In our next episode of “making sense by making something” and “finding a place for all the little pieces” I present my new (and improved) Tiny Scrap Patchwork Needle Book. The name needs tweaking, but I’m pretty happy with the design!
I set out to make something useful, and beautiful, without buying or acquiring any new materials. I started with a sweet pile of off-cut hand-dyed linen and hemp scraps gifted to me by Christina Lannan of Madder Root, leftover from her gorgeous project bags.
I added in a few choice pieces of linen from my own scrap basket, before lining them with strips of cotton flour sacks that Ashley Durand from Secret Holiday Co. cuts away when she makes her inspiring hand-crafted banners.
I stitched them up with pieces of the most luscious industrial felt my old studio mate at A Gathering of Stitches, Betsy Scheintaub gave me when she was cleaning out her stash a few years ago, tucking in little lengths of twine that I think came from Sam? (Did you know storing your needles in wool helps keep them good and sharp, and rust-free?)
Perhaps most precious of all are the buttons, each one chosen from my Nana’s button collection, something I’ve treasured since she died in 1987. I spent countless hours as a kid, playing with these buttons, arranging and rearranging them, scooping them up, and letting them slip through my fingers like sand. Each one holds untold secret stories about the garment they came from, and the person who wore it. Oh, if these buttons could talk!
I've added two rows of hand stiching with Sashkio thread on each needlebook, and stocked each book with a few of my favorite needles: a quilting sharp, an easy-threader, and a wider-eyed needle perfect for embroidery or sashiko stitching. At $30, they’d be a great gift for the sweet stitchers in your life!
I’ve only made a handful of these. They won't last long!
Love to all the makers who so generously share their leftovers aka: treasures!
Tiny Handmade Patchwork Needle Books
Each needle book is unique, in that all the piecing is done improvisationally. That said, there are books that are predominantly grey, dark blue, and madder root. If you have a strong preferene, let me know, and I'll try to get you the one you want!