Monday, April 27, 2015

Hedebo Tea Cosy and an Inspirational Motto

I have done a little more embroidery on my Hedebo tea cosy which I wrote about some time ago. This UFO (unfinished object) was started in 2006! I often wonder why some projects languish in the UFO or 'to do' box while others are completed fairly quickly.

Hedebo tea cosy based on a design by Hetsie van Wyk 
One of the things that bothers me about this Hedebo project is that I used perle threads for the surface embroidery and it has not given me the results I had envisioned. At the time perle or stranded DMC embroidery thread was all I could get. With internet shopping opening up the variety of threads available, I think I would now perhaps choose a cotton floche thread which is softer looking than the perle I used.

I have come across this inspirational quote a number of times recently and it prompted me to take action. After all perfection can be an enemy of progress. Can't it?

Photo: Offizin on Etsy
My tea cosy may not match up to my original mental picture of it but I really like the design and with my new motto 'done is better than perfect' I'm carrying on with the stitching. I can also practice techniques that I don't use often or haven't tried before - like the eyelets I was putting off doing.

The eyelets were made without cutting any threads and the 'special tool' I used to keep the openings all same size was a 2.75mm knitting needle. With a stiletto, awl or laying tool you have to judge how much to open up each hole, something I have found tricky. The knitting needle worked well for me and I like how you can get the same size hole each time - well almost.

The next step is to finish off the pulled work around the sides and around the border at the bottom. Then I can start cutting and withdrawing the threads for the drawn thread areas. Those are the bits I have been wanting to get to for a long, long time.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Kimberly House Embroidery - Bridal Shower Gift Ideas

My niece Genae has just visited from New York.  She is now part of the on-line store Kimberly House and brought with her some of their beautiful hand embroidered items to show me.

Genae also gave me an embroidered kitchen tea towel and a guest towel from the Kimberly House range that I will show you below. Having just been to a bridal shower and kitchen tea I thought what a lovely and special gift these hand embroidered towels would be for a new bride.

My tea towel is made of soft 100% cotton waffle-weave fabric and it is embroidered with satin stitch peas. 

It's not easy to embroider on waffle-weave cloth, but as you can see in the close up photo of the peas above the satin stitch lies neatly and smoothly on the uneven surface. I'd love to be a fly on the wall and see how it is embroidered.

You can see the rest of the range of kitchen towels on the Kimberly House website here. (Don't you like the strawberries and the radishes?)

My guest towel is embroidered with a spray of lavender on a fine white linen fabric. Look at the elegant little touch of drawn thread work on the hem.

It's so pretty that I don't want to use it and have put it away for a very special visitor to use. The guest towels are available in both white and the chic natural colour linen shown here.

I had previously seen the Kimberly House website and liked their range of embroidered items, but I was particularly impressed by the finish on them when I actually saw the real thing. If you are looking for a gift for a new baby, there is also a sweet and stylish selection of hand embroidered gifts for babies here.

My ex-Zimbabwean readers may be interested to know that all the embroidery was originally done in Zimbabwe. Unfortunately the factory there no longer operates and the embroidery is currently done by hand by embroiderers in Vietnam. Genae is currently on a visit to the factory in Vietnam to find out more about it. I did drop some broad hints about accompanying her to carry her suitcase, but no luck there. I'm sure it will be a fascinating visit and I wish Genae much success.

Photos courtesy of Kimberly house.

Disclaimer: I received a gift of two towels, but I do not benefit in any way from publishing this review.