Posts Tagged ‘hand-dyed’

I’ve had the idea of turning an old pocket watch case into a pendant for a while now, but it wasn’t until yesterday, when after a challenging morning helping my 11 yr old to muck out her bedroom, I felt in need of something simple and soothing to stitch. The watch case itself was ready to go, I just needed to find the fabric…


…then track down the Dinky Dyes variegated silk I knew I had that would go with it, select three tiny nuggets from my sea glass collection…


…and I was good to go. Seed beads first.


And then the embroidery – feather stitch using one strand of the silk and scattered trios of french knots.


To finish I layered a piece of wadding over a circle of card and snipping the edge of the fabric, I wrapped each tab round the card and lightly glued them to the back before setting the whole thing in the watch case.


It’s been a long time in development, but I’m absolutely delighted with the result.

If you’re interested, you can find it here.

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This is Fuchsia.

Fuchsia Fairy

Fuchsia and my youngest fell in love with each other at a craft fair in Polperro where we bought her from the lady who created her. Being very small (and easily rolled over on), I was told that Fuchsia needed a sleeping bag to keep her safe in bed. Pink was the first choice of colour, but I only had a small strip of pink, so Fuchsia graciously agreed that green, trimmed with pink would be acceptable.

I had the perfect piece for her sleeping bag – a scrap of hand-dyed green cotton with its original lace border onto which I planned to appliqué the pink, probably embroidered first. So this was the main bit of sewing I did on holiday this year; Fuchsia’s sleeping bag.

Fuchsia's sleeping bag 1

The hand dyed pink cotton is embroidered with French knot rosebuds with lazy daisy stitch leaves and a whipped back stitch trailing stems.

Fuchsia's sleeping bag 2

Then I feather stitched the embroidered panel onto the green fabric and hand stitched the whole thing up into a pouch shape.

Fuchsia was delighted. So was my youngest.

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This piece of gilding metal was stuck with round stickers and then run through the rolling mill to impress the pattern into it. They turned out oval, but I love the effect; like a scattering of bubbles.

Bubbles book charm 1

Halved, drilled, corners smoothed round and polished into book boards.

Bubbles book charm 2

A tiny book…

Bubbles book charm 3

…with hand dyed silk pages…

Bubble book charm 8

…and coptic stitch binding in hand-dyed orange silk thread.

Bubbles book charm 4

Then the closure.

Bubbles book charm 5

A pop of bright blue from a coco shell disc bead held in place with a striped seed bead and finished with a gold coloured jump ring as a bale.

Bubbles book charm 6

And in comparison with a penny (same size as a cent).

Bubbles book charm 7

I also started the grid book charm with pages of a very loose hand dyed cheesecloth cotton in purple and green.

Grid book charm mk 1 a

Unfortunately the very loose nature of the fabric made it really difficult to get the tension of the binding right, the fabric pulled into holes in places and the stitching inside was really untidy.

Grid book charm mk 1 b

So despite the beauty of the fabric, back to the drawing board for this one. Indigo dyed cotton I think, for mark 2.

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I’ve been working on a number of small projects, fitting them into slivers of time in the meagre 24 hours there are in each day.

I love these darker green nuggets of sea glass, paired with a very pale hand dyed linen background.

The way they take the light is just beautiful so I’ve left them alone; just surrounding them with a scattering of random seeding stitches in one strand of space dyed green/brown stranded silk thread .

Dense seeding close to the sea glass,

which becomes more widely spaced the further out I go.

I’m working this in my hand, as it’s only about 4″ square, hence the creases.

It’s not quite finished, but is something very calming to work amid the bustle of life at the moment.

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