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Thursday, 18 February 2016

Stitching Ancient and Modern

Today hubby and I are celebrating being a couple for ten years!  We have lived in this house for 9.5 years, which isn't really all that long (I was in my previous house for 17 years) but it is long enough to have long-lost treasures apparently!

When we first moved in we have a piece of furniture behind the settee which I stood some stitching pictures on.  As the Small Boy became more mobile and able to climb they got moved and put away.  While looking for something else entirely this week I found them and this one too.  I don't think I've seen this picture since we moved in, it used to be at the foot of the stairs in the old house.


The subject is Eilean Donan Castle in Scotland, a gorgeous Scottish Keep which was used in the film Highlander.  I visited it back in the 1980s so when I started stitching and saw this kit I knew I had to stitch it.  The design uses a mixture of one and two threads to give depth and texture to the picture.

It was one of the first pieces I got professionally framed by the lovely Ben of Frames of Norwich.  The label on the back gives their address in St. Giles Street which puts this at late 1990s as he was originally somewhere else when I first used him.

Here are some close-ups:



This piece is back on the wall at home, for now!  I had a little rummage around and found the original chart which is a John Clayton design called Dawn Mist at Eilean Donan.  copyright 1997.

And that's when I struck stitching treasure!  Because in the bag were a number of older neglected stitchings, some finished, some WIPS.  Here are the photos!


A Bucilla kit called Max's Moon stitched in 2008.  This was stitched on black aida using the threads supplied.  The Large Boy loved cats and requested I stitch it for him.  Unfortunately it never got framed.  It will now, after a good iron!


A Needlepoise sampler called Bramble Harvest, stitched in the mid 1990s on 28 count evenweave.  There's only one and a half bands left to do.  I wonder why I stopped?  I have the chart for the companion piece called Strawberry Sampler I should stitch sometime.


This is the sampler I stitched on a wonderful retreat, again back in the early 1990s.  The bag it was in has a phone number for Middlesex beginning with 081 and those numbers were only used between 1990 and 1995.  The design is by Jane Greenoff and is called Woodland Walk.  I think it is probably OOP because the only online version I could find for this title is completely different!

The host chose this project because of the number of speciality stitches and different techniques used.

I've always been a little uncertain about the finished piece because it seems a little "empty" to me.  I toyed with the idea of adding some extra motifs but never did.

Look, hardanger!


The next piece I remember buying at one of the Olympia shows in 2000.  It's a Textured Treasure design called Southwest Garden by Karen E. Dudzinski.  They had a hotmail email and a geocities website so rather technologically advanced for the era!  Google reveals she still has a blog!


This is the cover photo which attracted me, not sure how much it would cost to cut those mounts!


And this is a close-up of one corner, sumptuous isn't it?


And the final ancient piece, the cover kit from Cross Stitch Collection issue 8!

What an exciting trawl through the past!  I think my framer is going to love me.  I use a lovely local lady now, she's half the price Ben was, even 15 years later!  That's the city vs small town for you.

On to modern stitching now.  I am speeding through Nora Corbett's S Fairy:

stitched on Oceanic Fantasia by Crafty Kitten

There's quite a bit of skin, lots of wing and another swirl at the bottom of the letter.  Then Kreinik on the wings, backstitch and beads.

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Finally, I was emailed about a craftivist project recently - Stitching for Syria,  Here's what the charity Concern says about their work "At Concern we run a host of activities helping Syrians caught up in years of war. These include teaching Syrian refugees and poor Lebanese women embroidery. Selling what they make gives these women a vital income, and the sessions themselves bring warmth, hope and friendship."

And here's their website to find out more - Concern.  Basically, you sign up and they send you a free chart which you stitch and mail to them to make a hanging for their centre in Lebanon to bring hope to the women that go there.  A donation would be nice too!  It's a small pattern, only 30x30 so shouldn't take long to stitch.  The project has literally only just been launched this week so needs all the publicity it can get!


41 comments:

D1-D2 said...

Wow so many you've found so many treasures. I absolutely love the cat.

Kaisievic said...

What a wonderful haul, Jo, it must have been such a thrill to find all of those lovely finishes and WIPs. I especially love the castle and the cat and the moon! Thanks for the link for the Syrian charity, too. Those poor people.

KimM said...

Oh my gosh! What treasures! Love them all. I'd be over the moon if I found these.
xxx

Carolyn said...

Hello Jo,
Oh my look at all those beautiful stitched treasures you did. I love how each one has a story to it. I think this would have made a great post titled Throwback Stitching. I've been doing it on my blog for the last few weeks. I have a new post up now if you care to take a look. Nora Corbett's S fairy is looking great.

Jan Jones said...

Congrats on your anniversary. Wow isn't it fun to find treasures like that and to reminisce about what you were thinking and stitching in the past.

Linda Harris said...

Such lovely treasures you have discovered.

Jacquie Morris said...

Happy being a couple anniversary! Lol
Gosh looks like you found some old treasures!
Smiles :)

Mouse said...

ooooo I say ... how fab is that you have found those treasures ....I wonder what else is lurking in there :) love mouse xxxxx

gominam said...

Happy Anniversary! These unearthed pieces are a real treat to celebrate the happy years, what a trip down memory lane esp.when the boys were younger:) I thought the first pic was a painting at first glance,lol. And the hardanger and cat are so pretty too!

Linda said...

What amazing treasures you found Jo. When I go hunting all I find is dust bunnies. Lovely progress on the S.

Linda

Barb said...

That must have felt like finding a hidden treasure! They are all beautiful. I'm going to look into Stitching for Syria. Thanks for the information.

Stitching Noni said...

Oh wow! What a lovely haul of stitching treasures you found hidden away! Love the kitty :o)
"S" is looking gorgeous - great progress happening! :o)
Hugs xx

Gillie said...

Thanks, Jo, for the link. Downloaded the pattern. Lovely hidden stash!

Mini said...

Happy 10th anniversary Jo.
What a throwback thursday....what treasures you have found.I really like the Eilean Donan Castle piece. I was there in August and know how fairy tale-ish the castle looks.
St. Giles Street rings a bell too.I see you found a few samplers..I'm guessing those would be on your finishing list first, given that you like samplers.
Good Progress on S .

Heather said...

That's so awesome jo! I'm excited for you and I didn't even find the treasure lol you're a stitching pirate! Your stitching is lovely :)

Preeti said...

Wow, that's a great treasure!! I loved all the pieces and I don't feel the hardanger piece looks empty. May be you can just finish with beads or laces whatever you like. When we see our old pieces we realise how much our taste has changed over the years but even while following new designer charts we still love the old ones. Your modern project is looking very beautiful:)

Rachel Tomkins said...

It must have been a real walk down memory lane finding those forgotten projects, and such a variety too! Your S is looking good. Oh, and happy 10th anniversary. :)

Justine said...

You should be a detective! I love how you worked out how old your treasure is. I hope you can get them all finished and framed. Great job!
I was contacted too by Concern. Are you going to stitch the design? I think it's quite simple.

Kerryp77 said...

Beautiful pieces of stitching. I love the bramble one and the hardanger one. They look so delicate. It must be lovely finding them again. I have so many unframed pieces that I keep promising myself to frame but never get round to it.

Christine said...

Ooh, treasure indeed! I think Jane originally had a set of four seasonal samplers like that.
I tried to sign up for the Concern thing and got myself into a kind of infinite click loop, I'm still not sure whether I actually managed to sign up or not

Vickie said...

Happy 10th! How awesome these pieces are that you unearthed. I really like the castle.

Mii Stitch said...

I love that little kitty, it's really sweet! Nice to know you will get it frame.
Great stitching on the S.

Suz said...

What lovely treasures! I love that a designer (I think it was Nora) said that all pieces, even if they look the same are drastically different because of the stories and emotions cased in them. I think it's so true. And your lovelies are not only beautiful on the outside, but carry so much meaning.

And thank you for the information re: Syria. I have a get together planned next weekend for some activist stitching (no, really!), but after that I will look into the Syria project.

Katie said...

Wow what a blast from your past. Love them all!! Your S is just Super Fantastic.

The Inspired Stitcher said...

Oh Jo, what fun to see your forgotten treasures! So glad you ran across them and shared today. Have a great weekend!

Keebles said...

That is SOOO cool that you found those!

Leonore Winterer said...

Wow, what a great journey to the past! There are some really beautiful pieces in there, I hope you'll finish the Harvest sampler up not that you unearthed it :)

Tiffstitch said...

How fun to find such excellent projects! Oddly, my Mom is stitching an Eilean Donan castle pattern, but not that one. Thanks for the info about Concern, I will find time to do that as well. Great idea.

Stitcher S. said...

Isn't it great to find wonderful treasures? I really enjoyed seeing them.

Babs said...

Congratulations. And such nice piece of stitching :)

Sarah in Stitches said...

Thanks for the information about Concern! I'm definitely going to get involved. Beautiful pieces from the past, too :D

Sally said...

What wonderful finds! Isn't it lovely to find old stitched pieces.

Your Nora Corbett piece is looking beautiful.

craftivista said...

Thanks for sharing the word about Stitching for Syria, it sounds fab!

Bea said...

What fantastic treasures! LOVE the cat of course and the castle - I'm sure I've seen pictures of that building. S looks great - you've done a lot.

Mini said...

Hi Jo, I was trying to get some information about the Syria project form the website. I would like to know where the pieces need to be send before I sign up for the cause. Is there a way i can get this information before sign up?

jocondine said...

Happy anniversary! Max's moon is so cute, it deserves a welcoming place in the house. Can't wait to see progress on Bramble Harvest with closer pics please. Hugs.

Shebafudge said...

Happy belated anniversary to you both.

What a lovely haul of past projects! I have always loved the cat one, it is just SO adorable.

Adatina said...

All works are wonderful, but the cat just stole my heart!
And - happy anniversary!

Brigitte said...

Finding these beauties must have been like entering Aladin's cave. And these projects are real treasures, all so different in colors and style. And each with a story. When going through my finished pieces I also love to think about where and when and under which circumstances I was stitching some of them.

Brigitte said...

... and happy belated anniversary!

Karen the stitcher said...

LOVE the work you did on Southwest Garden!!! So happy it was an enjoyable experience. Hope you and hubby had an absolutely wonderful celebration.