Saturday, June 5, 2010


I mentioned to Allie one day that I used to do quite a bit of needlepoint. She said show me some one day. I took the camera into the living room and came up with a few. The two black ones on the sofa and the bellpull on the wall are all Elizabeth Bradley kits that I purchased on trips to England. They are quite pricey here so were a little more affordable purchased there. They are done in the old berlin stitch which is similar to cross stitch. When finished I made the pillows and backed the wallhanging myself. This ends up being a very expensive hobby if you cannot do the finishing yourself. I have a needle rack that you can make various sizes with and I dampen a towel, roll the finished canvas up in it until it is damp enough to pull and then you attach it all around to the nails on the frame. When I am happy with it, I take a spray bottle of water and mist it. I then put the frame in front of one of the heat vents until dry. If you have squared it enough it will come off the frame straight. If not, it can be repeated again.
I usually have done this in the winter so the heat is on which helps with the drying. I think in the summer it would dry naturaly but take much longer.

The first two pillows are part of a series. One is called "The Three birds" and the other is called "The Wreath of Herbs". I don't remember the name of the bellpull but it is all flowers. I took a closeup of the top flowers.

Funny little story is I had so much thread left from the bellpull kit that I thought I would duplicate it for Florida and do the background in off white. Well there were some yarns that I knew I would need more of plus the background yarn. There is a store in downtown Chicago that carries Elizabeth Bradley loose yarns. So off I go with good old Harv doing the chauffering and find the store. Well the individual yarns were in hanks so you had to buy a whole hank even if you just needed a couple of threads. I must have come out with a dazed look on my face as I told Harv the extra yarns cost me more then the whole bellpull kit did. I did do it and it is hanging in my home in Florida and I do like it. I just found a picture in my files of the Florida one and added it in.


Magpie's Mumblings said...

I think needlepoint will be the next thing to enjoy a resurgence - I seem to be seeing it more and more in different places. I really like the white background bell pull - is the bottom flower a poppy?

Gina E. said...

Your needlepoint work is gorgeous! I just love bellpulls, and would like to do one myself one day. I have one that a friend gave me, done in cross stitch. She found it at an opshop and grabbed it for me.

Allison Ann Aller said...

What exquisite, beautiful work, Freda! These are heirlooms that will last for generations...
I love the richness of the wool and the fine detail you can get, and I'll bet the stitching can be soothing too.
Thanks so much for posting these for us to see!

maggi said...

Such lovely pieces. Thank you for showing them.

Debra said...

I love the Bradley pieces-have one of her books but doubt I will ever do the projects. They are so lovely!