Saturday 20 March 2021

Marvellous Melon Seeds

Painted melon seeds

Do any of you remember painting melon seeds as a child and then making necklaces with them?  It's certainly something I did and I can remember watching my daughter carefully threading some together to make a necklace for herself.  Well, I've been doing some more of that lately but not to make necklaces.  I was making a tree out of beads (yes, more trees!) and didn't have anything suitable for the leaves - so that's where the melon seeds came in because I did have some of those!

Tree (detail)

First, wash your seeds and let them dry.  After they have thoroughly dried, paint them.  I used acrylic paint in several shades of green.  Let them dry again.  They are then ready to use as embellishments for your stitching.  I sewed them on as if they were buttons using two holes that I just made with my needle as I went along.  You could just use one hole like a sequin and secure with a bead or a french knot.  You do have to be careful not to split them so don't sew too near the edge or use too fat a needle, or make the holes too close together.

Beads, sequins and french knots make up the flower details

I used bugle beads and the odd sequin for the trunk and branches, melon seeds for the leaves and sequins, beads and french knots for the flowers and grass at the base of the tree trunk.  Here's my finished tree...

Finished tree

If you want to be inspired further by amazing embellishment check out the work of Jess Grady and Kate Tume.  Or you can listen to them over on the Stitchery Stories podcast here (Jess) and here (Kate).  

Let me know if you use something unusual in your stitching - or if you have a go with melon seeds!

Saturday 13 March 2021

more trees please!

Stitched booklet - more trees please!

Recently I have been working on a little fabric book entitled - more trees please!  

I love trees.  I know I'm not alone.  Nature, in all its glory, has been particularly appreciated in the last year when our worlds have been limited by pandemic worries and restrictions.  Getting outside for some exercise and fresh air has been a boon - and trees have been there to provide a beautiful backdrop to inspire and uplift us.  I nearly became a forester in the dim and distant past and whilst I don't regret not doing that, I remain fascinated by the magnificence of trees.

My stitched book doesn't aim to showcase realistic trees - think more children's drawings and you'll have a better idea of what I was aiming for.

Anyway I had a great time stitching my different trees...

The back of the stitching is interesting too and I like the frayed edges of the pages...

And I think you'll agree, we could all do with more trees please!