Textile Memories

Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been working on a textile book of all the finished and unfinished crafty things we found when clearing my mum’s house when she went into a care home a couple of years ago. I had started it a few months ago but I was spurred on to finish it as I wanted it on display at her funeral this week. It was quite therapeutic working on it.

I showed you some of the pages last week…

Well I finished it just in time. I decided to edge the pages with a simple zig-zag, it doesn’t make as neater finish as I prefer, but it was manageable considering the number of pages I had to do, I zig-zagged round them all once and then a second time, but this time I used an overlocking thread which is slightly ‘fluffier’ to give coverage. I wondered about using different colours for each page, but the thought of trying to co-ordinate back and front colours – I just used grey!

Some of the pages have pockets I can keep things in…

The square embroidered bag contains letters I found between my parents before they were married. The tall purse contains bookmarks my mum bought on visits out. She wrote on the back who she was with and when, there were dozens of them but these were ones with my children.

The embroidered bible covers have little paintings slotted in their end pieces. There are bigger pictures in the cover pockets of the book.

The ‘I’ below was on a cushion, I used it for the opening page. The quilts in the background were two quilts she made years ago which were well used to the point of being threadbare in places. I have lots of happy memories with these quilts as they were up in my mum’s weekend cottage in West Witton in Wensleydale.

I took an idea from the Stitchbook Experience books and used a bead inbetween each page, it just helped to space the pages, particularly as some were quite bulky.

The outer cover is made from a larger cross-stitch with some uphosltery fabric both as back and lining. One of the buttons covers a stain which didn’t come out with washing! I made it long enough so I could fold the ends over to make pockets for paintings. I found some stiff interfacing in my stash, I wasn’t sure if it was the iron on one or not, anyway I slotted it in place and ironed it, it was, the lining side is stuck to the stiffener.

I’ve really pleased with how it’s come out, I’ve one large piece of embroidery left which is going to be made into a bag to keep it in. To give you an idea of size, the

I took it along to the funeral tea but sadly due to the lockdown with corona virus, hardly anyone could come – put it this way our catering numbers went from 40 to 15 the day before the funeral. If it was happening now we wouldn’t even be allowed that many! It was hard as it doesn’t seem a fair reflection of her life, but we moved the service to the Lady Chapel and this made it a nice intimate service with close family and friends, rather than rattling round in a big church. These are difficult times.

About craftycreeky

I live in a busy market town in Yorkshire with my husband, kids, dogs and chickens. I love trying new crafts, rediscovering old ones, gardening, walking...anything creative really I started this blog after my New Year resolution worked so well. My resolution (the first one I've ever kept!) was to post a photograph of my garden on Facebook every day. My hope was that I would then see what was good in the garden and not just weeds and work, which was my tendency. The unexpected side-effect was that I have enjoyed many more hours in the garden. I am hoping that 'The Crafty Creek' will have the same effect. Happy creating!
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15 Responses to Textile Memories

  1. magpiesue says:

    It is a pity more folks couldn’t come to the funeral, especially after all your work to get this textile treasure assembled. There are a lot of funerals – and weddings – that are having to be put off these days, or kept to really intimate affairs. So sad.


  2. prue batten says:

    What a beautiful heirloom.
    Your hands touching hers…


  3. katechiconi says:

    Maybe you could get those who couldn’t/didn’t come to write a little note on a card you can slot into a pocket of the book, so that they are there in spirit? That way, when you look back, you can see who was there virtually as well as physically.


  4. Sharon says:

    The book turned out wonderful and is a beautiful heirloom. Perhaps when this is all over a lovely celebration of your mothers life for friends and family unable to attend could be organized. MY thoughts are with you.


  5. Laura says:

    This is such a precious treasure, Margaret! I love it! Hopefully, there will be better times where you can share the memories! 🙂

    Stay healthy and safe!


  6. kathyreeves says:

    What a lovely book this is, you will treasure it for years to come, and your children and their children (someday) too. Stay well, friend.


  7. kaye steeper says:

    As a person who endlessly does little projects i may start on this idea and hope im around to finish it . Wonderful tribute to your mum


  8. Lizzie says:

    A truly lovely piece. And a wonderful book that you will treasure. I finished a quilt that my mum started, quite a while after she passed, and I get much pleasure from wrapping it around me. It’s like having a hug. Take care.


  9. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    You poured your heart and soul into this book. It will be a part of your Mum that will always be with you. I am glad you could at least have a few close family and friends with you to give you solace. The book is a treasure. Well done.


  10. mandycurrie says:

    Hello Margaret, your Mum’s book is beautiful and such a great tribute to her. I’m sorry the virus interfered with the funeral, but it’s a good idea to have a card written by others that would have been there. Hope you keep well and healthy. Regards Mandy xx


  11. anne54 says:

    This must be a difficult time for you Margaret. The coronavirus is so all consuming that it sucks the air out of everything else. Having space to mourn your beloved mother must be hard….and then not having special people at her funeral. ~hugs~ I think Kate’s idea is a lovely one. As is your Mum’s idea of writing on the bookmarks. I love bookmarks and wish I had written on them too.


  12. CurlsnSkirls says:

    Margaret, your book is such a moving tribute to your mum! I hope those unable to attend the service this past week will be able to regroup and remember with you all the happy times. Meanwhile, please be safe and take special care. Happy Mother’s Day, and I hope your daughter is safe whilst at her own post of nursing. xxx


  13. Lynette says:

    I had a Mum who was an amazing creative embroiderer and I have inherited her stash of fabrics, silks, notions, etc. This is such a wonderful way to celebrate a life of sewing and love. Your tribute to your Mum is a precious heirloom and a great inspiration to others. I think when it’s her anniversary (birth or passing) your lovely book could be shared at a memorial with others. Hope lockdown is over for you soon, if not already. Arohanui from New Zealand!

    Liked by 1 person

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