Bird Embroidery Projects
Source: Martha Stewart Living, August 2003
Encounters with birds are often fleeting. These delicate creatures may linger at a feeder in your yard or alight on your windowsill, but it's never long before they flutter off again. Reproduce their silhouettes on fabric, however, and you can enjoy their presence all day long. The dainty details of embroidery, with its interlocking loops of silky thread, perfectly capture the light-as-air quality that birds embody.
Let America's state birds take flight on household linens -- you just need one simple stitch and our old-fashioned line drawings. You can add subtle style to accent pieces, such as throw pillows or hand towels, by embroidering them with your state's bird. Or create an avian motif on larger pieces, such as our bird-adorned quilt or curtains, with a whole flock of favorites.
Since some states share a bird, only twenty-eight kinds are honored with state designations. We've included illustrations of all of them, plus one for Washington, D.C., for a total of twenty-nine. Stitching the feathered creatures on fabric doesn't take long and makes plain household linens special. We used a single stitch -- the chain stitch -- for all the birds, and just one color thread for each one, giving them an appealing graphic quality and making the projects especially easy. Instructions for transferring a pattern to fabric and for embroidering with the chain stitch are included in our printable file.