An Old Finish, Emily Peacock’s HUG cushion

I finished the cross stitch on this cushion ages ago, there is even a post about it. Yikes, that was 2 years ago! Well you will be happy to know it did not take me two years to finish it into a cushion, I got a sewing machine as a wedding anniversary gift in October 2011 and made it up shortly after that. But it has taken me since then to blog about it.

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I love the light brown and ivory striped ticking cotton fabric I used for the backing and while the pom-pom trim was a pain in the backside to stitch on (and is nowhere near perfect) I’m glad I persevered with it. I bought the fabric from a fab eBay seller, they had the most amazingly gorgeous fabric (expensive though), but they don’t seem to be selling any more, which is a shame (don’t worry, I did stock up quite a bit while they were in business).

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It took me forever to find an inner for it, if making a cushion cover I would definitely suggest finding an inner and making the cushion cover to fit it rather than the other way around. My inner is not a perfect fit, but it was cheap (from ikea) and the best I could find. I love my HUG cushion and I wish I had my KISS one finished as well since they would look so great together but that particular WIP has not been touched for a while. To be honest I haven’t even stitched since last summer, completely lost my bug. I have a feeling it will be back soon and hopefully it will stay for while, long enough for em to finish some WIPs at any rate.

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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.

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.

CJC – 7th finish of the challenge, a Christmas ornie and some WIP updates

Let’s start with the finish, really should have posted this last week, but just didn’t have the time. The Crazy January Challenge (CJC) finish is the cross stitched part of the wall hanging mail organizer I’m making for my mum. Now I just have to sew on to some fabric and make it into a wall hanging. Should have it in the mail for my mum next week (fingers crossed)

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I also finished my Christmas ornament for March last week, it’s a Liz Almond design which was in the free Christmas design booklet which came with The World of Cross Stitch issue 170. I used Madeira Decora and Silk floss in green, red and gold, and some red Gütermann beads, and stitched it on plain old 16-count white aida. The pics aren’t great for this one, so I put in two (excellent logic, no?).

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I’ve also been working on two WIPs.

Mostly it’s been my Sleepy Hollow Sampler by Raise the Roof. I really do love this one and can’t wait to finish it and frame it. There is still quite a bit to do, the story excerpt at the bottom and of course the border, but every single stitch is a joy!

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This last one it’s been a while since I worked on, it’s the Stitcher’s Sampler. It’s a little slow going as I’m having trouble making the changes I want to it, but I’ll get there eventually. At least all the borders are done now.

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CJC – Blackwork Lady Finished

First a warning, this will be picture heavy.

This weekend I finished another of my Crazy January Challenge(CJC) pieces, Lesley Teare’s Blackwork Lady which was in WOXS last year. I used a piece of hand dyed 28-count evenweave for her, which I had received in a grab bag from Polstitches. The fabric is beautiful, I think it might be Rustic Rhubarb, it seems to be the closes match. She is of course stitched entirely in black using DMC 310, and instead of french knots I used beads, as my French knots are really sub-standard and on a piece like this they would stick out. Over-all she was a lovely stitch, but I think my habit of sitting in dark rooms stitching made it harder for me to get her done. At least she is here not and just needs a frame before she can go up on the wall.

Here she is with the stitching complete
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And here she is fully beaded
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Here is a close up of her face, you can see the beads better and she looks so delicate. Think this is my favorite part of the design
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These butterflies are pretty adorable, and I’m really please with how the beads complement the piece.
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And a final look, this time from the bottom of the chart

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Which means I’ve finished 6/15 of my CJC pieces. That’s an average of two a month, but of course most of the ones left are larger designs so will take longer. But I am well on my way to completing this challenge

March Biscornu, a couple of cards and an exchange

As I said on Saturday I have a couple more finishes to show you, today i had a picture taking session and got it all done. And I got permission to use a picture taken by the recipient of my exchange item, silly me had completely forgotten to take a picture before sending it off.

My Basket of Biscornus challenge, which I set myself, is going really well. For March I decided to honour St. Patrick and stitch up Faby Reilly’s Shamrock Biscornu, it used to be a freebie on her site, but she seems to have taken most of them off the site now. So if you don’t already have the chart, tough luck I’m afraid. I decided to stitch this one on 18-count cream aida (trying to use up my aida, really did buy a shed load when we lived in Abu Dhabi), I used 2 different types of floss, the dark green is Madeira Decora 1479 (satin thread), and the variegated is DMC Colour Variations 4045. For the gold I used Madeira Silk 2210, and the beads are gold Mill Hill ones. I love the button in the middle, it was part of a charm pack my dear friend Kim gave me. Originally it should have been for a Shephard’s Bush stocking but I use them for various other things (the silver heart charm in the January biscornu is from the same charm pack). I think this might be my favourite biscornu to date, it certain is hubby’s favourite. The best part of it is the blackwork in the two larger shamrocks, it just gives it lovely texture, it also helps that the satin floss is a little ticker than the cotton so it’s more raised.

Here it is from the top.
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And here, a side view
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Finally a closer look
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I also stitched two cards for Mother’s Day this year, I never remember when the Norwegian Mother’s day is (at least not until after the fact) so I just send cards for the British one. I’m sure that makes me an even better daughter, my mum gets celebrated twice (once by me and once by my bro). This year I decided two free cover kits would do the trick. For my mum I’ve stitched a card from the same series as the one she received last year, The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady. I love these designs, timeless classics!

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For MIL I stitched a Fizzy Moon freebie. These WOXS free kits are driving me crazy, they keep cutting the thread length very short and some of the colours are really hard to differentiate between. It stitch up really nicely though and I changed the words on the note to ‘MUM xx’.

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Last, but certainly not least, we had an Easter-themed scissor fob exchange at CrossStitchForum. I decided to stitch a Penelopis freebie on mine, and stitched it up on some 28 count handdyed Polstitches fabric. I made the cord out of some variegated Anchor floss i had, it is infact the same colour as the one I included in the package, very Easter-y/Spring-y. Didn’t manage to take a picture myself, but Alice kindly let me use the one she took of the goodies I sent.

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Stitchy Saturdays – Some ATCs etc.

I’m really unorganized this month, not only did I not find my camera for most of it but once I did I forgot to take pictures. I do have a couple of things to show though.
First we have a few ATC, these first two are from the February exchanges on two facebook groups I’m a member of.
For this one we had the choice of two charts designed by Kell, a cross stitch one and a blackwork one. Below is my interpretation of the blackwork chart.
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This one had a Valentine’s theme, and I used a Liz Almond chart which was in the WOXS Design Library she designed.
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And as my March ATCs have been received I can show them off as well.

For the Cross Stitch ATCs group the theme was Transport. I wanted to stitch a more unusual mode of transport and settled on a Penny-farthing. It’s my favorite ATC that I’ve stitched (with the possible exception of the silhouette one), I used a DMC colour variations and stitched on 18 count aida.
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In the Addicted to Cross Stitch ATCs group our theme was Luck o’ the Irish, and I stitched my atc putting together elements from a couple of Kell’s Irish designs.
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One of nexts month’s themes is AOY (All Our Yesterdays) so at the moment I’m trying to decide which design to go with, I have at least 12 thanks to the Mini diary which was a magazine freebie.

I also stitched a square for LoveQuiltsUK, using the Brushstroke Butterfly chart which is a freebie over at CyberStitchers. I used some varigated Anchor (1335 methinks), as I was stitching on 11 count I uded about a skein and a half. Now I’m trying to find some more charts to stitch up. There are no specific childrens quilts at the moment, instead there are 4 stitch-a-longs, the themes being Butterflies, Purple, Green and Disney Characters. If you have some time on your stitching hands and have a chart which would be suitable to one of the themes head on over and sign up 🙂
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I have also finished my March biscornu and a Crazy January Challenge piece, but need to take some nicer pictures of them before letting you see them 🙂 And then there are some mother’s day cards and other cards. Maybe I’ll have to make it stitchy Saturdays and Sundays 🙂

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