My garden greenman

Last year I decided my garden needed a a bit more pizzazz. We have been putting in shade plants for the past few years to liven up what was a very sparse yard. The greenery is coming along, and the space cried out for some decoration to compliment the new life. 

I decided on a greenman.

I spent all winter imaging and planning something to hang on the fence on the shady patio side of the house. As soon as I could be comfortably out in the garage this spring I began working with some cedar fence boards. Sketches in hand, I pulled out the band saw and got to work. 


It took some work to get everything to line up but I am pretty happy with the result.


I’m in stitches, again


When my son was young I took up cross stitching. I used to sit on the couch with him at my feet and watching A&E when A&E was still arts and entertainment, and the X-Files when Skully and Mulder weren’t parodying themselves – eons ago it seems.

Recently I came across a box full of embroidery floss (in almost 100 colours), several extra pieces of needlepoint fabric, and both finished and unfinished work.

Being the compulsive creator I am, I never bought cross stitch patterns. I bought the fabric with the smallest weave possible and created my own patterns from gleaned ideas and images.

Berni liked this one, and we took it to be framed. Turns out it looks absolutely lovely hanging in our bedroom. I recall it taking me several years to complete so it is gratifying to see my efforts gracing my walls.


I also found this one, partly done. I had to go buy more thread because I didn’t have more of the blue, but I now have it finished. I may get it framed as well, and I might pull together one or two similar looking images to stitch and make a set. But not right now.


I have just begun an especially ambitious project. I want a new table runner for the dining room. Our table seats 10, so the runner will be 9 feet long. I want it winter, but not Christmas, themed. And of course, I want it completely stitched; foreground and back ground. I spent this winter putting three, three foot lengths of fabric together. I’ve secured the edges with three rows of stitching.


I’ve done some research and have drawn out a plan on a long piece of butcher’s paper. The pattern will repeat down the length, and mirror itself the long sides. The images will be silhouettes.


I want it to be in muted, related colours. I bought some threads that appealed to me and made up a couple samplers like this one to see how the colours played off each other.


Now that I have a plan I can get to work. I will sketch the images on the fabric as I go along, but will be free styling it a bit. I am a HUGE fan of ‘imperfection’. I think the small flaws are what make art, art.

Wish me and my hands luck. It will be slow going because my fingers and thumbs seize up a bit now so I’ll have to take frequent stitching breaks. Some time in 2020 I’ll let you know how it has turned out.