Family Photos + Handmade Gifts

Merriweather Stitchery | 3 comments

Late in 2013 I started using vintage imagery in my embroidered hoops. I love looking at vintage photos and I super ultra loved using them in my textile pieces.

In November, my mother in law emailed me two images of her parents and asked me about the possibility of using these to create gifts for her sisters for Christmas.

The images she sent me were exactly the sort I love to use – especially the one of her mother – sitting on the beach with the sand an sky behind her. I have long loved vintage beach babe photos, and from a technical standpoint, the uncluttered sky/ sand/ water backgrounds make the subjects stand out more which is great, obviously.

If I remember correctly. this photo was taken at a beach my husband’s family has gone to for many years – and I’ve been there with them as well!

 

The image of her mother, Madeline, was one I had seen before and loved then too… for pretty much the same reasons I’ve mentioned above. There is just something about vintage photos of ladies at the beach that really makes me feel nostalgic for a time I’ve never experienced. Ladies dressed so classy then… sigh.

We eventually added in two more snaps – one each of her mother and father -to create a total of six unique hoops, four of which would be Christmas gifts. Of course, she was going to have two for herself.

family photos + handmade gifts | the merriweather council blog

I could kick myself (is that even possible?) for not getting a photo of my mother in law and her sisters together with their hoops on Christmas eve when they received them. (It’s one of my worst habits – not documenting things like that more, especially when it involves portfolio work.)  I think they all readily liked the gifts – it’s always fun to be involved in a personalized gift and make someone’s vision for something special come to life… even better when I get to be there for the gifting-moment!

This was not the first time I’ve created custom pieces using family photos. I did a custom hoop for a friend of mine to gift to her grandmother featuring a photo taken of her the first time she went to the ocean. Stuff like that is really awesome – the stories and the images.

Do you have a favorite family photo from a time before you were born?

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Oh, hi! Welcome to The Merriweather Council. I’m Danielle and I am a maker in business and mentor to other makers in business. I teach you how to turn your crafty tendencies into profits!

Oh, I’m also really into crafts, boy bands + iced coffee. Email me anytime to say hello or send cute Backstreet Boy videos or dog pictures .. or whatever! danielle (at) merriweathercouncil.com Thanks for stopping by.

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3 Comments

  1. Love the idea and photo of your work. Too bad you’re easing out the hoop business — think of the ways this concept could work for brides and grooms …. or babies ….

    But the vintage photos are key — I would like to use one of my father, getting ready to go camping – probably taken in the early 1960s or late ’50s; he has a fishing pole in one hand, and a backpack, and there’s a vertical space beside him. (Of course, engagement and wedding photos of my parents also rank high!)

    • I will still be doing work of this sort, just not in hoop form. I’ve grown tired of the hoop motif, but all the other elements are still very interesting to me! This sort of thing can be done on any fabric surface – I just won’t be using hoops as frames much longer :)

      As you said, the key is the photos! And the text elements personalizes it even further.

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