Monday, January 22, 2018

Bluebirds and frogs....what a combination!

With it being wet and miserable outside, I think the frogs decided to move in with me so they could stay nice and warm.....let's hope they decide to move out quickly as I've had enough of them!

Don't you just hate when you make a mistake and then have to unpick all that work that you've spent all evening doing.....and to make matters worse for me, not only did I unpick it all, but then I stitched a whole section using the wrong colour.....more unpicking! I knew these blue threads would be a pain! So although I have been working diligently on this design, there's not much progress to show...'s where I am now...

I'm hoping that the frogs have finally got the message that they're not welcome and that they've  moved out!

Until next time...happy stitching!


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Blue birds

The blue threads are still on the go.....I'm still managing to use them without pulling my hair out.....well, not yet anyway!

This is where I was last week on the bluebird design...

....and this is my progress as of today....

We now have a Mrs Blue Bird! I feel like I have really progressed this week....and it feels good!

I also managed to get loads done on the crochet shark. My daughter was supposed to bring over some black yarn she had at her house so that I didn't have to go and buy a whole ball just for a few little bits on the shark...the eyes and gills.....but guess what she forgot to bring....yup, the one thing I needed! So here's my not-so-little shark (minus eyes and gills!)...

And I've just noticed that I've chopped off his fin in the picture! He measures about 22 inches long. When I picked up the book (Crocheted Sea Creatures by Vanessa Mooncie)  in the craft store, I had assumed that the creatures would be quite small - probably about half the size that they are.....I really should read things more carefully before I buy them....although I  still would have bought the book anyway! Hopefully I'll have the eyes etc completed by the next post :)

Since I don't have much to show you today, I thought I'd give you a little glimpse of what I'm working on....of course, it's top secret and I can't tell you what it is until it's published....but suffice to say, I'm having fun and am  doing something that's quite different from what I normally still involves threads and fabrics.....

....just not the fabric that usually work with!

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time....happy stitching!


Monday, January 8, 2018

My first finish of 2018!

Let's hope it's the first of many for this year! So here it is, the dragon stitching for my daughters professor.....

The chart is called Tales of Wonder and is designed by Jennifer L. Aikman-Smith. The chart can be found free hereI changed the lettering from the original chart and also the dragon that was on the bottom - I wanted a larger dragon, so I used one of the other free charts that were available by this designer.

Now I just have to find some bell pull hardware (not as easy as I had thought!) and then it's completely done and ready to gift....what a great feeling.

I manged to spend one evening stitching on the blue birds design...

Not an awful lot of progress (I was watching the ice hockey on the TV at the same time) but at least it's not gathering dust.....yet! Those blues are beginning to get to me ;)

And as if I don't have enough stitching to be getting on with without starting something new, I started a new crochet project! I just couldn't help myself.....

My hubby got me a crochet book for Christmas and the projects in it are just so darn cute! The book is called Crocheted Sea Creatures by Vanessa Mooncie. I've started on the shark as I thought that might be a bit one of the easier projects to tackle. There's a cute puffer fish that I wanted to do, but the instructions seemed a bit complicated and I wanted something a bit easier to build my confidence!  I'm excited to pick up the crochet hook and get more done on this shark. Let's hope it doesn't prove too difficult for me to finish.

Anyway, that's all I have to share with you today, thanks for stopping by.

Until next time....happy stitching!


Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Happy New Year!

Wishing you a year filled with joy....whatever joy you desire, be it good health, exotic travels, more time with family, etc....but most of all joy from stitching.

This year I have decided to only have one New Year resolution as I'm not the best at sticking to my resolutions....anyone else like that? This year, my New Year resolution is to do more of what brings me happiness. I figured it's vague enough that anything could fit into that statement and I'm likely to keep that resolution all year long! 

So what have I been working on over the Christmas period? Well, first of all I managed to get the felt stocking completed.....and in time for Christmas! Yay me!!!

The sequins really sparkle but you can't tell from the pictures.  Santa's beard was made up of several layers each embroidered and sequined before being attached...

His mustache, eyebrows, cheeks and hat are all stuffed as well as being sequined and embroidered...

The hardest part was embroidering the name on the top. The last stockings that I made were done on pale or white felt and I was able to use one of those disappearing ink pens to write the name so that I had a guide while stitching. This time nothing would show up on the dark green felt, so I just had to stitch and hope for the best! I didn't manage to get the stocking lined, so that's a project to do before Christmas 2018....what's the betting that I leave it to the last minute? :)

I also managed to get a few stitches into the little birds kit....yes, lots of blue....I think after this, I'll be looking for designs that don't have any blue in them at all! 

Another new start was this design that was just perfect for my daughter who wanted something to give to one of her professors that she has kept in touch with. This professor teaches a class called Storytelling and Cultures. I was looking for something to stitch and came across this chart in my stash....

It was perfect for this wonderful lady. 

The designer is Jennifer Aikman-Smith of Dragon Dreams Inc. Unfortunately she has taken quite a few of her free designs off the website due to illegal copying and sharing of her charts....a problem that many designers face. As much as I love Facebook, Pinterest and the like, there are just so many illegal copies of charts being shared that it's hard to see how long designers will be able to stay in business. The good news is that you can still find many free dragon charts on the Dragon Dreams Inc Facebook page.

So,  a big thank you to all who visited here and left comments in 2017 ...... fingers crossed that 2018 is a great and productive crafty year!

Until next time....happy stitching!


Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you a wonderful Christmas spent with those you love....and (of course)some stitching!

Until next time..


Monday, December 18, 2017

Stocking progress...and some new starts!

With Christmas day fast approaching, I'm desperately trying to find time to get in some sneaky, secret stitching....which really is not easy at all! Here's where I was last time I posted on my  Santa stocking secret stitching...

....and here's where I am now.....

There's still some hair to do along with some holly and berries to stitch and applique. I still have to embroider the name, attach the front of the stocking to the back and then make and attach the lining! All in  a week....I can see that I'll be burning the midnight oil to get this done in time and without the recipient seeing it!

So, while said person is around and I can't work on the stocking, I decided that maybe it was time to pull out this gorgeous kit that I got from my hubby a few Christmases ago......

......I absolutely love the design (and the fact that my hubby picked a cross stitch kit as a gift for me!), but I HATE stitching on black fabric.....which is why I have been putting it off for so long. Even with some white fabric on my lap so that I can see the holes in the aida, I still detest working on dark fabric......don't get me wrong, I love the finished result but I hate working with black or navy aida. So, with this in mind, I'm going to take it slow and only work on this design one night per week so that I don't end up having this project become a UFO.

So the other nights of the week (when I couldn't work on the stocking!) I have been working on this little kit...

This was one of those last minute grabs that I did in my local Wal-mart, so that I would have something to stitch when we were back in the UK for my father-in-laws funeral. As it happened, I didn't get time to stitch so have just started it. It's a cute little design with a sweet saying, which is probably too small to see on the photo, but it says 'Loved you yesterday, love you still. Always have, always will.' I wasn't too sure about buying it as I didn't love it, but it was the only one on the shelf that I would have stitched, the rest didn't appeal to me at all and I really wanted to have something to work on in the evenings while in the UK.  It was marked at $8 but when I got to the check-out it rang up as $3.50....what a deal! As you can see it's all blues, so i have a feeling that by the end of this design I'm going to be fed-up of stitching with blue threads!

I'm off to see if I can get a few stitches put in the Santa stocking before everyone else gets home from work.

Until next time....happy stitching!


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Jo's Advent Calendar blog hop....and an apology!

Again I'm having to start a blog post with an apology.  I had signed up for Jo's Advent calendar blog hop and then with everything that's been happening in the family and two trips back to the UK, I had completely forgotten all about it.  So, my deepest apologies to Jo for messing up her plans and to all the other participants and readers, I apologies to you too.

Sooooo........Jo's question was 'How do you spend boxing day?' Boxing day isn't something that's celebrated here in the US, but being true Brits, we confuse our American friends by talking about it and bemoaning the fact that you don't get another day off work! When we lived in the UK it was a day spent with my side of the family as we had spend Christmas day with my hubby's family.  Today, we spend Boxing day quietly, eating the left-overs from Christmas dinner and usually playing board games. I love the fact that my grown up children love to play board games. We often go for a long walk (which seems to be another typically British tradition!) and we are lucky enough to have a nature preserve very close to where we live, so if the weather is good and there isn't tons of snow, a good long walk is also something that we  typically do (it also means that you can then eat the last of the Christmas trifle guilt-free!) I also like to get some stitching done too....what's a day without stitching?

Since I don't have any pictures of our boxing day traditions, I thought I would just share some of my Christmas stitching from previous years (lots of pictures as I'm feeling guilty for missing my date!)....

....and now that I have seen some of these old pics, I really want to go and stitch some of these little gems again!

For more of the advent Blog-hop please visit Jo's blog might find some new blogging friends to follow!

So, apologies once again for throwing a spanner in the works for Jo's carefully laid out plans.  Wishing you all the joys of this wonderful season, no matter how you celebrate!

Until next time....happy stitching!


Monday, December 11, 2017

Tis the season of ...seed beads!

I have seed beads everywhere! Luckily, I don't mind working with them....except when you drop the container with them in and they end up all over the floor!

So my first project with seed beads to show you, is a cute little Christmas card that I started stitching on my long flight back to the US....

 .... a cute little button, some fraying of the edges and the aforementioned seed beads....

...means one adorable Christmas card!

This was a little kit that came with the December issue of CrossStitcher magazine that I snagged while back in the UK. Oh my goodness.....I love the UK cross stitching magazines....and the prices of them compared to here in the US.

The next project uses not only seed beads but sequins to get that Christmas sparkle! I haven't managed to get as much done on this Christmas stocking as I had hoped's really hard to stitch a secret gift for someone who lives with you! 

Each piece has to be cut out, embroidered and then have the sequins and seed beads attached before being sewn onto the main part of the stocking. It's a very time consuming process.....

Some pieces have to be stuffed as you attach them so the end result is 3D.....

....don't you just love those hamster like cheeks?!!!!

The one thing that I have to do is buy another beading needle as the one that came with the kit is looking a bit worse for wear and is far from straight....I have a feeling that it won't last long! Keep your fingers crossed for me that the craft shop stocks those super skinny beading needles!

Until next time....happy stitching (and beading)!


Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Late again!

First of all, I want to apologize for being late with the announcement of who won the giveaway. For those of you who are regular readers, I'm sure you'll understand how hectic things have been here and why I'm late posting.

Soooo......onto the news that you came here for! 

The winner of the chart is......RJ! You can check pout RJ's blog here - and I recommend you pay her a visit as her blog is wonderful!

So this wonderful chart by Veronique Enginger will be winging its way onto RJ, who I hope will enjoy stitching it as much as I did.

Congrats RJ....I'll be emailing you shortly.

Until next time....happy stitching!


Monday, November 27, 2017

Christmas stitching

This post is being brought to you by the magic of the blogger 'schedule' button. Instead of cracking on with some Christmas stitching, which is what I was planning on doing, we are flying home for my father-in-laws funeral. I am so grateful that we were able to see him when we went back just a few weeks ago. Life is sad sometimes.

Anyhoo....onto the stitching...which is what you came here to see! This is what I have been working on.....

Looks a bit strange doesn't it? This was for an advent calendar idea that, sadly, won't be ready for the start of December. But since I'm an adult (and so are my kids!!!) it's no big deal that it won't be ready in time and we can continue with the idea as soon as I get back. 

Another Christmas stitching  project that I started was this......

I love these felt applique stockings!  Luckily, this one won't be needed till December 24th, so I'll have plenty time to complete it when we return to the US. All those sequins and seed beads that are involved means that it's not really a project to take with you when you travel....

Some of you may remember me stitching these before.......I think they should carry a health warning on the packet....they are addictive!  Here are some pics of the other stockings that I've made......

No doubt I'll be complaining of my fingers hurting with stitching all those sequins....which is, I'm sure, what happened when stitching those other stockings!

So all that's left for me to do is to grab something from my stash so that my fingers are busy while we are away..... a great reason to have a supply of unopened kits....even if they are just the freebies from the cross stitching magazines!

Remember there's still time to enter my here if you want to enter.

Until next time...happy stitching!