August 1, 2014

Embroidery + Therapy

I discovered long ago that quilting is therapy for my soul.  Of course, hand stitching a binding or applique are or piecing on the sewing machine are all included.  Embroidery, when done in such a way that I am not being too critical about my stitches, when I am not comparing my work to that of others, or when I simply do not think too hard about what I'm stitching, that kind of embroidery, is also therapeutic.  Lately, I have found that I spend far too much time thinking about all of the beautiful (and perfect!) stitched works that I see in magazines and online.  Sometimes this makes me anxious about what I am creating.  That was certainly the case with this Valentine project.  I had simply wanted to make a project I saw in my own mind that I considered beautiful.  As the stitches ran together to make flowers and leaves, I found myself being far too critical of each and every stitch.  It was grueling!  That is why this project took me so long to finish.  I finished it a good three weeks ago but have not been very  pleased with it until recently and even now I find myself critiquing the finished product.  I wish that I liked it more.  But honestly I'm just glad it is done.  It is not so bad now.  I'm on to another project and have promised myself to not repeat this state of anxiety over perceived perfection (or imperfection in the case of my own stitching).  I'm on to learning more about stitching and what makes others' items look so neat and well, perfect.  Here's to new beginnings and to Finish it up Friday!  Have a great week-end!

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. ~James 1:12 (ESV)

love, Lisa


Annie Walsh said...

Before I read your post my first thought was oh look how perfect her stitches are I wish I could do that.
They are beautiful you should be proud. XOX

CityHouseStudio said...

Lisa, I think it's absolutely gorgeous! This must have taken FOREVER to make. I really love it. No one but you would ever notice that anything isn't perfect!

Tami D said...

I often think, too, that quilting feeds my soul. I think your embroidery is just lovely. I did just little bits, recently,and would love to do more. It is its own kind of therapy. We all tend to judge our hand work harshly. Why do we do that? You've done a lovely job.

Jenny said...

Hi Lisa

That piece is just so beautiful. I think the reason we are so critical of our own work is because we are working so close to it. Stand back and admire it for what is is - a thing of beauty made by your own fair hands. I will never be a perfectionist, but that's OK, the bottom line is that I love what I'm making.
Best wishes from Jenny in New Zealand

Wendy said...

I think it's beautiful and that you're being way too harsh on yourself. your stitches look good to me. It may be that you've been staring at it so close up for so long that if one stitch is a minute bit shorter than another you think it looks terrible! perspective is a great thing, if you stand back and look at it, I'm sure you'll realise how beautiful it really is.

Jenni said...

I had no idea before the heartland blog hop that you had a blog. I love this embroidery you made. It's so beautiful! The stitches are perfect. I'm the same way. I'm so hard on myself. Especially seeing everyone's beautiful works online. You are such an inspiration to me. I love how you always try new things. And you also accomplish a lot! I guess it's all about the journey...taking one day at a time.