Saturday, January 1, 2011


Like most of us......we approach the New Year with all sorts of resolve began about a week ago. I'm determined to get more stitching done in 2011. As my blog teaching schedule indicates.....I'll be doing less and less travel teaching this year, which should leave a bit more time for designing and sewing time. (Though having a retired husband at home takes up more time than one might imagine!) *I'm happy to have him though!!

In a rare cleaning frenzy, I came across a box from C & T Publishing that I barely glanced at when it was returned to me about 2 years ago. It contained the miscellaneous supplies and step-by-step samples from my book "Embellishing With Felted Wool". it was a small stabilized and marked woolfelt piece which was a perfect jump-start project to tackle during this busy time of year.

The square design area is 11" x 11" and features a star motif.

So, I grabbed my white button collection.....sorting out the small ones to keep the proportions of my design in scale with the overall size of the wall hanging. Next, the buttons were positioned to fill in the shape of the star. They were secured with one pass of Nymo beading thread just to hold them in place in preparation for beading.

Stitching through only 2 holes of a 4 hole button is adequate for this step. Notice at the top of the photo.....where I've come back and added beads to cover the holes and thread path on each bead.

This extra step of bead embellishing the buttons provides an attractive and more polished finished piece.
Next, I decided to add some hand embroidery.....basically just chicken scratches....although I'm sure there is a proper name for that stitch. Working on a stabilized piece of woolfelt (in a QSnap frame) will avoid distortion of the fabric. Notice how nice and flat this is, even after all the stitching.

I didn't want to duplicate the pattern that is featured in my now it's time for patience as I begin auditioning various finishing ideas. Though I like the scale and shape of this rick rack, it had a bit too much Christmas look for me at the moment. (Maybe two weeks ago I'd have liked it!)

Some bright yellow woolfelt strips were another consideration which I rejected. But now....looking at the photo....I like it better.

Next I tried the idea of alternating seed beads and buttons to frame the piece. Although I can get frustrated when a project is stalled.....this is actually the part of designing that gives me the most satisfaction once I get the right mix. Tim Gunn would say....... Make it work! what happens......

Happy New Year Everyone.....may all your wishes & resolutions come true!


Anonymous said...

I love the button star. I have been accumulating yellow buttons for a button quilt but have not decided on the form yet.

Julie Bagamary said...

Great use of buttons Mary. Happy New Year!