Monday, January 28, 2008

Giving Grandma her props

I've commented before on how I've turned into my mother, but it seems her mother's genes are expressing themselves as well. Lately I've really gotten into crosswords and various other word puzzles... this is something my grandma was totally into when she was older & more or less home bound. I've started out with one of those multi-puzzle books and got really into the Acrostics (kinda like a crossword... but not really). Then I got a little book of NYT "Light & Easy" Crosswords. The only ones I can finish quickly & consistently are by Peter Gordon...with the rest of the so called 'easy puzzles' I get about 90% done then have to cheat to finish up the rest of the puzzle. I've learned a lot about Mt. Etna though..... what was my point again? Oh yeah, my grandma!

Grandma was a seamstress by trade (I have not yet inherited those skills!) but also quilted and cross-stitched. Most of her handwork was not spectacular, but practical and serviceable. Here is an apron she made and embellished with cross-stitch.

I went through a heavy cross-stitch phase in junior high & high school... culminating in this sampler I made to celebrate my sister's wedding my freshman year in college.

After finishing this one, I started an even more impressive pattern to honor my college graduation... I gave myself nearly 4 years to do it. I never even finished the border.

Anyway, I'm not so much into cross-stitch anymore, but I am getting back into needlework. Here's my second attempt at embroidery.

The flowers are from the same template I used earlier on a bag... but I filled in the petals with what I now know is called seed-stitch, and gave the leaves some veins. And then I added the little birdie from the same template package (lots of flowers & cute animals). I'm pretty impressed with this little picture, although I have no idea what I'm going to put it on. I think I'll save it up for a quilt (if I ever get back into quilting that is!!)

I was so impressed in fact that I went out and bought a white canvas apron and the book Sublime Stitching... which unfortunately claims not to be my "grandma's embroidery." While I understand this simple means she's updated the styles and patterns for current tastes, there's nothing wrong with my grandma's work! Anyway, stay tuned for more needlework.


Magatha said...

Your grandma= my grandma Flora.

I love the birdie! I love the sampler! I need to see if I can still embroider. I used to do it all the time in the 70s.

Beverly said...

I was a cross-stitcher in high school and college too. Your comment about a piece you started working on for your college graduation reminded me that I have a piece started that was supposed to be for my high school graduation. Oops. I think it's officially a UFO if 15 have passed.

Great job on the embroidery!

gl. said...

wow. i am impressed with your skillz.

hope the sublime stitching book turns out to be a good one, grandmotherly defenses notwithstanding. :)

Exuberant Color said...

Thanks for your comments on my blog.
I have an unfinished embroidery sampler to announce the birth of my son which I never finished. He will be 47 in 3 days. I think I can throw it away now.