Embellish with Relish

Do you love cake?  I love cake in any shape or form.  There are layer cakes and sheet cakes and “leave in the pan” cakes…those are the ones you throw together for your husband because he complains there is nothing to eat in the house. Some cakes have poured on burnt sugar frosting and others are stacked and decorated to the nines. But at the end of the day it’s just flour and sugar. The difference is how you put the flour and sugar together and how you decorate it.  


The same goes for needle arts.  You can sew a couple pieces of cloth together putting together a utilitarian piece…and sometimes that is exactly what is needed.  But the operative word in needle arts is “Art.”  For those of us who use the needle arts as a way of expressing ourselves…you don’t need a “leave in the pan” cake.  You need a stacked wedding cake with cascading flours and edible sparkles.  


That is called embellishing.  There are purists among us who say less is more.  Not me.  If some is good, more is better.  And if more is better, put more on top of that.  When it comes to embellishing…how much “more” is enough?  A little bit more.  Now that Christmas is over and the seasonal cheer is back in the basement, I have caught the creative bug.  My theme for 2016 is going to be Embellish with Relish.





I have been embellishing since I was in high school.  Back in the day, all girls were required to take Home Economics.  We learned how to insert a zipper in a jumper and make a gathered skirt. We also learned how to embroider.


Our mothers provided us with kitchen towels on which to learn our stitches. I stitched a chicken on my towel.  My mother was crazy for chickens…and I still have the towel!! That was my first taste of embellishment.


I continued to take Home Economics while in high school.  I made a dress from a red and gray cotton fabric called Hopsacking.  Do any of you remember Hopsacking?  As I neared completion of my dress the teacher suggested making prairie points to edge the sleeves.  I loved making them. And the dress turned out really cute!!  


From that point forward I have continued to love “dressing up” all of my needle arts projects. Embroidery and handwork takes boring to special…ordinary to spectacular.  Yes…it can be overdone. Well…maybe not!!!!




By: Ginger Mangie