Blog, Makes

Embroider and appliqué a Seagull inspired Cushion

Three things inspired this craft project, the sea, gulls and the effective but random looking stitching currently used by many fine art embroiderers. They in turn appear to have been inspired by Asian quilts made out of recycled Sari’s. I embroidered the cushion front in free hand stitches. I wanted to create the curls where the waves turn over themselves and also the subtle changes of colour in the waves and the sky. To achieve the turbulence of the weather I used two background colours of felt and also different colours of the embroidery floss. The changing direction and sizes of the stitches helps to suggest movement.

If you are not happy just doing freehand stitches using a water erasable pen, draw your design onto the cushion front, embroider over the pen lines. To get rid of the pen marks, dampen a cloth and rub quite lightly.

I expect, like you, I am forever taking photographs when I am by the sea. I took the images of the gulls using my phone. I increased the size of them and then printed them out quite large. Before cutting out in felt, I placed the paper gulls onto the stitched front and arranged in a pleasing composition. I then drew round the gull images onto the felt and cut out and then pinned and tacked the grey felt gulls onto the cushion front.

You will need

Piece of felt 100cm x 100cm x 3mm deep in pale blue felt for the cushion cover

36cm square cushion pad

Felt squares or oblongs in Grey, marine blue and purple

Embroidery floss in light grey, white, mid blue and turquoise (Korbond)

Tapestry needle

Sewing needle

Printer and images of flying seagulls

Water erasable pen

Paper Scissors

Dressmaking Shears

Dress makers pins

For the back opening cushion cover

Cut the cushion front 37cm x 37cm and cut the two cushion backs one 22cm x 37cm and the other 30cm x 37cm in pale blue felt .

Step 1

Work on the cushion front, leave a 2 cm border round the edge, and using brightly coloured thread, tack a piece of dark marine blue felt onto another piece and onto the cushion front so it measures 22cm x 32cm

Step 2

Thread the whole six strands of a piece of white embroidery floss into a tapestry needle and sew random sized running stitches from the left side of the felt to the right and back again, creating 7 uneven rows of stitches. Change colour and sew 7 rows in pale blue.

Step 3

Repeat step 1 using the purple felt. Make sure it joins onto the blue felt and will measure roughly 32cm x 11.5cm. You don’t need to cover the whole of the cushion in stitches, the effect you are after is the waves of the sea. Print images of gulls, draw round and cut out in grey felt.

Step 4

Arrange, pin and sew the gulls onto the cushion front. Using turquoise thread, blanket stitch along one long edge of the cushion back. Make an envelope opening for the cushion pad. With the two back pieces over lapping in the centre of the cushion, pin the cushion backs to the cushion front and sew together round the edge using blanket stitch.

Needles

Embroidery Floss

Pins and scissors and erasable marker pen from http://sew.korbond.co.uk

I designed this project for Coast Magazine

Blog, Press Show Picks

Home inspirations for Autumn Winter 2019

If you are looking for good design at a low price point then you need look no further than J D Williams autumn winter 2019 ranges. They have produced two very different looks .

Arthouse Tonal Mineral Wallpaper £18

         The first is called Far Away and is my favourite. It takes inspiration from autumn coastal escapes, across rural landscapes and through hardened elements. There is a very strong Scandi feel in both the materials and colours used in this collection. Reflected throughout is a palette of cold, natural aquatic tones-inky blues, deep green hues and teals contrasted with pearly white, terracotta and purple grey.

Eva Smoked glass desk £129, Klara Office chair £69,
Graham & Brown Abstract framed Canvas £129, Set of 4 bamboo baskets £39

Artisan in mood yet sophisticated in design; water colour prints take center stage in dreamy inky hues paying homage to the rolling seas and rugged coastal scenery. Particularly beautiful is the Isla Digital Print bed linen from £25 for a Duvet Set.  There is the glorious Florence bedhead in cotton velvet from £299.

Watercolour lines Cushion £20,Set of 2 rush lined baskets £29,
octopus cushion £22, Navy Boucle Throw £30, Havana Rug from £55, Halo Grey Speckle 2 Piece Mug set £28, angle poise desk lamp£35, Navy Florence Curved Bedstead from £299

         The furniture is modern and clean lined and very good value.

The second collection is called Palace Design. This collection carries on the very strong Luxx trend heading towards Art Deco that has been around for a few seasons. It is a new take on boudoir design.

Gaia Foot stool £299 Blush Glass Vase £16

 The designers say it reflects a contemporary combination of feminine tones with masculine designs creating a truly refined collection. The range includes luxurious materials from brushed brass to soft velvets, softly tinted glass to satin finishes.

Mahogany, Verdigris and smoked gold are lifted with hints of light ecru, palest of pinks and soft yellow tones. Rose velvet beds are dressed with satin sheets embossed with linear floral and intricate geometric designs, whilst rose velvet button-back chairs are styled with the palest pink marble accessories and set against gold angular furniture.

Once again the prices are all very reasonable. I feel this is a look that looks fabulous if well maintained but would be unforgiving and start to look tacky if not kept tidy, polished and super clean. The two pieces of product that stand out are the Gaia Foot Stool £299 and the Blush Glass Vase £16

book review, Book Reviews, Uncategorized

RELAXED COASTAL STYLE

 

9781849759625

 

When I heard about the book Relaxed Coastal Style, by Sally Denning I was very keen to review it. I met Sally many years ago as she was setting out on her career as a stylist, and she used my house as a shoot location. Since then I have been very aware of her meteoric rise in the ‘styling world’ and so knew this would be a gorgeous book and I was correct.

The first part of the book consists of Sally’s unique take on coastal style, celebrating the colours and textures of the seaside: bare wooden boards, unadorned windows, and furnishings covered in robust linen or cotton that will endure salt water and the sun’s rays or gently fade with age. Sally also explores lighting, furniture and coastal decorative accents such as maps, charts and nautical-themed accessories.

Screen Shot 2018-07-07 at 13.31.16

She draws inspiration from beach combing, displaying shells and driftwood to feel close to nature and the sound of the waves. Sally and her photographer have travelled far and wide to shoot a selection of glorious coastal houses, cottages and hideaways that are guaranteed to enchant and inspire.

Screen Shot 2018-07-07 at 13.30.42

The second reason I was keen to get hold of a copy of this book is that it features the house of Jane and Martin Will who own the old Coastguards cottage on Deal seafront. I grew up in Deal although in those days it was less glamorous than it is today. It is now full of artisan shops, pavement cafes and galleries such as the homeware and gallery ‘Will & Yates’ that Jane co-owns with artist Caroline Yates. The Will’s house is as lovely as the gallery painted in soft greys and inky blues and furnished with simple functional pieces of furniture and ‘brocante’ finds.

Screen Shot 2018-07-07 at 13.30.57

 

Wherever you live, Relaxed Coastal Style will inspire you to adopt the relaxed, informal simplicity of life by the sea.

Relaxed Coastal Style by Sally Denning (£19.99) with photography by Benjamin Edwards ©RylandPeters&Small.

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