Handbasket by JAR Designs

A Project A Day – Counted embroidery work is my main hobby and I have a huge stitching stash. Some of these projects are huge and take years to stitch, and while others are quick projects, I often spend months without stitching at all. So while I have hundreds in my stash, only a half-dozen ever see attention any given year.  To address this imbalance in 2012 I will each day write about one project languishing in my stash.

Handbasket by JAR Designs

Copyright JAR Designs 2007.

JAR Designs

Handbasket by JAR Designs

Chart: This is a small chart so it fits comfortably with clear easy to see symbols on one A4/Letter page. The chart comes with the thread and charms included.  You just need to add the fabric and needle 🙂

Stitches: Pattern uses whole cross stitches and backstitch.

Materials: JAR Designs hand-dyed cotton and metallic charms. Stitched on JAR Designs 28ct “Desert Storm” Lugana.

Designer’s Notes: The term “Going to Hell in a handbasket” dates back to at least 1941, but its origins, albeit scarce in documentation, date back even further to 1913 with the term “to heaven in a handbasket” or “to heaven in a wheelbarrow”. Even more abstract references date back to 1714 with a text reading, “Govr said he would give his head in a Handbasket as soon as he would pass it.” This seems to suggest that the term in one form or another has been around for quite some time.

Why I was attracted to this design: For years I have used the phrase “Where are we going, and why are we in this handbasket?” especially in meetings at work regarding restructuring.  I seem to be employed just as each organisation was about to go through a restructure 🙂

So why haven’t I stitched it? This is another case where I wanted to get *the* fabric called for in the chart. Unfortunately JAR Designs seemed to have stopped making this fabric a year or so after the chart came out.  I’ve been looking for the fabric for at least three years without success.

Until now!  I’ve discovered that Needleworkers Delight, the company that bought out Silkweavers, also carry the full range of JAR Designs fabrics range.  So I enquired after “Desert Storm”.  They emailed me today to say that they can get “Desert Storm” specially dyed for me, what size, fabric and count did I need?

So if you want “Desert Storm” from JAR Designs or any of their other fabrics that you’ve found hard to get, I strongly recommend you contact Needleworkers Delight.

Where can you buy it? With JAR Designs now seemingly out of business, this chart is pretty much out of print.  It can bought at the rare ONS or LNS or check eBay.  Alternatively, let me know in the comments and I will pass on my copy to one of you as soon as I finish stitching it.  I will be stitching this up as soon as the fabric  arrives!  It is a quick stitch and the chart does come with enough floss for this chart to be stitched more than once.  You will need to source your own charms though – sorry.

Discussion questions: Have you ever stitched on JAR Designs fabrics.  Will this be worth the wait?

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2 Responses to Handbasket by JAR Designs

  1. tempewytch says:

    Oh yes I know this feeling well *wry grin*, this one I look forward to seeing stitched up!

  2. Laura says:

    Mel, I’ve had a good chuckle over this one several times but just never got the pattern. I’m glad you’ve found the fabric and will be stitching!!

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