Carolyn Pearce Home Sweet Home workbox 29: assembling the tape measure cover

Now I’m up to the not-very-favourite bit of this project by Carolyn Pearce…..assembly <groan>!! It helps, though, if I cut everything out ready, before I start. So here are all the bits that I’ll need: stitched pieces, acetate for stiffeners, thin wadding, matching fabric for the long joining strip, and the tape measure itself.

Tape 17

Thin wadding is placed on the reverse side of the stitched piece, and also on one piece of the acetate (I held it down on the acetate with double sided tape, to stop it slipping). I unpicked the blue guide placement stitches first, then worked running stitch with strong quilting thread, a quarter of an inch in from the edge of the fabric, and gathered it up to attach the fabric over the padded acetate.

Tape 18

Here are both sides completed up to this stage.

Tape 19

Then the long strip that will go around the tape measure is attached in the same way to the long strip of padded acetate.

Tape 20

Here is where I hit problems big time. Entirely my own fault! When I re-read Carolyn’s instructions in her book ‘Home Sweet Home; an embroidered workbox’ they were very clear. I just didn’t bother to read them properly  :-P .

What happened was that, somewhere along the line, I took the long piece of acetate that I had cut out to the measurements that Carolyn gives in her book, and temporarily fitted it around the edge of the actual tape measure, to check the fit. When I found that it overlapped by about an inch, I assumed that the measurements in the book were wrong, so I cut the inch off. SPOT THE DELIBERATE MISTAKE!! I hadn’t allowed for the fact that the long strip has to fit THE CIRCUMFERENCE OF THE TWO STITCHED CIRCLES, and not the actual tape measure, which is bound to be smaller!!! How stupid was THAT?!

So, I had patiently started to slip stitch the long strip onto the first circle. When I got most of the way round, I realised that the strip was far too short. So I swore, unpicked it, made another strip to the correct length, and started to stitch it on. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the SECOND long strip that I stitched on….it was the first one again! And I only realised that…you’ve guessed it… as I got most of the way round and it STILL didn’t fit. You can see, in the photo below, that I must be stitching on the strip that was too short, because there are little tufty pieces of thread sticking out of the top edge of the strip, left over from when I’d unpicked it before. Doh! How stupid can you get.

Tape 21

Anyway, eventually, I got the correct strip stitched on neatly, and it looked like this, with a quarter inch gap to allow the tab of the tape measure to stick out:

Tape 22

Then I slip stitched the second circle onto the long strip – this time, with no mishaps at all. Half way round, I even remembered to insert the tape measure, too  :-)

Tape 23

Finally, I stitched a row of Knotted Pearl Stitch over the slip stitches on each side.

Tape 24

Now there’s just the tassel on the tape itself to do, and it will be finished.


New dollhouse needlepoint pole screen and firescreen kits launched today!

Look at these lovely little pole screen and firescreen needlepoint kits for doll’s houses, that I have just launched today on my website:

Polescreens and firescreens new kits 2015 - 800

They are great fun to make, and will give you hours of stitching pleasure during the winter evenings.

The pole screens are to be stitched on 40 count silk gauze, and the firescreens on 32 count silk gauze. These  co-ordinating kits are all designed around the theme of ‘the four seasons’. I already had the second firescreen from the left in this line-up in my range of over 260 kits – it’s called ‘Summer Roses’. But that inspired me to design all of the rest, as I thought that the other seasons could all be represented in needlepoint, too. So, from the left, these are called Spring Flowers, Summer Roses, Autumn Harvest, and Winter Wreath.

They are all suitable for twelfth scale doll’s houses (one inch to one foot scale). The pole screen, when finished, is five inches high, and the firescreen is 2 3/4 inches high.


The firescreen kit contains a white metal kit in three pieces to make the frame, and the pole screen kit contains finely-turned mahogany pieces to make the pole screen. Also, each type of  kit contains a colour block chart to count the design from (the design isn’t printed on the fabric), a suitable fine needle, generous amounts of Anchor stranded cotton (floss), a piece of silk gauze and detailed instructions.



The firescreen frames are simply glued together with a contact adhesive such as Araldite, and then finished with enamel hobby paint, such as Humbrol (not included in the kit, but the colour I used is suggested on the instruction sheet). The pole screens are glued together with wood glue, and then finished with mahogany wax polish – you can purchase a Wood Finishing Kit from my website for this, or you can simply leave the wood in its natural state.


Both types of kit are very easy to make. There are tutorials on my website about how to put each one together, if you’d like to see that first! Here’s an example of one of the tutorial pictures:


Here are the new pole screens and firescreens, displayed in miniature room settings, to give you an idea of how they could look in your own doll’s house:

spring-flowers room corner

summer-roses-room corner

Autumn room corner

winter-room corner

The firescreen kits are £20.95 each, and the pole screen kits are £19.95 each. These would make great Christmas presents, either for yourself or a friend!



Carolyn Pearce Home Sweet Home workbox 28: the reverse side of the tape measure cover

The reverse side of the tape measure cover from Carolyn Pearce’s ‘Home Sweet Home: an embroidered workbox’ book features just one single flower – a strawberry flower.

Tape 14

This is the same motif that was used on the scissor keeper, so I tried to use the same threads as before (although I’ve run out of the dark green Gloriana silk for the leaves, so I’m using a similar shade of dark green Anchor stranded cotton). The flower petals are stitched by outlining each petal shape first with split back stitch. Then satin stitch padding is worked in two layers within the lines (at right angles to each other). The image above shows the first layer completed.

Tape 15

Then the top layer of long and shirt stitch is worked, using the shade ‘Snow’  by Gloriana. Highlights on each petal are worked in little straight stitches using a pale yellowy green.

Tape 16

The centre of the flower is lots of little French knots, stitched using one strand of Anchor. Then the leaves are done using the dark green. The flower is about three quarters of an inch across. I think this one has come out neater than the one on the scissor keeper, so I’m more pleased with this one than the other one. Now I just need to assemble the tape measure cover.



Look what I’m stitching now!

I have put my Home Sweet Home workbox embroidery aside for a while, as I’ve been stitching some new miniature needlepoint designs that I’ll be bringing out as kits in just a few weeks.

I thought I’d give you a sneak preview of one of them…..

Pole screen 1

This is a design featuring two little cottages by a river, stitched on 32 count silk gauze. I am using a single strand of Anchor thread. I have stitched all of the lower half of the design, and I’ve only got the sky to do now.

Pole screen 2

The silk gauze is mounted in a piece of mount board using masking tape, to hold it taut and make it easier to stitch. All my kits come with a colour block chart to count the design from – you can see the chart, paperclipped to the side of the card mount in the top photo.

The design is made to fit in a round frame, as part of a pole screen kit. There will be eight pole screen designs, and eight co-ordinating firescreen designs launched altogether, in a few weeks, so keep your eyes open for them  :-)

If you’d like to see the other doll’s house needlepoint kits that I sell, have a look at my website.