Thursday, July 14, 2016

Flowers—The Appliqué, Ribbon, and Embroidery Way

Last winter, we invited you to join us on our quilting road trip to Virginia, where we went to the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Show in Hampton, and then we took a class at the Academy of Appliqué in Williamsburg.  (To read about that road trip, read A Quilting Road Trip and Our Quilting Road Trip Continues.) Well, Kara and I (Teri) are already planning next year's trip. But there will be an exciting difference: next year, we will be teaching at the Academy of Appliqué.

It would difficult to express how thrilled we were when Barbara Blanton, the owner of The Academy of Appliqué, contacted us about teaching next year. Our creative juices immediately started to flow, and naturally, we turned to our two favorite sources of inspiration: literature and our gardens.

We love appliqué, but we really enjoy the embellishment of the appliqué with embroidery. There is so much detail that you can add using an assortment of threads and ribbons. The first book we looked at for inspiration was an old edition of a poetry book, which includes poems about many different flowers. In our minds' eyes, we were already stitching these flowers as we read the verses. I love to take photos of flowers; sometimes I see the detail in a close-up shot of a bloom that I don't seem to notice when I look at the beauty of the flower from afar. So I began searching my photo files for blossoms to stitch.

We don't want to give away too much too soon, but here is a sampling of the flora we will be stitching at the Academy in February/March 2017.

Every garden needs some lilies.

And roses, of course!

Nothing says spring like the cheerful face of a pansy.

The aroma of jasmine sweetens the air.

One of my personal favorites: wisteria.

Part of the charm of a clematis is the variety of the blooms with that interesting center.

Getting started on stitching clematis petals. Embroidering that center will be fun!

The fun has just begun!

With our love for telling stories, we turned to a childhood favorite: a classic story that we both loved as young girls. Perhaps you can guess what story we will be stitching. Any ideas? Stay tuned, and watch for the class listings for the Academy of Appliqué in August. We hope we will see you in Williamsburg!

Can you guess which story we'll be stitching?


  1. For embellishment with embroidery and ribbon, you should check out "The Art of Silk Ribbon Embroidery" by Judith Baker Montano. It's gorgeous!!

    1. Thanks for the suggestion, Judy! We have another of her books in our libraries, but not that one. We always love a good book recommendation!