Monday, September 22, 2014

Old Tricks, New Stitches competition starts today!

OldStitches New Tricks competition on &Stitches blog
Are you ready? Are you excited? Have you wondered what the theme of the competition could be? Well, wonder no more, we'll tell you all about it right now!

The theme of the competition is Old Stitches, New Tricks. We want to see where you will take something old and make it contemporary.

The 'Old' part can be anything: a pattern, a technique or stitch that isn't used much any more. Maybe some ancient materials.

The 'New' means it must be used in a way that is quite different from the Old's traditional use. The more imaginative the better. Go crazy!

Here's a few examples: cross stitch made with chicken wire, an all neon version of a vintage embroidery pattern, oversized crewelwork. Anything goes as long as it will blow our minds. ;-)

You are very welcome to share sneaky peeks at your project(s). If  you do, please use the tag #andstitchesnewtricks. We are so excited and can't wait to see what you guys make!

Competition rules
• You can enter up to 3 projects, but they must be different.

• The competition starts today and will end on November 16th.

• On November 10th, we will put a post on the blog where you can submit your entry/ies.

• Entries will be accepted until noon UK time on November 17th, that should cover all time zones. ;-)

• You will need to write a blog post about your project, or have it on a Flickr page or somewhere else that can be publicly linked to. In your blog post (or other link), you must tell us about it, not just post a couple of pictures. What is the idea behind your project? What materials did you use? How long did it take? Were there any challenges along the way? Why did you make this particular project?

• The winners will be chosen by Carina, Julie and Nicole.

Dates to remember
Competition start: September 22.
Add your entries: November 10-16.
Winners will be announced: November 23.

There will be three winners and they will get some lovely stuff (We wish we could enter!)

&Stitches competition 1st prize
1st prize:
Stitch the Halls by Sophie Simpson (aka What Delilah Did)
Kit of their choice from Fiddlesticks AU
PDF pattern of their choice from Satsuma Street
Set of  Kreinik threads in Christmas colours
A copy of Hoopla magazine, issue 2.

&Stitches competition 2nd prize
2nd prize:
Set of  Kreinik threads in Christmas colours
A copy of Hoopla magazine, issue 2.

&Stitches competition 3rd prize
3rd prize:
Set of  Kreinik threads in Christmas colours
A copy of Hoopla magazine, issue 2.

A big thank you to our prize sponsors, you guys are awesome!

What Delilah Did 's publisher Pavilion

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Eye of the Needle Exhibition & chance to win tickets

The Judgement of Solomon Mid 17th century. Needlepoint lace, materials include glass beads and pearls.
© M & E Feller. Photography by R Holdsworth FRPS

This fabulous, delicate mid 17th century White work piece, depicting the Judgement of Solomon is one of the examples on show in The Eye of the Needle, a current exhibition in the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford (UK). The Eye of the Needle highlights 17th century embroideries from the Feller Collection and the museum's own collection. Objects include samplers, panels but also household items and clothing.

Lady’s cap. Early 17th century. Materials include linen threads, wrapped metal threads, silk floss, sequins on plain weave linen
© M & E Feller. Photography by R Holdsworth FRPS

England in the 17th century was a restless mix of religious and political differences, which were often at the root of radical events (the beheading of King Charles is a grim example). Against a turbulent backdrop of wars, revolution and the start of colonisation, 17th-century women and girls made embroideries. The needlework reflects their feminist perspective on these tumultuous events and their place in society.

Esther and Ahasuerus Mid to late 17th century. Silk floss on plain weave linen. 
© M & E Feller. Photography by R Holdsworth FRPS

You can visit the Eye of the Needle until the 12th of October and we have two tickets to give away for this wonderful exhibition! So if you are interested, leave a comment (and indicate you want to go) before the 27th of September 2014. Make sure you leave your e-mail or twitter name so we can trace you easily. 

Frog Purse 17th century. Materials include leather, silk, metal thread on silk
© Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford 

And if you are lucky enough to live close to Oxford: on Saturday the fourth of October the Ashmolean Museum hosts a special event in partnership with the Embroiderers Guild. It's called The Big Stitch and you can expect a day full of embroidery related activities such as tours, talks (Karen Nicol is one of the speakers) and workshops. All events are free.  

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Win tickets to Thread Festival!

&Stitches give aways

Fancy a pair of tickets to an exhibition devoted to all things needlework and fabric?

The good people behind the Thread festival of textiles are offering a pair of tickets to the two-day show, taking place Friday and Saturday 26-27 September at the Farnham Maltings, in Farnham, Surrey. The tickets allow entry to both days of the event.

Returning for the second year, Thread aims to showcase the diversity of textiles, from needlework to dressmaking, quilting to fibre art. The two-day festival includes a marketplace featuring suppliers of hand-dyed embroidery floss, vintage haberdashery supplies, and contemporary kits, fabrics and tools. Professional textile artists will feature alongside needlework designers.

I made this cross-stitch dragonfly from an awesome kit I bought from Floss & Mischief at Thread last year.

Carina reviewed last year’s exhibition here. This year promises to be bigger and better, with the likes of What Delilah Did and Tilly & the Buttons on hand. I’ll be there; fancy meeting up?

More details, including tickets, directions and a list of workshops and talks, can be found at the Thread web site, here.

To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment on this post, and tell us your favourite style of needlework...

The nitty gritty: 
- there must be a way to contact you, so make sure to either leave an email address, a link to your blog or somewhere else where an email can be found. We will not notify the winner by leaving a comment on your blog. You can also leave your Flickr name or Twitter @
- the giveaway is open to anyone anywhere
- the giveaway ends on Saturday, 20 September, at 7 p.m. UK time (GMT). We will announce the winner on Sunday, 21 September.

Good luck, everyone! :-)

Monday, September 15, 2014

Presenting.... a new competition!

Old Stitches New Tricks - &Stitches competition
Hello! We're super excited to tell you that we're going to have a new competition here on &Stitches. But that's really all we're going to tell you right now. So sneaky. ;-)

Although maybe the image there may give the theme away a little bit.

Next week we'll tell you all about it! :-D

What are you stitching? Please share in the &Stitches Flickr group. We'd love to see it!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Spotlight: Marna Lunt

Marna Lunt &Stitches Spotlight
Today I want to put the spotlight on a fabulous UK textile artist called Marna Lunt. You may have seen her work on the cover of Mollie Makes.

Marna creates these wonderfully quirky illustrations which are then handstitched incorporating pretty textiles and buttons and other lovely things. They are beautifully tactile; I just want to reach through my screen and touch them.

See that lampshade up there, with Liberty? That is one example of Marna's work. Isn't it gorgeous? It took over 50 hours to make, impressive! Do pop over to her blog and read all about it.

Have you come across any fab stitchers we need to know about? Maybe you are a fab stitcher we should know about! Tell us about it in the comments!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Introducing a new &Stitches blogger!

We are very excited to announce that two new members are joining the &Stitches blogging team this month and next month! This month Rebecca from Hugs are Fun makes her debut as &Stitches blogger. At least it's her first post as 'official' &Stitches team member. If you have been reading our Summer Bloggin' posts you probably already saw Rebecca's LED lamp post a little while ago.

Rebecca is an avid (cross)stitcher and on the &Stitches blog she will be mainly writing about cross stitching. On her own Hugs are Fun blog though you can also read about Rebecca's other crafty endeavours such as English Paper Piecing and crochet.

You can find some of Rebecca's cool cross stitch designs (like the Solar System pictured above) and cross stitch kits in her shop. Welcome to &Stitches Rebecca, we are looking forward to your posts! 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Round up: Summer Bloggin' 2014

Summer Bloggin' on &Stitches

We have really enjoyed this year's batch of Summer Bloggin' posts. We hope you did too! We hope you have been inspired to try new things.

Maybe you have already tried soaking your fabric in tea for a nice colour effect? Busy adding LEDs to all your stitcheries? Maybe you have been inspired to enter your work in a competition?

I think Summer Bloggin' may be one of my favourite things we do here on &Stitches. I really love seeing all the different things people do.

Thank you to all of this summer's guest bloggers, you're awesome! :-)

My Grandmother's Sewing Box by Laura Howard.

Exploring Transfer Methods (part 1) with Cate Anevski.

Exploring Transfer Methods (part 2) with Cate Anevski.

Stitching negative space with daisyeyes.

Don't Fear The Fair (part 1) with Jorie.

Don't Fear The Fair (part 2) with Jorie.

LED embroidery with Rebecca Greco.

Creating interesting surfaces to stitch on (part 1) with Flaming Nora.

Creating interesting surfaces to stitch on (part 2) with Flaming Nora.

What are you stitching? Please share in the &Stitches Flickr group. We'd love to see it!