Sunday, December 30, 2012

A Peacock & A Dog

The hustle and bustle is over for another year, so I thought it was now safe to share the 2 stitchy gifts I gave this year for Christmas.  Of course they were both started a lot earlier in the year, but as a lot of us stitchers tend to do, they get put on hold for some reason or another, and then we are scrambling to get them finished for the "big day".

My daughter Chantelle is a lover of peacocks, so I always keep my eye open for things that have a peacock theme when out shopping.  When I saw this pattern, I thought it would be a fun one to stitch to add to Chantelle's collection.  

I wanted to change up the colours to personalize it a bit more, so while shopping for the threads, Bonnie suggested that I use the colours that Chantelle had used in her  wedding the year before.  (New to our blog, and curious about the wedding?... you can read about it here.)  These are the colours we came up with: Peacock and Purple Majesty by Weeks, black beads for the border, and Midnight beads (from Michaels) for the tail.  The fabric - China Pearl, 28 ct. Jobelan - I already had this in my STASH, which is always a bonus :-)

"Proud Peacock" - Châtelaine Design by Martina Rosenberg

 Grrrrr!!  I usually don't use glass on my pieces, so I forgot to take pictures before framing it and then had to deal with the glare!!

Trying to be as frugal as I could be this Christmas, I picked up the frame at Goodwill for $5.00, and I spray painted it a glossy black. I almost hated to take the frame apart... the person who originally framed it did such a beautiful, meticulous job!  It was 2 frames in one... almost like a shadow box.  That's why I decided to keep the glass this time around.

 I actually had the stitching all finished on the peacock quite a while ago, but was putting off the beading.  I have done projects before that had one or 2 beads added to them, but never this many.  Once I got started, and had a rhythm going, I discovered that I really liked applying the beads!  Ok... some of you out there may call me crazy, but I am one of those stitchers who loves to do french knots and now beading!!  Hmmmm... now maybe I'll get back to that Mirabilia (with the 100's of beads) that I started almost a decade ago!

Now this isn't stitching related, but it's in keeping with the peacock theme.  I also wanted to share a picture of  the gorgeous blanket that Bonnie found in her travels back in the summer.  She took the chance and bought it, hoping that I liked it and would want to give it to Chantelle as part of her Christmas gifts.  Well, you were right Bonnie... she loved it!  Thanks again for helping me with my shopping!!

Now, onto stitchy gift #2.  This one I made for Chantelle's husband, our son-in-law Martin.  He is a dog lover, and gravitates towards the smaller breeds... pugs, bulldogs, etc.  While we were visiting them in Toronto last year, Chantelle showed me a needlepoint pillow of an English bulldog in a shop window near where they lived.  She made the comment that Martin really liked it, but didn't want to pay what was on the price tag.  That's all I needed to hear to get the wheels turning!  We went back to their place, got on her laptop and started looking for patterns.  For some reason, at that time, I couldn't find any English bulldog patterns, so we settled on a "French" bulldog instead.  

I thought I would change things up a bit with Martin's too, so I decided to convert the DMC colours to Vikki Clayton solid silk floss.  Wow... gotta love stitching with silk threads!

I was so excited when I went to the fabric store and started digging through the remnant bin and found the perfect fabric to back the pillow with... it was exactly what I had pictured in my head right from the beginning :-) 

Being stitched on the white fabric, I felt it was still missing something.  Out came Nana's button tin and I started digging.  I think adding the 4 metal, slightly distressed buttons was just what it needed!

It was so much fun to stitch both the picture and the pillow, especially when I know that both Chantelle and Martin really appreciate all of the love and time that went into making them.

Time to go dig out that Mirabilia...



Catherine said...

Wonderful projects and that blanket is beautiful!

Bonnie said...

Gorgeous !! They turned out perfect!

It was really hard to keep these gifts a secret since last May!

Oh by the way, when you framed the peacock were you able to keep 'Jayne's' message in view? (When Tracey was stitching this at Brentwood - Jayne came along when Tracey was out of the room and quickly stitched a message along the outer edge of the material and we waited to see how long it was before Tracey would notice.) Tracey excitedly said, "I'm leaving that on there!"

I'm so glad Chantelle liked the blanket too.

Barb said...

Such thoughtful gifts. The stitching is lovely.

Trina said...

They all look amazing! They will definitely be appreciated and enjoyed!

Happy Stitching!

Tracey said...

Thanks Bonnie! Oh, and thanks again for helping me sew up the pillow too.

No, I wasn't able to keep the message visible... you do have to take the back off of the frame to see it.

CanuckLulu said...

Hi Tracey, Love, love, love the peacock piece. So beautiful and the beading makes it more. I also loved the shiny black frame. Looks perfect for it. The little pillow is so cute and I really like the button trim. What a great idea. I, too, have a grandma's button can!
Lulu x

jayne@~an eye for threads~ said...

ha ha ha...Gotta love a smartass eh. Cheers to your wonderful gifts and I have to agree about the French Knots. I love them and even though I have been known to use beads I still would rather go the fk way.
Happy Happy Happy to 2013 and it is that much closer to the end of May,,,,,just say'n
love you guys.... As always

tilly said...

I absolutely loved the gifts. My plan for 2013 is to make/stitch/craft every gift I give for Christmas and birthdays. You ladies are definitely an inspiration.

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