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Ring pillows for the wrinklies

This post is about more work for my other role in life, that of humanist celebrant doing weddings and namings.

I was thinking about older brides in particular after leafing through another wedding magazine.  There really are only fresh-faced, porcelain-skinned young women in them.  You would be excused for thinking that no older women ever get married – or remarried.   I think it’s the equivalent of thinking women over 55 only ever want to dress in navy blue or beige artificial fibre tents.

I was wondering what sort of thing would suit older women.  I wanted to make some hearts that could be easily converted into ring pillows for weddings, and could be keepsakes thereafter.  Thinking about myself and my own tastes, these are hand-embroidered hearts worked on recycled fabrics.  Some are on the reverse of a very nice linen furnishing fabric:

You can see the front on the back, ironically, of this small heart:

The print is of these gorgeous, overblown tulips, but it would have fought against any lettering.  The fabric is leftover from some upmarket curtains.

The other is a printed commercial king-sized quilt which I bought in a charity shop and have been cutting up and using for a couple of years now:

The embroidery is largely stem stitch.  I learned how to do it a couple of years ago when a wonderful teacher explained to me that it is basically back stitch done on the back rather than the front of the fabric.  The scales fell from my eyes and I have been using it ever since after years of frustration not having any success and having to unpick it every time.  You can teach old dogs new tricks.

The little heart with LOVE on it is worked in two rows of chain stitch.  They are all done in variegated embroidery floss which is my current favourite thread.  They are all partly stuffed with the leftover fabric from when I cut them out.  All part of my drive for more sustainability.

You may have noticed that these all have quotations from Beatles songs on them.  These take me right back to being a little girl and being given Beatles singles for Christmas.  I would love to do a Beatles-themed wedding.  A couple coming into the ceremony to ‘Here comes the sun’ would be lovely.  I’m not sure what they would go out to.  The chorus of ‘All you need is love’ maybe.  Might be nice for a sing-song half-way through as well.

Just in case you are thinking of getting married and would like to use one of these as a ring pillow, they will be going in my Etsy shop which you can find by putting PomegranateByAnn in the search box on Etsy.com.  I can convert them to proper ring pillows by embroidering a little loop to thread ribbons through.  I am also happy to stitch any other song lyrics that have special meanings.

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Persie the Klimtian Cat

I am sure that some of you know that I am a humanist celebrant.  I do non-religious namings and weddings.  I like to give the baby a present when I do a naming, and this particular baby was adorable and had an unusual name.  For this reason I decided to make her something with her name on it, and because she loves cats so much, it had to be a cat.  The decoration is inspired by the patterns that Klimt used in so many of his paintings:

The famous Adele Bloch paintings are a treasure trove of decorative ideas.  I used some gold fabric and stitched them on:

I left the back fairly plain:

The face is a combination of the gold and some felt:

 

I embroidered the name in backstitch with perle cotton.

It’s quite easy to make, and I give a sort of cartoon set of instructions below.  It isn’t my idea, but I can’t remember where I got it from.  If I do find the original, I will post it separately.  Essentially, it’s the sleeve of a felted sweater, so you could make two from a jumper.  The head comes from spare fabric.

You need to chop the sleeve off at the length you want the height of the cat to be – so a child’s sweater will probably be the whole sleeve but a man’s is probably 50-75%.  The head could come out of the spare sleeve fabric, I expect.

The woman at the top of the page is my PhD supervisor, by the way.  This is a sort of memorial to her, because her birthday was in November.