120 zipper pouches in 14 days

Well, I took on something a little crazy recently. I was asked by an event planner to sew 120 embroidered zipper pouches for an event. When I was originally asked I thought I would have almost a month to finish them. However, by the time all the details were ironed out I only had two weeks. But… I really didn’t want to pass up a great opportunity. So I said yes, and was determined I was going to get it done on time. I couldn’t believe myself to be honest. I didn’t even know how I was going to find that many zippers on such short notice (there aren’t a lot of sewing supply stores where I live). But with some help from my amazing family I rounded up all the supplies. I’m lucky I have people who were willing to help me find everything and even pick some of it up for me.

So I basically sewed constantly for 2 weeks. It was hard. They’re pretty simple pouches to sew, but 120 is a lot. Especially when you’re embroidering the same thing on every.single.one. Even though it was super overwhelming, I realized there’s something to be said for that feeling of completing honest, hard work. This felt less like art and more like a one person assembly line, but I made every single one from scratch with my own two hands, and that feels pretty good.

My pouches were for a portion of an event for women entreprenuers sponsored by Etsy Canada. 120 women received a gift card in one of these:

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Thanks for reading!!!

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From the bottom of my heart

It has been way too long since I’ve written here unfortunately. Life has been crazy due to moving along with a other busy-ness over the summer. I wanted to check in with a quick post today, and now that things are settling down I’ll be able to share projects here more frequently again.

yesterday I had a really awful end to the the week at work. However, I had a really great week in my embroidery/etsy/crafty world, and at the end of the day that’s where it counts for me. Although I don’t make a living off of my art work, it is truly where my heart is. And I just want to say thank you to you wonderful people who take the time to look at and take interest in my work, from the bottom of my heart.

I will do this for the rest of my life and continue to share it with you even if I knew I would never sell another thing. ❤

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Singer sewing machine dreams coming true

Ever since I started sewing I have dreamed about owning a vintage Singer sewing machine. Well that day came a couple of weeks ago, and I am now the proud owner of this beauty:Image

This is actually the third one I’ve come across. The first one I stumbled upon at a flea market and battled with myself the whole time trying to decide if I should buy it. It was beautiful and only $50. However when I went back to look again, it had been sold. It was sad, but I guess not meant to be. The second one I  found was at a another flea market. It was in way worse condition than the first one and the man selling it was really pushy. Once again, just didn’t seem like the right one, so I passed it up.

This time my friend happened to find this one at a thrift shop. When she saw it she texted me pictures right away. I was unsure at first but decided it wouldn’t hurt to go look after work. So I did. And instantly fell in love. This one was perfect. It was in great condition, still working, and I love love loved the table. It was a lot more compact than the other ones I’d seen. I honestly probably would buy the table for my home even if it didn’t come with the sewing machine, it was so perfect. I just knew this time. Probably the fact that I had turned down two others already made it easier to say yes this time. So, $75 later and I own a vintage Singer sewing machine! Dreams really do come true.

The Singer website is amazing. It was so easy to date my machine. They have model and serial numbers listed which match up with the year the machines were manufactured in. My machine was made in 1948. http://www.singerco.com/support/machine-model-numbers

Now I just want to learn everything I can about vintage Singer sewing machines! I’m so happy I found the right one ❤

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

 

I miss my bike – Parts I and II

Hey friends!

I feel like I’ve been absent from here for a while. The weather is finally getting nice, and life is getting busy! But I’m back with a drawing and an embroidery piece to share. 🙂

I’m enjoying my “a-drawing-a-day” journal project so much. It’s become even more than a little something to give me a creative outlet during my work days. It’s become some what of a stress reliever. It’s also really helped me to find inspiration in my every day. Suddenly little thoughts and ordinary happenings from my every day life are becoming ideas for embroidery pieces. I really love this.

I drew this bike a couple of weeks ago when the weather was still really cold. I was dreaming of getting my bike out for the summer. My favorite thing about this one was that I always felt like bicycles were difficult to draw, but when I broke it down and spent some time on it I came out with a result I really like. That’s what this project is all about, learning and becoming a better illustrator.

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I then decided I liked it so much I wanted to embroider it, so it became this:

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This embroidery is for sale in my etsy shop http://www.ceestitchery.etsy.com

I wish my bike had hearts on it in real life. Thanks for reading 🙂

 

Always turning a new leaf

Hello! Today I want to share my latest embroidery piece:

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I put quite a bit of time and work into this one, and I am happy to say I am satisfied with the end result!! I really wanted to work on something with a little more detail, depth, and density, and this leaf project that I’ve had in my sketchbook for a while seemed like the perfect opportunity to do that. I used a fish bone stitch on most of the leaves, which was really fun. It’s not a stitch I have used often, but I love the look of it. I also used a lot of satin stitch and stem stitch in this piece. My original idea was to use all different shades of green, but once I got started I felt it needed a contrasting color to add some interest. I added the purple and instantly loved the dimension it added to the work. I am always learning in my work and want to always continue learning. I like to think theses leaves represent how every project turns a new leaf and teaches me something as an artist.

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You can see more of my work in my Etsy shop http://www.ceestitchery.etsy.com

A little bit more on my wanting to get into some projects with a little more detail: I recently joined the Embroidery Association of Canada. Basically this is a nation wide association devoted to “preserving traditional techniques and promoting new challenges in the art of embroidery”. I was really excited when I found out that an organization such as this exists, and joined right away. It’s really exciting to be part of a community that is as passionate about this form of art as I am. I am inspired to start trying more traditional techniques and incorporate them into my work. This is something I’ve always been interested in, but I think now more so than ever! I usually focus on quite small scale projects. This type of work seems to suit me the best for some reason. Mainly because when I get a new idea I tend to get really excited about it and want to start on it right away. If I’m working on a large time consuming project, this often results in me abandoning it to start the new idea. However when I work on small pieces I find it easier to finish them before starting on the next one. So, I don’t plan on changing that, but I am making it a new goal for myself to start adding more detail to my work, and to continue experimenting with different techniques and stitches that i haven’t used as extensively before!

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Any Canadians out there interested in the Embroiderers’ Association of Canada you can find out more here http://www.eac.ca/

Something else I want to mention quickly: I have noticed recently that a lot more people are recognizing needlework as art. It IS art, and I can’t even tell you how much this fills me up with joy and pride that more people are seeing that. Over the years needlework somehow developed this reputation of being a pass time hobby for well, your Grandma. And while there is nothing wrong with that (at all!), It can be difficult to feel like you are taken seriously as an artist when people have only that in mind and won’t see past it. The hand made movement is changing that in a huge way and I just want to say – that. is. amazing. I didn’t feel like a true artist until I discovered needlework as my medium, and I’m a true believer that all art is just that – art. Just because you’re not a painter or sculptor doesn’t make your work any less beautiful and important. And with the end of that rant/rave I will leave you with a quote from a VERY talented textile artist:

“Many people disregard embroidery as just a hobby. As an artist you have that extra battle to make people see it’s potential.” – Karen Nicol

Challenge accepted. 😉 Read more about Karen Nicol and her work here http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2012/embroidery/

Thanks for reading!! XO

Spring?! Dandelion Acceptance, Skirts, and the Encyclopedia of Stitchery

I am finally feeling optimistic enough about Spring being potentially on it’s way that I can talk about it out loud. It has been really cold in Saskatchewan where I live. I mean REALLY REALLY cold. If you have been to or heard of Saskatchewan you’re probably thinking Isn’t that normal? Well, yes. But even Saskatchewan doesn’t normally have as much snow in March as we do right now. And -25 to 30 Celsius temps are usually behind us. Not this year. However! The forecast for this week is looking promising – we are supposed to have above 0 temps in our future! So on that happy note here’s what’s been going on lately:

Here is my latest finished embroidery project:
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I have had this idea in my head and then in my sketchbook for along time – so I am happy to say here it is in real life! I’ve always thought dandelions were pretty even though they’re considered weeds. When I heard this quote I really loved the message. I think a big part of being a happy well rounded person is all about seeing the positive and the good in people, things, and situations. Dandelions can be really beautiful if you choose to see them that way.

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This 10″ hoop art is for sale in my Etsy shop! you can find it here http://www.ceestitchery.etsy.com

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I have been really into skirts lately. I should also mention I love dresses. I pretty much always wear them, seeing me in pants is rare. So I’m really excited about incorporating more skirts into my life for spring and summer. What I’m most excited about is finding some unique fabrics and prints to sew my own skirts. This is one that I’ve made recently. I hope to do a skirt post in the near future when I get some more sewn!

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Last but not least – I snagged a copy of “The Complete Encyclopeida of Stitchery” this weekend! It is filled with lots of great illustrations like this one and some stitches I haven’t tried and even a few I haven’t heard of!

Well that’s just a little peak into my latest creative adventures. I hope Spring is starting to show up where ever it is you may be reading from! Keep your fingers crossed for me that one day our dreams may come true and it will come to Saskatchewan too 😉

“No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.” -Hal Borland

Sometimes I get really nerdy about thread…

Okay. So, sometimes I get really nerdy about thread. It’s just one of those things that happens, so here’s my recent thread obsession story:

I went to a flea market recently and ended up scoring a huge basket full of embroidery floss. I am talking like a ton of floss…you can see a photo of my almost complete stash on my instagram (I couldn’t fit it all quite into the picture but it shows most of it) username –> CeeStitchery. I was excited #1 because I just tripled my stash for $10, and #2 the majority of it was Anchor brand floss, and I always buy DMC, mostly just  because that’s what is accessible to me. So the idea of trying a different brand of floss and adding so much to my color palette was really cool.

 It took me a while to get around to sorting through this messy basket. I separate all of my floss into groups of pastels, brights, and darks. I have slowly been working away at it when I have a few free minutes or decide to take a break from stitching. A week or so ago I came across a skein with a label I had never seen before.  It looked particularly old so I decided to ask my mom if she’d heard of it before. She hadn’t , so we googled it. The label said “Corticelli”.  I found out that Corticelli was indeed a thread manufacturer once upon a time but hadn’t existed for quite a while. And that was it. I was obsessed. I spent more time than I’d like to admit the next day researching it on the internet, but was surprised at how little there was on it. It doesn’t even have it’s own Wikipedia page.

ImageHowever I did discover that Corticelli played a pretty cool part in the history of sewing thread. Basically, it started out as the Nonotuck Silk Company in the 1830’s and grew to become the world’s largest supplier of silk thread during it’s time. The company stayed in business until 1930. They were the first to manufacture “machine twist” thread, and to produce a thread that worked properly in the newly invented sewing machine. They of course, also manufactured other types of thread including embroidery floss.

Here are a couple of links that provide a more detailed account of what I’ve briefly explained above: http://www.textilehistory.org/NonotuckSilkCompany.html   http://www.smith.edu/hsc/silk/northampton.html

I got a huge portion of the rest of the floss organized this past weekend and found a few more skeins of Corticelli! I think what initially excited me the most was finding out that Corticelli went out of business in 1930. Meaning these skeins of thread have to be at least that old. I expected that they were vintage but not quite that vintage!

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I’m so curious as to who this basket belonged to. I imagine the Corticelli thread and maybe more was probably passed down to her. It was a man that sold it to me at the flea market but I didn’t get a chance to talk with him – it was pretty busy! It’s fun to daydream about where all these threads came from, what projects they were intended for, and what they were used for over the years. I live for this stuff.

 

Thanks for reading,XO

 

 

Farminista

I have mentioned a couple of times lately that I was working on an order for Farminista – an online store that is an extension of a local shop where I live. The embroidery I did for them has been posted and I just wanted to share the new items and their website! The following are all for sale and can be found here http://www.farminista.com/collections/handmade

ImageBird Hoop Art $40.00

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Tea Cup Hoop Art $40.00

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“Shine on” Hoop Art $40.00

ImageFloral Embroidered Pouches $30.00 Each

Farminista is “A craftily curated collection of vintage inspired fashion and home decor.” There’s a lot of really cool stuff to browse through on their website – they sell lots of gorgeous dresses and accessories as well! I feel like my style is fitting for this website. My work often has a vintage feel to it, and my obsession with stitching floral motifs fits right in!

More of my embroidery can be found in my Etsy shop http://www.ceestitchery.etsy.com

XO

 

 

 

 

No Place Like Home

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Here is my latest hoop art! I had been wanting to stitch a rocking chair for a while, and when I found this fabric the idea fell into place.

Home is truly the best place to be. And with the extreme cold weather we’ve had where I live it’s really the only place I’ve wanted to be lately! I’m really happy with how this one turned out, I think I might need to keep it to hang for myself in my own home. When I see it it reminds how much I cherish the coziness and comfort of home – I truly am a homebody, and I love it.

I think I will stitch up another one and add it to the shop soon http://www.ceestitchery.etsy.com

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Have a fantastic weekend!