Things have been very busy here the last few weeks. We just took possession of our first home, and we’ve been busting tail to get things rolling on the renovation of our basement – plus repainting, figuring out furniture and new appliances, packing and moving.  It’s been exhausting, but pretty rewarding so far. I can’t wait until we can actually start unpacking, but one step at a time, eh?

In the midst of all this insanity, my brother-in-law is getting married and I had to figure out a bridal shower gift for my sister-in-law to be. I thought about the kinds of things I wanted when Dave and I were getting married. I wanted to do something handmade, and on the traditional side, so I eventually landed on a handkerchief. I didn’t have one at my wedding, and I really could have used one.

I started by scouring the internet for ideas, and landed on a floral monogram. I was super inspired by pictures of Elizabetta Sforza’s floral monograms, which I found on Pinterest.

I didn’t have time to order her book, which I hope to do one day, but I figured that since I am an artist it shouldn’t be too hard to design my own.

I sketched out a quick idea on a piece of scrap paper, used my lightbox to trace the design onto the handkerchief blank (this one). In my excitement to get started, I stupidly traced the design and started embroidering on the wrong side of the fabric. I only realized this after I was about a quarter of the way done, and decided that instead of starting over (and crying a lot) I would just embroider a blue border along the raw edge to disguise it.

This worked out well. I think the blue border looks nice, adds another layer of security to the lace, and hides the raw edge; I personally can’t tell anymore that it was embroidered on the wrong side, and I doubt anyone else could tell either. The flowers are peonies and monk’s hood (the bride’s favorites) and I also added in canola and saskatoon berries, which are references to the province (Saskatchewan is famous for growing canola and wheat) and city (Saskatoon) we live in.

The handkerchief also has a special feature – a ‘penny pocket’. In filipino culture, you’re traditionally supposed to keep a container of rice and money in the corner of your house so that you always have food and money.

The bride’s maiden name is Penny, so I thought it would be cute to add a small pocket in one of the corners, with a penny and a grain of rice inside. The penny and rice are secured in place with a few stitches; easy to take out when it comes time to wash the handkerchief.

Anyhoo,  that is all I’ve got for this week. I’ll be working on more kanzashi soon and hope I can get in a few more updates before SaskExpo in September. If not, I hope to see you at the Expo! 🙂