Tuesday, December 1, 2020

A Stitching Finish

 I have been jumping around on the stitching as of late which tends to happen in fall and then Christmas. I was working on my heron when I ran out of thread and I am glad I did. I just knew as soon as I ran out of the color that I was supposed to finish my flowers before the year was up.

The final installment is a magnolia.

Now, let's take about what led me to the stitches and my plans for them. While perusing one of my favorite gardening and decorating Instagram pages I saw a wall of botanical prints that I fell in love with. The decorator was using them in an antebellum home just north of Auburn and commissioned an Auburn artist to watercolor these prints. I also follow that artist and love love love his work. If only I could afford that kind of thing.

The following prints are from A Place to Call Home by James T. Farmer and the prints were done by Andrew Lee Design of Auburn. I wish I could find a better picture, but I don't seem to be able to locate the picture of them upclose that got my wheels spinning so long ago.

This is an example of Andrew's work on Instagram. Amazing...

I kept thinking on it and really knew I had nowhere to put anything like that even if I could afford it. I was still drawn to them and then it hit me. I stitch...that is what I do and what better than a wall of flowers and birds of my own stitching

You have seen the three birds I stitched and yes, they are hidden away in a bedroom at our Auburn house, but they look spectacular in that bedroom. I hope one day we will spend a lot more time there than we presently do, but either way I love them.

I think the flowers will also look good all mixed in with those birds when framed. The framing will come in the new year because after all it is Christmas and I have presents to buy.

How did arrive at the choices? Well, the birds are the three birds I can count on seeing when I walk everyday. The flowers are special choices as well. Let's talk about the four state flower choices and we will go in the order I stitched them.

I first stitched the orange blossom for Florida. It is my home! I love Florida. I have loved Florida my whole life. While I wasn't born here, I lived just across the Alabama /Florida line and spent many weekends either shopping or beaching it. It is my hubby's birthplace and home. He has only lived in Auburn other than right here. I have lived here officially since August of 1984. I taught 4th grade many years and loved learning and teaching about this wonderful state. It has a rich history. Of course, my kids were born here too. I actually lived in Pensacola for a month at age 4....long story...Pensacola NAS.

The second stitch was the camellia for my sweet home Alabama. I was born there and that is where I lived most of my growing up years. My mother and father are from south Alabama. Both were born and raised in Conecuh County, Alabama. The U.S. Army took them away. Starting in 6th grade, we moved to Brewton where my home was 9 miles north of the Florida line. My roots are deep in Alabama. I do love pink camellias. There is one very close to my dad's grave in Range, Alabama. Oh, and Fort Walton Beach, Florida is the camellia city. My street is lined with them. They are a show stopping plant in full bloom during the winter months. Can't beat that!

The third stitch was for where a piece of my heart resides...the Cherokee Rose of Georgia. I have lived there two times in my life. Once as a small child...Fort Benning and again as a first year teacher just out of Auburn. Same location...Columbus, Georgia. Columbus is just across the Alabama/Georgia line from Auburn. It was the last place I lived with my dad alive and then was able to share my love for the area with Jeff when we were dating and engaged. In fact, he asked me to marry him in Columbus. We visit often and ride around the area. I was so glad I got to share my heart with him there. I taught just north of Columbus at Harris County High School (home economics). It was just 5 miles south of the Calloway Gardens gate. We love that place. We spent a lot of time there when I taught there and he was finishing up in Auburn.

The final stitch is another of my quintessential Southern favorite flowers.. the magnolia. The magnolia is Mississippi's state flower. Why did I choose that because trust me I have many favorite flowers? I mean there is the blue hydrangea that grew abundantly around my great grandparents' home. Mississippi is where Jeff's parents were born and raised. Two Mississippi people and two Alabama people gave birth to a couple who loves their southern roots and feel blessed to live in our area. We actually have a painting above our couch that is two boats on the water named "The Mississippi Blue" and "Miss Alabama."

That is how the birds and flowers were chosen and I look forward to blending them altogether on that blue wall in Auburn.


  1. Your work always looks perfect to me and your grouping will be lovely on a wall when you get them all finished and framed. Looking forward to seeing it!!

  2. So beautiful your flowers. They will loook amazing in frames and with the birds.
    Thanks for sharing your lovely memories about the flowers.
    Have a nice day, Manuela

  3. Sandy, your Magnolia finish is gorgeous. Thank you for sharing the stories behind the why they were picked. I think you should attach those stories to the backs of the frame pieces once you get them framed.

  4. This is gorgeous, Sandy. So delicate. I love the handwritten look of the text, too. I think your stitches are better than prints because they came from your hands, and the designs are timeless. I hope you are having a great week and staying relaxed. This can sure be a frazzling time of year!

  5. Beautiful flowers. The house is stunning. I see why you like it.

  6. Your flowers are magnificent, Sandy, just like you!! Have a wonderful week!

  7. What a lovely post. I really appreciated reading about your inspiration for stitching the birds and these flowers. They are all beautiful and will look wonderful together someday.

  8. You will have a wonderful gallery with these cross stitch flowers, they are fantastic. And it will be all the more special because you've made them yourself. Well done!

  9. Oh how wonderful, Sandy! I love your flowers and the stories behind them! That makes them even more beautiful! And yes, they will look so lovely with your bird pictures on that blue wall. Can't wait to see the finished product! Thank you for sharing a little bit of your family history connected to these flowers. I've never thought much about the state flowers, and now you have me thinking about them. I do love all four of those flowers too! Especially the Camellia. We had several small bushes of them at our last house, which I planted while there. I hated leaving them behind, and I do hope the new owners appreciate them! Our church does have a lot of bushes, and I have been watching them and waiting for them to bloom soon. They have a lot of buds! Take care, and have a blessed week.

  10. Just home and catching up on my blog time. Love your pretty stitching and it will be so pretty once everything is on display.

  11. How very lovely, Sandy! I love the stories behind each flower and why you selected them. The inspiration photos you shared are beautiful and I have no doubt yours will be equally pretty! I hope you do get to spend more time at your Auburn house once this virus is under control--I bet you've really missed it. Enjoy your weekend as we count down to Christmas ♥


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