Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Going Soft-Hearted For Valentine's Day...

It's that time of year again, Christmas and New Year have passed, January has almost finished, and February can only mean one thing...Valentine's Day! Hearts and flowers and love in the air...Hearts are everywhere, in jewellery, accessories, fabric design, home decor, and crafting - especially in crafting!

I found these two gorgeous heart designs in a French cross-stitch design book Coeurs : Broderie traditionnelle et au point de croix by Agn├Ęs Delage-Calvet &  Anne Sohier-Fournel, http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/250107761X/ref=cm_sw_em_r_am_it_ws_gb?ie=UTF8 and adapted them as the centre panels for two cushions (as you may have noticed, I love cushions!)

The first design is worked in one colour on a contrasting background, and is a large heart made of other tiny hearts, no two are the same. One features a dove, another has roses and the centre, another has a bow, some have beading incorporated into them, but  they are all gorgeous, and the overall effect is stunning. I designed my own 'lace heart' border to frame the main heart, frayed the edges of the Aida, and then appliqued it on to a toning gingham cushion cover, adding a wooden button in each corner of the panel...and yes, even the buttons were heart-shaped!

The back of the cushion cover simply overlaps, and is secured with metal poppers, covered over with more heart shaped buttons, so there was no fiddling around trying to fit a zip (because although I know how to do it in theory, it never quite seems to work out as it should!)

And this is the same basic design, in a different colour.

The second cushion I call my  'Love Letters' cushion. The heart on this one is comprised of every letter of the alphabet, in a different font style. I chose a range of eight or nine colours of a similar palette - in this case, browns, coppers, and spicy ginger colours, on a cream background, and worked 2 or 3 letter in each shade.

This design ends up more rectangular than the previous one, which is pretty much square, so I decided to make it look like an actual letter, and added the outline of an envelope in a colour slightly darker than the aida I was using, so the effect was quite subtle and didn't overpower the heart. I made the cover from some recycled cotton fabric, which gave it a rustic look,  made the opening in the same way as the first cushion, and then just sewed the cross-stitched panel into the centre - and I it!

These designs can be worked in any combination of colours to suit your decor, and once you've stitched the panels, you can turn them into almost anything, bags, wall-hangings, anything you like. So why not make yourself a Valentine's gift this year as well?


  1. They're both adorable, but I really really like the second one. It's beautiful.