The thing about hand embroidery is that it takes time, sometimes a lot more than you envisaged when starting a new project. And when you enjoy working on more than one project at a time – flitting between them like a magpie choosing the sparkliest item on the day – it means weeks can go by without much to show for your hours of toil. Add to the mix a couple of exciting projects that cannot yet be named and the weeks become months of works-in-progress with no tangible end and you start to hear the echoes ricocheting around your empty and hollow blog… So how exactly have I been spending my time lately?
Well, I’m working on a long-term project that involves new stitch ideas. As you’ve likely realised by now, I can’t just leave a good stitch be. I have to manipulate it and mix it up and experiment with it. But this fits right in with my philosophy of craft evolution and I’m pleased with the direction in which this project is going – even if it is taking an age.
Two projects are under wraps. I’m in the middle of one and still in the hopeful phase for the other. So even though I’m not at liberty to reveal any details, please keep your fingers crossed for me.
Another project that I hope will come to fruition in the near future (in hand embroidery terms, that is) is a step from the digital to the physical. All my offerings to date have been digital products – patterns and The Stitch and Thimble – but I aim to take this brave step with a range of… hang on, I’m not going to ruin the surprise. You’ll just have to wait and see.
I have pages of sketches, most of which will never become more than that – a simple case of too few inspirational moments of late, a by-product of winter. But I’ve made cushions for our couch, neck cushions for my sister and her husband, and crocheted a cushion front that is waiting to be made up (the couch was looking rather forlorn). My hexagons are ready for joining, a new pattern project is ready for stitching and my fabric box has been culled and whittled down to reflect the style into which I’ve grown.
Then there are those little bits and pieces of admin that take an inordinate amount of time. Drawing up financial spreadsheets, finding suppliers, keeping up with correspondence and even simple things such as adding a Pinterest button to my website and email signature (I’m still loving the whole pinning thing) seem to guzzle the hours.
But even though I don’t have much by way of finished product to bring to show and tell, I acknowledge that my view of time is a consequence of living in an age when everything happens too slowly. It’s an unrealistic expectation of the natural pace of things (particularly a hand craft such as embroidery) and perhaps the very act of writing this post is a sign to simply keep at it and enjoy the process as it unfolds, in its own good time.