I shared the other day a little intro post to my embroidery hobby and now it’s time to show you the first 10 projects I completed. Most of these were following, or adapted from, a pattern I found but I also started to experiment with creating my own designs.
I do like looking back and seeing how I’ve improved each time, although I also do have to resist the urge to try to fix them as I could do so much better now!
- Koi Fish Pond
- Birds on Branches
- Bowl of Dicks
- Rococo Cup of Tea and Flowers
- Vase of Flowers on Books
- What A Story Mark (Tommy Wiseau)
- Hawaiian Flower
1. Koi Fish Pond
My first ever embroidery piece was a free design from DMC that I mistakenly thought was simple but quickly realised was actually very difficult! I probably should have started off with a sampler pattern to learn the different stitches, but no… I went straight into the deep end with a load of satin stitches which was actually one of the hardest to get to look good!
2. Birds on Branches
My second one was from a pack of cheap Amazon iron-on transfers (this is an affiliate link, if you bought anything through it I’d get a few pennies!). I was much happier with how this turned out, though I was again going all in on the satin stitch! If I did this one again now I would do those leaves completely differently! I gifted this to my Grandma. I actually have it back again now after she passed away last year.
I then decided I’d take a stab at my own pattern from a photo of my sister for her birthday. For my third ever piece I’m happy with this, though I’d do it so differently! I’ve since experimented with paint on the fabric which would make this pop a lot more. The banner in particular I think looks great, I love the colour combo.
4. Bowl of Dicks
This was a gift for my ex-housemate. The reference for it is a meme of a bowl of dicks that we used to always send to the group chat whenever anyone asked what we were getting on takeaway night. That was a very fun time in my life!1
This one was a real challenge, and again I think I could do a lot better now but I am still pretty pleased with it. The recipient loved it.
5. Rococo Cup of Tea and Flowers
This was another free pattern from DMC and I made it for my Nan for Christmas. I was really happy with this one. I really nailed the neat stitches on those red triangles, and I got a lot better at French knots!
6. Vase of Flowers on Books
Another free DMC pattern, this one was for Grandma. I actually went a bit off-book with this one. I just used the pattern as inspiration and I freestyle the flowers. I was thrilled with my neat stitches on the books!
Both of these Christmas hoops spray painted bronze. I liked the effect of it but it was quite a faff!
7. What A Story Mark (Tommy Wiseau)
2019 was also the year I first watched The Room, and became subsequently obsessed with it. This was my own design and I gifted it to my brother for Christmas! It was my first attempt at framing rather than leaving it on the hoop.
I live with the pain of forgetting to fill in his mouth. (I did a lot of embroidery that Christmas, it ended up a bit of a rush!)
8. Hawaiian Flower
This was a free DMC pattern again. I love this one, I love how bold it is and the colours. This was my first go at stitching with 6 strands of floss for a chunkier look. I like how this turned out but I decided it is not my preferred technique and it does use a lot more thread!
This is one of my favourites.
2019 was also the year I discovered RuPaul’s Drag Race and subsequently became obsessed with Trixie Mattel, via her and Katya’s YouTube series UNHhhh. I had to attempt an embroidery of her! This image was from quite an old photograph (her makeup has calmed down slightly since,) but I loved the flower crown and wanted to try some more 3D stitches for it. The make-up was very tricky to do!
I got this pattern from Urban Threads. They only do patterns for machine embroidery now but they used to offer them for hand embroidery too. I wanted to practice florals and stitching letters so this was perfect. I remember the flowers giving me a hard time and the lettering being a lot more difficult than I expected. I am a lot better at petals these days! I am still fond of this one despite its imperfections, I like the attitude of it.
If you want to see more you can follow my embroidery on Instagram @stitchesbyalice! Or just be patient and wait for me to post the next 10 projects I have completed.
- After a rough break-up when I was 27 I moved into a shared house five guys! I became quite close to three of them and they really helped me to come out of my shell! We’re all scattered now, but I often think back on those 2 years fondly as one of the happiest, most free periods of my life ↩︎