Friday, January 13, 2012

Fashioning Helen Gibb's Ribbons

Last year for my birthday I received a wonderful little kit - Helen Gibb's Ribbon Flower Bracelet Kit.

Helen's knowledge of ribbon work is extensive.   I have admired Helen's work for many years especially her first book The Secrets of Fashion Ribbon Flowers: Heirlooms For The Next Generation published in the 1990's.  It's out of print now, but I still enjoy pulling out my precious copy to languish over all the glorious silk flower projects - peonys, hollyhocks, sweet peas - so many of my favorite flowers.

I have never done silk ribbon projects before, so this was new to me.  First I emptied the contents of the kit and found lovely, intricate little silk ribbon flowers, trims, ribbons and beads.

Also I thought this was a hand project, but I was wrong.  Except for adding the beads and ribbon flowers by hand, the project was stitched using my machine.  Which means.........this little project was quick .........

and adorable. 

Here's the full view of the bracelet.  On the far lower right a little elastic loop slips over the iridescent button on the other end of the bracelet.  
Helen's little kit made my assembly appear beautiful with so little time and effort.

Thanks Helen for your ribbon artistry... and thanks to my sister for the kit.

In your travels if you find a copy of Helen's book, pick it up.  The Secrets to Fashioning Ribbon Flowers is a jewel of a book.

SCHMETZ Needle Used:  Microtex 80/12

Friday, January 6, 2012

Thangles - Not Tangled - Christmas Scraps

Christmas and holiday gifts have been stitched and given away to family and friends.  The Christmas tree and all the holiday decorations are packed.  Now what?  What about all those scraps of Christmas fabrics?  Well, here's what I do . . . . an ongoing project.

Gather up all those Christmas scraps of fabric.  As mentioned earlier I love fabrics with a glint of silver and gold.

Start cutting up strips.  I just happen to love the little 1" Thangles, so my strips are 1.5" wide.

Pick up a package of Thangles and start stitching.  Seemingly I have an excess amount of a nice tone-on-tone holly print married with endless Christmas fabrics in assorted colors and prints. 

I love Thangles!  The stitching and cutting lines are easily viewable on the paper strips.  I even use up those nearly empty spools of threads that collect dust and space. . .  you know what I mean.  Plus I use a Universal 80/12 needle or some of those gently used assorted needles that may be laying around from projects past.

Once my Thangles are stitched and cut, they are stored in little clear bags for easy viewing.  Now the fun part begins.......

auditioning these little 1" half-square triangles. 

I love Thangles!  When I want to sew, but don't want to get involved with an intense quilt or garment project - but just have that burning urge to sew, sew, sew . . . . I sew Thangles!