My new Birds In My Garden embroidery pattern is especially designed to make it easy to either embroider the complete 20″x 20″ sampler or to pick and choose from the sections of the pattern to embroider smaller projects for around your home or for gifts. Either option offers some fun stitching for you. There are 20 sections in the pattern all together, featuring birds, flowers and quotes.
It was fun finding scraps from my stash to finish the sample and single sections with colorful edging. To add even more color I used folded fabric squares tacked down here and there as accents topped by mother of pearl buttons.
To make the folded fabric squares, I traced 2.5″ squares on fabric using a template, which is included in the pattern (1). After cutting the fabric squares, I laid each fabric square good side down and folded the corners to the center and pressed the edges with an iron (2). Then again, I folded the corners to the center and pressed (3). This enclosed all the raw edges. I tacked the corners together in the center (4) and finished with a button topping before tacking the square to the embroidered piece. There are spots for 16 of these cute little squares scattered over the sampler.
The Coral Stitch is what I chose to stitch the borders around the sections. It is a new addition to the few simple stitches I usually use in my patterns. It adds a nice organic, “sticks and vines” feel to the pattern, and blends perfectly with the garden theme. The Coral Stitch is a very easy stitch to do and the borders went down quickly. When tracing the pattern, I only drew tiny dots at the corners of the sections. Then when I finished the embroidery, I used a pencil and ruler to lightly draw a line between the corner dots. I started the Coral Stitch by bringing the thread up through the fabric at the end of one of the pencil lines and doing the first tack stitch right on the corner, which made a nice anchor. Then I laid the floss down on the line and held it in place with my thumb while I did another tack stitch about 1/4″ from the first one. I continued like this to the end of the line. The border lines looked smoother if I stitched the whole length of a line that may be shared by several sections on the sampler rather than stop and turn too many corners to stitch each section separately. I left the outside border line around the completed sampler for last. The trick I found to doing the Coral Stitch was to hold the floss securely on the pencil line and take a tiny tack stitch going down on one side of the floss and up just on the other side, catching only one or two threads of the fabric in the stitch, then pulling the floss gently upward to make the knot before laying it down on the line again.
It was great fun to go wild with the scrappy edges on the sampler and the single sections. No rules for doing the edges, I just whipped together any old thing, using left over pieces from the border on the large sample and use that for edging for the single sections. I then looked for places to tuck those cute little folded fabric squares topped topped with buttons.
This is a great pattern to celebrate coming through a snowy, long winter into Spring, with all the flowers and birds and nature sounds. I know you will enjoy stitching this one. The single sections make great gifts. Ask your local quilt shop whether they carry my patterns.