I am using this blog to chart my journey as I get involved with stitched textiles again after a gap of twenty odd years. I've tried once or twice recently to get started, but time - the lack of it - got in my way. Now seems right though, and this online diary will be my reminder not to let it slip through my fingers again.
Wish me luck.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

When life was simple

It was never a problem for me. From the earliest of ages, like 5 or 6, when asked what I'd like to do when I grew up I would reply without hesitation " go to Art College"'. I probably didn't know what it meant, but if it meant that I could spend all day making art then that was just fine by me.
I was a quiet bookish type, not at all into sport unless swimming, and blessed with the ability to do well at exams. I was the archetypal best pupil for my teachers and the odd one or two would attempt to divert my interest into something more academic.
They mostly knew better though, that any attempt to move me from my chosen path was entirely futile. My parents, bless them, encouraged me with my drawing although my Dad probably just thought I would leave school, get a wee job and then get married and become a cosy housewife. That was what women of his generation did after all.
One day when I was about 11 or 12 in my last year at primary school, someone came into the classroom and told me to report to the art room.
That holy place in the attic of the school where all the glorious paints and pencils were kept. I remember being curious but excited as I made my way upstairs. What had I been singled out for?
The art teacher ( sadly I've forgotten her name) sat me down at a table and explained that the school had been sent a sample of a brand new art material, something not even yet on the market in the UK, which was to be tried out to see if it was worth investing in. My teacher had decided that since this was so precious a material she couldn't initially hand it out to a whole class, and so I had been specially chosen to spend the entire afternoon on my own in the art room playing with this secret thing. What utter joy.
A small brown cardboard box was placed in front of me along with some sheets of cartridge paper. I was bursting with excitement when I opened the lid. Inside were twelve of the most joyous colours - chalky pink, pale lilac, sky blue.... They were the very first FELT PENS. My love affair with colour started then.
When was this? 1965!
And I did go to art college!

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Stitching by the inch

Well here I am again. Just popped out of the other side of weeks of constant work making up orders from a Trade Fair back in January and suddenly we've reached almost the end of them and I find myself with free time.
So once the list of boring jobs are out of the way - accounts, stocktake, tidying up etc- I should be able to lift a needle and thread again.
I did make time for a tiny piece of work during my Christmas hols, which became part of my sister's Christmas present. It was pieced together between cooking and cleaning and was made up of colours and fabrics that were to hand with no real thought or preparation. But I enjoyed making it.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

January Inspiration

Today I was lucky enough to catch Forever Changes, a major retrospective exhibition of the work of Michael Brennand -Wood. If the name isn't already familiar, he is one of the most influential textile artists working in Britain today.
I've loved his work ever since he first started exhibiting but I'd never seen any of it up close until now.
If you are in Edinburgh the exhibition is on at the Dovecot Studios until 12 January and what's more, it's free!
The studios themselves are well worth seeing too.

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Happy New Year

With the very best of wishes for a happy and healthy 2013 to you all from all here at Embroidered Originals.
We are enjoying a few days of happy family down time with a visit from a special little honorary Scot in his Mitchell tartan kilt.
A bracing walk along the beach yesterday to see the last sunset of the old year from the pier at Lower Largo, after a basket of chips and a pint in the Crusoe Hotel.

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Christmas Greetings

It's Boxing Day and I'm enjoying the feeling of nothing to do. The ham is boiling away on the stove, the trifle is in the fridge and our family will arrive later on but for now .... relaxing.
Another year of embroidery wilderness due to the pressures of work.
Except for a small piece of playing around last weekend.
I'm going to give it to my sister for Christmas. Hope she likes it.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Just visiting again

How long ago it seems since I've been here.
No work done - stitched work I mean.
I'm living the life of a slave to our business and she demands all of my time..and more.
A couple of years ago I could say that the first few months of the year were the quiet ones for the business, and I had some free time to myself. I was easing myself slowly back into the idea of working with a needle and thread again.
Since then, there have been no quiet months. Of course the fact that the business is going so well is something to be celebrated. But it is at the expense of other ( important) things.
I'm telling myself that we should be working as hard as possible just now so that we can have a cushion to relax against when we retire, but maybe we won't be allowed to retire. The business seems to have a life of its own.
A bit of a ramble tonight, but I've just noticed that although nothing has been updated  for a year at least, there are still quite a lot of visitors who spend time here, and I'd like to say thank you to you all - mainly it seems from across the Atlantic - who have stopped and looked.
Come back again....I might have something new to show.
Well here is something not new - over thirty years old actually. But it is pertinent as I made this sampler for my daughter when she was a baby, and now she has her own baby, our grandson. Sorry to say I haven't made a sampler for him - yet.

Thursday, 17 February 2011


The time isn't here yet.
There will be a chance to do some embroidery again, and move a step or so further but not for a little while yet.
We are just too busy with orders from the Trade Fair in January but the list is getting smaller.
Meanwhile I'm doing a bit of thinking and hopefully planning. There are a lot thoughts running around in my mind all the time, mainly about colour. It's difficult to actually grasp one and pin it down, but one day I will.
We're off to London in a week or two for a few days of culture and possibly inspiration.