Friday, January 29, 2016

Tatting, silk ribbon roses and French knots on felt hearts

I love combining techniques to create OOAK items.

 I make these felt hearts in two different sizes and they look beautiful as door or drawer knobs, hanging on coat hangers or as pin cushions

I use Sizzix dies to cut the hearts and use polyester filling. My preferred embroidery floss is DMC and I like size 20 thread from Lizbeth for shuttle tatting  

Once I have completed the embroidery and/or tatting I sew two hearts together using either a running stitch or blanket stitch. I find it is best leave approximately a one inch space to insert the stuffing (it's a good idea to measure enough floss to sew around the heart without a join)

Please see the index on the left for tutorials for making silk ribbons and fork bows?

This is an example of a heart I teach as part of enrichment programmes on cruise ships -  
it takes about 60-90 minutesto complete one. It is a simple design and good for beginners. Most of us learned to do lazy daisy (chain) stitch at school and it's like riding a bike! 
Here I have combined silk ribbon roses and leaves with a tatted edging pattern by Mary Konior and French knot wisteria 

 ....more tatting with seed beads

Hollyhocks and cottage garden flowers with a tatted butterfly

......scattered French knots around  roses and added a seed bead to each stitch around the edge

 These are fun to make and you can make them as simple or busy as your hearts desire!

I hope you enjoyed seeing these and please visit again



Monday, January 11, 2016


Today I am sharing a project I just finished for our living room. I was inspired by a picture I saw recently but, unfortunately I can not remember where or when. If I do come across it I will post a link.


The room was recently decorated in French Grey and, although it does look nice, I thought some dark grey accessories would add some "zing" 

I bought this vintage wall pocket on eBay

and used a mirror we already had

Contorted Hazel (Avellina Cortylus) 
Pink and/or peach silk ribbon (mine was was hand dyed)
Isopropanol aka rubbing alcohol
Reindeer moss 
Distress ink
Craft glue
Florists' wire (optional)

Flat paint brush 
Cocktail sticks
   Palette paper (or any non- stick surface) 
Blossom punch or die cutter


I. Apply two coats of Americana Decor Chalky Finish paint to the wall pocket and mirror (you may   have to carefully remove the glass from the mirror) and leave to dry


2. Apply two coats of DecoArt Spray Sealer   

3. Make the blossom as follows: 
        a. cut flowers using a punch or die cutting machine. I sandwiched 2 layers of silk ribbon 
            between copy paper (to prevent it getting jammed). 

        b. fold a stamen in half and insert through the holes in the middle of the flowers. I used both 
            ribbon  and paper flowers - some were made with silk, some with paper and some with
            both. The fact that I varied way they were assembled made the blossom look more realistic
            and delicate.

        c. apply glue  over the top and under the base of the flower
        d. lay aside to dry, on a non- stick surface
        e. gently mould into shape with your fingers. Try to make them all different for a  more realistic 
            effect. To make buds simply roll a silk flower between your fingers omitting the stamen
        f.  Apply distress ink to the end each stamen

        f.  Once dry cut the excess stamen under the flower

4. Cut the oasis to size and place in the wall pocket

5. Glue the blossom randomly on to the twigs
6. Press the twigs in to the Oasis

7. Lay reindeer moss over the Oasis and fix in place with wire if necessary


8. Hang both items on the wall and enjoy the WOW factor

 Please let me know if you think I missed anything out