Stitchers Templates

using Sharon B's CQ StencilsMy stitchers templates are designed with other embroiderers and crazy quilters in mind. I aim to help you take your stitching to the next level.  With my templates you are able to create hundreds of different hand embroidery patterns to embellish your seams and decorate you crazy quilt patches with flair.

These templates are easy to use, made of clear plastic so you can position them easily and are compact in your sewing box. To use them position the template in place and, holding it firmly with one hand, so that it does not shift, use a quilter’s pencil to trace along the edge of the template to create a pattern. You can stitch along this line to decorate the seam.

using my Crazy Quilt Templates set 2

There are also a number of different curved lines that allow you to create many organic type hand embroidery designs. They are ideal for floral sprays. The curved lines can also be used them to create frames and other types of flourishes on your work.

Templates fro crazy quilters ebook pageTo  show how each set of  templates could be used, I have a free ebook of patterns to accompany each set. Using the shapes found on the edge of each stencil you can create numerous seam embellishments.

TO ORDER your Stitchers Templates

Stitchers Templates set 1 you will find here 
Stitchers Templates set 2 you will find here 

dove from Crazy Quilt Templates set 2

TAST Interview with Christine B of Patchwork Allsorts

This week I would like to introduce you to Christine B of Patchwork Allsorts. I noticed Christine’s interesting TAST samplers  last year and after poking about her blog and reading it for while I realised how creative and talented she is. So without further preamble I would like to introduce my readers to Christine B of Patchwork Allsorts.

Image for TAST Interview with Christine BWhy do you like hand embroidery and hand work? How has it influenced your life?

I love the unique style that hand embroidery/hand work gives to a project. Each embroiderer’s work is totally personal to them, just like their handwriting. Hand work has allowed me to express my creativity at times when it has been difficult to communicate in other ways (living in a country where you haven’t mastered the language yet!!)

How did you start? Were you taught by your mother, school or taught yourself online? If you taught yourself what attracted you to embroidery?

I was taught a few basic embroidery stitches at school and my mother still has the needle book that I made from the sampler I stitched then. However, that was a long time ago and when I took needlework up in adulthood I basically taught myself with the help of online tutorials (such as TAST) and many books! (I love books!) My mum always knitted and did hand sew a few items of clothing when we were children which probably encouraged me creatively but, she didn’t embroider. I have always liked the look of hand embroidered work and I think that is why I wanted to learn.

Image for TAST Interview with Christine BDo you use TAST to make samplers or incorporate the stitches into projects as you go. Or what sort of projects most attract you ?

I have made several different samplers using the TAST stitches. When the first piece of fabric was full, I made it into a needle case and started a second sampler. This second sampler I stretched over a canvas and made into a picture which hangs in my sewing room. I am currently still working on the third sampler but, when it is complete, it will become another picture to compliment the other one and will hang beside it in my sewing room.

Image for TAST Interview with Christine BCan you talk about your last project and/or your current project? 

As well as finishing off the second TAST sampler picture, I am currently working on two projects. The first is a wool felt project inspired by Sue Spargo’s lovely work. It is a series of circles appliqued to a wool background which I am embellishing with hand embroidered stitches. The other project I am working on at the moment is a freehand machine embroidery project. It is based on a photograph of the Chalet we lived in for some years in Switzerland. I am really enjoying seeing it take shape and it is something completely different to anything that I have worked on before.

Image for TAST Interview with Christine BWhat is the project you are most proud of?

I think my favourite piece of embroidered work is the crazy quilt that I finished in 2015 . I made it as part of the Crazy Quilt Journal Project for that year. It was my first attempt at a crazy quilt and, although I made many mistakes, I learned a lot and I still love this quilt which now hangs above the bed in my daughter’s bedroom.

Image for TAST Interview with Christine B

I love all the detail and my very favourite addition is the hedgehog stitched using bullion knots .

Image for TAST Interview with Christine BDo you have any UFO’s ? If so, fess up to how many?

I do have UFOs…. I don’t really like having projects unfinished, so I do try and keep them to a minimum. The ones that I have are mainly BOM quilt projects which I have joined in with online and have made the blocks but haven’t got round to putting them into quilts yet. I currently have 11 UFOs not including the current projects I am working on.

Do you work purchased designs or do you design your own projects? Or do you do both?

I work on both purchased designs as well as designing my own projects. Sometimes I find it is nice to have the structure that comes with a purchased design. The decisions are all made for you but, it is also nice to have the freedom to work on something entirely from your own imagination and creativity.

Do you have a creative design process? If so what is it? Or do you work intuitively?

I don’t think I have a design process. I tend just to see something which I like and then want to try and make one for myself. As well as the decorative side of needlework I also like to understand how something has been constructed and trying out something new is always exciting. I like to challenge myself to try a new technique each year.

Image for TAST Interview with Christine BWhat stimulates your creative process? What inspires and sparks ideas for you?

I find that I am inspired by all sorts of things. Often I will just love a piece of fabric and that sparks the idea for a project or, I will see something online that I like and just have too try it out for myself. The internet is full of inspiration and talent!

Lots of people have trouble starting a project. What makes you start a project? Do you have any tips to get you from blank fabric to stitching?

I mostly feel compelled to start a new project by ideas sparked by others’ projects that I have seen online. There are so many fantastic online tools which give you inspiration. Facebook groups such as TAST is one such tool! My advice for someone starting a new project is just to get started….. what is the worst that can go wrong? If you don’t like something you can take it out. Don’t be afraid to experiment with ideas.

Do you have stall points? If so how do you get past them? Do you have any tips to share about this.

I don’t often have stall points but, when I do, I set the project to one side but I leave it where I can see it. Having it in view reminds me to keep thinking about it and encourages me to find the way forward. I don’t think you should be afraid to throw something out if you are really unhappy with it or, to try out a stitch or piece of fabric and if it doesn’t work take it out again.

Image for TAST Interview with Christine BDo you have ‘go to’ stitches. In other words stitches you use frequently that you return to using over and over. If so what are they and why do you think they are so successful for you.

Yes, I do have several favourite stitches that I use regularly. The first is herringbone stitch. I love this stitch, it is easy to work and covers a lot of space in a short amount of time. It can also be added to which takes it from simple to sophisticated. Another is the reliable buttonhole (blanket) stitch which I really enjoy stitching and finally, I like colonial knots and you will find these on most of my projects.

Do you have a favourite embroidery thread, or something you use all the time? If so what is it?

I really enjoy stitching with variegated threads and one of my particular favourites is a hand dyed silk thread which is produced by Stef Francis. I really enjoy working with this thread.

What advice would you give to new hands?

My advice for someone new to embroidery would be to start with something you know you can achieve. Don’t start with something which is beyond your capability and end up putting it to one side and feeling disappointed. Build your confidence by starting with a small project and gradually increase your stitch library!

Is there anything else you would like to add?

I would just like to add that I have really enjoyed the TAST stitches, they have expanded my stitch library enormously, so thank you Sharon!! I would also like to say that nothing beats the camaraderie that is found in the stitching World…. so if you are not already involved, jump in and get started!

I hope you have enjoyed this TAST Interview with Christine B of Patchwork Allsorts. I certainly enjoyed discovering more about her approach to embroidery. Read more about Christine B’s  embroidery, take a break, make a cuppa pop over to Patchwork Allsorts.

This interview is part of series that will run during 2017 as the Take a Stitch Tuesday Challenge has been running for a decade. Throughout the year I will interview stitchers about their hand embroidery and feature their work.

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My book has arrived!

holding my book in front of  quiltI received a copy of my book The Visual Guide to Crazy Quilting Design I am as chuffed as can be – wandering around the house with big silly grin. I am so pleased with it, as C&T Publishing have done a wonderful job.  They did not squeeze the illustrations so there is a lot of eye candy, descriptions on how I did something, what I used etc and hopefully loads of inspiration. I hope it makes peoples fingers itch to stitch.

book openAlso many people will be pleased to hear that there are right and left hand stitch instructions.

book openThere is a very big sense of achievement as I hold it. I am totally thrilled to see it – and am very happy with the result. My book The Visual Guide to Crazy Quilting Design: Simple Stitches, Stunning Results is available on pre-order. It will be released early August.

Take a Stitch Tuesday Stitch 83

Beaded Oyster stitch 83
Stitch 83 in the Take a Stitch Tuesday (TAST) is Beaded Oyster Stitch. TASt stitch 34 was regular oyster stitch but that version of the stitch is often worked individually with units arranged in flowers etc. The beaded version can be worked in singles but is most effective worked in a line and since it is part of the chain stitch it will follow a curve well. Beaded Oyster Stitch makes a great edging stitch around a collar or neckline, or on projects such as needle cases or for a contemporary twist us on  fabric books postcards and the like. As Usual you can find a tutorial for stitch Beaded Oyster Stitch in my Stitch Dictionary.

TAST2012logo

Join in on the challenge and share what you do with Stitch 83

The challenge guidelines are on the TAST FAQ page. If you are new to hand embroidery the challenge is to learn the stitches. If you are an experienced embroiderer push these stitches in creative manner and share with beginners what can be done with a little imagination.

Where to share: Stitch a sample, photograph it, put it online on your blog, flickr site, share it on Facebook or where ever you hang out online, and leave a comment on the Beaded Oyster Stitch page with your full web address. Don’t forget the http bit of the web address so that your address becomes a live link so that people can visit your site and see what you have done.

Feel free to join the  TAST facebook group and leave your photo there.  For Flickr people the group is Take a Stitch Tuesday. Hashtags are #TASTembroidery and #PintangleTAST on places like Instagram etc. Go for it – share and see what others have done too.

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You can have Pintangle delivered to your inbox by using the follow feature in the sidebar. Just enter your email address, and when you get the confirmation email make sure you say yes and you are all set! If you are on a mobile or tablet you will need to scroll to the bottom to find the follow feature.

Crazy quilt template set 2Have you seen my Stitchers templates?

As a stitcher who loves crazy quilting and embroidery I designed these templates with other stitchers in mind. With my Stitchers Templates you can create hundreds of different patterns to embroider on your stitching and crazy quilting projects. They are easy to use, totally clear so you can position them easily and they are compact in your sewing box.

Templates set 1 you will find here 
Templates set 2 you will find here