Lizzie*Kate Exchange Blog: Exchange C

In May I joined the Lizzie*Kate Exchange Blog and promptly joined in with the first exchange open to me. I had a really hard time deciding on which chart to stitch, and an even harder time figuring out how to finish it. I mean, my stitching is good, but I don’t have a lot of finishing experience since I haven’t been particularly adventurous when it comes to finishing off my stitching. To tell you the truth I was getting really anxious about the whole thing, especially as the standard of finishing amongst the rest of the blog members was really high. I finally decided on a pattern, Plant Love from issue 28 of The Gift of Stitching, which stitched up quickly. I used 32-count natural linen, and floss from my stash, a mixture of DMC, GAST, WDW and Dragonfloss.

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Then I had it lying around for a few weeks before I figured out how to finish it. By coincidence I had picked up some paper mache boxes at a store near us, and had the bright idea of trying to mount my stitching on top of one. How hard could it be, right? As it turns out, not too hard actually, provided you have the right tools of course.
Before mounting it I painted the box in white, then I attached the stitching to some mounting board, together with some wadding and finally used my dinky new glue gun to attach it to the box top. I trimmed the bottom of the box with some adhesive ribbon and trimmed around the top with some purple cord. All in all I was pleasantly surprised by how nice it looked, one of the favorite things I’ve made so far.

Judge for yourselves 🙂

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My partner, Conny, got it without any problems, and I think she liked it.

Not long after I sent mine off I got a package of my own through the letter box, containing this beautiful ornament from Angela P

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It’s so beautiful, and it really inspires me to keep trying new finishes, I’m determined that a few of my Christmas ornaments this year will be made up using this flat finishing. After all, with this perfect example how can I go wrong?

Round D is getting close to send off dates and I have of course signed up, so hopefully you’ll get to see pictures from that in the beginning of October.

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Crossstitch WIP – Abi Gurden’s Tree of Stitches

A few weeks ago I heard about this SAL called Tree of Stitches, intrigued I headed over to the The Stitch Specialist group, to have a look and I was instantly hooked. The SAL had already run it’s course when I found out about it, so I got to download all 15 parts at the same time.

The tree is made up of 15 different types of stitches, a great learning piece, I’m having so much fun with it.

When I heard about it and saw other peoples trees I got a very clear idea of how I wanted my tree to look. I had a piece of Polstitches fabric which I got in a large cuts grab bag, I think it might be The Deep, but I’m not sure, and I knew I wanted a white/gray tree, in the spirit of the White Tree of Gondor. At first I thought I’d just go for DMC color variations 4015, but then I was seduced by the wonderful Caron Waterlilies, and ended up going with Waterlilies Quicksilver, using anything between 1-3 strands to create different effects and textures.

I wanted a clear difference between the trunk and the leaves as well when it came to texture and look, and decided to stitch the trunk in satin floss, I used DMC Satin 415 which was horrible to work with, but which looked just the way I wanted it.

Here you can see it after part 1, the trunk, had been stitched using cross stitches.

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I then stitched Part 2, Smyrna stitch, Part 3, French Knots, and Part 4, Algerian Eyelets, in quick succession, and here is how the tree looked once those were completed

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Here is a closer look at those stitches

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I then went on to stitch Part 5, Rice Stitch, and Part 6, Cushion stitch. The Rice stitch seemed to take me forever, but I loved the effect of the Cushion stitch. And this is how my tree currently looks

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And a closer look at the stitches used

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The next stitch on the agenda is Jerusalem stitch which I’ve never heard of let alone tried out before so we’ll see how it goes, I’m looking forward to it and the rest of the stitches though

Cross Stitch Finishes – The Sampler Girl ‘Fancy a Darcy Day?’

The Sampler Girl was having a sale back in May (or was it June) and I got a few charts I’ve been wanting for a while. The first one I stitched up was ‘Fancy a Darcy Day?’. Instead of the charted colors I choose an Anchor variegated thread, 1342, and I stitched it on to 32-count natural/raw linen. I’m also stitching Sampler Girl’s ‘Fancy a Jane Day?’, but when I was doing the last few stitches I realize I made a mistake and had to frog the whole silhouette and since then I haven’t wanted to pick it up again. It’s stitched on the same fabric as Darcy but with a peachy variegated instead, I’ll show you a picture when it’s done.

Anyway, here is ‘Fancy a Darcy Day?’

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Crossstitch WiPs – Little House Needleworks Two Sheep

Way back in April I made a start on a Little House Needleworks freebie called Two Sheep. I was given it along with probably 50 or more charts from a friend of mine. Lots of LHN, CCN, LK, Bent Creek and SB charts, I wanna stitch them all, and have managed to stitch a couple so far.

But back to Two Sheep, I’m stitching it over one on 28-count evenweave which I tea dyed, and when it’s finished I’ll have a go at mounting it on an altoid box 🙂 I’m using threads from my stash, a mix of WDW, GAST and DMC.

This was one of the pieces l left behind in Liverpool, but I have it here in Basingstoke now and will try and finish it in the next month. Here is a picture of it as I left it back in April

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Cross Stitch Finishes – Lizzie*Kate Forgive Quickly

This is one of the first finishes I had after we moved. I had some how managed to leave all my WIPs and all my fabrics behind in Liverpool, and all I had here was some charts and fabric. But after some eBay retail therapy I had more than enough to get on with some new projects and as I said this was my first finish back in May.

I love how this design combines traditional and modern, it’s so different from their other designs, but still very Lizzie*Kate-ish.

I stitched it on 28-count antique white cashel linen using Polstitches Dragonfloss Sweetheart, I left out some of the design on the borders as I was running out of floss but I think it looks nice like this, definitely my own.

Eventually I’ll make this onto a cushion or frame it for the bedroom

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Something new – Gustav Klimt’s Tree of Life from Yiotas XStitch

A few weeks ago I was asked if I could review a cross stitch kit from online company Yiotas Xstitch who sell cross stitch kits and patterns. I got to pick any kit I wanted from their store to review and they’d send it to me for free. Choosing a kit was not easy, if you have look at their store you’ll see why, there is so much choice. In the end I went with Gustav Klimt’s Tree of Life, I love Klimt’s art in any case an this one has some lovely earthy colors.

The kit arrived in the mail a few days later (super speedy delivery) and looks like this

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The chart is printed on good quality paper and it’s printed over 2 A3 sized sheets so the symbols are nice and big, excellent if your eyes aren’t all that good or when your just tired.

Another great thing about this kit is how the threads are all sorted and wound on to numbered bobbins, it makes it so much easier to keep everything in order. The aida which came with it is nice and soft, it’s ecru or cream which is great for this pattern as that means you don’t have to stitch the background. The floss is Madeira, which I think always looks shinier than Anchor and DMC, but as I haven’t used Madeira cotton much I don’t know how well it stitches up coverage wise.

Don’t you just love the colors used in this one?

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Not sure when I’ll get started on this one, I’m thinking next week, once I’ve finished a WIP which I’ll tell you more about later. I’m stitching a few smalls over one on 40 count as well soon and think this project, with it being on 14 count aida, will help me get through the tiny, tiny stitching relatively sane.

The Return of the Erratic Blogger

It’s been a while since I posted regularly, or posted anything of substance. Since April a lot has happened, there has been emotional and physical upheaval with our move from Liverpool to Basingstoke, and tragedy and devastating grief with the loss of a loved one.
There has been good things as well, the move wasn’t too bad and we’ve settled in to our new home and jobs (yup, that’s right, I am a lady of leisure no more). And more excitingly, come February I become an auntie to two more munchkins. It’s probably the only thing that has kept me sane through the last few months, that and stitching.
I’ve started and finished a fair few projects over the last few months. I still have a lot of challenge pieces left to finish, but half of them are still in Liverpool with the stuff we couldn’t fit into the van when we moved down. I also have a few WIPs and I’m playing catch-up on my ornaments and biscornus of the month.

Over the next few weeks I’ll attempt to catch you all up on what’s been happening in my life, my stitching etc, and so that it’s not all old news I’ll do every other post current and catch-up (as much as I can at least).

I’ll leave you now with a picture of me and my family during happier times, at a family party back in April (we all had to wear wigs)

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Left to right:
My BIL Tom, Me, my SIL Helena, my MIL Ann (RIP), and my hubby Paul

Copyright © 2007-2011 Line Sletvold Finnan
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