Monday, December 26, 2011

Holiday Gift Wrap-Up #1 -- Willow Pillow

It's all over but the leftovers! Before I start in on the next gift occasion, here's a peek at what I made this year (now that holiday surprises won't be spoiled).

For Mom and Dad, I finished the quilted pillow cover I wrote about here. The fabrics are silks I dyed with willow I grew myself. Dad helped me plant that willow, and one of the fabrics was dyed using my mom's old aluminum jelly kettle as the pot-as-mordant.

The hand stitching was done with pale pink silk buttonhole twist I bought at a yard sale then overdyed in the willow bath.

I purchased the square pillow insert, and used a row of snaps to close the cover. Note to self: Buy more snap tape. That would be easier for aging fingers to do up after the cover gets washed, but I was out of what has become a sewing staple for me. It's not just for onesies any more.

The finished pillow got wrapped furoshiki-style in one of the 35" x 35' willow-dyed silk scarves like I sell in my Etsy shop. I swaddled the works in recycled dressmaker's pattern tissue for mailing. The United States Postal Service moved the box from northern Wisconsin to southern Florida in a timely and efficient fashion and delivered it to my parents' door with a smile and wishes of the season from the mail carrier. He probably got cookies from my mom.

When I'm pressed for time, I sometimes forget how much I love hand stitching and embroidery, working without a plan, seeing how things develop, making it up as I go along. For this gift, I had time to savor the making. And I did!

I'd like to think that good feeling gets worked into the piece and radiates love when I can't be in that room myself.


  1. Donna, beautiful story and beautiful gift. Love you dear friend.

  2. Wow, silk hand-dyed with your own willow, how utterly glorious! I'm certain your parents were thrilled with such a lovely and personal gift. And how sweet that your mother gives goodies to the mailman. A handmade thing is always a real treasure!
    (and thank you for your comment!)


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