Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric... Welcome to the Patriotic Quilter where I like to share all things quilty as well as red, white, and blue! Please feel free to look around and enjoy yourself! I would love to hear from you.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Patriotic Samplers

Back when I still had a home, before the movers took everything away, I worked on some things that I could share now.  One of them involoved some of my traveling projects from the past.  Way back when I used to cross stitch a bit.  I did a few projects and then discovered that quilting was much better!  Several years ago, though, a friend gave me some cross stitch patterns for little "samplers" that were all patriotic.  I fell in love with them, so I got some aida cloth (I never learned to stitch on linen) and floss and worked on them from time to time mostly when I was moving.  The problem with cross stitch is when you complete the project.  Do you get it framed?  Sew it into something?  How much are you going to spend?  It isn't unlike quilting in that once you finish a top you have some of those same decisions to make.  Sometimes I think that "making the decision" is half the battle. 

While going through things in my quilting room, I unearthed a pile of these little samplers that I had more or less finished.
I say "more or less" because while I had completed the stitching, some of them needed a little charm or special buttons, etc.  I guess I was waiting until I found the special things to finish them.  I've also been shopping around for the perfect, primitive style moulding used for the frames.  You know, like the photos on the pattern cover.  Yeah right.  By now I was remarking at how much I liked them and how I just want them finished so I can enjoy them.  I dug out my button box and found some tiny buttons which worked for the embellishments.  I noted the approximate size of each one in my note app for my phone, and then when I did the thrift shop routes I could look for frames.  I thought since they were "squareish" shaped, that I would have trouble finding frames, but surprisingly, if you are just looking for shape and size there were just the right ones out there!

Whatever the frames were painted or filled with, if they fit, I brought them home.  I stripped out the back, whatever "picture" was inside, and the glass.  Then I painted them black.  While the paint was drying, I stretched the stitcheries over foamcore and pinned them into the edges.  When the pieces were all done, I put them into the frames, sealed up the back, and put on hangers if needed.  This is what I ended up with:

These two are in identical frames--I found the pair of them for $4. They were originally a pinkish "whitewash" and inside were several layers of mats with seashells in the middle.  See what I mean about if the size and shape were right?  I wish I had taken "before" pictures.

This frame was originally gold and I love the texture!   It had a small print in it, too.  Most of these were little "framed art" pictures--not empty frames.  I wasn't afraid to strip off the back and repurpose them, though.  Especially if it only cost a few dollars.   The star button was supposed to be a charm.

This is the only frame I bought new.  I loved the wooden "mat."  It was stained and the frame was shiny black.  I crackled right over the stain on the insert and love how it came out.  I mat painted the frame just like the others.  The star button on this one was supposed to be a charm, as well.

What I love most is that they are finished!  I didn't spend but $12 or so to get them done and I love the way they look!  Yes, I could have spent considerably more, but I don't think it was necessary. The decisions are over and they are ready to hang...   whenever we get to Virginia, find a house, get our stuff, and unpack!



  1. The picture and their frames look amazing. I'm glad you are pleased with how they turned out. Great minds think alike, I'm just going through my unfinished cross stitch pile to try and get some of them finished x Melanie

  2. Thanks for linking up. These frames are adorable.

    So when you say you stripped off the back, do you mean you take off that paper part that is sometimes on prints. The reason I ask is that I have two frames that I would love to repurpose. They have prints in them and the back is paper. I am just wondering what to put behind a new picture to keep it in.


  3. Very cool.... you are right that you don't have to spend a fortune on framing stuff! You done good!

    Whereabouts in VA are you headed? Just curious... both my sisters are in VA...

  4. Love them! What a wonderful job you did, and they look so great as a group. I know just what you mean about finishing cross stitch projects. I have a few finished items myself that I have never framed. Thanks for the inspiration to get them out and just do it!

  5. They are adorable! I quilt small runners and wallhangings, but have been itching to return to small cross stitch things again. Do you happen to recall if the patterns came from a book, and if so the name of it? Maybe I could hunt it down through Ebay or Etsy. I love the Americana look! Thanks for sharing!

  6. I love all your red, white, and blue. It is my favorite color combination! What a great addition to your home.

  7. Just love your finished Counted Cross stitch red white and blue pictures. What a great addition for your home !

  8. Great job! Don't you just love it when you make something really nice with next nothing and it comes out looking just like you intended? They will look lovely in your new home. I have a few unfinished cross stitch projects...h-m-m maybe I need to get them out.

  9. Hi JoAnne,
    What a wonderful set of cross stitch you made! I just love each one of them. All the frames turned out great too! Nice job on the crackle finish! And now you will be able to enjoy them once you are settled in. Thanks for sharing these at the Patriotic Link Party!

  10. Nicely done and will fit in nicely with your new home!

  11. Your framed Americana collection is so pretty!! Congrats on finding all the right frames and finishing them all so nicely...

    I see you are moving to the east coast to VA, my neighboring state... Great! I hope you'll call on me to help you with your future finishing needs! A basket filled with small patriotic stitches to sit near your framed collection would be just beautiful... And since I do finishing.... Well, call on me when you're ready..

    Good luck with the move and settling in... You'll love beautiful Virginia!

    Always, Fayeo