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by Ernestine Heythaler

of Victorian Dreams

Little Shopping Bag
Finished size ­ approx. 4" x 4"

#18 mono canvas ­ white ­ 7" x 7"
Masking tape
Permanent fine tip marker
Stretcher bars ­ 2 pair ­ 7"
Staples or tacks to mount canvas on stretcher bars

Heart charm
Tiny glass seed beads ­ white ­ one package (for snow)

Threads: Caron Watercolours
Rosebud #148, Orange Blossom #096, Granite #165,
Dark Shadows #175, Sandstone #001, Copper #137,
Natural #000, Snow White #100, Blush #115, Black
Forest #063, Delphinium #133, Eggshell #130,
Creamsickle #166, Polar Ice #157

Caron Impressions: #0000, #1146

Caron Soie Cristale: #7055

DMC floss: #613

If doing the finishing yourself, you will need the following materials: a piece of fairly heavy fabric (light upholstery or decorator's fabric) ­ 4 1/2" x 4 1/2" for back of bag and a piece 2" wide by 13" long for the gusset. From lining fabric, TWO pieces 4 1/2" x 4 1/2" and one piece 2" x 13". You will need about 9" of cording for the handles (make your own or buy). Directions for finishing will be given after the stitching.

Click here for the Main Chart and Stitch Diagrams

My designs use charts, line drawings, and I diagram stitches used except tent stitches or French knots. Use the main chart and color photo for guidance. I number different areas of the design. The designs are a bit intricate, but are not difficult to stitch. Just read carefully each section before stitching.

Cut canvas, tape edges with masking tape. With the permanent marker, trace the line drawing chart onto the canvas. I put mine up to a window, but if you have a light box, use that. Put the stretcher bars together and staple or tack the canvas to the stretcher bars.

Start at the right side of the castle. You will have a short, vertical line here. It is 2 threads in from right edge. The castle is a counted feature, that is, count stitches vertically and horizontally while filling in with the designated stitches. Use the large chart to count stitches. There are windows all over the castle, some little and one bigger one. As you work each section, either put in the little windows as you come to them or leave blank to fill in later. The little windows are done with one strand of Dark Shadows and are two vertical stitches to cover the area. The bigger window (in Area #2 on right) is also Dark Shadows #175 (one strand) but is done in a diagonal over 2 stitch ­ note one side is reversed (see diagram).

Area #1 (there are two areas #1 ­ one tower on right and one tower on left) ­ Using one strand of Orange Blossom #096 PLUS one strand of Impressions #0000, work in a horizontal brick pattern (See diagram). NOTE: The top two rows are worked with just one strand of Orange Blossom in tent stitch. Work just the right side and then work each section towards the left of the castle.

Area #2 ­ (two areas) ­ One strand Sandstone #001 PLUS one strand Impressions #0000 in horizontal brick. NOTE: on the right side, there are two rows on the top of this section which are worked in tent stitch with only one strand of Sandstone.

Area #3 ­ The main part is worked with one strand of Granite #165. It is a diagonal over 2 threads (see diagram) EXCEPT the very center is diagonal over 3 threads. Again, put in the little windows as you stitch. At the bottom, there are two areas that are done in Copper #137 (one strand) ­ diagonal over 2 (see diagram). These are little walls that stand out from the castle ­ where the entrance door is. The top part of this main Area #3 is worked in tent stitch with one strand of Granite #165 with the dark, window-like areas done in Orange Blossom #096 (one strand) with one vertical stitch and then a large "X" over this. See diagram.

After working Area #3, you will do the second Area #2 and the second Area #1 ­ follow the same colors and stitches as the first areas. NOTE: Area #1 ­ the top two rows are worked with just one strand of Orange Blossom in tent stitch.

Area #4 ­ one strand Eggshell #130 PLUS one strand Impresssions #1146 ­ horizontal brick

Area #5 ­ one strand Natural #000 PLUS one strand Impressions #0000 ­ horizontal brick

Area #6 ­ (three of area #6 ­ one on right, one on left, and one on top of main tower #3) Creamsickle #166 (one strand) tent stitch

Area #7 ­ (two of Area #7- one on right and one to the left of main tower) ­ Blush #115 (one strand) tent stitch. After working the sky and ground, backstitch with one strand of DMC #613. You will make long stitches from top to bottom along the castle sections and tack down the long stitch with the same thread. See diagram for example. Do not backstitch the outside edges of the castle. Just between each tower and to define the little sections. Look at the color photo for reference.

SKY: One strand Delphinium #133 ­ mosaic stitch (see diagram) ­ NOTE: There are 3 rows at the top edge that are done in tent stitch in Rosebud #148 (one strand)

GROUND: Snow White #100 (one strand) this is just a random stitch ­ it is done in diagonal pattern of long and short stitches. It represents drifted snow. Just fill in the area.

LAKE: One strand Polar Ice #157 PLUS two strands of Soie Cristale #7055 ­ Bargello stitch ­ over 3 threads, up and down 5 stitches (see diagram)

TREES AND BUSH: One strand Black Forest #063 ­ these are done in a random long and short stitch ­ start with the main trunks ­ I use a long stitch and then tack down the curves with the same thread. Make branches off to the sides. The bush is done the same way.

Once the stitching is finished, sew a small heart charm on the bush and sew the white beads all over for falling snow.


Remove canvas from stretcher bars and block if necessary. Cut around design leaving 1/2" of blank canvas.

Right sides together, stitch long (2"x13") piece of heavy fabric to canvas design. Trim the end of the long piece after sewing. Still right sides together, stitch the other side of the long strip to the back heavy square. Turn right side out. Cut the handles about 4 1/2" each (2 of them) ­ center one on front side and one on back side (raw edges together). Stitch the lining the same as the bag, but do not turn right sides out. Slip it inside the bag with the seams inside, turn under the top edges of the bag and lining and slipstitch together.

Fill with dried flowers, candy, etc. A small gift will fit (if you can bear to part with the bag). Enjoy!!

Be sure to visit the designer feature on Ernestine Heythaler
to see more of her great designs!

©2003 Victorian Dreams

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