My Etsy Shop

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Lindisfarne Celtic Geometry Pattern

I have mentioned in previous posts that I have many sources of inspiration for my designs but one of my favourite sources is the beautiful Celtic designs created over a thousand years ago throughout the British Isles. These islands have a wealth of Celtic art in various forms and designs can be found in manuscripts, on ancient stonework and on artefacts such as shields or jewellery. I have long been fascinated by Celtic art and when I took up embroidery as a serious hobby, I began looking for designs that celebrated the art that I loved. Although there are Celtic cross stitch designs available, I couldn't quite find what I was looking for.
I didn't want Celtic for the sake of being Celtic; I wanted my designs to tell a story and to have links with their ancient roots. So, I found designs that I liked in various books about Celtic art and culture and began to convert some of them into cross stitch patterns. They have often been simplified and adapted to modern colours but each one has its origins in those ancient times.
I often think about the original artists as I'm working. I imagine a monk working in the peaceful surroundings of his monastery while he draws out the lines that will help him create an intricate motif to decorate a page from the gospel. Or perhaps there is a stonemason in his workshop, carefully etching beautifully formed knotwork into  a sandstone cross.

These are the people who have inspired me to give new life to these patterns and share them with those of you who want quality embroidery designs that have an authenticity and are a real celebration of the wonderful artwork from the history of Britain and Ireland.
The design pictured here is my Lindisfarne Celtic Geometry pattern. The Lindisfarne Gospels are illuminated manuscripts that were created in the Lindisfarne Monastery of the Northumbrian coast, probably in the early 8th century. This angular geometric style is a common feature of Celtic art and is quite striking. I have used shades of seas green and to give it a modern look. You can of course choose other colours if you wish.
You can find it in my Payhip shop or as an instant download in my Etsy shop.

All photos (c) Karen Eley 2014-15

Monday, 20 October 2014

Instant downloads on Etsy

Just a quick note to announce the launch of my Etsy shop! I've been on Folksy for a while but now I'm also on Etsy which has a bigger potential audience. The shop is called Hawthorn Tree Designs and exactly the same designs are available but on Etsy they are available as instant downloads. This means the patterns will be available to you as soon as payment is completed. I operate through PayPal but don't worry if you don't have an account, you can still use a credit or debit card. Take a look!

Saturday, 11 October 2014

New Christmas Patterns!

I can't believe we're already almost halfway through October - where does the time go? I didn't work at all last weekend as I was at Derby Folk Festival enjoying all the great music. Due to the fire earlier this year, the Assembly Rooms are closed until further notice so it became an outdoor festival. There was a big marquee set up in the market square and a number of events took place in the Guildhall Theatre and the Old Bell Hotel. It really showcased Derby's cathedral quarter and created a real buzz in the city centre. I was able to indulge myself in my favourite music all weekend with performances from Coope, Boyes and Simpson, Kathryn Roberts and Sean Lakeman, Martin Simpson, Jez Lowe and the Bad Pennies, Steeleye Span, Show of Hands and Kate Rusby. Fantastic! I'm already excited about what will be on offer next year.
There were sycamore leaves and seeds all over the market square and the chilly nights reminded me that winter is fast approaching. For us crafters, it's time to think about the projects we want to work on for Christmas. If you're looking for something festive that won't take up too much of your time then I have THREE choices for you! They can each be finished in well under a month and only need two skeins of stranded cotton and a small amount of metallic braid. If you're speedy you could easily make more than one of them before Christmas.
The first is this Festive Bauble, inspired by traditional band samplers and Assisi work. Although it will fit into a 6-inch hoop, it looks more balanced in a 7-inch hoop. It can be worked in any colours you choose so feel free to use my design as a guide to match it to your own festive colour scheme.

The second is this Noel Sampler featuring mini motifs which can be used for smaller projects such as Christmas cards. This design fits perfectly into an 8-inch hoop.

The third design is this sampler inspired by the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol. For me, no Christmas is complete without this story and I'm a big fan of the TV version with Patrick Stewart as Scrooge. When the old miser is shown the error of his ways by the Spirits of Christmases Past, Present and Yet to Come, Scrooge vows to make amends and change his ways. You could almost imagine Mrs Cratchit herself making this sampler to display on the wall as her family sit down to their Christmas dinner.

You can find them all in my Etsy and Payhip shops and don't forget you can also keep in touch with me through Facebook and Twitter.