Sunday, June 16, 2013

Embroidered prayers for Dad's garden

Growing up, my Dad always had a garden. It wasn't a big garden and it shrunk over the years as the many trees he planted in our small yard filled out, but it was always there. The yard was also full of flowers he started in the basement during the gloomy winter months of western New York. They were mostly marigolds and impatiens, and although my parents have moved from the house where I grew up, the pots and pots of overflowing impatiens make the new patio familiar. The garden still isn't big, but there is more light and it is always abundant.


Dad gets his gardening genes from my grandfather. My grandparents had an extra house lot--the whole of which was a victory garden. Grandfather had apple trees and planted beans, cucumbers--which my grandmother pickled--radishes, onions, peppers, tomatoes, and corn. There was probably more, but since my sister and I never weeded for more than a half hour at a time before wondering off, I didn't pay close attention. I did, however, love the greenhouse he and Dad built out of old windows. It was actually painted dark green and smelled like earth and old clay pots


Neither Dad nor grandfather talked a lot about their gardens or made a big deal about them, but when you couldn't find them elsewhere, that is where they would be--there or listening to AAA baseball on the radio.


So, for Father's Day this year, inspired by the "To Boston With Love" exhibit, I decided to make my Dad prayer flags for his garden. His office has a porch overlooking the back yard, so even when he isn't actively getting his hands dirty, he should be able to watch them flutter and know that even though I am 2000 miles away, I am still thinking about him.


Happy Father's Day Dad! Here is a preview of your gift--the flags go to the post office tomorrow!

"Soil" is my first attempt at Palestrina stitch! Other stitches include whipped chain, interlaced back stitch, and stem stitch in "Sun", buttonhole in "Soil", and buttonhole, lazy daisy, feather, and back stitch in "Eat".


"Grow" includes whipped stem stitch, buttonhole and fly. "Rain" is my first attempt at oyster stitch as well as whipped buttonhole and chain stitch filled with backstitches.


Here are the finished flags knotted together and hanging over my patio. I think I'll have to make myself some since I haven't been successful at growing anything in the high heat and low humidity of Colorado. I can't wait to see them in Dad's garden!



  1. what a lovely idea I am sure your Dad will love watching these blowing in the breeze and will instantly think of you and all the love you have put into making them

  2. I think these are GREAT!!! I can't wait to hang them over my garden.
    Thank you, Love always,