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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Ahwahnee Table Topper

This is a travel project - a pre-printed cross-stitch table topper (or what my mother and grandmother would have called a supper cloth) I purchased from Herrschners in a sale because I liked the pattern and could work on it while travelling without too much gear or too complicated a pattern. I dug it out recently when I needed to travel interstate.

The cotton fabric is a nice quality and the print firm and clear. There are only four thread colours, which come in precut lengths - very useful when you can't carry scissors on planes.

On my first trip with this project, going to Sydney to see my father, I carefully packed it in a drawstring bag with my husif - containing my circular thread cutter but no scissors, as I had only carry on luggage. What I overlooked was the scissoroos I had slipped into my iPad case one night when stitching. The kind and efficient security officer who found them held them while I purchased a padded bag and stamps in the terminal, addressed the envelope and returned to the screening point. He then offered to post the envelope for me - they were waiting at home when I returned two days later. I wish I knew his name. It made my day.

I was then away for over a week, working in Victoria, and the Ahwahnee work progressed. With only 4 thread colours, the pattern is easy to get the hang of, and there is a bit of choice in how to work it, to keep boredom at bay. I work with long threads, and tend to work two thread lengths in one colour - 3 strands each, using up one six-strand length - then change colour. This way I see the design emerge.

 I like this design a lot. I think it would look great in other stitches and I may play around with it when I've finished this piece. It would lend itself to a range of whipped stitches or variations on chain stitch for example.

With the dark blue outline in place the basic shape is clear. It would not be hard to work variations on this.

Since arriving home, being the finish-fanatic that I am, I kept working on it, although it would have been quite sensible to put it aside until I next travel. Here's the finished article and a trial-run on a coffee table.


Monica said...

LOL, you will love this, Jillian. I wondered if this design was inspired by the Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite, California. It is! Click on the photo gallery in the link below, and you will see it in the valance in the mural room.

Although I haven't stayed at the Ahwahnee, we did have a look in while visiting Yosemite. It is fantastic, and I still hope to go back for a stay some day. :)

Jillian said...

How amazing is that, Monica! It looks just great - wouldn't mind going there myself one day. Thanks a million for checking it out and sharing. It's a lovely design and worth repeating elsewhere.

margaret said...

a pretty cloth which I am sure you will get lots of use from, just be careful of those tea drips!

katherine said...

Beautiful stitching! Lovely that the man posted back your scissors. Funny thing is when we flew to Hobart a couple of years ago I had about 15 packs of different medication, a syringe and a stitch cutter as my carry on luggage! No one even stopped or questioned me.