My maternal grandmother, LaViolette, taught me how to embroider and needlepoint when I was 10 years old. In the fifth grade, and I don’t remember exactly how it came about, my teacher, Miss Mallander, allowed me to work on my embroidery and needlepoint projects during class. So whenever Miss Mallender was lecturing or reading, or I had a lull in my schoolwork, I was busy stitching away at my desk. Miss Mallander didn’t allow anyone to make fun of me either, and surprisingly no other kids ever teased me about embroidering during class. Thank you Miss Mallander! And the funny thing is, my first project was a needlepoint kit of a big pink elephant (how gay is that?), that my mom let me pick out on my own at the sewing shop. I still enjoy embroidering, however, I don’t needlepoint—it’s just too boring doing the same stitch over and over. There are so many different stitches in embroidery and it's fun. I’m particularly fond of French Knots.
Here’s my latest embroidery project. I used sailor tattoos and nautical ephemera as my inspiration.
There’s anchors, sailing knots, swallows and of course a merman. What do you think?
My grandmother, LaViolette, embroidered this pillow in the early 1970’s. I love the color palette she used and the shapes. She used mostly the chain stitch to create the entire piece. This pillow is currently in my home and I think it’s even more stylish today than in the 1970’s.