About Rachel

I have been studying and working with various forms of needlework for the past ten or more years. I look to the stitching community for insights and expansion on my lifelong studies. My favorites are blackwork designs or projects with minimal needle changes that focus on the pattern, not necessarily the color. My completed portfolio is available publicly on Flickr. You can also find me on Twitter, Pinterest, Etsy, stitchbyrachel.com and of course on Facebook

Designing my own patterns the 500th post!

Thistle

I thought about designing my own patterns for years. I would go to the nearest shop and find things I liked, but very rarely that I LOVED. I joined the Stitching the Night Away ornament club in January, and I confess I fell in love with the idea of coming up with something new every month. I had these three patterns inside me for a very long time, and many others to come, but I just had to get these on paper. So to speak. Right now all three of them are just in pdf! Throughout my years of studying needlework, stitching and its origins, I came across an old belief “one should never stitch or create a pattern of an object born with a soul”. There were many samplers that only had letters, floral, homes, rivers, nature than sort of thing and I realized why there was this void about people and animals.  In keeping in that tradition, most of my first creations have been floral. Many thanks go out to Loretta for providing valuable feedback on the most user friendly tools to utilize while designing.

I have committed to stitching all three myself to find the ins and outs of my patterns. There are more brewing inside me yet  🙂

I have designed a set of three you can find on the StitchbyRachel Flickr page, my blog http://internationalstitcher.blogspot.ca/, Pinterest, craftgawker, craftsy, Instagram, tumblr, etsy, twitter, olioboard, and on Stitch by Rachel Facebook.

Have you done any Charity Stitching?

Thanks to our friend Loretta, I found WOCS. World Of Charity Stitching. They have a Yahoo group, and they want to make all kinds of nifty things for people in long term care…

This is the blog  link:   http://worldofcharitystitching.blogspot.ca/

I signed up for the Brushstroke Butterfly Quilt they had on, which happens to be a pattern designed by Loretta, and I have included my version of it below. They are a kind group of people who take your cross stitched squares and sew them into quilts, walker bags, or just finish them into bookmarks. I signed up and had to be finished in about a month, but I did it and mailed it about 10 days late. They accepted it graciously and I hope to do more for them in the future. Rachel in AZ (and the other lovely ladies) is always supportive and puts a tremendous amount of work in. I’m going to add this to the StitchbyRachel Pinterest Boards too…

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Different Techniques for your Thread

As part of what I like to call my ongoing “thread studies”, I came across this fabulous book a while back.

colour-book

It is a thread and time consuming practice called “needle painting”. The finished work is so beautiful, and I have tried my hand at a few of my own. Although mine are a bit more bold than Trish Burr, I one day strive for her delicacy and tremendous finish product. Here is one of my finishes:

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Assissi Work

Assissi stitching….

I have been doing some research on European stitching techniques over the years and I was wondering if any of you have done any work related directly or indirectly to the Assissi method…
[Read more…]

Sharpening Stone

448Stork Scissors. My cutting accessory of choice. I searched for the right pair, silver finish as opposed to gold or brass, fit, function. All these qualities were important to me. I am very careful to just use them on fabric and thread, absolutely no paper, and after I am finished, I sheath them.

But what happens after you play with your toys month after month? Wear and tear. So I put out the call last year for a Christmas present that involved a sharpening implement.

This is what they came up with… [Read more…]

Stitching: Solitary or Solitude?

After reading years of books, magazines, and web content about stitchers and their stitching, I have noticed one prominent theme. We typically stitch alone.

id_rather_be_crossstitchingAre we all loners? Not at all! I don’t think so. There are many who like to stitch with friends, as a group, maybe even belong to a guild. But most of my reading indicates that we all like a QSnap/Lapstand/Floorstand, a comfy chair, and DVDs playing in the background while we pluck away at our projects.

I was re-reading all the Blog Hops of late, and I found them very revealing. It seemed as though almost everyone who contributed was a solo stitcher. Personally, my reason is somewhat of an escape – the one part of the days or weeks of chaos that I can take just for myself. What is your reason?
[Read more…]

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