Oh golly. I seem to have a problem!
I’ve started embroidering some little trees – using simple stitches worked in various combinations – and they have turned into a bit of an obsession.
I am, in short, addicted to them. Every hour I spend away from my needle and thread, I’m aching to get back to stitching. My mind whirs with new possibilities, and everything I have to do in Real Life – you know, the stuff you can’t avoid day to day? – I do with haste, so I can return to my stitching post and test my newly-hatched ideas.
It’s an obsession that creeped up on me, unawares. I had no intention of getting involved in a whole series of stitchy things right now.
It started one day as I was perusing a couple old embroidery books…
I came upon a page that featured some vintage stylized tree shapes. Very Arts-and-Crafts-Era. Simple in concept. Brief in line. Nothing elaborate.
I said to Myself, Self, you ought to clean up This One, and see how it stitches up.
Myself replied, You don’t really have time to get involved in a new project right now.
To which Myself replied, If you keep it really simple, that thing will stitch up in an hour or two, and it just might be a perfect Evening Project. One sitting. Simple stitches. Relaxing. Fun. All stash oriented. Just to seeeeeee how it turns out…
And of course I capitulated and listened to the Voice of Reason.
In a couple Very Satisfactory hours, I had a completed embroidery project that was rather pleasing. It was cute. It was, in fact, kind of pretty. It was uncomplicated. Fun to stitch. Perfect for a quick embroidery fix after a busy day.
And I liked it.
And that’s actually when the problem started….
I headed back to my computer and started messing with trees. There were six at first.
And then I went out to my work room and checked out my fabric supply.
Lo! I found the stack of leftover little linen squares that I had prepared (whipped edges and all) several years ago for a local class. I even had backing fabric cut and ready, all neatly stacked in a box. And – my goodness! – upon counting them, there were some 29 little squares there!
I also found a 45″ long strip of linen, 6″ wide. And then the ideas really started boiling over. After all, what can one do with a six-inch wide strip of linen that’s 45″ long?
And this is when I said to Myself, I’m in trouble.
Next thing I new, I was doodling everywhere.
And then I betook myself to my computer and changed my doodles into clean line drawings. I ended up with 18 doodles in that session. Some I liked more than others, but all were worth testing to some degree.
I tweaked them all to the same height (3″ tall), printed them, and ran back out to the workroom, where I transferred them to 18 little squares of linen.
Then I ransacked my thread drawers, pulling out cotton threads only, and focusing on Christmas colors. Not all my trees were typical Christmas trees – and they could definitely be stitched in any color scheme, any time of year – but the mood had struck. And I could see each of them sporting their holiday garb in one way or another. And so, Christmas it was!
With the excitement of a newly-launched project bubbling over within me, I ransacked my bead trays. After all, if you’re going to deck the halls…or the trees… you might as well have a little bit of sparkle here and there!
I dumped all the threads into a bag, everything else into a box, grabbed as many 4″ hoops that I had lying about, threw in a pair of scissors and a pincushion stuck full of common needle sizes, and I was good to go!
I figured any time the hankering arose for a quick embroidery fix, I could just grab a tree.
But then the hankering kept rising… and lately, it’s become a permanent state of mind. All I want to do is Stitch Trees!!!
I’ve been photographing the trees along the way, and on December 1st – if nothing goes amuck between now and then – you can join me in my obsession! I’m putting together a group of my favorites for you.
If you want a perfect antidote to the over-hectic holiday season, something that allows you to slow down, relax, and pause for a while, join me on December 1st!
What Do You Want for Christmas?
Well, I asked this question a while back – what are your ideas for good give-aways that you’d like to see leading up to Christmas? And low and behold, the elves got busy, and sure enough, after Thanksgiving, we’ll start A Stitcher’s Christmas, 2017 – a series of embroidery-related give-aways that tops the charts when it comes to the generosity of business folks and designers who have joined me, to bring you some delightful gifts this Christmas.
From kits, to tools and accessories, books, fabric and threads, scissors to die for… it’s an amazing line-up!
If you’re not signed up for the newsletter here on Needle ‘n Thread, you might do that if you don’t want to miss this series of give-aways. The sign up form is on the left column on the website, or, if you’re on mobile, it’s in the drop-down menu.
I haven’t said Happy Thanksgiving yet – I’m going to pop in tomorrow with a special message. My heart overfloweth….
See you then!