Tuesday, September 6, 2011

E is for Embroidery

I think I may love embroidery more than my yarn-crafts.  Although I will admit I'm smitten with knitting patterned dish cloths at the moment, my first love is floss, needle, and hoop.

There are many things to love about embroidery, but what I like most is the versatility.  Simple stitches... complex stitches... minimal colors and/or lines... tons of colors and/or designs... an exercise in one stitch or a palette of many stitches... plain fabric or print clothes.... Well, you get the picture.

I can remember vividly two stitching projects from my childhoods.  One was a blue, burlap cloth that I embroidered with Native American symbols for a school project (I can remember working rows of satin-stitched upside-down hearts) and a blue cloth sampler with my name and a few doodads (I remember loving stitched daisies at the time).  I have no idea why I put embroidery down sometime after the age of eleven, but I have a feeling it had to do with listening to Riot Grrrl Music, writing bad poems, and reading Sassy magazine and feeling like stitching (and baking too) were things that the Patriarchy used to Oppress me.  It didn't matter that I loved it, by golly I had a righteous anger to maintain!

I picked embroidery back up after college when I found myself battling an awful episode of depression.  I was reading, but I had ceased writing for the time being; it just zapped the energy out of me.  Reading was great, but that's an awful lot of intake.  I need to be producing something.  And there we have it... embroidery and to a lesser extent crocheting.  I stitched and stitched and stitched.  The first thing I made was a tea towel riddled with embroidered teapots and teacups for my mom.

I'm a slow stitcher, so I don't produce a lot.  For me it is more about the tranquility of the experience (well, most of the time it is tranquil, I do end up swearing a good bit) than the number of items made.

Right now I'm working on an August stitch-along.  That's right.  Here it is September and I'm still working on an August stitch-along and I'm nowhere near finished.  Oh well....

Basically I'm just learning/practicing different stitches using a vintage pillow case.  I think this might become a pillow or it will be placed in a hoop and hung on the wall.  We'll see how things shake out.

Now I think I have an urge to play in some floss.... g'night!


everybookandcranny said...

I think I like embroidery better too - I love to crochet but I have to follow a pattern - I'm not good enough at it to veer off on my own. So I feel like I can be more creative with embroidery. I absolutely love your vintage pillowcase! Neat idea.

Katie @ Mama the Reader said...

I really want to learn how to embroider. I think I'd like it. Is it simple enough that some online tutorials could help me out, or do I need more help than that?