Embroidery SAL – First Update

April 10, 2016 at 7:49 am | Posted in Embroidery | 11 Comments

I’ve been on a major cleanup spree in my craft room, and while I was at it, I have found several half-done embroidery projects that sat almost forgotten in a box. So, decision time: Finish them or give them away to somebody who appreciates them more? Having made that all-important decision, there’s the additional problem that I need to do something with the intention to finish them instead of putting them back in the box. Accountability to the rescue! Avis has been running an embroidery SAL for a while now, and I’ve been admiring the participants’ progress from afar. Time to join in in the fun and make some progress of my own, I think.

So, the first project I’m working on is a tiny little box kit I bought at the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham <cough> years ago: The Rosebud Box. The finished box will be only 4.5 x 4.5 x 3.5 cm large, so you can imagine the tiny scale I’m working on here. But that’s not the reason the project was stalled, as I soon noticed. Here’s the “before” picture, which is actually taken after I did some needed surgery I’ll explain in a minute:


The box lid on the left was already finished, and I had made a start on the sides of the lid on the right. Unfortunately, I had blindly followed directions to leave at least 1.5 cm around the motives on all sides and had started to stitch the lid sides 3 cm to the right of the top. I noticed after a bit that there wouldn’t be enough fabric on the far right to finish the strip. That was the point where I put the thing in a box and forgot about it for a couple of years.

So, before I could start making actual progress, I needed to take out the start of the strip and position it correctly. The red thread in the picture is the guide, and it looks as if there’s enough space after all to get the whole strip in! A few hours of stitching in front of the TV later, and the sides of the lid are actually finished:


It doesn’t look very impressive, and that’s another challenging aspect of this project: There’s a lot of stitching with dark blue thread on dark blue fabric. Working with the metallic thread for the cross-hatching is also fiddly. The thread is fairly high quality, and I’m using much shorter lengths than normal, but I still struggle with it. On top of all that, all the stitching is done with only one strand of embroidery cotton. But I do like the result, so I’ll march on. Next up: the sides of the box, which is a strip of the same width as the strip for the lid, with a smaller version of the flower motif from the lid on each side. Let’s see what I can get done till the next Update!

Here are the other members of the SAL who are posting today. Make sure to check out their work, it’s amazing!

Avis at http://sewingbesidethesea.wordpress.com
Claire at http://claire93.wordpress.com
Gun at http://rutigt.wordpress.com
Carole at http://aslightobsessionwithbooks.wordpress.com
Wendy at http://thecraftersapprentice.blogspot.co.uk
Lucy at https://lucyannluna.wordpress.com
Cathy at http://nanacathydotcom.wordpress.com
Jess at https://everthecrafter.wordpress.com
Sue at http://sewingmagpie.blogspot.com
Kate at http://talltalesfromchiconia.wordpress.com

If you would like to join in please contact Avis, who will give you full details.



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  1. oooh this is going to be very delicate and pretty.
    Welcome to the SAL ^^

  2. Welcome to the SAL! You are doing a great job I think! So exciting to see how it turns out in the end!

  3. Hi Constanze,
    This is a very pretty project, and such a tiny and delicate piece of work. I’m looking forward to seeing progress.
    By the way, please could you add me to your list of participating blogs?
    Thank you, Kate

  4. Welcome to the SAL.
    Love the project you’re doing at the moment. It looks very delicate and pretty 🙂

  5. This is going to make a beautiful box. I’m so pleased you decided to join us and get it finished. Welcome aboard 🙂

  6. Wow, this sounds like an ambitious project! It will be stunning when you’ve finished it. Glad you found this group to help keep you motivated and working!

  7. Welcome! Oh my that is some project, navy on navy and one strand. It’s going to be so pretty. Being in the SAL ensures that a project isn’t neglected completely!

  8. Hello and welcome to the sal! I actually fpund your blog today searching for needle lace tutorials after going to a needle lace class. Then i realised who you are!
    You went to foq in birmingham so i’m guessing you live in the uk? But yoy said mom, so i’m also guessing you’re not british?

    • Nope, neither British nor American, although I will be at the FOQ this year again, coming over from Germany. Thankfully Europe is a relatively small place to get from one place to another.

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