The Thin Red Line

7719972788 cec38202e0

She’s finished! Isabella is finished and she is beautiful! I put the last stitches in on Thursday night. What a thrill to finally have another sampler finish. She is stitched in the called for Belle Soies, but on 40ct Vintage Lentil – none of which would have been possible if it weren’t for Sylvia!  I wanted to start Miss Johnstone for my birthday last year and my sweet friend made sure I was able to. I started her on my birthday last year in August, but then set her aside in order to try to get my Hare Pyns stitching done. I picked Isabella back up in April this year, because I needed something pretty to focus on during everything I was dealing with at the time. And I’ve pretty much worked on her steadily since April (as steadily as I get). And here she is finished in my birthday month.

There were so many things that drew me to this sampler, the beautiful ivy border, the M. Roden (which is a family name), and of course the red cow.

7719973652 05904239a6

And as much as I enjoyed stitching that red cow, I really loved stitching the bottom half of this sampler. I loved the little flower clusters. I loved the little blue berries. And I loved getting to stitch a name that’s dear to me too. And if all that wasn’t enough, when I got down to the bottom of the sampler, I noticed something in the directions I hadn’t seen before. There was an instruction about what color to use for the backstitched line. What backstitched line? Well, sure enough, there is a red line just above the M. Roden. It is nearly impossible to see on the chart (truly impossible unless you’re looking for it). Which may explain why I hadn’t seen the red line on other finishes of this piece. So then the question, do I stitch it or not? I finally decided that what I love about this piece is that Isabella just kind of did her own thing. Her leaves don’t match, her sampler is delightful in its asymmetry. So, why not a red backstitched line? And sure enough, I love it. I’m so glad I decided to include it.

7719972034 aa5e199cc3

Isabella was a really fun sampler to stitch and I’m so glad she and I had the pleasure of each others’ company. And I think that her finish is well-timed, since it’s time for another WIPocalypse post too!

Here’s Isabella’s full-length portrait.


And since my Isabella was finished during the London Olympics, and since she is herself an English girl, I thought I’d share something fun I brought home with me the other day.

7767493862 9213d38a60

Don’t you love my new book? I fell in love with the old well-worn look of it, and of course the crowns! It makes me think of Paulette every time I look at it. But the best part?

7767494720 3f4e2af0ef

It’s a box! I can keep my stitching supplies in there so that they don’t get absconded by a couple of little four-legged fiends. How fun is that?!

Thanks for always stopping by, and thanks for watching my progress on Miss Bella. I hope to see more of her being stitched on other blogs soon!

I am grateful for working together to make our home lovely.

35 thoughts on “The Thin Red Line”

  1. Laurie in Iowa

    Congrats on your gorgeous finish. I’m so glad you stitched the red line… it just adds that extra little sparkle to a very sweet sampler.
    Love the box!

  2. Congrats! on a beautiful finish
    I have always loved that cow
    Is the pattern in a magazine?
    I think I may have it, now I want to stitch it

  3. What a beautiful finish. I’m afraid to get into samplers because I have too many big projects going as it is, but if I did one, you’ve inspired me to pick this one. I, too, love the red cow!!

  4. Your Isabella is wonderful! I love that red backstitched line — darn it, wish I’d realized it was there. lol! Love that box too!! So cool, and perfect for those 4 legged furry ones.

  5. What a surprise to see my name mentioned on your post! 🙂 I just wandered over here to take a look at your gorgeous Isabella! So, so beautiful. Makes me wish I’d started her ages ago.

    LOVE LOVE LOVE your “book!!!” :)I’m surprised, however, that there isn’t a bottle of nail polish inside. 😉


  6. Absolutely stunning!! I love the cow. And your box! First thing I thought of, of course, was Paulette. Congrats on your beautiful finish.

  7. This sampler is just lovely and how exciting that you started on your birthday month and finished on your birthday month.

    Happy Birthday

    What a neat box.

  8. What a beautiful finish, Michelle !!!! I absolutely love it and it is one in my list of samplers to stitch. Seeing yours makes me want to start it right now !!! Love your box too, how perfect for your stitching supplies 🙂

  9. What a great finish! How fun to stitch it for your birthday, and the addition of the red line is perfect.

    Happy belated birthday!

  10. Gorgeous finish – I’m sure you will enjoy her a lot – please be sure to show the frame moulding you picked when she is framed. Enjoy Melody

  11. I fell in love with Isabell when I saw it on another blog, cabnt think right now, a while back. Still enamored with it as I watched your progress. Lovely job, she is beautiful!

  12. I’ve seen this sampler completed on other blogs and everyone said how much they enjoyed the stitch. Your photos showing the elements and colors are some of the best for her. I can see now why everyone loves it!

  13. When I first saw this sampler, I was like – well, it is nice, but I’m not sure I want to stitch it. Well, I was proved wrong! Because I’ve been following your progress and falling more and more in love with it! And the finished piece! Oh my! I love the red line and will do that with mine too! Your whole sampler is perfection! I’ve come to the conclusiong – blogs are dangerous – LOL! They are very expensive as I run out and get so many things I see on them!

    Linda in VA

  14. Oh Michelle, Isabella is so lovely!! That makes me itch to continue mine!! Congrats on a beautiful finish.

    Love the book as well! Good to keep Frick & Frack out of things.

  15. Isabella is absolutely gorgeous! Thank you for taking the time to point out some of the extra darling details on her, it made me fall in love all over again. I love your new book-box, very cute, and a great place to stash your stitching supplies.

  16. Congratulations on your Isabella finish! She’s stunning and will look lovely framed and hanging in your home. Love the new book stitching box too! 🙂

  17. Isabella is simply beautiful! I have admired this one for a long time and now I may just have to cave and get her! I have always been drawn to the red cow since I first saw it, but there is so much more there!
    Great little box too!!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.