August 4, 2014

More Boutis

Since I began my boutis journey I've made a few more items.  With the special needles that I was using I just had to have a special place to keep them.  And so I made a small needle case.

I wasn't quite sure how to finish the edge so I did a blanket stitch around the last filled area.  I'd like to do it as historically correct as possible but with me trying to interpret directions in French, things often get lost in translation.

I have also made a small pouch for a dear friend.  I'm thinking it's to be used as lingerie storage but she can use it for whatever she desires.

And I also made her a small item to hang in the window.

I have 2 more items to share with you but they will have to wait until the next time!  My current boutis project is calling my name.  



July 11, 2014

Petassoun Boutis

I love Boutis.  Particularly corded whitework.  Such historical inspiration and even present day ladies around the world are painstakingly making items.  This is my first.

I just love the transparency of corded whitework.

In a few days I'll show you my 2nd project.



June 29, 2014

Bonnets & Blueberry Fleur

As you can tell by the title of my post, this one must be about bonnets and blueberry flowers.

Over a period of time I've been searching for French whitework baby bonnets.  They didn't have to be finished, as in a finished bonnet.  In fact, most of them have not been finished bonnets. These hand embroidered baby bonnet cap backs were all made in France.

I can't imagine the practice, practice, practice that must have occurred prior to the stitching of these bonnet backs in order to get them to this level of expertise.  Some arrived in the mail a little worse for wear due to their age.  Some were missing some connecting threads.  Some had obviously been stored away for years in boxes or drawers and they had the "patina" of vintage.  But with a little delicate hand washing in Retro Clean the "patina" disappeared.

Some of the bonnets came cut in a circle.  Some were in a square.  I knew I wanted to combine 5 of them to make a small wall hanging and I really didn't want to piece them using new fabric.  I only wanted the "new" to be the underlayment that they rested on.  So with some very careful trimming, squaring up, and adding a vintage whitework lace that I was also lucky to find, I managed to piece it all together.  Somewhat successfully.

I say somewhat only because the gauze type linen that these have been embroidered on is extremely thin and very difficult to work with.  It moves - EVERYWHERE - and every which way.  And I only had so much to work with.  All but the middle bonnet had to be the same size!  As you can see, with the embroidery done in a circle, it was very difficult to "square" them up.  I think I held my breath the entire time I was trimming.  And so I trimmed.  And what I trimmed added to others.  Oie......what have I gotten myself into?

So here is a photo of the 5 bonnets as they came to me (after I had washed them).

And here they are after I pieced them and added the vintage whitework lace:

As you can see I used a silver gray Radiance silk blend fabric as my underlayment.  I then used a boutis inspired pattern, the blueberry fleur, as my quilt corners.

I traced this 4 times using the light box.  Then the quilting began.  Below is my finished project.  Enjoy!



June 25, 2014

Les Petite Rosaces

This is a pillowcase that I received from Cindy Needham.  She has one just like it.  We both decided to do our "own thing" with it just to see how different they both can be.  I placed mine on an underlayment of pink dupioni silk.  She placed hers on an underlayment that was a sort of gray-brown.  And then we both used designs that were boutis inspired as our quilting designs.  Cindy's pillowcase in the photo attached is not finished and still a work in progress but you can tell how it's going to turn out.  Absolutely gorgeous!  Of course I would have changed lots of things on mine - aren't we always like that? - least of which is adding the pink but each project is a good learning lesson.

Here is my pillowcase:

And here is Cindy's:

I did name mine Les Petite Rosaces giving credit to the boutis design that I used.  Enjoy.



June 18, 2014

English Legacy

I call this linen "English Legacy".  I purchased it on eBay from a woman who lives in the United Kingdom and was downsizing.  She had gotten the linen from her mother, Edna Lyles, who lived 1913-1990.  Her mother was born and died in the Yorkshire Region of the U.K.  

Cindy, the daughter, really knew nothing about the linen.  When I received it and was looking it over I found a very small tag in one corner on the back of the piece which read "H. Leake".  I wondered who that was or if it was a company name.  So I emailed Cindy only to learn that H. Leake was her mother's sister, Hettie, who had died of tuberculosis at a very young age.  It is unknown if Hettie perhaps made the linen or how she happened to have her name on it.  But it was obviously passed down from Hettie to Edna to Cindy and now I am the recipient.

I told Cindy my plans for quilting the linen and perhaps preserving it for the future.  I put Cindy's name, Edna's name and Hettie's name on the label.  Cindy's response was "her mum would surely be smiling from heaven."  And that made me smile.



June 14, 2014

Back Again

How long has it been since I last posted?  A long time.  Every once in awhile I think about my blog and then walk away.  Seems like that's the way it is with lots of projects.  How many years have I wanted to make "this" or do "that"?  And then time passes and tastes change.  And so I've re-assigned some of my fabric stash toother projects, given away some things, donated items, and I could do it all again.

I guess in order to catch up on my blog I'd better "go back" to things I've already made to show you what I've been doing.  I guess mostly I'm hoping to inspire those who want to try something new, go back to where they once were and pick up where they left off, or give some plain old inspiration.

These photos are from an ayrshire embroidered christening gown that I purchased.  Mind you, it was only a "part" of the gown, the embroidered pretty part.  Hence, the odd shape. But the embroidery was just too beautiful to ignore and so I made a small wall quilt out of it.  Swiss lace was added as well as ribbons to perhaps give it the appearance of the gown it used to be.

I've been sharing "morning inspiration" with a friend every day via email.  Not always my projects but those of others as well.  And so now I hope to share them with all of you and hope that in them, you too, will find inspiration.  Enjoy!

August 26, 2012

Inspirational Words

What a wonderful way to think!

These famous words are from Johann Wolfgang von Goethe:-
Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it.
Until one is committed there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness.
Concerning all acts of initiative there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and endless plans.
That the moment one definitely commits oneself then providence moves too.
All sorts of things occur to help one that would never have otherwise occurred.
A whole stream of events issue from the decision, raising in one’s favour all manner of unforeseen incidents, and meetings and material assistance which no man could have dreamed would come his way.
Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.
Begin it now.