Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Quaker on Paper: the Embroidered Card that Wasn’t


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Last week, I took it into my head to make use of this book on embroidery & perforated paper. I thought I would make a card. You know – one of those “I’ll-just-whip-this-up” sort of projects…

As it turned out, it wasn’t a quick project at all. I always underestimate things like this. ALWAYS. It used to be that I thought I was an optimist – and being an optimist is a good thing, right? But now I realize it’s not optimism at all – it’s a gross under-estimation of the speed at which the hands on my clock move. And this gets me into trouble.

The occasion for the card came and went.

And yet, I went ahead and finished the embroidery for the card. Some day, I’ll cut out the lacy edge for it.

The design is one of the Quaker motifs available on the Needleprint blog. I picked the colors to match the cardstock I was going to mount the piece on. For thread, I used regular DMC stranded floss, mostly two strands. The count on the perforated paper is about 18 squares per inch, and three strands is too much for the holes – which was evident after I finished stitching the central “flower” in three strands, and found that the paper was trying not to warp. Two strands were perfect.

Embroidery on Perforated Paper

I like the blue / yellow scheme, and I think the design is neat. But you know what was going through my mind the Whole Entire Time I was stitching this? Any idea?

I was thinking…. “How can I translate this design (and similar designs) into surface embroidery?” And so, I played with it. And later on in the week, if all goes according to some kind of Plan of Sanity, I will share with you my version of the above design, re-structured for surface stitching.

Embroidery on Perforated Paper

I tried to get a shot where you could see how the three strands of floss started to warp that center area a bit, but I don’t think you can really tell in any of the photos.

Sometimes, I kick myself for starting “quick” projects like this, because it takes away from making headway on larger projects that are already starving for time. But in this case, I made a couple discoveries along the way and came up with some ideas that I’ll be sharing with you in the upcoming days and weeks. So I don’t count this particular “quick (slow)” project as a complete waste of time!

Coming up this week on Needle ‘n Thread: the final lesson in long and short stitch shading, a book review for a nice iron-on transfer book (really nice!), some thread talk, TWO give-aways to celebrate the end of the long and short stitch shading lessons, and any other tidbits that may happen to pop up! So do check back in during the week!

Have a jolly Monday!


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(4) Comments

  1. I like the idea of "quick" projects to be used for greeting cards. Then I look at the patterns and they're not quick at all. I recently made one that took over 8 hours. No way was I going to send it as a simple card that might get tossed. So I turned it into a bookmark, something practical and likely to hang around for awhile.

    I do like the Quaker Motif you made. Can you share how long it took to stitch?


  2. Hi, Irene – Time-wise, this took probably about 3 hours all together. Maybe a little less. But I still want to cut out a "lace" edge, which I suspect will take some serious time!

    We'll see….


  3. Hola! Me encanta haber encontrado este post con motivo quaquero!
    Tengo una duda sobre este tema, y es que no encuentro explicaciones en español sobre el bordado quaker, dónde nace o su significado….
    Me podrías ayudar??
    Muchas gracias!

    1. “Quaker” motifs originated from the samplers created at the different Quaker schools in England. This style of motif is called “Quaker” because it is similar to the designs on those early samplers from those schools.

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