interpretations & variations

While working on my second book (Making Peg Dolls & More) I asked several friends to test some of my patterns, and I am very grateful for their help.  Their comments & corrections have certainly made the book easier for everyone to use, and I thought it would be interesting to show you the results of their pattern-testing efforts.

emily's doll & pincushion blossoming among the lettuce

Here is a pincushion stitched by my friend Emily.  She followed my instructions & patterns, but her pincushion is unique.  It resembles the pincushion I created, and yet this one is clearly Emily's own beautiful work.

snail applique by caroline (pattern tester extraordinaire)

My friend Caroline created this linen shoulder bag with snail applique.  In the book I added small touches of embroidery to the pocket, but Caroline did something very clever; she added embroidery which echoes the swirling silver snail-trails I find in the garden. (Additionally, she added veins to the leaf, which is also her own unique interpretation!)

herbal pocket doll stitched by alice & her mum

I adore this little yellow & lavender doll which Alice helped create (and I adore Alice's sweet face, too.)

greenwood tree wall hanging created by caroline

In my books, my designs are simple and relatively unornamented, leaving room in the patterns for personal interpretation, customization, extra embroidery, beading, etc... Designs with less ornamentation also reflect my personal style.  I am an avid admirer of Salley Mavor and Elisa Kleven. Both these artists create complex and intricate work; however, if I imitated the intricacy of their work (which I love and am in awe of... every little detail), I wouldn't be true to my own style. (Occasionally I will even add extra beading or embroidery to a project and then rip it out again because it doesn't look right to me.)

my little son playing with the wall hanging sewn by Caroline

Are you feeling inspired to try some of your own variations and interpretations?  I always enjoy & appreciate seeing photos of your work inspired by my books -- please email photos any time!

P.S. Did you know that, starting Monday, February 2nd, there will be a blog tour for the new book?  I will be posting the schedule this Friday, and you will be able to check in here every day for the next 2 weeks for updates about where to find the blog tour posts.  See you then!


  1. Greetings from down-under. What delightful projects. I love these..... Thank you for sharing.

  2. I can't wait for the new book to come out. I have a gift card for amazon and went shopping last week. But I saved enough money on it to get your book!

  3. All very lovely work! my favorite I think is the pin cushion but all are lovely. :)


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