I gave this piece, continued from here, a very light pressing, not wanting to smash the stitching …

There’s a back story, of course …

I’ve been using Rowenta irons for over 20 years, ever since being introduced to one at a B&B when I needed to iron a cotton Laura Ashley dress that hadn’t traveled well. I was smitten by its weightiness and by the scorching heat it generated.

Unfortunately, I have a habit of knocking irons off the board, thereby bouncing them on the concrete floor, which tends to scramble whatever electronic impulses are necessary to make the darn things work. After the most recent drop, I went to Target and grabbed the first Rowenta I saw off the shelf. Alas, I did not read the box labeling, which touted a new feature: no temperature control button. Rather, the damn thing promised to automatically adjust to whatever fiber I was pressing. I call BS on that.

So I went back to Target, bought the cheapest iron I could find (a Sunbeam) and have been happily ironing away ever since. And yes, I did scorch one piece of cotton cloth by using the linen setting … but hey, I like to live dangerously.

All that by way of saying I eased back on the throttle with this cloth, using a wool setting so I wouldn’t overdo it.

Deb Lacativa’s so-called Dirty Threads served me well, as always. Shades of grey for the initial wording …

“what if words are like shadows … like dreams that fade away with barely a trace left behind … leaving thoughts in their wake … ”

Followed by sea blues and greens …

“… and a new understanding of how we might go … in the words of Old Man Crow: we dream of a world where live is the answer, when the question is how do you get through the day?”

And finally, sky blues and violets …

“Stitched by Nana (Liz Ackert) for Griffin in 2019”

with an asemic bit that can only be read on the back …

“keep on dreaming, keep on believing you can make dreams come true.”

With thanks to Hazel at Handstories for telling me about the book Pockets by Jennifer Armstrong, which put the idea of a hidden phrase in my head (while I await receipt of my own used copy, ordered from for $3.99 with free shipping).

And with thanks to Griffin for loving this cloth into being. Soon enough ’twill become a pillow for his bed.

P.S. This project has gotten my rusty stitch lettering back up to speed. Now I’m looking forward to revising this bit of patchplay.

19 thoughts on “Iron-y

  1. I hope Griffin will keep his dreams in this beautiful pillow all his life, please tell him that I have a very thin pillow I have had since I was a little kid that holds all my dreams!


    1. Oh, he will love this! And now I’m thinking I might make it into a kind of pillow case (so the inside can be seen and -also be separate from the filling) …


  2. love your idea above…a kindof pillow case….your Fine Fine handwork and Deb’s Thread
    are so so perfect together


  3. Oh what a perfect example of cloth holding and expressing dense, powerful thoughts and emotions. You have made great use of Deb’s beautiful threads and have given Griffin so much more than a pillow.


  4. Hi LA – all very technical on the iron front. I know Fiona invested in a great steam iron recently for her sewing work – works a treat I understand. Not a lot of ironing gets done in our household – only for business and other special public occasions. Love how the piece has worked out with all the stitching and blended colours. B


    1. Well, the irony here is that the new iron is so much less expensive and works so much better than the deluxe model. And we, too, use our iron for very little except my stitching (and even that is occasional)


    1. You may or may not realize it, but your poignant “too many poppies, too many deaths” was pivotal in my move to hand-lettered stitching. While I don’t equate my efforts to your carefully wrought calligraphy, the idea of different-sized letters opened my eyes to new possibilities and emboldened me to try


  5. So, so beautiful Liz. That does look like a good book 🙂 I love how we can just summon up books with a one word suggestion. Ah, teachers, librarians and booksellers. It’s a gift. xo


  6. I’m glad I’m not the only one who has ruined an iron (or two) by having them hit the deck!

    I love the communal spirit of your creations, the way you draw down love and let it inform aesthetic choices.


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