Author Archives: dawnrogal

Sugar Skulls


The other day, in a flurry of activity, I made a small collection of sugar skulls. I entered them into a call for art for a gallery nearby. Unfortunately I didn’t get into the show, but fortunately, I now have this really sweet set.  I love stitching these so much.



Mindful Stitching


Day of the Dead Mermaid     WP_20150906_15_07_19_Pro 2

There are times when my mind is racing and not always with thoughts of projects and fun things to do. It projects horrible outcomes for everyday events, it swims in hurtful comments from acquaintances or ridiculous posts on FB – and I find myself overwhelmed by depression and anxiety.  During those times my “go to” method of self soothing is hiding in my bed, but I’m trying so hard not to let that happen.  It’s worrisome to me and to my family.

So last time it happened I dug out an old pattern, one that requires hours of hand stitching. Repetitive stitching of sequins and beads. Nothing challenging because I’ve made this before, just stitching.

I’m so pleased with the outcome, the bright colors, bold lines and that little heart beneath her ribs, all make me smile.



I realized that I haven’t posted a picture of the fish that I (got carried away) making. These are fun little guys to stitch – fairly simple, sequins, organza, big eyes… what’s not to love.  These need to be mounted on stands, which will happen as soon as I can find our drill (did I mention that after a year here in El Segundo we’re still unpacking boxes?).





A few years ago I made a very large mosquito, a piece that I still have and still love, Looking at her I decided that I wanted to do another winged insect, a dragonfly.  In my usual way, I found pictures to paste in my sketchbook then began working on a pattern. I wanted to duplicate the unique shape of the body as closely as possible. I had the perfect fabric, sequins and beads in my stash.

The finished piece is 18” wide by 22” long. Completely hand stitched. I love her.  I’ve already picked out fabrics for my next one.

                    dragonfly4       dragonfly2



I love vintage linen tea towels. I usually buy them with Vera Neumann designs but now and then something else will catch my eye and I must have it.  Or sometimes I will buy a bundle of tea towels at a great price and end up with something odd.  This one came to me that way but honestly, how could I resist?


What I really liked was the lettering which is the Gettysburg Address. I thought it would like nice as a reverse applique piece. But the more I looked at it the more I knew I had to include Abe’s beautiful visage.  This is the result.  I like his little stovepipe hat.




Everyone knows that you’re never sure where or when inspiration will strike.  What is certain is that it won’t hit you if you’re not looking for it.

Like the other day while dropping off some flour at a friend’s house. In the driveway a neighbor had dropped the cellophane and organza from a bouquet of flowers.  And there it was. A goldfish.  Away to my sketchbook, some photos and drawings of goldfish from the internet and my design was decided. A quick pattern made, supplies gathered and away I went. Okay, the supplies gathered was a long frustrating venture into the depths of the garage and many, many unpacked boxes labeled “garage” that contained everything from art supplies to electronics, papers, books, bike parts, fabric etc. etc..

goldfish 3

goldfish 1

goldfish 2