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!

Sunday, November 1, 2020

Finished Crewel Necessities

 I am so pleased with this finish! The colors, the gorgeous Ulster upholstery linen, the design...everything! It's almost too pretty to use. The last finishing steps were the hardest and the most fun.

Back to lacing again after putting the padded side of the board towards the wrong side of the front. I used the heavy polyester thread provided in the kit and kept the thread "running" from the spool on the wood spool holder for the long amount needed (no knotting in between). First one way, then the other way.



The inside cover was pinned to the outside one to get ready for stitching.

The instructions said to slip stitch the two together but I used a slightly slanted Ladder stitch to make it a bit more secure with the polyester thread. A small opening was left on one end to eventually tuck the cord ends into.
I made the cord with pearl cotton and used my Spinster.

Next the cord was pinned to the edges of the Necessity starting at the little opening. Stitching the cord to the edge was the hard part. It took two days to slowly work my way around the rectangle using one strand of supplied embroidery thread to match the cord. Guided by the instructions I placed a piece of tape around the cord a little way from the opening and then cut in between the tape.


I used my "Purple Thang" to push the end into the opening, then repeated to the opposite end of the cord. Both ends we're secured together and to the edges. Whew!
A small pearl button was stitched to the cord endings to disguise the joining.

Opposite the cord, on the other side of the case, I made a button loop with pearl cotton over three strands of pearl cotton and then buttonhole stitched over the 3-strand loop. 

It's done. Finished! Here's the inside...

And the beautiful outside. Thank you to Kim Sanders of North Carolina for teaching this wonderful class and designing such a beautiful project!!

It looks so pretty and clean I'm hesitant to use it so maybe I'll display it in my newly remodeled sewing room!





Monday, October 26, 2020

More Crewel Huswife

The next step in finishing this wonderful crewel huswife is putting the ruler and scissor pockets onto the foundation. First step was to cut out their patterns from the provided plastic, easily done using mat, ruler and rotary cutter to get the most accurate templates.


The ruler pocket was really easy: turn under the pocket top and stitch it down, folding the sides in to the Pekinese stitch top border and pressing using the template as "pattern". Then an easy slip stitch to the foundation after the template was removed: quickly done and very satisfying. The scissor case was a little more complicated. The plastic template stays in this one. The completed front is centered and edges wrapped around the template. Lacing is done with a strong thread. I chose Cotty #12 cotton thread for this. First the top to bottom are laced: the top is carefully stitched on the edge of the fold. Then the sides of the case are laced.

The scissor case lining is folded in slightly smaller than the laced front with corners tucked in. I did use a steam iron to help with this to get sharp creases. 

The lining was slip stitched to the scissor case cover to prepare for final stitching to the foundation.

Here is the result of a carefully stitched scissor case. I put extra stitches at the top corners just to reinforce where the most strain would be. The last step was stitching the little felt "pin page" (my term on this) to the foundation using some of the crewel wool in the same felt color and a catch stitch to secure it. It looks good so far. 

But the next challenging step is putting the lining and the cover together, but that's another day!

Friday, October 23, 2020

Finished Sewing Room!

 Well, ALMOST completed sewing room. After putting in the IKEA desk and drawer unit plus the Pressing Cart, I decided I needed to upgrade my file cabinet. So I spent time cleaning out and organizing files...files of wholesale vendors and SAGA information. Then there were the files of projects, patterns instructions, articles and general ephemera of doing what I do. Out went two grocery bags of paper to the recycling bin. Whew! Never knew I had that much "junk" in those files! Here's the area with the old filing cabinet behind the door...filled with rolls of fabric, dolls, rack of doll clothing and a ribbon holder somewhere underneath. It's crowded in my small room but the new Alex cabinet will make it neater and better organized.


The need to clean out was two-fold: the drawer/file unit I bought from Ikea has only one file drawer and three drawers. And the files badly needed an upgrade of organization. The ALEX drawer unit matches my other wider unit next to my Ikea desk. It blends and looks like I had a professional decorator design the room. 
Skip listin

Skip listingALEX drawer unit/drop file storage white 14 1/8 " 22 7/8 " 27 1/2 "

Putting the unit together was easy...

Count out the parts and get ready to put it together.


Put the outside box together.
Build the three top drawers and secure to inside drawer rails.
Finished file drawer is ready for securing to side rails. 
But moving the files from the old cabinet to new was another matter! 
I threw out more old vendor catalogs, files, file folders....
But the new cabinet is finished, filled and ready for more organized work!
It's much better now. I think I'm finally done with "remodeling" my wonderful sewing room haven!