I got myself a book from our Brandon Embroiderers library and started practicing the first stitch. Things went on from there; so this is my version – in basic brick stitch. And special thanks to Deb Blackmore for taking a photo of the card when she got it – after I forgot to do so before I sent it!

Carol E.

Here is Carol’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Carol’s words:

Here is the postcard I sent to Colleen. When I looked at Kim’s photo it could have been taken from our back door looking west. I have often thought I would like to stitch such a scene, as all but one of my skies so far have been blue ones. At last I was inspired to finally do this. When I went to the computer to find one of my own very similar photos I couldn’t, but I did find this scene taken at the back of our property at the end of all the trees. I decided to do it as it presented the challenge of a dramatic sky!

I used silk paints on habotai silk and stitched the evergreens and distant trees with Piper’s Silk; the bare deciduous tree was stitched using DMC for a textural contrast. The orange at the bottom is not part of the postcard. Thanks Kim for FINALLY mobilizing me to try this! I really enjoyed doing it.

The distant trees across the field at the far left horizon is where our good friends live so I had to include them! Along with he birds, the sunset, and darker sky on the left they all help to balance the trees on the right. I call this scene ‘Prairie Palette’.

Can’t wait to see the next challenge.

Colleen

Here is Colleen’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Colleen’s words:

My creation of the photo sent by Kim is my idea of what this scene would look like 100 years from now – Severn Sunrise 211. All the trees are gone except for the remain of the small maple on the far left – now just a dead shell of the tree. the sunrise remains the same.

Worked on canvas that I dyed with Dyn-a-flow paints/dyes (ruined 2 pieces of silk trying to get the right look – more ATC materials), the tree is single crochet couched in place and embroidered over the top in places. Machined around the border.

Am looking forward to our next challenge.

Paula

Here is Paula’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

Carol S.

Here is Carol’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Carol’s words:

I just love sunrises and sunsets, and this picture was no exception!

I decided to make some silk paper for the background. One Sunday morning in September, it was incredibly calm outdoors and I ignored all domestic duties to go out and make several sheets of silk paper. I then used my view finder to find the piece that I wanted to use for this postcard. I also used a piece from one of the other silk papers for the foreground, and stitched over it with straight stitches.

When it came to the tree…as I’m more of a counted thread person, I wasn’t sure how to stitch the tree. Luckily, our weekend stitching retreat was at the end of September, and I knew that Joyce Davis was coming to the weekend and would be able to help me with the tree. Thanks Joyce for all your help!

I was going to put birds in the picture, but I definitely needed more practice with that. As I was afraid I was going to wreck my silk paper by stitching and unstitching birds, I made the executive decision – no birds!!

Overall, I was very pleased with my picture, and am going to try stitching more trees in the future.

Anne-Marie

Here is Anne-Marie’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Anne-Marie’s words:

When I saw Kim’s picture, I thought it was a picture of my place! I live in the country and I often see similar sunsets; every time it happens, I feel very lucky.

The first thing that came to my mind was a piece of fabric that I have. The sky is represented with that fabric. I then added black fabric for the bottom portion: I used a satin stitch(with my sewing machine) to join the 2 fabrics.

I have decided that I would render a simplified version of the photo. The sun is represented with the shell bead, and to make the halo around it, I stitched straight stitches with Caron’s Rachelette (tubular outer thread). For the tree on the left, I straight-stitched with Rainbow Gallery’s Flair stretchable tubular ribbon. I have used that same ribbon for the ground around the trees on the right. Now, for the trees on the right side, I have tried something I have been wanting to try for a while: make my own cording with my sewing machine. I have couched that cording with the same thread I used to make it, so it doesn’t show.

My postcard as a lot of layers that I assembled together by satin stitching around the edge with my sewing machine. The layers are, from the top to the back: background fabric, quilting batting, stiff interfacing sticky on both sides (the one used for fabric bowls), and cotton with the postcard back printed on it.

I enjoyed making this postcard and can not wait to start the next one! I really like all the other postcards!

Laurena

Here is Laurena’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Laurena’s words:

I’ve been inspired by all your postcards and the diversity of techniques used.

When I first saw Severn Sunrise I was reminded of lace and thought of all the things we don’t see until the sun rises: moss on the trees, reflection of light and the beautiful spiders who have been busy spinning their webs. I created my lace with free motion machine embroidery worked on water soluble interfacing. I painted the colours of moss and sunlight into the remaining interfacing fibres. Angelina Fibres are laid underneath to reflect the colours of the sunrise. And Miss Spider and her web is hand stitched.

Deb

Here is Deb’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Deb’s words:

With the start of the new group, I felt I could go back to a technique I used in the last go-round, so this card is made with recycled candy and gum wrappers, with machine stitching on the top. I thought that using these wrappers captured the luminescence of the morning sunrise. I’m still a newbie with free motion work, but now that my machine and I are on better terms with one another, I’m hoping for better things to come.

Sandra

Here is Sandra’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Sandra’s words:

I knew I wanted to do the tree tops as those always fascinate me against a coloured sky. To me they often seem to have no colour at all — just black against the sky.

I was poking around Canadiana Needlecrafts and saw some dyed cheesecloth. This gave me the perfect colours and an opportunity to blend the colours by overlapping. Then I started stitching the tree but the stitches were too thin and it just looked wrong. I grabbed some black roving and started needle-felting in branches. It still looked pretty goofy but I figured I was this far, might as well keep going and see what happened.

As I worked, it was magical. Suddenly the branches came to life. The fuzziness of the roving created the little haze that forms the smaller branches and needles.

Andrea

Here is Andrea’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Andrea’s words:

For some time I have wanted to try stitching free-motion trees on dissolvable stabilizer, so as soon as I saw Kim’s photo I knew this was the opportunity! I also immediately pictured a blackwork sky as the background.

When I went to find my dissolvable stabilizer in my stash I came across a heat-sensitive stabilizer that you brush off after disintegrating with a hot iron. I thought that would be even better as it would distort the trees less when removing the stabilizer (and it did work very well!). I used free-motion zig-zag and straight stitching to form the trees. I tacked down the evergreens with small stitches after removing the stabilizer. I free-motioned only the larger branches on the middle tree and added more branches with hand-stitching. The blackwork was done with variegated and solid silk threads from my stash.

Eleanor

Here is Eleanor’s interpretation of the September-October theme:

In Eleanor’s words:

Cotton fabrics were used in this postcard and the sky was painted using Seta Colour fabric paints. Rather than use black for the trees and ground, I used very dark red values to complement the rosy hue of the sunrise. The large tree on the right was done with French knots and outline stitch. The bush next to it was done in outline and straight stitches and pine tree was done in feather and straight stitches. The edge was finished with a zig zag stitch, on the sewing machine, in a dark red thread also.

 


November-December

Our November-December postcards were based on this photo of an old cottage:

This image ended up stirring up all sorts of emotions for us, and we let these emotions show in our creative interpretations of this old cottage/farmhouse.

This theme was submitted by Andrea. Here is what she had to say about our inspiration for the last two months of 2011:

Here is what Andrea had to say about this photo and theme:

My photo is of a time-worn old farm house. Abandoned houses like this in various stages of decay are a common sight here on the prairies. I am fascinated by these old houses for many reasons. I think of the shelter that they provided to our pioneer ancestors in this harsh climate; I admire the texture in the old wood and shingles; I think of the families that called them home, and I marvel at how they appear both fragile and strong at the same time. This particular house has special meaning to two members of our postcard group, and we will explain more when we post our pieces. I hope you enjoy creating a piece based on my photo of “the old farm house”.

Mary Wyn

Here is Mary Wyn’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Mary Wyn’s words:
When I first saw the old farmhouse I thought….this is beyond me but all of a sudden black work seemed to suit and I enjoyed doing it!

Anna

Here is Anna’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Anna’s words:

The original photo arrived just after Halloween, and my mind was still in haunted house mode, so here is a house with its empty windows reflecting only the night.
The process is applique using bonding fabric, something I’ve used in the past to make church banners.

Kim

Here is Kim’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Kim’s words:

When I saw the photo, I was drawn to the windows. Their shape and the shades of gray within them was interesting. The “life” they have seen from both sides of the glass.

I went on the hunt for a fabric that was coarse like but would allow cut work to be done on it. I found a piece at the local fabric store. It was a remnant so it is a mystery as to what it really is. It does remind me of coarse type linen. I also found some black lining to use as the window panes. Using Pearl Cotton, I satin stitched the edgings around the pane areas and then added the inner lines. I carefully cut the pane areas. Due to the nature of the fabric, I could not get a refined look to the cut edge but then I figured the wood on the windows would be aged and rough, so this would be okay. I used DMC 644 to contrast the cream colour of the base fabric. Again the wood would be aged and dirty. I then put a layer of lining down and added an extra layer to one of the four panes, since in the photo it appears one is darker than the others.

It is a simple card but trying a non-traditional fabric for something like cutwork is something I have always thought of doing. I had fun with this.

Sue

Here is Sue’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Sue’s words:

This photo reminded me of my childhood. I had an Uncle who told children’s stories about a friendly witch called Grubby Griselda. Grubby Griselda lived in an tumbled down cottage in the country side. As children when ever we were driving, any old cottage we saw was the home of Grubby Griselda. To this day I still think of Grubby Griselda when I see an old cottage.

To create this postcard I wanted to use only straight stitch . I transferred the image to congress cloth with a photo transfer and then stitched on that image. The plan had been, to just highlight certain areas with stitching, but once I started I found I need to stitch it all. Well I didn’t stitch the path or the extra little outside buildings. It was hard to leave the bushes without french knots but for once, I managed to practise some restraint and stay with my original one stitch plan.

Sue also created a second postcard based on the theme:

Colleen

Here is Colleen’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Colleen’s words:

My creation – the main background is plain unbleached cotton muslin with dyed pattern cloth torn to imitate a vignette line-and-wash watercolour technique.

The two windows were stitched in cotton floss with the Sasketchewan lilies and grasses in variegated silks.

Carol E

Here is Carol E’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Carol’s words:

Eleanor now has her postcard so here you go. When I looked at the old house I wondered about the type of embroidery that one might find inside; hence, the crazy quilt. I titled this, “A Piece of the Past” since crazy quilts were also known as piecework. I decided to do the house in redwork which was not uncommon on old quilts either. Spiders of course would certainly reside in an old dwelling, and the wild flowers of the prairies would no doubt grow nearby. It seemed fitting to include the orange/red Saskatchewan lily. Having taken my first class in crazy quilting at Seminar last May, it was fun to try my hand at designing another small one. I chose jewel colours for my patches as they seemed more fitting somehow, but apart from the house in outline stitch I really didn’t know how the rest would evolve when I started. That was the fun part!

I’m glad I had no idea that Eleanor used to teach crazy patch for EAC or I would probably have been too intimidated to send this to her!

Can’t wait to see the next photo.

Anne-Marie

Here is Anne-Marie’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Anne-Marie’s words:

When I saw the picture, I thought of a clothesline, and I decided my postcard would show what it used to be like when looking through the window.

The background is white patterned cotton. For the little house and the clothes, I did some collage with various cotton fabrics. I used straight stitches with embroidery floss to outline the end of the land and to stitch the little grass “puffs” here and there. I also used embroidery floss (black and grey thread) to stitch around the empty garden using stem stitch. Inside the garden area, I have made the litte dots with a micron 0.5 Pima pen.

After all that was done, I added a layer of light gray organza on top of the stitiching, to make it appear like looking through a window. To keep all the different layers together I machine-stiched black ribbon around the postcard.

I really enjoyed working on that postcard and can’t wait to start the next one!

I am next on the list to post an inspiration picture: it will be available at the end of the month!

Happy stitching to all of you!

Paula

Here is Paula’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Paula’s words:

On seeing the old farm house it didn’t take long for the idea to brew, and I decided to do it in Blackwork as the shadows on the house seemed suitable for that.

The picture was printed and then printed once again in black and white to really accentuate the shadows. Next came deciding on the various patterns to use and viola! the farm house was in production. This is my first original piece of blackwork and i feel pretty good about it.

Andrea

Here is Andrea’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Andrea’s words:

When I posted the inspiration photo, I mentioned that I am fascinated by these old houses for both their structure and for the pioneer families that lived in them. I wanted to incorporate both aspects in my postcard.

For the background, I fused together sheer fabrics and machine stitched over them to imitate the wood grain. I rubbed light grey Shiva oil stick over the surface to create a weathered look. I wanted to do the wood out of sheer fabrics to represent the fragile and fleeting nature of some of these buildings. The house was torn down not long after the photograph was taken.

The photograph of the family was taken on July 15, 1937 against the wall with the three windows. My dad is the little boy to the right of the mother when looking at the photograph. I mentioned that this house has meaning to two members of our group. The other person is Wanda. Her grandfather (my uncle) is the boy in the back row on the right. I stitched a “frame” around the photograph in gold to imitate the ornate gold frames from the era (my grandparents’ wedding portraits are framed in such frames).

My dad was raised in this house and as a small child I also stayed in the house when we were at the farm. My parents built a new house on the property in the 1970’s. My dad farmed there until his health no longer allowed, and he passed away just over a year ago at the age of 80. My siblings and I had to sell the farm and we knew that the new owner would tear down the old farm house as it was falling apart. One day I drove there and the house was gone. The grass had grown over and there was no evidence that a house had ever existed on the site. That was why I could not get the idea out of my head of sending a photo of the old farm house when it was my turn to choose an inspiration photo. I have been so thrilled to see the house come back to life with every postcard you have created. The house will live on forever now through your art and the website. Thank you so much for your beautiful work. It has been an absolute joy to see every piece and I know my siblings will be amazed and thrilled when I send them the link to the website.

Deb

Here is Deb’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Deb’s words:

Andrea’s image really struck a chord with me. My father’s parents were also Saskatchewan farmers and this image reminded me of childhoods visits to their farm. They had fourteen children, animals and hundreds of acres to farm. I can only imagine how difficult it was to put enough food on the table to feed everyone. In fact, my grandmother was part of the emigration from Eastern Europe at the turn of the 20th century, coming to Canada from the Ukraine for the free land. Her first house when she arrived with her parents was a soddie, and was very proud when she married and moved into a ‘modern’ house with a pump in the kitchen.

My depiction showed Andrea’s house at an earlier time, when I imagined it might have been occupied, perhaps painted and when there would definitely have been a clothesline. I remember some hot windy days when we visited my grandparents during summer vacation, so whipped the laundry up to show it. I thoroughly enjoyed working this piece for the memories it stirred.

As an aside, if you are interested in reading more about the early immigrants from England who settled in the Lloydminster area, and some of the hardships they endured, you have to read David Richard’s fictional account in “The Plough’s Shares”. I found it hard to put down.

Now I think I’ll go skiing!

Laurena

Here is Laurena’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Laurena’s words:

The photograph of The Old Farmhouse reminded me of my summers spent travelling across Canada in the back seat of my parents’ car. At that time “entertainment” was looking out the window at whatever passed by. I have fond memories of crossing the prairies seeing the fields and fields of wheat and the big, BIG blue sky that seemed to go on forever.

The background is painted grass paper. The ‘wheatear’ fields and old farmhouse were embroidered on dyed cheesecloth backed with fine net and then cut out and glued around the edges to the paper.

Carol S.

Here is Carol S’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Carol’s words:

Well, as with a lot of you, this picture brought back nostalgic memories. For me, the house reminded me of my grandparents. I don’t remember their house on the farm, but the house they had in town was old, and with no running water. My parents had lived in the house until just before I was born (I’m the 3rd child of 8) and they moved next door to a bigger house. My Grandma passed away when I was 7, and we also moved to another town around this time. I can only remember little snippets of things about my Grandma.

My Grandpa kept a diary from 1938 onwards. He always said that after he died, anyone was welcome to read his diaries, so I did. I typed out a few of the entries that were of interest to me at the time, and I share this excerpt with you (note: he refers to my Grandma as Mum, and Velma and Pete are my parents):

“Monday, February 6, 1960
Mum has her quilt spread all over the front room. Just barely room to get past it on three sides. The other side is blocked entirely. Poor wee me. It’s for Velma and Pete when its finished. Mum has been piecing the top together for nearly 3 years, I think. One thing about it, it’s not costing us much. All we had to buy was cloth for the back, cheesecloth for the batt and thread. We all ready had the wool, real wool at that, from another old quilt.”

So, this made me decide to do a quilt. Since I don’t really know what kind of quilt my Grandma made, nor do I actually know how to quilt, I decided to do a “log cabin” pattern to represent the old house, and stitched it in a Lazy Roman stitch to look like logs of a log cabin. I then added the batting and the backing (with writing on it) and tied through all layers (one of Grandpa’s later entries referred to it being a tied quilt).

Thanks for the memories. 🙂

Eleanor

Here is Eleanor’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Eleanor’s words:

When I first saw this picture I felt I wanted to emphasise the loneliness of the abandoned building. I put the house away back by itself in the composition with one lonely dead tree, also off by itself. The foreground, which dominates the picture in size, shows a field of grass that is long, uncut, uncared for and appears abandoned like the house.

The house is cut out of a piece of grey cotton fabric and fused to the background. Details are added using pencil crayons. The sky is hand painted on cotton and the foreground is batik fabric. The field of grass was created using straight stitches and various embroidery threads.

I was not going to put anything on the edges because I thought might give it more of a feeling of distance, but it didn’t look right. I guess I am one of those persons that feel that edges need finishing of some kind. The dark grey corded edge that I tried didn’t suit it very well either, too tidy and neat. The grey yarn seemed the right colour to match the weathered wood of the house and the shaggy look was more in keeping with a dilapidated building.

Sandra

Here is Sandra’s interpretation of the November-December theme:

In Sandra’s words:

Andrea’s had her postcard for a bit now and I’ve been busy creating dance costumes.
When I looked at this card, I really wanted to make it look like an old photo done in sepia. I chose a warm cream/beige evenweave fabric and a selection of three golden browns. My first thought was blackwork but it just didn’t want to be. I wanted the simplicity of what we think of as a simplier time (I’m not sure it was. I think it was just different.) So I let the stitches speak to me and worked the piece primarily in straight stitches. The original plan was to also stitch the background to make everything stand out more. I finished the house and the grass at the end of an evening. As I looked at the card in the morning, I was struck by how perfectly the house stood out…just like it would on the prairie…so I left it alone.

 


January-February

Our January-February postcards were based on this photograph of a skier enjoying the best of this winter wonderland we live in.

For many of us this photo reminded of times spent with family or simply being outside enjoying crisp and sunny winter days.

Here is what Anne-Marie (a true Canadian girl who loves the winter and the snow) has to say about this photo and theme:

First I want to wish you all a Happy New Year! May 2012 bring you happy stitching moments!

My picture is called “Ski to the sea”. This picture is exactly what winter is to me: I love winter and the more snow we have, the happier I get! When I ski down a hill, I feel free and nothing exists except for me and the hill: while I dance my way to the bottom, my mind is free of everything and I feel like a bird gliding on a wind wave!

The picture is from my favorite ski place: Le Massif, located 1 1/2 hour east of Quebec city. This ski hill is on the St-Lawrence river: The views frome the top are incredible and when you go down, it feels like your going right in the water! It is not me on the picture but it could easily be me since I have skied the exact same hill many times!

So here we go, I hope you enjoy stitching about this place as much as I enjoy skiing there!

Kim

Here is Kim’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Kim’s words:

Ever had a picture really speak to you?

Well, this one did. I think it was the blue first. It is my favourite colour and the blue is so strong in this picture.

On first glance I was at a loss as to what to create. I kept it by my chair and spied it every once in a while. The white lines really got me. I decided I would work with the blue tones and the white lines. I would keep it simple but try to catch the two things that really caught me.

I needle felted the blue background using various blues I had onto white felt. I liked how the felt suited the blue of the photo. Next using white Oliver twists, I embroidered different lines, trying to catch the swirl of a few of them. I did lines of herringbone, coral, outline and chain with various threads. I really had fun with this.

Happy Stitching!

Mary Wyn

Here is Mary Wyn’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Mary Wyn’s words:

This is my “ski to the sea” post card….very simple. Some blue mottled cotton as base….the skier is a little raised on black felt and blue mesh over it and snow flakes all over….this picture really challenged me and I find I am not all that creative….so here it is.

Eleanor

Here is Eleanor’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Eleanor’s words:

My first impression, when I saw this picture, was to do something in blue and white only – forget the green tree!!

The background fabric is a blue rayon moiré fabric with a layer of sparkly blue tulle on top of it. The white portion of this abstract stitchery is cheesecloth with a lot of the threads removed. Several small pieces of iridescent tulle and a few strands of Angelina fibres were placed on the blue background and the cheesecloth was dropped on top to form the pattern. A strand of textured white yarn was added on top and then I needle felted these pieces together, just enough to secure them in place, while I added beads and some embroidery stitches to hold it all together. That worked extremely well and I would do it again. The three buttonhole eyelet circles, which I understand are called buttonhole courronnes, I did “in hand” using a pencil to work them around. I used a #25 Coton à Broder but I think it is too soft and pliable and I need to try a stiffer thread next time. One strand of the textured yarn, used in the design element, was tacked around the edge to finish the postcard.

Sue

Here is Sue’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Sue’s words:

Andrea has received my offering for this great photo. I loved this photo and it immediately spoke canvas work to me. I considered Barggelo stitching and then remembered a book I bought in Regina at Seminar, New Canvaswork by Jill Carter.
I reread the book and then decided to give some of the ideas a try.

First I painted a piece of 18 count interlock canvas with Shiva paint sticks all in shades of blue, some metallic, some straight colour. I then added a little blue metallic foil. I then placed a piece of angelina fabric in iridescent blues over the sea portion.
The next step was free motion machine stitching on the canvas. I stitched an horizon line and then only rows of straight stitching for the sky randomly.

Next I used an ordinary white thread and marked the placement for the breakers. Once this was done I wound Lola brazilian thread on the bobbin and cable stitched the breakers from the back. The three breakers nearest the horizon were left like this.
I then stitched the water with a variegated blue green thread in zig zag stitch leaving lots of blank space.

The water was then finished by adding patches of blue metallic hand stitching in tent stitch. It was a little difficult to see the grid what with the paint and angelina. My plan had been to add a variety of canvas stitches but I found the tent stitch enough of a challenge on this background.

The breakers towards the middle and the front of the card where worked next. I added three different sizes of silk ribbon ,the biggest being in the front. I then stitched with some thick silk thread in fly stitch, chain stitch and feather stitch over the breakers . The last step was to add beads to add more definition.

I placed this all on a piece of blue fabric added the backings and stitched them together.
The edge was difficult to stitch because of the grid from the canvas , next time I would hand stitch this part.

Glad you like it Andrea.

Colleen

Here is Colleen’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Colleen’s words:

My interpretation of Anne-Marie’s Ski to the Sea is called “Ice and Snow”. The 22 ct white canvas was coloured using the shaving cream method of marbling with sky blue jacquard Textile Colour and white Lumiere metallic acrylic. The stitching is random straight stitch using four strands of DMC cooton floss#995.

I was trying to make this have the appearnce of cold water and white snow and ice – winter in Canada.
Hope I’ve succeeded.

Anna

Here is Anna’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Anna’s words:

Here’s my ski card, safely arrived at Wanda’s. I also prefer cross stitch, when I can. The idea of flying came along with airplanes barely visible, birds, and of course, skiers. Used up some of the blues in my stash, but keeping the white from being completely boring meant playing with the stitches. Somehow a bit of bargello sneaked in.

Carol E.

Here is Carol E.’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Carol’s words:

Sue has received my postcard so now I can share it with you. When I first saw Anne-Marie’s photo I was struck by the beautiful blues and her words “… bird soaring on a wind wave”, but deciding what to do took almost two weeks. When I remembered this hand painted material that I bought in St. John’s, NFLD while attending seminar, it seemed a perfect echo of the colours in the photo, and hence, a contrasting background for a bird. I pored over a few bird books but finally decided on this gull which I photographed several years ago on the beach on Hilton Head Island, North Carolina, and is stitched with DMC threads. Working on this brought back many great memories! Fittingly, I call it “Soaring on a Wind Wave”.

Subsequently I have also stitched an abstract postcard on this material, & will show you that when I get a photo of it.

(Here is Carol’s abstract postcard)

In Carol’s words:

Last October at a retreat I challenged a fellow stitcher who designs abstract to try needle painting & I would try an abstract design, which I have never really done before. It was not an easy task for me but fun for us both to stitch ‘outside of our boxes’. So here is my effort for her inspired by Mary-Wyn’s Jan/Feb photo. I call it, ‘In The Beginning’ although my husband thought it should be called ‘The Flow of Time’, an abstract concept. I like both. The lower threads came from a very early seminar but that inspiration never materialized; the rest are DMC, Kreinik, & silk. I used the same hand painted material that I did for my gull ‘Soaring on a Wind Wave’. Thanks Mary-Wyn for the inspiration!

Anne-Marie

Here is Anne-Marie’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Anne-Marie’s words:

I have picked 3 things that represent my love of skiing at this place : water, snow and feeling like a bird.

-Water: the cotton fabric speaks by itself by itself, so I did not add anything to it.
-Snow: First, I used plain white cotton backed with batting; then, I wanted to give some dimension to the snow so I added some light sheer fabric: I stitched around the fabric with a small running stitch and made small pleats. For the ski tracks, I used Rachel nylon tubular thread by Caron.
-Bird: Instead of a skier, I stitched a bird : I used straight stitch with DMC 6 ply sheer effects (100% polyester)
-I beaded around the snow and around the postcard with bugle beads and size 10 seed beads using a back stitch.

It was fun and challenging to make something based on my own inspiration photo, but I am glad it’s over!
Looking forward to see the next inspiration photos!

Happy stitching to you all!

Laurena

Here is Laurena’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Laurena’s words:

I love the way snow and water always reflect an iridescent quality of light. I developed my postcard background with rice paper sandwiched between tulle and fabric and stitched the layers together with a very loose detached lazy daisy chain. The dark blue watercolour wave is an interpretation of the aerial view of the St. Lawrence river. The three dimensional snowflake is cut from non-woven interfacing and includes four silhouettes of the skier.

Let the challenges continue!

Paula

Here is Paula’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Paula’s words:

Finally managed to get the photo downloaded! This picture has been a toughie from start to finish. I stared at the photo for the first 5 weeks and just couldn’t figure out what to do. And then, while I was sorting out my drawer of white fabrics I came across this piece of white organdie and viola! things just started coming together. I sketched it out and transferred it onto the cotton organdie and did shadow work for the mountains and stem stitch for the rest. The organdie was then mounted on light blue cotton to create the contrast.

Carol S.

Here is Carol S.’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Carols’ words:

I loved the inspirational photo provided, although winter is not one of my favorite seasons. I did consider doing a Christmas scene (to me, it’s the best part of winter).

Our winter in Saskatchewan this year was particularly mild. We only saw a handful of nights where the temperature dipped to -30 degrees, as opposed to some winters where the temperature reaches -30 for a daytime high and stays there for 2 weeks.
During one of these one-night cold snaps, my friend took a picture from her upstairs bedroom window and sent it by e-mail saying “Look what Jack Frost brought last night”. I thought this was quite a coincidence since she did not know about the winter postcard. And other than the cold associated with it, I love the patterns that are formed on windows from frost. I also prefer seeing winter scenes through the window, from the inside looking out!

I printed the frosted window photo onto transfer paper and then ironed it onto a satiny-type white fabric that I had in my stash. I was hoping using this material as opposed to a poly cotton would bring a sheen to the overall picture. I embellished the frost with Kreinik ribbon and DMC metallic thread. I then stitched the tree trunk in straight stitches. I left the other trees unstitched so they – hopefully – appear to be in the background.

I don’t know if my photo program printed it out in a smaller size, or if the material shrunk slightly when I ironed the transfer on, but the postcard ended up being a bit small. So I put a window frame around it! I stitched the window frame with Caron Collection Watercolours thread with satin stitches over hardanger fabric but I can’t recall how I attached it! Guess I should have written it down at the time. I was going to put curtains on too, but thought that might do nothing other than take away from the window’s view.

Andrea

Here is Andrea’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Andrea’s words:

I have never skied and cannot say that I share Anne-Marie’s enthusiasm for winter and snow, lol. So I decided to focus on what I do like about snow, and that is how fresh and bright and sparkly everything looks after a new snowfall. I decided that I would stitch with white thread on white fabric and add beads for an “encrusted” look. I started by adding some pearlescent fabric paint and iridescent foil to white cotton fabric. I then began stitching without pre-planning anything…something very new for me. Before long I had stitched light snow, heavy snow, blowing snow, snow drifts, snowballs and the parts of a snowman. It was hard to get a good photo so I hope this comes through OK.

Deb

Here is Deb’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Kim’s words:

I found this image to be inspirational and actually had the thing started way back in the newer part of the year. Just didn’t get it finished in time. Suffice it to say that plummeting down a steep hill on two narrow slats of wood scares the heck out of me, so I stitched an image of how I thought I’d probably end up.

The technique is all free motion machining. The background is made of strips of silk fabric, the figure and skis are wool felt. The ‘scream’ – dollar store brads.

Sharing a phobia is kind of therapeutic! Enjoy.

Sandra

Here is Sandra’s interpretation of the January-February theme:

In Sandra’s words:

This was a tough one to stitch because I had an idea in my head and it just wasn’t happening in fabric. I wanted the snow in the bottom corner to be frothy and raised — that’s how I envisioned the banks of snow, probably because that’s often what it looks like here in my yard. At one of the RSG meetings, I was trying out techniques and failing to get the look I wanted. A number of the gals came by to see what I was working on and so I ran a few ideas past them. This brainstorming led me to the fly stitch on water soluble stabilizer.

The card is done on a medium to heavy organza. I have lots of bits of this in my stash as I love using it for encasing loose bits in machine embroidery and for dressing at dolls. I used two layers in the bottom and one in the top so the colour is less intense over the white background. I then used a variety of whites in different threads from embroidery floss to pearl cotton to blending filiment. I added in a silvery-blue rayon to give it some dimension. The bottom corner is layers of fly stitch on the stabilizer, tacked down and then the stabilizer washed out. The skier was also a challenge but I saw a ‘worry doll’ and thought that might be the thing. I used vinyl twist ties from computer cables (see Sue, I can recycle too : )!) and wrapped them in white and black pearl cotton to create the skier. As I said on the back of the card, “I’m not much of a skier so hopefully my stitching is better!”

Once I got going, this was a fun card.

 


March-April

Our postcards for the months of March and April were based on a dazzling and challenging theme:

Here is the March-April theme thanks to Carol S.:

As you can see, we all put on our extra-creative hats and created some dazzling Mardi Gras celebration postcards. Thanks Carol S. for the inspiration!

Kim

Kim created this postcard based on the March-April theme:

In Kim’s words:

Laurena has my card so now I can share with you…( I like March break to be productive)

I loved this photo! The colours were awesome! I had two thoughts when I saw it: something with tulle or something just with thread. The photo kept bringing to mind the string art I did as a kid. Hammering nails into wood pieces and then linking thread or yarn to them was a regular craft for a time for me. I have noticed that some is done in paper embroidery…something I have yet to try.

It is because the thought of string art just wouldn’t go away that I worked with it. I had some black Cashel linen and I had a variety of DMC Variations. For the string art I used one thread of each making sure the design would allow for the variation in the thread to be seen. They were spaced out over two threads as having it closer not only made it crowded but it was tough to see with the dark fabric (even something light in behind didn’t help). I then did some eyelets and added a seed bead to the center.

This was a nice visit back to an old craft.

Also, congrats to Carol! I see you won the Jane Nicholas contest with Country Bumpkin….always nice to see someone from Canada win something, bonus if you know them!

Colleen

Colleen created this postcard based on the March-April theme:

In Colleen’s words:

I used a base of a very fine layer of angelina peacock then added yellow strands across and heavier ‘bunch’ of yellow to make the golden circle Pressed to seal the angelina. Couched green cording and added black ‘stars’ in flat black (flower thread). There was enough glitz.

Had to get this done in a hurry since we are moving – downsizing too- but am saving a lot of stash- some of which will be stored at the cottage until I get used to sharing a room with my stamp collecting Bill.

Mary Wyn

Mary Wyn created this postcard based on the March-April theme:

In Mary Wyn’s words:

This is my Mardi Gras which I gave to Colleen today…..just some shiny material put on card with wonder under and some beads……

Sue

Sue created this postcard based on the March-April theme:

In Sue’s words:

When I first saw this card I loved the curves in the shapes. The card reminded me of the psychedelic sixties or, what I would have seen had I drank all those coloured concoctions in the test tubes on Bourbon Street!

It took me a while to figure out what to do. I initially tried canvas work but couldn’t get the effect I was after.

I finally used a piece of navy blue wool for the background and needle felted wool and silk roving on to it to get the swirls of colour. I placed a layer of purple tulle over the whole card and then free motion stitched along the shapes.
The next step was hand stitching to make it pop a bit . I then added some beading for that extra Mardi Gras sparkle.

Andrea

Andrea created this postcard based on the March-April theme:

In Andrea’s words:

I smiled when I saw that you had also done a space theme!

When Carol posted the inspiration photo I knew right away that I wanted to make an “outer space” piece. I had the background commercial fabric in my stash for this very purpose. I have always been interested in astronomy and have wanted to do something like this for some time. The nebula is made with Angelina and the galaxies are made with beads and French knots. I wrote on the card that I have never been to New Orleans but I hear that Mardi Gras is “out of this world”!

Eleanor

Eleanor created this postcard based on the March-April theme:

In Eleanor’s words:

I love the colours and the gentle curving shapes in this picture. I originally thought I would do this card using the curvy shapes and machine appliqué them in place. Then I changed my mind and decided to use sheers and stitch the shapes down with hand embroidery stitches. That didn’t work and the plain sheers seemed rather dull for a Mardi Gras interpretation.

I then used metallic sheers in the background and for the curved shapes. Metallic thread, ribbon and cord were couched over the edges of the shapes to hold them in place. Much better now the card had some glitz!! The curved shapes and the little round metallic circles on the background were cut out using a soldering iron. I was going to attach the little circles using a bead but they looked like sequins when I did that. I tried using thread stitches to hold them in place but the thread detracted from the look I wanted so I opted for gluing them down. I usually try to avoid using glue on stitchery projects but in this case I think it was the better alternative.

Anne-Marie

Anne-Marie created this postcard for March-April:

In Anne-Marie’s words:

When I saw the Mardi Gras picture, 3 things came to mind : sparkle, shine and movement!

I used organza, DMC Jewel Effects and beads. I basted the organza in place and stitched around the borders, then I stitched and beaded the insides to attach the layers securely to the background. Finally, I stitched a few curvy lines and stitched and beaded a sheer ribbon to frame the postcard.

The metallic threads were a challenge : I had to be very careful when pulling the thread through the sheers! I also had to use short lengths because the tread did not stay intact for very long.

Now I have to decide how I will interpret Laurena’s inspiration photo! It’s play time!

Happy and fun stitching to you all!

Deb

Deb created this postcard for March-April:

In Deb’s words:

I used nine different colours of organza and ruched them in place with sequins and beads. As there was no needlework per se in it, I used the drizzle stitch with gold braid to depict the light source you see in the original image.

I called it my folded fabric universe.

Carol S.

Carol S. created this postcard for March-April:

In Carol’s words:

When I first picked this picture, I had it all worked out in my mind of how I would stitch it. But of course, things changed along the way!

The biggest change was that the fabrics that I was using to make the swirls were as shiny as I wanted, but far more transparent than I had thought. Therefore the swirls didn’t show up the way I had envisioned. To compensate, I couched down over top of them with metallic thread.

I started with a base layer of shiny blue fabric, and first layered the “eye” with a swirl of some yellow and green Angelina that was already in sheet form from a Seminar class. I then cut out swirls from my fabrics and layered them on the base fabric. When I was done layering, to compensate for the lightness and transparency of my swirls, I couched down metallic threads over top of them I added Smyrna crosses where the “stars” were. I finished by adding both clear and shiny beads in the eye, and in the centres of the stars.

You may get a chuckle out of this; I’m sure a lot of you may recognize yourself in this story. I was in a fabric store looking for some shiny material for my postcard and came across a clearance bin with a piece of yellow shiny fabric that I thought would be perfect for the eye of the postcard. When I went to have it cut, I was advised that because it was in a clearance bin, I had to take a whole metre of it. Hmmm, I only needed about 2 square inches, but oh well! And then in the end I didn’t even use it. And THAT, my friends, is why I have a rather gigantic fabric stash even though I don’t sew!

Sandra

Sandra created this postcard for March-April:

In Sandra’s words:

Carol received her Mardi Gras picture last week and I think she’ll be willing to share that it is another of these postcards that looks better in person than in the photo.

I really loved the primary colour scheme and the flash of light in the photo. I again covered the canvas in an organza but this one was lighter weight. It’s a black organza with sparkly flecks throughout. Over the white, I thought it gave the impression of a semi-dark sky. I layered a bit of green-yellow organza over top of an area in the bottom to create the light area of the photo. I worked the bursts of light in floss. No particular stitches just trying to mimic the swoosh of the light. For sparkle, I added large crystal beads in the centres.

I actually stitched most of this at the fair where the RSG was demonstrating. It was interesting to see the reactions of passers-by. Most of them actually “saw” what I was getting at.

Thanks Carol for picking a fun photo.


May-June

Our inspiration for the May and June was thanks to Laurena’s young daughter and a game that most of us have played – I Spy.

Here is what Laurena has to say about her theme photo:

This inspiration photo is a current snap shot of my living room floor. It reflects the organization skills of my 16 month old daughter Penelope.

I hope it reminds you of something wonderful.
Enjoy!

Mary Wyn

Mary Wyn created this postcard:

In Mary Wyn’s words:

This one really stumped me! I can’t wait to see some of the more creative cards for this one.

Carol E.

Carol E. created this postcard:

In Carol E.’s words:

I think I called this “Later..”. When I saw Laurena’s photo it reminded me of many years ago when the kids’ baby toys were all over the living room floor! I also remembered how good it felt at the end of the day when the kids were sleeping and the toys were at last picked up! Hence, my postcard. I had to add a teddy bear, using fuzzy thread along with DMC cotton, & the shiny top was a very old memory from my childhood stitched with Brazilian threads. This was really fun to do! Also I mounted it differently after taking a class at our art gallery from a quilter (she was actually teaching us how to paint fabric as backgrounds) so I decided to try this ‘shaped’ effect which thankfully worked well.

Glad you liked it Kim, – happy summer everyone!

Kim

Kim created this card:

In Kim’s words:

First I have to admit this one took a bit. The eyes on the toys got me. The variety of colour also got me. Then I thought about the Where’s Waldo books the kids love and a photo I took of my oldest son Nolan for his first Christmas. I had him on the couch surrounded by stuffed toys. You had to look to find him as he looked like a doll. That’s when I knew I wanted to do something about “where’s the child in all these toys”

So out came the needle felting and I combined the variety of colours. These were to represent the many colours of the toys. I then needle felted the eyes adding some boa yarn for lashes. This was for the child because I could imagine a child in all those toys and you having to look closely to find him or her. Of course, it would probably be their eyes you would notice first and the only part of them you would see.

This was a fun photo.

Sue

Sue created this postcard:

In Sue’s words:

The photo of Penny’s playtime caused me to think of lots of different things to do, and then not being able to focus.
At Seminar I took a class with Dale Rolleson and we stitched on paper towel , newspaper and paper napkins. When I came home I wanted to play with what I had learned and so my postcard Sue’s Playtime came out of this play.

The background is paper napkin stitched on to dark green felt and then gold leaf added in places and then green and gold foil applied randomly. I then cut the balls out of another napkin and felt and stitched those around the outside of the postcard. Dale had given us a chocolate with a Koala Bear wrapper, I scrounged the wrappers from several people and stitched one of them in the middle.

The big blue fish was a motif on another napkin which I applied. I then stitched some stars just to add some brightness.
For the edge,I zig zag stitched and then painted around the edge.

I wrote with the machine free hand Play , Stitch , Create. This doesn’t show up too well on my computer, hope it is better on yours.

This was fun and I hope you enjoy it Carol.

Colleen

Colleen created this postcard:

In Colleen’s words:

The ground is a polyester aida cloth (which I normally would never use) but it suited this purpose. The coloured stripes are painted iron-on interfacing torn in strips with baby rick-rack stitched in place (from the stripes on the soft dolly) The flowers in blackwork are from the flower motif on the car.

Anne-Marie

Anne-Marie created this postcard:

In Anne-Marie’s words:

TIme to share with you my May/June postcard!

To make this postcard, I let my inner child create the design : that’s why it has a child’s drawing look. It is about playing outside on a beautiful summer day.

The background is cotton fabric : blue for the sky and circles to illustrate the bubbles kids like to blow so much!

The embroidery is all done with cotton floss: straight stitch, split stitch, french knots.

The kite is a button from my button collection!

Have a summer full of sun and fun!

Deb

Deb created this postcard:

In Deb’s words:

I’ve attached a photo of the postcard that I sent to Colleen, but which has, unfortunately, never arrived. It was sent in mid June with two others I’d finished at the same time. Although the other two were received, Colleen’s, which was the closest, has yet to. She has seen it, and asked me to post it to the group.

The pastel colour scheme I chose is reminiscent of babies and baby’s things. I painted the background with Caran D’Arche water soluble wax pastels. They are great for mixing colours, so easy and if you don’t like the depth of colour when it dries, you can just add more. The hand of the fabric is minimally changed. Ironing sets the colour.

The jumbled placement of the toys in the original photo was the inspiration for the randomness of the strips of fabric. I machined hearts for love, filled some in, some not. And the buttons were echoes of the circles and eyes on the toys in the image. Some of the pearl buttons were from my gran’s button box, so I expect some of them would be close to a hundred years old. She died at 96 and has been dead for almost 20 years. I chose them for Colleen as I thought she’d enjoy the mix of new (technique/media) and old (stitches/buttons).

Hope you like the card.

Eleanor

Eleanor created this postcard:

In Eleanor’s words:

For me the center of interest in the photograph was the toy telephone and this postcard is dedicated to the rotary dial telephone.

Years ago, in a correspondence course that I took, I did a design that was composed of letters and figures. So that was my inspiration to use the numbers 1 to 0 on the postcard. I decided to use an outline type of stitch for the figures. My usual solution for an outline type of stitch is to use a stem or chain stitch. Time to move forward!! This card is now a sampler of several outline type of stitches. And a couple of those stitches I will use more frequently now! I used #8 and #5 DMC pearl cotton to show up the texture of the stitches to their full advantage. The colours used are all representative of the colours used for the rotary dial telephones. In my web search I came across one phone that was a silver/grey colour so I used a metallic grey knit fabric from my stash for my background. The edge is finished with a twisted cord.

Carol S.

Carol S. created this postcard:

In Carol’s words:

Attached is a picture of my toy postcard that I copied off Regina Stitchery Guild’s facebook page since I forgot to take a picture of it before I gave it to Wanda at our last meeting! Thank goodness our Facebook administrator (Jeannette Luttmer) takes pictures!

My toy postcard is MY toys. The stitching represents my stitchery and that I like doing different stitches. I added in some bling because that is always fun. The turtle charm is because for some unknown reason I have a turtle collection. The heart represents my grandchildren, Jackson (13 months) and Audrey (5 months) cause I have lots of fun with them!

Eleanor

Eleanor created this postcard:

In Eleanor’s words:

I liked the idea of having bright flowers against a grey and white background. I chose a grey polyester fabric, with a bit of shine to it, and painted a white lattice background on it with Setacolor fabric paint A piece of green tulle was added to the bottom to define the ground area. Mauve tulle was placed in the upper right hand corner to add texture to the sky area.

The hollyhock flowers and leaves were done with silk ribbon in 2, 4 and 7mm widths. Cotton threads were used for the stems, other foliage and flowers. Using DMC pearl cotton #3, a twisted cord was made for the edge of the card.

Laurena

Laurena created two postcards:

I spy 2 dolls

I Spy a doll

In Laurena’s words:

So it’s time to catch up. One thing no one has mentioned is what to do when you’re STUCK! I often get caught up with too many ideas or none at all and then I don’t know how to begin. I Spy was my photo submission and I got stuck! My first idea was worthy of a Threadworks submission and well, it wouldn’t fit on a postcard. Then I didn’t know what to do…
Finally after being so frustrated with myself, I shared my distress with Colleen Darling and that day the light went on! I wish I had talked to her sooner.

So here is my I Spy. I chose one favourite childhood toy and created it from felt, batting and blanket stitch. Growing up, most of my childhood was made of felt. The matryoshka was a doll I never owned but always wanted.


July-August

With summer out in full force we are fortunate to see lots of brilliant flowers to take inspiration from. The theme for the last two months of the summer came from Anna and these brilliant hollyhocks:

Here is what Anna has to say about this photo: These hollyhocks were growing along the south wall of our home when we bought it 14 years ago. They renew themselves every year, like the summer. My gardening consists almost entirely of flowers – 3 tomato plants don’t count – so this shot is a good example of what our yard looks like.

Happy stitching everyone!

Sue

Sue created this postcard:

In Sue’s words:

I got rather hung up on the wall for this card. I decided I wanted a rough stone like wall and spent some time playing around with fabrics and fibres. I eventually made two backgrounds out of silk fibres. One with cocoon strippings and one out of a silk carrier rod. I used the background made with the silk carrier rod for this postcard. The bits of pink are the outside pieces.

I wanted the flowers to be dimensional so I used wide silk ribbon gathered up and then secured to the background around the edge. I stitched the centres with silk thread and then thought the flowers looked very happy so I gave them little smiley charm faces that I found in my stash. The stems are wrapped chain stitch and the leaves gathered up wide silk ribbon and the buds narrower pieces of the ribbon in loose french knots.

I zig zagged around the edge of the postcard and then painted the edge with pink shiny paint.

This was a great image to work with.

Mary Wyn

Mary Wyn created this postcard:

In Mary Wyn’s words:

Hi Gang……Sue has rec,d my “Hollyhocks”….they are pretty straight forward….I don’t have the wonderful imagination so many of you have…..looking forward to seeing the rest of them. Was telling Sue when I had it finished instead of leaving well enough alone, I decided to trim a little bit of the card board backing and I cut the #%$*^%#$@## edge off so had to try and repair the end with tape hence the green edging on top and bottom….that wasn’t in the original plan…

Kim

Kim created this postcard:

In Kim’s words:

I really liked this photo. The flower shapes and the leaf shapes really caught my attention. I decided to use a felt background for the base. I then used DMC Pearl Cotton #3 and 5 for the stems. French knots were added to give more dimension to the stems. I used silk fusion for the leaves.

This way I could get closer to the shape of the leaves and add more dimension. The flowers were also done in Pearl Cotton #3 and 5. I used buttonhole stitch to give the outline of the petals and to help with shape.

I hope everyone is finding time to stay cool, watch the Games, and of course, stitch.

Colleen

Colleen created this postcard:

Colleen sent along some extra photos of her card:

In Colleen’s words:

The seed pods were bullion knots in a variegated silk thread. The flowers and buds with leaves are silk paper cut to shape. The ferns were flower pounded after several tries to get the right colour. The lines for the panelling were drawn on with a coloured pencil at the end.

Anna

Anna created this postcard:

In Anna’s words:

I have been wanting an opportunity to do some Brazilian work and this seemed the appropriate time.

Carol E.

Carol created this postcard:

In Carol’s words:

Well, I sure had fun doing this one! I have always thought about stitching hollyhocks but never got around to it until now. We have them at the side of our house here, but also had them growing along the side of my home as a child in St. Catharines, Ont. There they grew under our kitchen window which was my inspiration to stitch them like this. Looking into our neighbour’s bedroom however, didn’t seem like a great view so I decided to try something new.

At seminar in Victoria I bought transfer sheets for transferring photos to fabric so decided to try using them for the first time. This is one of my favourite views these summer mornings when I can enjoy my tea on our back deck. I did cheat however & pull the scene in closer with my telephoto lens. Having never actually stitched on a transfer before, I sure learned a lot! The other new technique I tried here was inspired by a teacher’s work from my first full seminar in Truro. I wasn’t in her class but was very curious about it so wandered in at coffee & lunch breaks to see what was happening. I have occasionally browsed through her book, which I bought then, “Hand Embroidered Country Scenes ” by Sue Newhouse, and finally decided to try ‘laying mounts’ which she describes; hence the old window frame.

It was stitched separately using sampler threads, mounted on cardboard (this is where the book sure came in handy) and applied to the finished scene. It took more work than I anticipated, but I really enjoyed the whole process!

Eleanor

Eleanor created this postcard:

In Eleanor’s words:

I liked the idea of having bright flowers against a grey and white background. I chose a grey polyester fabric, with a bit of shine to it, and painted a white lattice background on it with Setacolor fabric paint A piece of green tulle was added to the bottom to define the ground area. Mauve tulle was placed in the upper right hand corner to add texture to the sky area.

The hollyhock flowers and leaves were done with silk ribbon in 2, 4 and 7mm widths. Cotton threads were used for the stems, other foliage and flowers. Using DMC pearl cotton #3, a twisted cord was made for the edge of the card.

Anne-Marie

Anne-Marie created this postcard:

In Anne-Marie’s words:

I wanted to make a simple design, not too crowded, something zen-like. The card is partly stiched by machine and partly hand-stitched.

Background: I machine-stitched some pleats in a cotton fabric. Then, I machine-stitched, using regular sewing thread, 4-5 rows of straight stitch for each stem.

Flowers: I hand-stitched using a very small back stitch, in circles, with 3 strands of cotton floss.

For the little buds on the right stem, I made French knots with Perle cotton no.5.

Deb

Deb created this postcard:

I had actually started this back in the summer when hollyhocks were in bloom, as I wanted to do a flower pounding image, similar to what Colleen has done. That image forms the base of the postcard. I added a bit of colour with watercolour pastels, then machined the stems. Then some layers of organza were added and stitched again with the machine.

That’s why I told Eleanor it was a ‘little bit of this, a little bit of that’ postcard.

Carol S.

Carol S. created this postcard:

Hollyhocks

In Carol S.’s words:

My hollyhocks were made using detached buttonhole stitch with Caron’s Watercolours. The stems were made with chain stitches; the leaves with a straight stitch (yes I know they’re not really hollyhock leaves…), also with Caron’s Watercolours. The buds were made with colonial knots. The background (the house) is made with a Ribbon Cross variation. I had to make a variation in order to make my life easier compensating the stitches around the hollyhocks. (Going 4 over and 4 up is a lot easier to compensate than going 4 over and 5 up!).

Laurena

Laurena created this postcard:

Hollyhocks2

In Laurena’s words:

I really do love hollyhocks – I chose to work on a rich hand dyed wool and pounded what was left of the summer roses and columbine leaves. Then worked hearts in backstitch to define the petals and twisted chain stitch for the stem. Not visible in the photo, the hearts were then padded from behind to created dimension.

Andrea

Andrea created this postcard:

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In Andrea’s words:

This is another postcard inspired Moy Mackay’s book “Art in Felt & Stitch”. Her technique involves wet felting, needle felting, machine stitching and hand embroidery. I enjoyed laying out the colours for this piece, but was disappointed with how it turned out. You can’t tell from the photo, but the dark flowers are too thick and lumpy. I thought I did them the same as the crab apples, but must have used more roving. I ended up needle felting quite a bit over the big flowers to help compress the wool after the wet felting had dried. I had planned to stitch the definition and highlights in the blooms but it was too thick. Oh well, it was a good learning piece!

Wanda

Wanda created this postcard:

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In Wanda’s words:

I used an article from one of my favorite magazines as inspiration for this card. I laid various wools onto a felt back and then sewed down a sheer fabric over top for texture. Then I couched down additional pieces of wool for more texture and finally cut a hollyhock out of silk and tacked it down with some french knots for a centre. I really like how it turned out!


September-October

For the late summer and early fall, we were inspired by these crunchy apples:

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Here is what Deb has to say about this fruity pic:

My contribution to the postcard imagery for the fall of 2012 is inspired by the dismal situation of the apple harvest in my province this year. Due to a very early warm spring, which resulted in the early flowering of the apple trees, and then a hard frost which killed off the budding fruit, the apple crop in southern Ontario has been decimated by 70 to 80%. In real terms, I was told that a basket of locally grown apples this fall, if you could find any, might cost upwards of $20 to $30! Interestingly, though, there are a number of crab apple trees in our area which seem to have escaped this devastation. The image I am sharing with you is of a crab apple tree heavily laden with tiny perfect fruit. As much as crab apples are small and sour, they may be the only form of malus domestica that we see this year.

Also interesting is how the apple has figured in stories and mythology from time immemorial. From the Garden of Eden to the teacher’s desk, apples have been a part of our culture. The more you read about apples the more you realize what an important, if somewhat overlooked, role they play in our daily lives.

Kim

Kim created this postcard:

In Kim’s words:

When I saw the photo I was really taken with the apples. I wanted dimension. I wanted the crab apples to really stand out. I used a felt background and a variety of batik fabrics to make leaves. I also included some silk fusion leaves. I wanted to give a little dimension with the leaves so they were layered and spread out on card. Next was the fun part. I wanted the apples to really stand out. Three dimensional was definitely the call. I know in stump work they sometimes use beads to help with giving things shape. I used three wooden beads and wrapped them with Pearl Cotton 8 using a couple shades of red and a yellow-orange. I then attached them to the card and there, it was done!

I had a lot of fun with this.

Sue

Sue created this postcard:

In Sue’s words:

The crab apple postcard reminded me of why I do not eat crab apples!.
When I was 5 years old there was an ornamental crab apple tree in our front yard. I remember my dad telling me not to eat these apples…. of course I did! My mouth was so sore and burnt and they tasted really awful!

I cannot even think about eating a crab apple how ever good they look! my mouth still puckers up.

To make the card I took a piece of hand dyed warm and natural and added some silk leaves , covered it with organza and needle felted it.
I then added red wool roving for the deceptively lovely apple and brown wool for the stem.

Some free motion stitching picked out the details and produced my Crab Apple Memories.
Enjoy Anna, but do not eat!

Colleen

Colleen created this postcard:

In Colleen’s words:

The stem was “painted ” on first with a stencil. Then the leaves were done the same way. The apples were put on last with Shiva brand artists’ paintstiks in solid red and then iridescent blender in gold applied in places on the apples.
The embroidery is simple stitches – straight, whipped chain and stem. the background fabric is a commercial mottled quilt fabric
Looking forward to the next picture.

Mary Wyn

Mary Wyn created this postcard:

In Mary Wyn’s words:

A piece of green felt, red French knots and a piece of binder twine for the trunk . We have a big crab apple tree in the front yard and every year it is loaded with thousands of apples which make the most beautiful jelly.

Anna

Anna created this postcard:

In Anna’s words:

I have always liked crabapple trees for their blossoms in spring and then, of course, the jelly in fall. I do agree, they are not called Crab for nothing. The birds enjoy them, especially in winter when they are frozen.

I used single floss DMC for the spring tree, and candlewicking materials for the autumn tree. The trunks were done in a totally unidentified hank of floss that turned up in our club stash, but simply looked like bark.

Carol E.

Carol E. created this postcard:

In Carol’s words:

We recently had inherited several old crewel books which gave me the idea. Until then, though,I had several designs, even on material but couldn’t quite get excited about them. Crabapples always make me think of pink applesauce & spiced crabapple jelly which is delicious so you almost got a recipe!

Anyway, I traced the deer from a page of animal motifs but the rest of the design is my own, certainly influenced by many old embroideries.

Anne-Marie

Anne-Marie created this postcard:

In Anne-Marie’s words:

With this postcard, I have decided to try a new embroidery technique called Kantha stitching. Last September, I took a one day workshop with Anna Hergert on Kantha stitching and decided I would stitch a “Kanthapple” postcard.

This technique uses only 2 stitches : the running stitch to create the channel effects, and the backstitch to do the outlines. To allow the running stitch to create the channels, you stitch without a hoop!!! The gentle pull on the thread with each running stitch will eventually create channels.

For the outline and the inside of the motifs, use 2 plies of the 6 ply cotton embroidery floss. For the background, use only one ply of the cotton floss.

I really enjoyed stitching this postcard and plan on using kantha stitching regularly in future embroidery projects.

If you would like to learn more about Kantha stitching and Anna Hergert, you can visit Anna ‘s web site and blog.

Happy stitching to you all!

Deb

Deb created this postcard:

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In Deb’s words:

The postcard was done in the same technique as the hollyhocks…flower pounding, adding watercolour pastel highlights, free motion machine work, applique with organza and then a stippled background.

Carol S.

Carol created this postcard:

Carol's crabapples

In Carol’s words:

It took me a while to figure out what to do for this picture.

My background is a piece of muslin-type of fabric. It is slightly tinted as I used it to catch drippings from silk paper that was drip-drying. While the picture doesn’t show it, the crabapples are quite raised (I should have taken a picture from the side too). To make the crabapples, I sewed buttons on the fabric and used the woven spider web to cover them. I used one strand of Caron’s Watercolours for 3 of them, and the other 2 were woven with 6 strands of Gentle Art Sampler threads.

The stems were done with whipped stem stitch in DMC embroidery cotton. For the leaves, I drew and coloured them with plain old pencil crayons. Unusual for me because I usually avoid drawing as I can’t draw very well. I then did running stitching for the veins and around the outsides with 2 strands of embroider floss (some with Needle Necessities variegated thread and the lighter ones with Gentle Art threads, and some were a combination of the two).

Lots of fun! Well, I’m off the do the Pansy Patch, and I already have an idea for the Jan/Feb 2013 one too.

Laurena

Laurena created this postcard:

crabapples 1

In Laurena’s words:

I DO NOT like crabapples, there, I said it! I love the blooming trees in the spring, but I hate the squishy, sloppy, rotten apples that land on the sidewalk at the end of summer. I tried to recreate the wrinkly look of the rotten apples with free motion machined circles on crepe fabric backed with jersey knit. I layered both fabrics into a hoop and stretched the jersey knit on the bottom as much as I could – then stitched and when removed from the hoop the top layer of crepe wrinkled up.
Watch your step!

Eleanor

Eleanor created this postcard:

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In Eleanor’s words:

I have done hand needle felting as an embellishment on fabric and paper projects that I have done but this the first time I have needle felted an entire project and I was really quite pleased with the result. This is certainly the advantage of the postcard size for trying out a technique.

The base is a layer of lightweight pellon, a layer of blue sheer material and finally a layer of blue chiffon scarf fabric on top. The background was hand needle felted with blue/green silk roving. The branches were needle felted using one strand of brown Medici wool. The crab-apples were outlined with one strand of Medici wool and the crab-apples themselves were needle felted with silk roving. The postcard was backed with heavy weight iron-on pellon. The edges were finished with a buttonhole stitch using two strands of Medici wool.

Andrea

Andrea created this postcard:

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In Andrea’s words:

This was inspired by Moy Mackay’s book “Art in Felt & Stitch”. I had fun blending wool roving to create some variety in the apples and leaves before wet felting this piece. I then needle felted some additional bits of colour, machine stitched the outlines and highlighting, and hand stitched the little apple ends. I haven’t done much wet felting so this was a fun learning piece.

November-December

We all have a dream house and for our early winter theme, Mary Wyn has treated us to such a house:

Here is what Mary Wyn has to say about this beautiful home in New Brunswick:

This lovely old house is in St Andrews, N.B. It is called “The Pansy Patch”….and it is the house I am going to buy when I win the lottery….I’ve been through it and it is as lovely inside as it is outside. This is the back of the house….the front looks out on a sloping lawn that runs down about 200 feet.

When it is mine you will all be welcome to visit the prettiest town in Canada as my guest.

Colleen

Colleen created this postcard:

Heartsease Tower

In Colleen’s words:

The tower is needlepoint lace padded with felt underneath. The Heartsease (Johnny-Jump-Up) is stumpwork and in the traditional way of stumpwork no concern for size relationship among motifs.

Sue

Sue created this postcard:

lottery schlottery

In Sue’s words:

This photo was a favourite for me so far but really hard to zero in on what to do. Everything I thought of was beyond my skill level. I finally got a wonderful picture in my head! The first two attempts at this re-creation were terrible and finally this very simplified version of my original design emerged! I wonder if Grand Ma Moses had this many problems?

I needle felted different shades of blue merino wool on to cream wool felt for the background and I free motion stitched by sight on to it. I wanted it dream like so I laid a piece of pink chiffon over the top of the whole thing and again stitched around the house. All my lines for the house were more wavy than usual to give a dream like look.

I learned several lessons whilst working through this house, always a good thing. Now if I can only remember what doesn’t work for the future!

Kim

Kim created this postcard:

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In Kim’s words:

I loved the photo and couldn’t see doing only part. I wanted to keep real to the picture. I used layers of felt to create the building, needle felted the greenery and did some embroidery to make windows. I kept it simple. I was pleased with how it turned out.

Happy Holidays everyone! The next full moon isn’t until the holidays so it’s just three weeks of Christmas on the brain to go (and I am not talking about myself)

Carol E.

Carol E. created this postcard:

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In Carol E.’s words:

Here is the photo of my name plate for the Pansy Patch house. Have you seen the interior Mary Wyn?

The first idea that popped into my head was to do a name plate for the house so I googled that & discovered that this was a common shape. At last I was able to use one of my hand painted fat quarters for the background & of course the best piece was somewhere in the middle! Ribbon embroidery was efficient, given everything one has to do for Christmas. I outlined the piece using a whipped reverse chain, after the name was stitched using Brazilian thread. I really enjoyed working with these colors as pansies are one of my favorite flowers.

Anna

Anna created this postcard:

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In Anna’s words:

I am continually in awe at the variety and quality of cards that result from each of the photos we send out. I hope nobody minds, but I print them out and tuck them in an album, properly labelled, so I can go back and marvel at them again.
Anyway, Sue has my version of the Pansy Patch, so I send it out. I had been paper stitching Christmas cards, and the outline of the roof with the picket fence seemed a possible design. Since it is the season for evergreens, I moved the one peeking over the roof in the photo to where we can see it.

Mary Wyn

Mary Wyn created this postcard:

P1030498

In Mary Wyn’s words:

I like the paintings of crooked houses so thought I’d try to draw one….nothing fancy about the stitching…..blackwork, French knots and backstitchng.

Deb

Deb created this postcard:

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In Deb’s words:

I loved this image but it took three starts to get the final product. I have fallen back in love with wool felt. The technique is fabric relief and is a favourite of Salley Mavor.

Sandra, pick out those white threads on the left chimney. Don’t know how I missed that!

Eleanor

Eleanor created this postcard:

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In Eleanor’s words:

Judith Baker Montano, the author of Fibreart Montage and other books, teaches a class where images of cottages are sketched with a pen onto fabric and then painted with fabric paints. This becomes a background for elaborate silk ribbon embroidered gardens. I have often thought of trying this technique so now was my opportunity – with a few variations!!

I sketched in the house onto a linen fabric, using an artist pen with brown ink. I painted in the grass and trees with fabric paint. Painting in the trees served only as a guideline for the embroidery as these areas were covered up with stitching. This postcard became a sampler of stitches that can be used to make trees and shrubs. The stitches that were used were straight, fly, feather, detached chain and herringbone. One strand of embroidery floss was used throughout. Liberty was taken with architectural details on the house and it needed to be coloured so that it did not fade into the background. Coloured pencils were used to colour the house and sky. Three silk ribbon pansies were added to the grass area. The edges of the card were finished with a chevron patterned braid and a small self tassel.

Andrea

Andrea created this postcard:

DSCF4958

In Andrea’s words:

This was done in the style of Moy Mackay, inspired by her book “Art in Felt & Stitch”. The background and house were wet felted. I cut the house pieces out of pre-felt and lay them on the background roving before felting. I then added some details and refined some lines with needle felting, followed by machine stitching and hand embroidery. In honour of the house’s name, I made window boxes full of pansies. I enjoyed the challenge of making this piece.

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