Amazing colors for this summer pattern by Barbara Ana, combining a terracotta fabric and a unique contrast of blue and brick. Order reigns on the left side of the pattern but in the shaded part, hair flows with the wind, morphing into waves with tiny sailboats and fish tossed about. Maybe a taste of what dreams are made of....
Following in the footsteps of Barbara Ana'sSpring cat, here is its new companion, the Summer cat. Both are elegantly dressed in tight wasted ballooning dresses that form an "image within the image". It's amazing the amount of detail the designer has managed to fit into this bay view, with a clever use of light where distant sailboats and hot-air balloons only appear as silhouettes against the scorching sun.
This reproduction sampler takes us back to the very early years of Christianity, when the Virgin Mary made her first apparition to Apostle James, as he evangelized Roman Hispania, what was to become Spain. Nuestra Señora del Pilar, the focus of the work stitched in 1884, is still venerated in Catholic Spain and well beyond. If you know any friend with the name Pilar, it is derived from here. A Reproduction Sampler by Couleur Tourterelle.
Elegant finishing ideas: antique samplers adapted as cushions
Thanks to the painstaking work of Meriem Chauvet of Couleur Tourterelle, many samplers stitched over a hundred years back, come back to life as reproduction samplers. While many stitchers will make a point of scupulously reproducing the original work, other stitchers opt for a more creative approach. When we saw these pictures we could not resist sharing them with you. Featured left are the original designs and right the patterns adapted into cushions by Raphalissou. You can follow her account on Instagram here. Thanks Raphalissou for accepting to share these images of your beautiful work!
Original reproduction Sampler by Couleur Tourterelle
Fashion styles from The French Revolution to the Roaring Twenties
If the French Revolution rolled king's heads and spread turmoil well beyond the country's frontiers, it also revolutionized fashion styles. Designer Perrette Samouiloff takes us through an interesting voyage, picking three emblematic time periods.
First, the troubled times just after the revolution, when people gathered in the streets of Paris around a freshly planted Tree of Liberty flying the colors of the brand-new French flag. Blue, white and red stripes, worn by commoner women, became an instant fashion statement of the time.
Then to the romantic times when Napoleon wooed Josephine. Wigs and heavy dresses where suddenly done with. Graceful young ladies bared their arms, dressed their hair up in ribbons, and wore light, high waisted dresses, changing a woman's silhouette altogether, the start of the popular Empire style that would spread to the whole world.
Finally, by time that wonderful machine - the automobile - appeared on the streets, women abandoned long skirts and tight waists altogether and went for straight dresses and short hair that gave them wonderful freedom - whether to drive a convertible or dance to the rythm of Charleston.
From 17th and 18th century in the chateau of Versailles, through the Victorian area and turn of the century and up to the roaring jazz bands of the 1920's, Perrette Samouiloff has a wonderful talent for capturing attitudes and styles in cross stitch.
One of the most amazing things about cross stitch, is that it is an activity beloved the world over. We cannot think of a country where there aren't any stitchers passionately working on their projects, stitch by stitch. And we find it all the more amazing when a designer, in a country at war, chased from her hometown by intensive shelling, manages despite her terrible circumstances to continue designing, sustained probably by her passion for needlework. We therefore proudly present by Ukrainian designer Kateryna, this tribute to cross stitch inspired by the folklore of her homeland.
Counted cross stitch pattern by Barbara Ana Designs
New seaside pattern by Faby Reilly
Part of Faby Reilly's Masterclass program*, here is a delightful beach scene with the focus on a heavy anchor and its chunky chain, with a clever use of chainstitch in multiple strands to bring texture to the foreground. The background cross stitch scene includes many exquistely designed detail including seashells, lighthouse, seagulls and sailboat.
The user-friendly chart comes in two-steps, first the cross stitch, then all additional stitches. It also includes an extensive guide* detailing all the steps and tips to achieve a perfect result for all specialty stitches.
The cavalier King Charles spaniel, a popular 19th century pet
When Meriem Chauvet of Couleur Tourterelle came across the original antique sampler, it triggered a whole range of emotions. Of course she knew that this particular dog was very popular in the 18th and 19th century among the English nobility - even with the King, hence its name. But she also recalled she had already spotted quite a lot of Dutch samplers with a similar layout, and the exact same dog. Her mind was set. The antique sampler joined her private collection and we can now delight in reproducing an exact replica of the dog (albeit with an adapted border) and reading through the historical research accompanying the chart.
Bikini clad in high heels, here's a fun and catchy pin-up design, retro-style, like many of Monique Bonnin's designs. You'll love stitching the skimpy polka dot attire and the wonderful curves of the girl's body and face, as rendered in cross stitch with a lot of talent by this expert designer. The text can be personalized too.
We have just released three alphabet designs by Lesley Teare. All patterns can be stitched as a whole, for their decorative effect. You can also use them to personalise objects of your choice, adding initials on the flap of a hand-made pouch, gifting a pair of His and Hers towels with a couple's initials, or creating a bedroom name plaque for each of your (grand)children.