Monday, February 21, 2011

what I have to show for my weekend.

Its been a while since I have been crafty lately. The move from Texas to Utah set me back a lot! Even before the move I found it hard to be creative since we had to keep our current house spotless while we were trying to sell it. I couldn't have snippets of cloth, stray threads, or paper bits on the carpet.

This Presidents Day weekend, I set up a small list of projects that I wanted to work on. About a week ago I found a few items that I wanted to put:

I am in the process of making my kitchen feel like my own. My old kitchen had me written all over it, this one is still foreign to me. So, I decided to make an personalized embroidered dish towel to hang on my oven and bring a little bit more of me to my new kitchen.

The thing I love about embroidery is it's fast, it's easy, and I love the result. It does not require a huge investment, and if you are not feeling too creative... you can cheat a little bit. (really!)

Hot iron transfers are so much fun to use... of course you don't have to. I've embroidered many things that I have hand drawn onto my blank canvas. But, this weekend... I wanted a lazy project. And, I love the vintage animated kitchenwear iron ons that I found at Hobby Lobby. Who can resist their kitchy appeal, winky eyes, and retro cuteness. I don't think I could have drawn one better myself.

When you iron it on, make sure you don't use any water. You don't want the paper to fall apart. ALSO (and I learned this from experience!) Put a small dishrag or old towel under the surface your are ironing on will keep the transfer from leaking through the fabric and onto your ironing board. No husband wants prints of vintage dishes on their crisp, white church shirts! Trust me on this one!

Check and see if everything printed to your satisfaction, and then:
I lost my embroidery hoop in the move, it was so cute... canary yellow - vintage-ness. So, I had to pick one up at the craft shop... but it was only $0.99! I am still holding out for my old one somewhere, maybe I missed unpacking a box?

The trick to embroidery is all in the stitch. If you have never done it before, it's simple... trust me.
I use what is called the split stitch, basically I stitch over the stitch I just made.
For a more complete how to, you can click here to the Sublime Stitches site. It's my favorite place to get patterns.
The thing I love about embroidery is, once you know how... it is so relaxing!
And even though you are using iron on transfers, that does not mean that you can't personalize your creation! I wanted the words "Emily's Kitchen" on my towel. Now, if I had a light box, I would whip that out at this point-- which would be so amazingly awesome. But I don't.
So, I made up my own technique... it may be a bit more awkward that a light box, but it works! Print your words out and:
Use a pencil and pretend you are in kindergarten again:

After you trace it, stitch it up and you are left with a personalized treasure!


Amanda Bailey Halliday said...

i love it...very cute...i should learn how to do sister gave me a case of different color embrodary thread..looks like fun. hope all is well with you Emily and the boys..including jeff =)

Erin S. said...

Oh my! How darling! Absolutely love it!

Artsy Aut said...

I love this! I need to get my needles and thread out! Sounds like a good activity to do while catching up in my Gossip Girl!

Brindi said...

This was so cute. My mom used to have a whole drawer full of iron-patterns. Love the vintage look of these. Reminds me of her drawer.

the duchess said...

Classic. But you should've used "Emily's Kitsch-en". ;o) (funny thought I had while reading this...if Emily ever got a tattoo it would totally be something like this)

Astrid in Bristling Acres said...

Oh my! Your embroidered kitchen towel is just the cutest one I've seen! Now if I could only make myself be that patient.


Eve said...

Adorable! I have some tea towels that I picked up at the dollar store, but hadn't found a use for them yet... I might give this a try!

Emily said...

Oh!! I need to look for towels at the 1$ store, great idea!!