Vintage Crewel

I was doing some spring cleaning today. Going through my hall closets, trying to get my crafting supplies under control, I found this partially finished piece of crewel work. The pattern says it is a Bernat Stitchery Pak, Petals Pillow No. SO 8057.

When the crewel embroidery is finished, it can be made in to a pillow. The color scheme (orange rust and avocado green) makes me think it's probably from the 1970s. It's mostly done except for the center flower and a few smaller leaves and flowers. From the handwriting on one of the bundles of yarn, I think it belonged to my grandma.
I haven't done much crewel work, although I do have a couple of books about the subject. The impulse overtook me and I sat right down to work on this long ago abandoned piece. I completed the two golden colored flowers. Made with bunches of french knots, they look like fuzzy mums. I never know what to do with embroidery. I used to cross stitch when I was younger. Even about 5 years ago a made a cross stitch sampler of fruits and vegetables. It's pretty large, maybe 12 inches by 18 inches. I enjoyed making it but had no idea what to do with it so it just sat around. My family often does a white elephant gift exchange. I figured that was the perfect place to get rid of my embroidery. I had a frame from a mirror that had broken. So I matted the sampler and framed it. My brother won the sampler but it ended up hanging in my parents dining room. They've moved now so I don't know where that sampler will end up next.

Anyway, what should I do with this crewel work? It's so close to being done that I think I'll finish it. I might put it in a shadow box I have and hang it up. I don't want it to look hokey though. I'm imagining a little bird figure sitting on the flowers in the shadow box frame. Is that too silly? We'll see.


  1. What a great find - it is lovely to have something that your Grandmother made. Thanks for the instructions on how to make a blog banner - I will get my 11 year old daughter (my co-author) to have a whirl! Lisa

  2. This is fun! Whatever you do will be great. I think it would be a fun pillow, esp. in the fall. My sister-in-law has a beautiful small antique footstool covered in crewel work, and it is so pretty.


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