Wednesday, February 20, 2013

January Redwork Birdie Stitches

I realize I'm only a month behind - but better late than never, right?  I have missed having a small handwork project.  Another quilter recommended Birdie Stitches Block of the Month by Little Miss Shabby, available free online:  When I saw it, I knew it was the perfect project for me.  The designs are fun and whimsical.  There are twelve small projects - one for each month - that are 8" square when finished.  Instead of using several colors of embroidery thread, I chose to use just No. 8 perle cotton in red.  All I need is a needle, scissors, a ball of perle cotton, and my monthly project.  Everything fits in a little bag, and I can take it anywhere.  

I printed the twelve monthly designs from the Little Miss Shabby website.  Next, I ironed freezer paper to a 12" square of Kona cotton in Snow.  I taped a paper pattern to a window, then taped the cotton backed with freezer paper over the paper.  I traced the design with a pencil. 

I have done redwork on a single layer of fabric, and the knots show through from the back.  I've tried backing the fabric with very lightweight iron-on interfacing, but the interfacing  wrinkled.  This time I used a double layer of the Kona cotton.  I ironed the layers together and used an embroidery hoop.  I didn't baste the two layers together, but it has not been a problem.  I've been very pleased with the results so far.

I did make one change to the design.  I added the name of the month to each block by finding a script font on my computer and enlarging it to 72.

The Months

January brings the snow,
Makes our feet and fingers glow.

February brings the rain,
Thaws the frozen lake again.

March brings breezes loud and shrill,
Stirs the dancing daffodil.

April brings the primrose sweet,
Scatters daisies at our feet.

May brings flocks of pretty lambs,
Skipping by their fleecy dams.

June brings tulips, lilies, roses,
Fills the children’s hands with posies.

Hot July brings cooling showers,
Apricots and gillyflowers.

August brings the sheaves of corn,
Then the harvest home is borne.

Warm September brings the fruit,
Sportsmen then begin to shoot.

Fresh October brings the pheasant,
Then to gather nuts is pleasant.

Dull November brings the blast,
Then the leaves are whirling fast.

Chill December brings the sleet,
Blazing fire, and Christmas treat.
                                Sara Coleridge

 You might also enjoy reading my previous blog post:


  1. Those little birdie designs seem to be quite popular. I think the price is right and they are cute. I am a big fan of take-along work ... a book to read if I can't sit down, and some handwork if I can.

    1. They were actually supposed to be done in several colors of embroidery thread, but I wanted to keep it really simple so just chose to use one color of perle cotton. It's amazing how often a little package of take-along work is really handy to have.

  2. Love this in red!--So fun seeing my patterns popping up here and there!

    1. I am having so much fun with your pattern. Thanks for creating and sharing them with us!


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