Background

11.17.2013

"Make do" door hanging


I used an old embroidered tea towel for the rod loop.





My younger daughter's room does not have a window, but does have a pretty French door that leads out to our back deck. Since it is the only light for the room, I have left it uncovered for many years, having once been the room I used for a studio.







My DH has wanted me to make something to cover it for privacy for ages, but the project kept getting pushed back behind everything else I have been doing. I started a quilted hanging about three years ago, but I got stalled out during the quilting phase and just couldn't get back into it. The piece just sat there in my studio, mocking me with its raw edges and gathering dust, but I just could not bring myself to finish the unwieldy mess. 


Flower basket.

Early this spring I found a batch of half-finished vintage needlework squares at an antiques shop, measuring about 2 feet square. You know the kind - blue lines on cheap cotton, usually not very precise. 
I thought they were charming and could not resist the price of $1 each. 


Star and flower.
I was deep in the thrall of a vintage sewing kick and wanted to use up some of my stash of thrifted embroidery thread on them. In no time I had them finished and laying across the back of the couch to admire them. What would they become? They were too cheap and fragile for a quilt or pillow, and a little too big to hang on the wall. When DH walked in the room I asked him what he thought (usually a bad idea because he is a self-described non-creative). He looked them over and said "why not sew them together and finish the door hanging for the bedroom?" Wow. Great idea from DH and it made us both happy. Plus, there was the vintage Singer just waiting to sink her needle into a fun project.


Sunburst with gradated thread.
The binding got wonky during sewing.
Now, I am fully aware that this piece is far from a perfect sewing job. I am still figuring out how to deal with tension on the old machine, and the narrow foot may not have been the right one to use for a big piecing project. My binding job is amateur and the material skewed a bit. BUT I love love love it and that is the point, isn't it? I wasn't making this thing for a juried show, I was making it for my sweet girl's room and it has such charm. Every day I get to look at the needlework that would otherwise have been packed away in a drawer, just like it was when I found it. For me, this kind of project is exactly the way to showcase the lovely handwork that often gets discarded in our digital age. 

Spy the Johanna Masko quilt hanging in the bedroom?