Sunday, 24 April 2011

Old embroideries and UFOs

This weekend has been amazingly warm, and even with some snow still in the garden, Mr. K. has started working there. He went through his shirts to find a suitable one, and gave me these four he no longer will use because the collars are worn out, the sleeves are too short or the shirt is just simply too uncomfortable (the one on the left). I spent a lovely time in the sun on the verandah cutting up the shirts and folding the pieces to add in my stash.

I have sometimes wondered if UFOs are hereditary. I mean the eagerness to start something and then not being able to finish the project? At least in my family it seems to be the case, as I have several UFOs from my grandmother's generation, some of which I have been able to finish. Recently my mother was sorting her stash and she let me have some of her UFO collection. Many of these look like test bits, never meant to be finished projects. I think I could use this one to practice new stitches:

This is obviously a sampler, with different patterns at both ends of the row:

This small placemat looks like something I could try to finish, if I manage to find some matching thread.

This one looks like mother didn't want to do the difficult part at the ends.

One reason for the many UFOs must be that we are also keepers, we don't like to throw things away. This old tablecloth is a perfect example for that. It has been used a lot, so the embroidery has started to fray, and the hemstitch is torn at many places. Still it has been washed and put in storage, and I saved it once again. Maybe I can use some of the good parts of the embroidery, or maybe my daughter will do so.

Here is a pattern I would like to copy for future use. The stitches are quite simple, and I can see in my mind a detail of a bag or something like that. I could make the daisies smaller, or bigger.


  1. I know just how you felt sitting int he sun, Ulla! And what a nice way to occupy your time while soaking up some Vitamin D! I love the old stitcheries - I think your mother and other relatives just knew they would be put to use at a later date!

  2. Cutting up flannelette shirts while sitting in the sun sounds like a nice warm activity for the hands.
    And those old stitcheries will bring you inspiration, and maybe even your GGD too.

  3. Beautiful projects. Today I am binding a quilt all done in plaids from shirts circa 1940's. The pulled thread work is lovely.

  4. How nice to feel the warmth on your skin. Mr. K has some nice new/old fabrics for your stash. :o) I love those daisies.

  5. I believe women invest some of themselves in their work and the idea of discarding it well
    The pieces are lovely and so nice you know where they have come from.
    I often buy ones from the charity shops. Either to use as is or cut up (if damaged) nto give new life.

    Happy Spring Stitching

  6. Thank you Ulla for showing us this bits and pieces... They look very difficult to finish for me .
    I love the warm weather and I have had some fantastic days at the cabin!!

  7. Funny: I bumped into your tablecloth embroidery in Taito magazine just recently! Somebody had made it into pattern and I took a copy of it to turn it into a stencilling pattern :)

  8. Hallo Ulla, ich kann mir gerade vorstellen, wie du draussen an der Sonne die Hemden deines Mannes in Stoffstücke aufgetrennt hast und dabei sicher auch Erinnerungen aufgetaucht sind... Und geschmunzelt habe ich beim Lesen, dass UFOs in eurer Familie weitervererbt werden. Du scheinst ja auch schon bereits mit einem bestickten Stoffstück an deine Tochter gedacht zu haben, also wirst du die UFO Vererbungstradition in deiner Familie weiterfahren :-) !! Ich liebe es auch alte Stoffe zu finden und mir dabei vorzustellen, wer was damit gemacht hat oder machen wollte. In unserer Familie aber wurde aber wurde aber eher genäht als gestickt.
    Liebe Grüsse und weiterhin schöne Frühlingstage,

  9. What lovely treasures! Good to hear that you had sun enough to sit out in with the shirts. I have a lavender hedge to replant next outside.


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