Life is indeed a stitch!
Berryhill Heirlooms and Susie Gay present techniques, heirloom sewing, hand embroidery and other musings that you will enjoy and appreciate. Come and join in the fun with Susie, a Home Economist, and savor a little rest from your hectic day...and yes, it's a Degree she uses every day!

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Hurricane Stitching

As most folks in the U.S. know, the eastern coast is expecting a dangerous hurricane to smack North and/or South Carolina starting late Thursday night. My area, commonly known as Hampton Roads, Virginia (specifically Smithfield, Virginia, for me), is enforcing mandatory evacuations for low lying areas, which is not our house thankfully. But, it doesn't mean it's going to be a vacation, either. I've been out gathering the usual supplies: batteries, water, pet food, kitty litter, and foods that won't need refrigeration since we will most likely lose power. I've finished all of my kits for the Smocking Arts Guild of America National Convention which starts next week in Winston Salem, which will make for an interesting drive for me on Monday.

So after I get all the preparations done, what about stitching? I'm going to NEED to stitch to stay calm. I've been back working on the beautiful wool shawl "Flowers for a Fall Evening" (designed by Kris Andrews) as you can see here.
I've completed the other Lily end and made progress since this posting a few months ago: "Carrot Time".
After I finish the red Poppy side I have one little leaf to do at the center back of the shawl. It will be lined, and then I plan to bead the ends. The lining will have to wait until I have power.... But I do have Ott lights that run on batteries, so I'll be able to see to stitch.

Then I can pull out a UFO or two from the Unfinished Object box if I want to do more stitching while the winds and rain blow.
And to all fellow stitchers and sewers in the impact area: stay safe, stay dry and God watch over you and yours during this dangerous storm!

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Hemstitching Doodle Cloth

Still getting ready "kitting" for the Smocking Arts Guild of America National Convention that's fast approaching. I'm working on the second to last batch of class kits for the Simple Stitches class. Someone had purchased ALL of the white Irish handkerchief linen from my usual source and wouldn't be available until October. And that was over 2 months ago....sigh. So I found another source...a beautiful expensive source: Ulster linen "1000". The one thousand refers to the weight and the 1000 is their lightest weight, perfect for baby clothes.
I thought I would make a little doodle cloth sampler of the hemstitching so student could choose their preferred size. I removed threads for three different rows: 4, 5 & 6 threads and marked the cloth indicating which is which. I started with just a regular hemstitch, so it looks like a row of triangles.
Then I did the other side of the row with the same hemstitch...but it looks like a ladder when done. Hence the name "Ladder Hemstitch". The second row is so much easier and faster because the bundles are ready counted.
Here's the completed Doodle Cloth with three rows of Ladder Hemstitch, one over 4 withdrawn threads, one over 5 and the largest row over 6 withdrawn threads.
 I think everyone will especially enjoy this class working on this lucious linen!

Friday, August 24, 2018


It's that time of year when I order lots of supplies for the upcoming SAGA Convention (this link is the classes) and the EGA Nartional Seminar....and other workshops I will be teaching. It's almost like Christmas with boxes and bolts arriving at the house. Today was a special day: the box of Dovo scissors arrived thanks to Bill, our UPS delivery man!

I always love opening these boxes that come all the way from Solingen, Germany.
They're always packed so carefully and neatly.
It's exciting to open each blue and red box inside to see what I ordered...even if I've ordered them many times before.
Scissors, shears and scissor cases...even serrated scissors on the right of the photo.
Then there are the specialty embroidery scissors in the beautiful mauve leather cases. And the diminutive (but powerful) lace scissors on the right.
And. oh my, MORE Scissors. Some for lefties, others for hardanger, and more curved ones. So many to choose from!  I call it scissor love. If you can't wait to see me at one of the venues, then travel over to my website and peruse the selection. If you don't see what you want you can always send me an email!