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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Weekend Stitching: Pumpkins, Leaves, & a Little Wheat


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Still trying to stitch slightly ahead of the season, I spent this past weekend working on a new autumn embroidery design that I first mentioned to you here.

Whenever I try out a new embroidery design like this, I end up having to work it several times. I want to know, after all, what kind of glitches might turn up. I want to know if it’s a reasonable design for stitching in a reasonable amount of time. I want to know if it makes sense to make it available the way I envision making it available. I want to know how different threads and colors will work on it.

And I want to know if I should add to the design, subtract from the design, or leave it just as it is.

To discover all these things, I get the pleasure of stitching the design more than once! And, as is practically always the case, I change my mind on many things along the way.

hand embroidery autumn design with pumpkin, leaves, wheat

With my pumpkin and leaves design, I decided it just wasn’t abundant enough.

When I envision autumn, I see a natural abundance of rich, golden color. This comes from living in Kansas, I reckon, where the land goes gold, come October.

While we are far enough north to enjoy a seasonal color change in the trees, the overall color that smacks the eyes in autumn out here is gold – bright golds, to rich, deep golds to earthy, warm browns, as the crops tone down and the fields go fallow.

Then, smattering among the golds are the brilliant colors of the trees in their autumnal glory. All of this is set against the vivid blue backdrop of massive, clear Kansas skies. When the sun sets and days go out in a glorious blaze, you really can’t beat it for huge expanses of color.

I know. Most people think that Kansas doesn’t have much to offer, natural-beauty wise. Sure, we’re not mountains. Sure, we’re not seashores. But we’ve got a grand view out here, nonetheless!

Anyway, I was thinking about these things when I stitched my first version of the pumpkin & leaves design, and I decided that abundant golds didn’t get their fair share on the design.

So I added wheat.

In some cases, I added a lot of wheat!

And as it works out, the wheat is my favorite part to stitch. Worked in simple stitches, it goes in fast and it fills out the design nicely.

hand embroidery autumn design with pumpkin, leaves, wheat

Above, you can see where I played with one of the simpler versions of the design, adding a couple little wheat ears and a few more leaves to the base, under the pumpkin.

I love this type of embroidery, for the sheer relaxation value of it. It’s not complicated, but the results are pleasing!

So that’s how I spent my embroidery time this weekend. This project is coming soon for you, too! So keep an eye out, if you want some casual embroidery, perfect for the autumn days ahead.

Hope your week is off to a swell start!


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(25) Comments

  1. Dear Mary

    What a lovely piece of autumn embroidery and it looks so simple to stitch, I love the colours you have chosen and the design it’s very pretty. I’m sure Kansas has it’s own beauty, by your embroidery above it looks very pretty especially in the autumn with all the reds and gold colours. I look forward to the progress on this piece. I’m glad you had a relaxing weekend of stitching after last weeks dilemma with the framing. Beautiful framing by the way you are full of talents, I wish I could achieve something like that. Thanks for sharing with us your pumpkin, leaves and wheat design with us. Have a great week.

    Regards Anita Simmance

  2. Autumn is my absolutely most favorite season. Your design makes me think of those cool evenings and the smell of the leaves. I like the addition of the wheat too.

  3. Hi Mary, Beautiful as always! Unless it’s the light playing off each version differently, I see you also tweaked the colors of the pumpkin to be slightly more muted. Subtle but made a big difference. And, you reshaped the larger leaf on the left side. Just wonderful to see you develop a design. Thanks for sharing.

  4. The wheat is a great add, Mary. It’s a lovely design and your prose is beautiful. It makes me want to see Kansas in autumn. And it has me singing Fields of Gold: You’ll remember me/when the west wind moves/upon the fields of barley…I’ll be humming as I stitch today…

    1. 🙂 Most people just fly over Kansas. :-/ There’s nothing quite like seeing the wind blow over fields of wheat or barley… It’s almost as soothing as watching the ocean!!!

  5. Such an inviting design! This very morning I had a fleeting, tantalizing whiff of autumn from an open window. I know I probably won’t catch it again for a while, but I so love autumn and your design and colors spark the yearning that it is on its way.
    Thanks for a bright spot in my day!

  6. I love the Fall! Beautiful stitchery! You are so right. The wheat really adds to it. I look forward to making this. Margie/TN

  7. The wheat balances the design nicely, but ripe wheat is long gone by pumpkin time. Milo heads would be more seasonally appropriate. But probably not as attractive in the design. 🙂

    1. Yes, milo would be… not as attractive! I think milo is ugly stuff. Rendered in embroidery, I can’t imagine… just bumpy and dark, I suppose! LOL! Dried wheat is often used out here in floral arrangements, wreaths, and whatnot throughout the autumn.

  8. I love your — Weekend Stitching: Pumpkins, Leaves, & a Little Wheat

    How does one buy this pattern. I am very new to stitching and would love to try this.
    Is it in a book, if so can you let me know the name of book?

    Thank you

    1. Hi, Ginny – I haven’t released this pattern yet. It will be available some time in September. I’m shooting for the first half of the month! Keep an eye out here on Needle ‘n Thread for it! Thanks for asking!

  9. I think that design is positively gorgeous, the wheat adds so much to it. I cannot wait until the pattern is available to us!

  10. First – You really have beautiful things.
    Second – Your site is so helpful with learning how to stich.

    Then – Being really new to all this I was wondering:
    Will you have pre printed or just the pattern for Pumpkins, Leaves, & a Little Wheat?
    Do I need to preorder it? I noticed your pre print goes ratter fast.

    1. Hi, Ginny – I will have a pattern & stitch guide (together) for the designs, and I will also offer ready-to-stitch sets (with the design pre-transferred). I don’t take pre-orders, I’m afraid, but if you keep your eye out on the website, I’ll let folks know when they will be available.

    1. Hi, Michelle – Glad you like it! I’m not taking a list of folks for the availability of this project and ready-to-stitch sets. It’ll be announced here on Needle ‘n Thread when they are ready, so keep an eye out! Thanks!

  11. Hi Mary, could you please tell me what stitch you use in the the thin blades, it’s the top picture where the thread is emerging from ? Thank you for all your help and resources.

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