Saturday, 13 September 2014

A birthday card made from orts

I made a very simple embroidery for a birthday card for my aunt.
It was an effective way of using up the stray lengths of perle 8 and the left over beads from my travel projects.

I don't know about you, but I find it hard to judge how much thread I'll be needing for a seam. Often I am left with a length that is too short to use, and too long to throw away, if you see what I mean. Such snippets of thread, or (long) orts,  are just right for a Lazy Daisy chain stitch flower.

From now on I will collect my stray ends in a jar and eventually make an orts embroidery.
What do you do with your left over thread?

32 comments:

Elizabeth's quarters said...

I do a similar thing with strips of unused fabric by twisting them into balls of yarn/string–one day I'll make something with them. Love the colours on your card, the lattice work reminds me of Elizabethan embroidery.

Pamela said...

What a wonderful card and great use for leftover threads!

janie krig said...

Very lovely!
I save my short lengths for use in small areas.

Queeniepatch said...

Good to hear you have found a way to use them.

Queeniepatch said...

A productive lady like you must have lots of orts, or do you calculate beforehand how much thread you'll be using?

Queeniepatch said...

With fabric strips I'd give them to an aunt who weaves Swedish rug mats, or take up Japanese saori weaving myself, but odd bits of thread...
If only my wonky Lazy Daisies were as delicately embroidered as the flowers of Elizabethan embroidery..., but the lattice works does give it that E embroidery look.

Anonymous said...

I save mine over the course of the year and put them in a clear glass ornament on January 1, and label with the year they were from.

Sometimes, if I've run short on a length of thread, I will raid the ort jar to see if there are any longer lengths to use to finish up that section of stitching. Anything that's longer than eight inches or so gets saved with the unused thread.

Carol S.

carorose said...

I love your car.
I usually put all mine between two layers of dissolving fabric, then sew them to make a fabric, after I have washed the dissolving stuff away. I then use this in projects.

margaret said...

dare I admit to throwing them away usually if they are cotton they go in the composter! Such a good idea though, a lovely card for your aunt, trust they will not get too tangled in a jar Queenie as sorting tangled threads would drive me crazy

Chris(craft) and Dave(photos) Richards said...

A lovely card Queenie..........I normally collect my 'orts' up into a ball and then they get knotted together and I throw them away.............how wasteful am I ?
hugs
Chris Richards
xx

City Krafters said...

Lovely card.

Queeniepatch said...

That's an excellent idea. I heard of someone who put headers and enders of fabric strips into a clear lamp foot. Turning orts into January ornaments is a great way of recycling.

Queeniepatch said...

Oh, I never thought of that! You are so creative!

Queeniepatch said...

I am glad you are brave enough to admit to throwing them away. This is what I have done up till now. If you read the comments above you get a lot of ideas for recycling these odd ends of thread. Carorose has this idea where tangled thread will find a new home - and no one needs to be driven crazy!

Queeniepatch said...

You are just as 'wasteful' as I used to be! Now I have got a lot of ideas for those stray bits and pieces.

Queeniepatch said...

Thank you. It is an easy stitch but can look quite charming. The beads add a lot of sparkle.

Anneliese said...

Now I am laughing about Chris R.'s comment on top. Very funny and wonderfully wasteful. I collect the orts - in a large jar - and there it is standing and getting fuller and fuller. I can press it still further down. Your daisy idea is very nice.

Julie Fukuda said...

I save mine in a jar and always look there before cutting more. There is a limit though, I sure wouldn't keep anything too short. If it is too short to use, it goes with other scrap threads into a mesh bag that is set out for the birds.

Queeniepatch said...

Unless we use the orts for something there is no reason to keep them...

Queeniepatch said...

What I have heard is that you should never throw out threads for the birds; their claws can get tangled up in them. Is that true?

Annet said...

This is a beautiful way of using all these threads! If I have a usefull length of thread left when I'm done stitching, I just keep it with the original thread. When I need it for a few French knots I use these pieces. My real orts go in a jar, which I empty every year on January 1. I have lots of plans for those, but then I need a jar filled with time!

Queeniepatch said...

Oh, a jar filled with time! That is the first item on my wish list!
Of course I will also keep any useful length with the original thread, but more than often I have these difficult to use bits of thread. Hopefully I will eventually get a Sumptuous Surface Ort Embroidery out of them.

Cynthia@aquilterbynight said...

This is a beautiful card, just so lovely. I am terrible at estimating the length of thread needed. I don't save any small lengths of sashiko thread, but now after reading the comments above, I might have second thoughts! Lots of interesting ideas.

Queeniepatch said...

I am glad that I am not the only one who can't judge how much thread is needed. Now that I have found a way to use up those bit and pieces I don't mind that much.

Séverine said...

This postcard is lovely, thank you for this idea. I have a full jar with snippets.

Linda Calverley said...

A great way to use leftovers. I usually keep mine in a needle case and are sometimes used on any project I may be working on or when they starting getting tangled they get thrown out.

Tanya said...

I love your birthday card! What a colorful display of beautiful threads. Is it a difficult stitch? I wonder if I have some leftover embroidery thread somewhere so that I could try...

Queeniepatch said...

I am now thinking up ways to use such short snippets that you can't really sew with them. Carorose (see comment above) had a smart idea.

Queeniepatch said...

Linda, you can use bar codes and lining of envelopes to create fantastic art. You if anyone should be able to use tangled thread in projects instead of throwing them out - or have you given up collecting 'junk'?!

Queeniepatch said...

The Lazy Daisy stitch is one of the easiest stitches possible! Do you know the Chain stitch? Of course, you do! The Lazy Daisy is made up of four individual Chain stitches.
Look at this link: http://inaminuteago.com/stitchdict/stitch/chain-detach.html

Lilian said...

Lovely card. I read somewhere (can't remember where!) about sandwiching the orts between dissolvable fabric, machine stitching over the top, then dissolving the fabric away to leave a new and interesting fabric. So I bought some to use with all the orts I'd collected. But one year on and the orts tin is full to the brim and dissolvable fabric gathering dust somewhere!

Queeniepatch said...

Hi Lilian,
Yes, Carolyn of Carorose (see comment above) also mentioned dissolvable fabric. You can apparently make 'new' fabric by stacking the orts between those sheets. As you are a very creative person, Lilian, I am sure you can make fabric and then create fabulous brooches or hanging ornaments. How about emptying that orts tin?! If you do, please blog about it!