Cold Feet

Besides my cold feet (and everything else) from the cold weather and my old drafty house, I suffered from emotional cold feet last week after finally getting the silk for my trinket box’s embroidery framed up and ready to stitch.

After I had drawn the pattern onto the silk, I tried to attach it to the slate frame, but found that the twill tape that came with the frame was flimsy. So I got some heavier twill tape at the fabric store and DH kindly stapled it on for me.

Then I attached the silk to the frame, ready to stitch.

And I froze.

I have never let my lack of practice or skill stop me from trying new and challenging projects. I believe I can do anything. So why did I find the start of this project so scary?

I don’t know.

When I was sawing the wood for my doll-sized casket, I could just discard any mistakes and keep going. When sewing, I make loads of mistakes and just rip them out and start over.

But I found the prospect of starting the embroidery on unforgiving silk satin daunting.


After some therapeutic game playing on my iPad, I did start. I chose to start with some French Knot grass in two shades of silk thread. Starting with a stitch I know well helped ease me into the project.

I’m still not pleased with how the silk is puckering at the top and bottom center, though. The instructions I used to dress the frame said to stitch from the center to one side, then from the center to the other side. This method left a crease down the middle. So I think I need to start over and try to get it smoother, probably by pinning it, then stitching from one side to the other.

We’ll see…


Anyway, I really love being able to work with both hands to stitch. And my ugly lamp makes it easy to see what I’m doing.

The slate frame is attached to a Lowery Workstand that I purchased from I had studied loads of reviews of needlework stands and decided that this was the one I wanted. I found it available in the US, but the price from sewandso in England, even with shipping, was better. I ordered it on a Friday night and it arrived the next Wednesday.

It will hold any size frame or hoop in any position and is easy to swing out of the way when I need to get up from my chair.

Yesterday, Supergirl (SG) was off from school for what seemed like the 47th time this year because of snow. And she stayed with me since her mom needed to go to work.


While I cleaned the snow off my car and did a bit of shoveling, she made this cute 2′ snowman.


We also enjoyed Salley Mavor’s new book, Felt Wee Folk New Adventures. It is an updated version that includes many more characters in addition to the flower fairies from her first book.

SG was fascinated by the brides and the men. She said that our fairies need a father, so we got started on making a male doll.

She also helped me organize my silk threads. From my Cabinet of Curiosities class, I have, so far, the same colors in four different silk threads. We opened all the packages and lined the colors up, dark to light, in four different rows.

Since she is back in school today, after I do some “real” work, I plan on re-dressing my slate frame and moving forward on the embroidery.

A few months ago, I gathered up colored pencils in similar colors to all the embroidery silks, but have decided to skip the pencils and work out the colors for the trinket box as I go.


I also feel the need to get back to some doll stuff. After several months, I think I’m ready to make an outfit for the doll who lost and regained her head. I think she needs a coat dress and I need a non-embroidery project.

Picture 002

I am inspired by this 1885-1890 child’s coat from The Metropolitan Museum of Art. And not just because it’s BLUE.


Cold Feet — 2 Comments

  1. Another great post! I appreciate your sharing your vulnerabilities with your projects. I’ve been (am) there too.
    Inspired by your ugly lamp, I have purchased an ugly magnifying light. Now I can sew on my Large 1860 china head’s body that I am restoring. Now I wondering if I should seek a proper chair??
    I agree with your choice of coat for your doll with the head issue (?)
    and I love it in that shade of blue.