Friday, December 23, 2011

Workbasket Update

So sorry to have been off the radar, blogwise, these last few weeks. Christmas sewing/creating for friends and family has taken over, and I am looking forward to returning to my workbasket!

Currently waiting for attention: a beautiful lavender design.... The chest ornament is one of Anastasia Dolby's from the late 1800's and I am working on the lower panels which will be a lattice pattern that I will create. This is the last of this particular silk.... Just lovely.

Happy Christmas to you all!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Paraments for Chapel in the Pines

Here are the paraments for Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church, Chapel Hill, NC. An original design on lavender dupioni silk. Hand embroidered in silk and wool.

It was a great experience making something for a group if people dear to my heart. The church is simple but beautiful, and is timber framed. The photos do not do justice to the interior... It feels very cozy inside, yet open with the grand windows.

For the paraments I focused on the personality of the church. The branches represent our individual journeys thus far as a congregation. The pinecones are the members of the congregation. The ribbon symbolizes the Trinity's presence in our lives, and the open design of the ribbon at the end shows that there will always be room for more members and friends...and at it's core, Chapel in the Pines is a welcoming church.

The IHS is, of course, the traditional christogram.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Wedding Stoles

In just a bit I will be adding two wedding stoles to my shop on Etsy, and they both come in creamy dupioni. One has a chest detail of hand embroidered 'ribbons' that represent the two partners and a hand beaded circle or 'ring' representing the presence of the Trinity in the relationship.

Next is a simple wedding stole that has hand applied albacon vintage lace (circa 1930s) from France, and hand beading with seed beads as well as crystals, framed in a mass of tiny french (of course!) knots. ;)
This is located on the lower panels of the stole.

I love them both for different reasons... But think both are dreamy...

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Progress on the Paraments

Here is a sneak peek on the progress made on the custom work for Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church. This is a detail from one of the two pulpit ribbons.

The pinecones represent the congregation, the ribbon - God's all embracing presence, and the open tail of the ribbon - (not visible in the photo above) that there is always room for more in the church community and they are welcome.

The parament design is anchored by the traditional 'IHS'.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Christmas Stole

Perfect for Christmas! Cardinal red dupioni silk on a heavy crisp, detailed white cotton, bordered in matching red french knots embroidered tightly. Check my shop out for availability! :)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Far too many days have passed since my best experience ever at a show! The attendees at the conference were absolutely awesome, the volunteers were wonderful, and my customers were great. It was so meaningful to get to know the people who chose to buy my stoles, and a great big "Thank You" goes to them all. It was especially nice to spend the day with my mother at my side, and to have her join in.

I deeply appreciate the generous invitation by Lou East to exhibit and the kind welcome of Cris Rivera as coordinator.

I am in the middle of writing a piece for the blog, but did not want to wait a day longer to give thanks. :)

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Covenant Network Conference, Durham NC

Please stop by and say hi at my exhibit at the conference today and tomorrow! First Presbyterian Church is hosting this fabulous event, and I am excited to be included!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Winterthur's Incredible Exhibit

With Cunning Needle: Four Centuries of Embroidery

On view in the East Gallery through January 8, 2012
I am trying my best to figure out how to make it to Delaware before January 8th to take advantage of an exquisite exhibition at Winterthur.  The well done gallery guide is such pleasure in to view, I look forward to seeing what other treasures the museum holds!  It has been a very long time since my last visit, and this is a wonderful draw!

I did discover a tidbit about muga silk, which I was not aware of before….the textiles are really amazing in themselves!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Back to the Drawing Board

After taking a few days off from any needlework, I have been able to spend several focused hours tonight simply sketching and planning, and it has felt good! On my task list is to come up with a design for a stole and matching pulpit paraments for a church's first Sunday service in their newly built chapel.

Since this will fall in Advent, I am choosing a lavender dupioni silk....

and am playing around with a variety of designs that reflect the name of the church, Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church, and the welcoming nature of their congregation. We will see... :)

Monday, October 24, 2011

Lesage Embroidery

Tonight I have entertained myself with watching Lesage discuss his couture embroidery and the contribution of his family's business to the world of design. Unbelievable vision. And although not liturgical, many of these ideas can be brought to life in our practice of worship, in expressing the beauty of God's word.

Check out this video on YouTube:

Monday, October 17, 2011

Ordination Stoles

Here is a collage showing details from three red stoles of my own design. All are in dupioni silk and are hand embroidered and all feature the dove - a traditional symbol of the Holy Spirit.

I have placed them in my Etsy shop if you would like to see them in more detail. As always, I welcome special orders!

This is the Day That the Lord Has Made

This joyful stole is now available in my Etsy shop!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Mermaid Love - New items in my Etsy shop!

Please stop by my Etsy shop to see my latest offerings!

There is a cute Mermaid Love embroidery kit that is truly unique and makes a great gift, framed treat or even a great starting point for a handbag! The best part is that you can personalize the ribbon to say what you wish! Make the gift special, make it your own!

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Wonderful Day

Thank you to all of you who stopped by today. It was a great joy to meet so many of you and to see old friends! Thank you for making this day so very special!

Friday, September 30, 2011


I have been working this week on a few surprises for the upcoming exhibition at Duke Divinity School on October 10. It is going to be a great day!

Please stop by and let me know you have seen my blog. I will be holding a drawing for a piece of art and don't want you to miss out!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Rainbow Dove in Ordinary Time

Thanks goes out to Kathy at Dyed Fiber: Kathy does a quality job in creating beautifully dyed fibers to use. A real range of colors in perfectly named shades of Bouquet, Frisbee, Lawn and Lifesaver...And it arrives so quickly!

I liked the mellow contrast of colors that her 'Bouquet' offered to this clean grassy green shade of dupioni for ordinary time.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Wedding Ribbons

Here is a detail from a wedding stole design I am playing with. The pearls were fun to bead with and the 'ribbons' are made of two different shades of cream.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

We Are All Children of God

Today my younger son and I joined others, in downtown Raleigh, in support against having hateful language added to the NC constitution, in the form of an amendment, which strips away many current rights of the LGBT community. It was an experience that had the audience personally acknowledging the struggles that so many have endured, and how hurtful the decisions of our state house and senate are to so many. Heartfelt speeches brought it all home and it was humbling.

As Americans, and as fellow brothers and sisters of the world, it is important to understand that these topics are issues of dignity and human rights.

Our search for justice, equality and freedom cannot be chosen piecemeal. To advocate for women's rights, the rights of the poor, rights of racial equality, but to then to deny civil rights to the LGBT community is not acceptable.

I truly believe that nothing in creation can separate any of us from God's love.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Thistles in my Sewing Basket

Here is part of a stole that I hope to put together later in the upcoming days. I have a beautiful piece of mossy green mohair, and will try my best to marry the two for a stole for ordinary time.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Vibrant Green for Ordinary Time

I wanted to design something cheerful and was fortunate to come across this beautifully vibrant green at my favorite fabric shop. Playing against that backdrop I embroidered a cross freehand, playing with gold, pink and green. On the lower panels, I designed a bit of gathered leaves and very small beading detail on small crosses as visual fill.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Dove for Pentecost

This is a stole for Pentecost, minus the sometimes seemingly scary flames of the spirit, for the children. The yarn-like white is actually thick silk, and the colorful thread is Egyptian cotton. Dove and red background is dupioni silk.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

A bit of hand smocking

Lavender dupioni hand manipulated silk trimmed with vintage velvet ribbon on white silk. Not seen is an embroidered butterfly on the upper part of the stole.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Inspiration from Mumbai

I have spent time sketching away in the evenings and have been waiting for a packet from India to arrive. Happily, it showed up on Wednesday, in time for me to play around with the choices and lay out thoughts for weekend work.

With Hurricane Irene approaching North Carolina, it looks as though I will have plenty of inside time!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Kimono Silk Accent

I think beauty and meaning are added when vintage fabrics are elements of new art for worship. Here is an example of vintage Japanese silk previously used in a kimono in the 30's added as an accent.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Green Liturgical Stole

A circle for eternity, God's constant presence.

A pale grassy dupioni silk, with an embroidered circle of vines, leaves and water on yellow silk. A contrasting tonal bronze dupioni piece is secured with a piece of wood wrapped in silk, embellished with French knots and seed beads.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fisher of Men Stole

Photo after photo the colors don't come out the way they appear in person, so I gave up trying to adjust the colors - that is being thrown off by the beading - and manipulated it to show the design and contrast.

I kind of love it!

Here is the original pic.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

A Stole for Advent

Here is some couture purple with orange/pink dupioni. Embellished with Egyptian cotton.

Vibrant and hopeful.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Detail from Fisher of Men Stole

Here is a bit of a preview.... Coral in French knots.

The rest involves more coral and a batik fish, but the color is muddy due to beading that I added, it's showing up a bit odd on film, but looks pretty in person. I have to work on that!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Beaded Baptismal Stole

For this particular stole, I chose to collect a variety of beads in aqua and use the last of my Nicole Miller cotton.
The shell is from a beautiful blue silk that I have been waiting to find the right home for. I finished the base of the hand beading with tiny french knots, which I kind of fell in love with.... :)
I am working hard in creating original designs for my upcoming exhibition, and I think this will be one the audience might favor...we will see!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Stole for Lent

Here is the completed stole I wrote about in my July 4th post. The bottom of the stole was finished with an embroidered lattice pattern bordered by French knots.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Royal purple IHC

Recently completed, a traditional look with golden yellow dupioni silk, hand applied with a French knot border, all on a deep purple damask.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Not too many words

Just a few photos...

I find such pleasure in embroidering stoles for women by hand. Lots to be thankful for!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Thanks Be To God

I was reminded today to reflect on how amazing that many of life's experiences can come together to bring such pleasure.

It is a gift. Thanks be to God.

Image from zersen on deviantART

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Less Common Symbols of Our Faith - Bees

The Sweet Word of God ~ Psalm 19:10

More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb.

Since time began bees have been part of the great myths of humanity and have always been extraordinarily potent symbols.

Bees, in their role as workers, are a symbol of the industrious and prosperous community governed by the queen bee. As organizers of the universe between earth and sky, bees symbolize all vital principles, and embody the soul. Bees also symbolize eloquence, speech, and intelligence.

In Hebrew, the word for bee, Dbure, has its origins in the word Dbr, speech. They settled on the mouth of the child, Plato, “announcing the sweetness of his enchanting soul ” (Pliny) (

In the Church, the beehive is a symbol for community of those who work together for the benefit of all. Used modernly as a symbol for the Christian Church, and is one of the best.

There are so many great historical symbols of our faith that I would love to see return in liturgical art with more frequency. Bring back the rooster, the peacock, the ship at anchor, the dogwood, the lobster!!!! :)

“The soul… may have many symbols with which it reaches toward God.” ~ Anya Seton