|Kathy B.'s block after embellishing.|
|Kathy B.'s block before embellishing|
When I shared Kathy B.'s blocks, I cannot believe I forgot to mention she included a lovely little goody bag for each of us that worked on it. Ironically enough, I already had some of the holly border, and was thinking it would go great with the colors in this block. (I purchased my holly border from Evening Star Designs. Sadly, they are going out of business. They are having a huge close-out sale at this time.)
|Goody bag from Kathy B. What a sweet treat!|
Two strands of the metallic gold floss (matching that used around the Santa fabric) were couched down on both sides of the black ornament ribbon. Mill Hill Old Gold glass seed beads #00557 were stitched on using a single strand of DMC 667 floss. (I have had these beads in my stash for ages. I LOVE the fact that there is a DMC conversion chart for Mill Hill beads, to help one stitch them on with a matching colored floss. The store where I purchased the beads was in Reedsport, Oregon, and it closed years ago. I have found them for sale at Acorns and Threads in Portland, Oregon. I have also found them at Joann.com as an on-line only item, and on Amazon.com.
Crazy Quilting International Blog and looked through Christmas and Winter themed blocks. Inspiration struck while looking through the eye candy from the Christmas 2008 DYB photos. If you visit that link and scroll down to Gerry K's blocks, you will see the seam treatment in Sherry's block for Gerry that inspired my embroidery here. (Give yourself some time - there is some AMAZING stitching to admire amongst those photos!)
In the lower, right-corner, I used a single strand of EdMar Iris #101 red embroidery floss and back-stitched the outline of a swag ribbon. Next, I used a satin-stitch to complete the swag. For a final touch, I used a Christmas Red shade of RiverSilks 4 mm ribbon to create bows along the swag. (Don't look at them too closely, or you will see I need more practice with Silk Ribbon Embroidery!) I am not perfect with my satin stitches, and this section alone took about 6 hours to complete, but I was quite pleased with the way it turned out.
Note to self: when using a satin stitch along a seam (which means stitching through 3-4 layers of fabric in some places), I may need to actually use a thimble.
A small Santa charm looked perfect along the dark green fabric. (He was a part of a Christmas Charm Pack I purchased from Evening Star Designs when I purchased the Winter Challenge 2013 Kit. At the time of this posting their close-out sale indicated they had one pack in their inventory.)
This section was still SO bare. I thought of adding snowflakes, but they did not look right. A Christmas tree? No. In the end, I made a bright Christmas star and stitched in the ground with a single strand of gold metallic DMC floss.
Next, I attempted to use an old vintage iron-on transfer pattern (that I traced onto tissue paper) to stitch on the outline of a gold bell. However, this fabric was not ideal for the outline, so I had to remove that and decide what to put in its place. I considered a wreath, but was not happy with how it would sit in the triangular shape. In the end, I stitched a tree with 2 strands of DMC green metallic floss. In the light I had, the contrast of greens worked well and the tree stood out from the green fabric. As daylight faded, I worried it would not stand out enough, but I think it is okay (I hope!) Mill Hill Petite Glass Beads #42010 (Ice) were stitched on with a single strand of DMC 762 floss to add some falling snow.
I wish I were creative enough to figure out how to enhance the Santa fabric in the center, but I feared any attempt would detract from his charm.
I hope Kathy B. likes the way the block turned out!