Friday, April 20, 2018

Fun Flowery Find!

So this week's Fun Find is a flowery one....just so that I could keep up the alliteration!

This is what caught my eye this week (Instagram has a lot to answer for!)........

Photograph copyright DMC


These are the new DMC Daisy hoops...aren't they adorable! They come in the four colours pictured above and in either circular  or oval shaped hoops. Click here to see the DMC Instgram post. Sadly for those of us living in the US, these bright and cheerful hoops are only available in the UK and some European countries......all I can say is...... 'thank heavens for international postage!'

Until next time....happy stitching!

Rhona

Monday, April 16, 2018

When you're about to do a happy dance....but.....

.....don't you hate it when the word 'but' is in the same sentence as 'happy dance'? 

So there I was ...all set to do my happy dance as I had finished my little embroidery project.....


 ...but then I noticed that something wasn't quite right...


....did you spot it? Yup, I used the wrong colour! One side of the design is stitched with  pink and magenta and the other side is pink and lilac! Now on some things it really doesn't matter if you've used the wrong colour....usually no-one would notice but on this it seemed kind of obvious -  although how I missed it while stitching I'll never know!  So my happy dance was delayed while I unpicked the lilac and re-stitched with the magenta....


...and it does look so much better being stitched in the right colours....don't you agree? And since I'm thinking of finishing this one off by using a bright magenta hoop, I'm glad that there's a bit more magenta in the design.

Here's the details of the kit...

Bucilla Plaid stamped embroidery called Bohemian Paisley
Stamped on dark blue denim fabric.
Finished size 6 inches
Threads, fabric, and instructions included.

As much as I enjoyed trying something a bit different (and I'll definitely be doing some more embroidery as it was fun) I'm really itching to get back to doing some good old  cross stitch!

Until next time (and don't forget to check in on Friday to see what fun finds there are this week!)....happy stitching!

Rhona

Friday, April 13, 2018

Fun Finds Friday!

Here's the first of my new Friday posts.....any fun thing related to stitching that catches my eye.....anything from new gadgets, new techniques, finishing ideas etc......the list is endless (at least, I think it is!)

So what better way to start  off Fun Finds Friday than with a free chart.......or what about five free charts?!! 

The first one is one of my own designs that you can find at http://www.cross-stitching.com. 


Photograph copyright Immediate Media Co.

You have to become a member to access the free charts....but there's plenty to choose from, so it's worth doing :) This design makes a great card for almost any occasion.

The next free chart is from Amanda Gregory......


Picture copyright Amanda Gregory

You can get Amanda's sweet little dream catcher here. This is such a cute design and is another design that can be used for so many different things.

And if you were lucky enough to get you hands on the new DMC thread colours, here's a gorgeous design that uses those new colours!


Photograph copyright StitchedModern.

This chart can be accessed here. Stunning on black fabric, don't you think?

This free design is from the wonderful, bad sadly retiring Linda Ebright better known as    Lizzie Kate  of Lizzie Kate designs
Picture copyright Lizzie Kate

Friendships are something that have certainly grown with this blog so I thought this design really fitting to have in this first of the Fun Finds Fridays!! You can get the free chart here.....just scroll down for this and many other free charts. You can also visit the Lizzie* Kate blog here

And finally, design freebie number five......a design that's great for using up any colour in your thread box...




....stunning in black thread, but would look good in any colour! You can find the chart here. This is another one that's being added to my to-stitch list! 

Hope you like the first Fun Finds Fridays!

Check back on Monday to see what I've been stitching!


Rhona







Monday, April 9, 2018

Trying something new!

Learning new things can be fun.....and it's supposed to be good for your brain....maybe not always good for your wallet, but we'll just concentrate on the good parts! 

So as I was wandering round my local craft store I spotted this little kit and decided to try something a bit different and expand my crafting skills....


....it's a Bucilla embroidery kit and the colours really caught my eye. It's printed on a denim fabric and uses some basic embroidery stitches, some of which I'm familiar with and others that I have had to learn. Luckily for me, the Internet is  a crafter's delight and good old google always come to the rescue :)

This has taken me wayyyy longer than I had anticipated, partly because I haven't done some of the stitches before and also due to the fact that I'm a bit of a perfectionist, so I have been doing quite a bit of frogging to get the stitches to look he way that I want them to.


So this first attempt at embroidery is far from perfect, but it is enjoyable and since I already own a ton of one or two skeins of thread, it might not be an expensive new hobby to undertake! That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it :)

Don't worry, cross stitching hasn't been abandoned.....I managed to finish off the rose design that I posted about last week. Now I have another gorgeous little card to add to my stash...


....isn't that pretty? 

Hope you have a wonderfully creative and productive week.

Until next time....happy stitching!

Rhona

Monday, April 2, 2018

No more blues....at least for a little while!

No more feeling the blues for me.......the love birds are finished!!!

So, the burning question is did I add the border or not? Well I appreciated all your comments and I have to say that I agreed with both sides.... fine without and fine with. In the end, after much deliberation I decided that it looked a bit unfinished without the border and seemed to need something to anchor or frame the design (I guess the designer really did know best!) so I reluctantly picked up the blue threads yet again and stitched the border.....


Although I would say that the design does need a border, I'm not sure if the border style is exactly in keeping the main part of the design. Anyhoo, it's done and looks fine and there's no way, I'm unpicking it and doing any more blues for a looooong time! 


So here are the details of this kit and my thoughts on it (These are just my opinions and I haven't been asked to do this by the company)....

The kit is by Plaid Bucilla and called 'Love You Always'. Finished size is 8 x 10 inches and stitched on 14 count aida. Whole cross stitch, half cross stitch, back stitch/long stitch and french knots are used in this design. Kit comes with a black and white printed chart, fabric, threads and a needle.

Here's some pros and cons of the kit...

Pros.

Lots of threads (I didn't run out of any colour!)
Very large black and white printed chart....and when I say large, I mean large......(Great for those of us who's eye sight isn't as good as it once was! 😄 )


Cons.

Not quite enough fabric. I like to have more fabric  to allow for stretching the finished design and framing.
The chart is super large as you can see from the photo....it's almost too large and is quite awkward for stitching and holding the chart.
Threads didn't come pre-sorted......those blues are killers!

So now I just have to decide how to finish this piece and not abandon it in the pile of shame.

Here's my next little start, it's the free kit from this months' World Of Cross Stitching magazine. The appeal for this little design wasn't the fact that it was a quick stitch.....it's because there are no blues at all in the design! Yayy!


Also in this months magazine are my little mug cosy designs.....


 World of Cross Stitching magazine
Immediate Media Co.


Didn't they stitch up beautifully?  I was really tempted to stitch some of these when I was designing them, but didn't get round to doing them (isn't that always the way!) but seeing them again, I think they might be added to my ever increasing to-stitch list.  

Here's a picture of my little mock-up that I made to check out the sizes when I was originally working on them.  I keep this kind of thing in case there is ever a problem with the deign when the magazines are making up the finished article.The designs are done so far in advance that it's often hard to remember small details that you were thinking at the time you were working on them so keeping this mock up helps......


 ....I didn't have time to do much stitching so all I did was the back stitch detail!  And a little tip for anyone who might be thinking of making these, I used one of those coloured elastic hair ties instead of a regular piece of elastic as the size was right and the colour matched the felt perfectly!

  
Also in the magazine is my Blackwork alphabet ......


Traditional Blackwork with a modern pop of colour....so versatile! 

And one last thing....

World Craft Week this year is  April 16th - 22nd. You can find all the details and download your free crafting magazine here.  This year it's supporting Bliss, the leading charity for premature and sick babies in the UK. There are some really cute projects in the magazine - I'm sharing because it's for a great cause and we all need some more projects to do, don't we?!!!!


Thanks again for all your opinions on whether or not to do the border in the Love Birds design....and for all your comments in general....much appreciated.

Until next time....happy stitching!


Rhona

Monday, March 19, 2018

Almost done!

Oooh, the excitement! I'm almost done with the blue birds!

Can you feel my relief that there won't be too much more blue threads in my life? (Watch me pick a new project that has loads of blues in it!!!!)
Anyhoo, the main part of the stitching is completed...yayyy! I just have to decide if I want to stitch the border all around the design.....not sure If I'm up to any more blue threads.  So with just the back stitching to do, this design is almost....dare I say it.....finished!!!


Soooo....what's your honest opinion....border or no border? Part of me thinks 'Just suck it up and do the border' and the other part says 'Why bother? It looks fine like that'....which part of me do I listen to? 😃

And you can tell that it was a real dilemma  as I voluntarily went to the pile of shame and did some finishing....yeah, that's how much of a quandary I'm in about these damn birds!

So here's the finishing that I did....(it's not much so don't get too excited!)

The embroidered cushion for my daughter and her 'pre-husband', as she calls him!


.....and the scroll for my daughter's professor....


So that's two down several hundred ahem, one or two more to go!

Until next time...happy stitching!

Rhona

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

More blue!

Blue, blue, blue.......arghhhh, it's beginning to get to me, all that blue and no other colour to break up the monotony.

Not much progress to show as there were a few nights that I didn't manage to stitch and nothing at all done over the weekend.....how unlike me!

Here's how the blue birds are looking now....




I'll be glad when this one is completed!

A few evenings I didn't manage to get any stitching done for one reason or another, and I really missed stitching. I really felt like I had wasted the time (even though I am moaning about the blue threads!)  I guess our stitching hobby really is addictive.....so addictive that this happens....



....... you see a waffle chip and think "I can stitch that!"

This, I must add, was not my doing. This was from a Facebook post by a page called  'I Craft Because Punching People Is Frowned Upon' which I wanted to share with you as I thought it was so funny. Hope you do to.😏

Until next time....happy stitching!

Rhona

Monday, March 5, 2018

Ooohhh.....look what I got!

This was a gift from my hubby.....for Christmas 😊....


.......guess DMC didn't make enough of these tins to keep up with the demand at Christmas time when he placed the order. I'm not complaining.... a gift at any time is always wonderful....and new threads (or anything to do with cross stitching) is always appreciated!  I'm torn between ripping the threads out of the tin and using them or just leaving them in there, in all their glory, all colour graded and in numerical order......oh what to do, what to do?!!!! 😏

Well the blues are still firmly here, but that's a good thing.....it's the blue threads.....nothing else. Slowly but surely I'm getting on with those blue birds....well, technically it's the background as the birds are finished! I'm beginning to wonder whether or not to do the border round this design....the thought of even more blues is just too much!


The cardinal design also has blues in it, so I thought I should try to do some of the blue while there are some of the reds and pinks still to stitch, so that I don't go completely crazy stitching blues at the end, but I didn't get far with that plan......here's where I was last post....


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


Now I'm going to go back and look lovingly at all those glorious new colours of DMC threads....and maybe get some blue stitching done!

Until next time....happy stitching!

Rhona

Monday, February 26, 2018

Feeling the blues!

I've been plodding along with all those blues on the bluebirds design.....but those blues are beginning to get to me!  It's been slow progress this week...


.....you can see the beginning of the lettering start to form, so that feels like progress. Once the back stitching has been done then I'm hoping that the lettering will stand out a bit more.

Luckily for me, this month's issue of The World of Cross Stitching  magazine  arrived and I was able to break up the boredom of stitching all blues with something that had some bright springlike colours to break up the monotony of those  blue threads....the free kit....


This was a super-fast design and I had this finished in one evening....yay me!!!! Another card finish to add to my stash.

And here's how you really know that those blue threads were getting to me.....I picked up the cardinal stitching more than once! Yup, even the black fabric was more appealing than blue threads :)


I had forgotten to mention in my last post the name of this design....it's called 'Ice Cardinal'. It's a dimensions kit and the design is by Mark Mueller.


Unfortunately for me, if you look closely at the ice covered branches you'll see that there's lots of....you've guessed it.....blues!

Looks like I'll be feeling the blues for some time to come!


Until next time....happy stitching!
Rhona

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

A day late!

Ooops...I'm a day late in posting but I'm hoping that you'll forgive me when you find out why....please, please, please say you will!

I had planned to write this blog post yesterday after I had been to see the doctor about my knee. What I thought was going to be a quick visit turned into an all day session waiting for X-rays.....and what made it even more painful (not the knee, but the whole waiting thing) was that I hadn't picked up any stitching to take with me! I have a tin full of small freebie kits that are perfect for popping into your bag for just such occasions, but for some reason I didn't even think a bout taking one with me. Typical.....I could have finished about half of my stash while I was waiting!

So, onto what I did mange to stitch last week......

 .
.....some more of the blue birds. I'm down to the bottom half of the design and onto the lettering so I feel as though I'm 'getting there'....although there's still loads to stitch on the main design and also all the border.

Feeling rather guilty, I picked up the cardinal design and added some more stitches to that....


......although I must confess that there weren't that many stitches added.The black fabric is stiff and hard and really not pleasant to work on, but it's such a pretty design! My original plan had been to wok on this one once a week, but as you can tell, that just hasn't happened!

I added another couple of rounds on my crochet blanket. It's hard to get a good picture of it....I really must take note on how other people photograph their blankets and see if I can get something a bit more interesting to show you :)



So that's all my progress for this weeks post. Thanks for popping by....and do please leave a comment....I love hearing from you!

Until next time....happy stitching!

Rhona




Monday, February 12, 2018

Happily feeling blue!

I'm still staying positive about the blues in the Love Birds design......


...it's a bit boring but also quite easy to stitch....not too much concentration required....and it's nice to see it progress....maybe not as quickly as I would like! I keep seeing so many other designs that I would like to start.... no doubt you can relate to my plight :) 

Another few rounds were put into my crochet blanket.....


...it's hard to photograph it so that the pattern shows. It's really nice now that  it's getting bigger that the yarn colour change is taking place almost on each row now. This is another easy project to crochet and doesn't need too much concentration, so it's great to work on while watching the TV.... now that I've said that, I'll probably make a huge mistake and notice it and end up unraveling it all!

My starteritis seems to have  been cured....not sure if I'm coming down with finishing-it-off-itis as I do have a couple of finished finishes (if that makes sense!!!) Here's the little teddy stitching that I posted about a couple of weeks ago all finished and made into a card.....


And then there was another piece that I stitched wayyyyyy back before Christmas and was languishing at the bottom of my stitching basket......


...yay.....another finish....at least one person will be getting a stitched Christmas card this year :)

Who knows what other things might be finished off this week if the finishing-it-off-itis takes hold!

Until next time...happy stitching!

Rhona

Monday, February 5, 2018

The great thing about blogging!

I felt that this past week I hadn't really done very much stitching/crafting. There just doesn't seem to be enough hours in the week to do everything that you want to do (stitching and crafting) and what you feel has to be done (cooking and other pesky household chores) and what you should do (get to the gym and workout!) And here's where the beauty of blogging comes in......after taking pictures of my projects this week, I realize that I have, in fact, done quite a bit....ok, maybe not so much on the going to the gym part of it, but as the song says...two out of three ain't bad!

So, the starteritis from last week lingered over for a bit :)  I'm still not 100% cured.....



I bought this Janlyn cushion kit before Christmas (does that make it a bit better?) in the hopes of having it made in time to be a Christmas gift for my daughter and her fiance.......didn't happen! But it will make a lovely housewarming gift for them....I just have to add their names to the bottom. This was a fun kit if you fancy trying your hand at embroidery......


....the design is printed onto the fabric and you basically fill in the spaces .....


....my only 'complaint'  is that the black lines for the leaves aren't completely covered by the stitches.....this is just my OCD kicking in!


It was fun and definitely something I'd try again.....I did like the fact that you didn't have to concentrate too much as there's no counting involved.....makes it a great project for doing while watching the TV!

I also did some more rounds on my crochet blanket....


...these are taking longer and longer to do as you start in the middle and work out. The first few rounds seem to be really quick and now it's taking much longer....and will only get worse the bigger the blanket becomes!

And I can now show you what I teased you with last week....my sewing machine project.....yes, I'm still actually on speaking terms with my machine....we didn't fall out!!!!


This project was aimed at  making something useful and also using up some of the fabric stash that I have acquired .....


 .... a soup bowl cozy! 

You can find the instructions and pattern here. Now the site has it listed under their Fast Fridays section.....now I have to be honest here and do the full disclosure thing...it wasn't fast for me. Perhaps it's because  I made it on a Sunday.....maybe Sundays are named Slow Sundays...... I'm sure it's all about the name and  has absolutely nothing to do with my lack of sewing skills!  So, is it perfect....absolutely not! Do I love it....absolutely yes!


So not only can you use it for keeping your hands from burning on your soup bowl, but you can use it for storing your stitchy paraphernalia  .....


 ....and did you notice  that it's also reversible as well as super cute? Time to start busting out the fabric stash to make some more!!! 


Yeah, definitely seeing a black and white theme going on here. Wouldn't they make a great gift....just make one of these then add a bowl and a fancy soup mix....perfect as a get-well gift or even a (dare I say it this early in the year?) Christmas gift.

And as for cross stitching.....I did that too! Not much, but those bluebirds haven't been entirely  neglected...



So a big thank you to blogger for making me realize that I have indeed been a busy little bee last week! Let's hope this week is as productive.

Until next time....happy stitching!

Rhona