Sunday, 31 May 2015

Mother's Day card!

Hi all!
So , yesterday I was determined to finish the little card for my mum as it is Mother's Day here in Sweden today , and I knew I was going to see her at 2 pm today !
So, I stitched . . . and stitched . . .and stitched . . . And I swore over the tiny holes in the 16-count aida . . . and I swore over the short , short threads that were included in this freebie card set . . . and I swore over the fractionals I had to do in the tiny aida squares . . . and I swore over the very fiddly backstitch . . . and I swore over the mixing up of cross stitches stitched with one thread as opposed to two threads . . .
An hour after midnight I finally finished off the last thread , rubbed my aching fingertips and relaxed my hands and drew a deep sigh of relief . . . my self-appointed task was done ! ! ! Yay !

And actually , I am very happy with this little chap ! ! ! He is really cute and those of you who are familiar with the designer Margaret Sherry will recognize characters like this one : ) Personally I have not stitched many Margaret Sherry designs before , and I am not sure I will in the future either . The end result is simply wonderful , but the road to get there . . . ! Well , that backstitch is not for the faint hearted , especially when using 16-count . . !
Anyway , having put the card together it looked like this :

I am glad I stuck with it because it looks really , really sweet , but frankly , I cannot wait to get back to my Lavender Fairy with its beads and Kreinik . . . much easier ha ha ! !

Happy Stitching Everyone !


Friday, 29 May 2015

Freebie card

Hi all!

What a frustrating week I have had ! Life has gotten in the way of my cross stitching and I have barely had time to stitch on my fairy ! I have started stitching with the Kreinik but so far I have had so little time to stitch that it is no point posting an update pic yet : ( ( Hopefully I can get some cross stitching done over the weekend - I feel like I will go insane if I have to wait much longer to stitch on my fairy !

I was hoping I might get some time to cross stitch tonight, which I did . However, here in Sweden it is Mothering Sunday this Sunday , and since I do not have the money at the moment to buy a gift for my lovely mum, I decided that the least I could do was to stitch a card for her . . . !
So I dug through my box with all the freebie cards from cross stitch magazines , and found a suitable card to stitch . It is not too detailed and should be reasonable quick to stitch. The one thing I do not like is the 16-count aida used ; I find it too fiddly and prefer 14-count. But since it is only a small card I am going to do my very best to cope . . . !

So this is as far as I got tonight . . .

I know , pathetic progress isn't it ? ? I definitely blame the 16-count aida . . . ha ha !
Can anyone guess what it will be . . . ? ?
Hopefully I can show you a picture of the finished card tomorrow evening !

Hope you all find time for some wonderful cross stitching this weekend !


Monday, 25 May 2015

Fairy progress

Hi all!
This is just a quick post to show you my progress on Joan Elliott's Lavender Fairy .

I have managed to stitch a bit over the weekend so now all the skin areas are practically finished . I still have the backstitch left to do on her arms and shoulders and on the rest of the dress . The lavender flowers are also done , except for the stems which will be backstitched in Kreinik . The last week has been quite stressful for me so I have found it difficult to focus on my crafts , but I hope that things will quieten down now so I can get back to some serious cross stitching again : )

Happy Stitching Everyone!


Thursday, 21 May 2015

A Little Birthday Card

Hi all!

My plan was to do lots of cross stitching this week but anxiety and stress put a stop to my plan . Then I also received the heartbreaking news that my wonderful physiotherapist passed away very unexpectedly . . .  Needless to say I have barely stitched anything on the Lavender Fairy , but I hope that the weekend will bring some peace and renewed stitching energy , because I can hear Belle calling from the pile of WIPs : )

Meanwhile I have a small project to show you which I stitched last weekend . It is a birthday card for an acquaintance and I used a chart designed by Durene Jones from the magazine Cross Stitch Gold issue 100 .

I love her designs since she always uses a lot of bright colours and has a very interesting and different way of using sketchy backstitch to highlight her colourful designs : ) These particular charts were originally meant for a female recipient , but I fell in love with them and decided to try to adjust the colours and the design to fit a birthday card for a male recipient . I also added the name and tried to add backstitch to the name in a way that would match the rest of the design .
There are five more similar charts to this one in the magazine and since I really loved stitching this card it is quite possible that I will stitch a few more for future birthdays . But then I think I will stick to the recommended thread colours - it is much easier that way : )

Now I am going to try to get some rest and relaxation so I can get back to stitching my beautiful Belle : )

Happy Stitching Everyone !


Monday, 18 May 2015

Not long to go now!

Hi all,
Lately I have spent a lot of hours on Belle , the lavender fairy . All her fairy wings are stitched . . .
 . . . and I am now stitching the lavender flowers on each side of her .
The lavender itself is not difficult to stitch . I began to stitch each flower on its own and finishing off the thread before I moved to the next flower . However , it seemed as if the amount of thread the kit provided dvindled rather quickly when I did it this way , so I then decided that I would ' jump ' with the thread beween the small lavender flowers as long as the distance wasn't more than 2 - 3 aida squares . I am also going to add Kreinik for the stems , so I am hoping that any threads on the back won't show through the fabric later on .

The other two things I have left to do now is to finish the skin areas and to stitch all the little pretty flies that fly around the fairy . However , the flies are tiny which mean a lot of starting and finishing threads , and stitching the skin colours requires a lot of concentration so I'll only stitch those in the daytime . Still , I hope I can finish those last areas this week so I can start with the beads and Kreinik soon : ) Can't wait !
By the way , does any of you know whether it is possible to hand wash Polstitches hand-dyed fabrics ?
It would be nice to be able to wash the stitching since I have handled it so much . . .
Now I am going to take time to catch up with all your lovely blogs ; my stitching has taken up all of my time lately and have made me neglect my blog reading !

Happy Stitching Everyone !


Tuesday, 12 May 2015

To face a Face!

Hi all!

Yesterday I gave away the crocheted poncho that I made recently .

The recipient was delighted and full of smiles and plans for when she was going to use it ! It sure is lovely making things for people when they show such appreciation ! !

I'm still stitching my Lavender Fairy , and I have now renewed determination to finish this project within not too long : ) The reason for that is probably that I have now stitched her face , and thus she has almost developed a personality . . . ! I know , it sounds a bit crazy , but she is more alive now and I have also decided to call her BELLE ! Such a beautiful fairy deserves her own name , especially since I am spending so much time 'getting to know' her . . . : )

So the process of stitching the face was quite time-consuming ; three different skin colours , lots of fiddly fractionals and quite a few thread changes . . . ! After a few hours I had done this much . . .

. . . and I was beginning to wonder if she would really end up looking as good as she does in the original picture ? ? Hm . . . nothing to do but keeping my fingers crossed and then stitch the different backstitches around the eyes and the mouth . . .

Well , now she began to look a bit better, with some of her 'make-up' on : ) But there was still something missing , so I carried on with the last bit of backstitching in and around the face and voila . . .
 . . . here she is ! Isn't she beautiful, my BELLE ? ? It is amazing what a few backstitches here and there can do ! I can just feel how I have fallen in love with this project all over again : )
And here is a picture of her as she looks tonight in all her glory ! !

The next big step is to finish stitching all of her wings and there are also all the lavender flowers that grow on each side of her . Although there are still lots of things to stitch , it feels as if it is doable and I am really looking forward to when I can go crazy with the embellishments . . .ha ha !

Happy Stitching everyone !


Sunday, 10 May 2015

A week of wonderful stitching !

Hi all!

I have had such a nice week filled with icehockey on the telly and lots and lots of stitching ! My Lavender Fairy is coming along nicely : ) I have now stitched the legs and I have done some more backstitching . . . : )

I have also started on the fairy wings. All the skin colours coming up is making me feel slightly bored so I am trying to mix it up by stitching different parts of the charts according to my mood. I'm also debating with myself whether I should stitch the face now or save it until the end . . .? Any thoughts ?
Here's another picture of one of my stitching buddies . . . :)

Isn't he cute rolled up like a little ball ? ?
Hope everyone is having a wonderful Sunday filled with lots of stitching !

Thursday, 7 May 2015

What did I do all afternoon ? ? ?

Hi all!

First of all I just want to thank you all for taking the time to read my blog and comment my posts ! I do not think you understand how happy reading what you write makes me : ) At times it thrills me so much that I just HAVE to call my sis and tell her how wonderful I feel when I see your  nice comments ! So I just want to take this opportunity to thank all of YOU for the happiness you all give me when you visit my blog : ) So , THANK YOU all you lovely cross stitchers out there in the world !

Now , on to stitching business ! So yesterday my Lavender Fairy looked like this . . .

. . .and today I stitched all afternoon and when I looked at what I had done . . .

. . . it looked like I had done almost nothing at all ! How depressing . . .! So , what DID I do ? Well , I completed some of the cross stitches I had left to do on the skirt , and I did some backstitching on the skirt too . However , the chart says to use grey thread so therefore it is almost impossible to see the backstitch once done . . .

Can YOU see the backstich ? ? I almost wanted to switch to black thread since I really don't like designs where one can't see the backstitch clearly . However , who am I to argue with Joan Elliott when it comes to design , so I am going to perservere with the grey thread and trust the chart and the designer . . .

I am so tempted to start some of the beading , but I know I have to wait . I stitch in hand and do not use a hoop or frame so there would be a risk of handling the fabric too much after adding the beads and Kreinik . Of course I don't want to risk having to redo any of the embellishments .

Now I have to decide what I want to stitch next . . . the legs . . . or some lavender . . . or more backstitch . . .? I'll see what I feel like tomorrow .

Happy Stitching Everyone,


Wednesday, 6 May 2015

The Joan Elliott world is my oyster!

Hi all!

Since the first moment I saw her cross stitch charts I fell in love with Joan Elliott designs . I loved the details and the colours she used and the subjects - just the overall feel of her designs : ) However , a lot of them felt very much out of my stitching reach since I had never used beads - how scary! - and I found metallics really challenging to stitch with .
However , I challenged myself to use beads for a gift I made last autumn . . .

 ...using a Joan Elliott chart . I used slightly larger beads that I had bought cheaply at a craft sale and the process of stitching the beads to the fabric was such an exhilarating experience , and the the whole stitched piece looked sooo good with the added beads that I was truly HOOKED! Then I decided to stitch the beautiful Unicorn by Joan Elliott for my sister's 40th birthday , where I got to use Kreinik braid #4 which was a very nice experience ! I found Kreinik very easy to use compared to DMC Metallics . I also used the small seed beads for the first time , and although they did their best to escape from me , the beading was a lot of fun : )
So , now that I had conquered my big fears as far as JE designs was concerned , it really dawned on me the other day that I CAN in fact stitch ALL of her charts that take my fancy ! WOW ! Of course it would be quite expensive , since I would want lovely ( hand dyed ) fabrics and beautiful beads and Kreinik , but still , I could do it ! And I also realized that I have quite a few of her charts already since I collect cross stitch magazines and have quite a few bookazines with some of her patterns . Of course I had to get out back issues of the magazine that often has her chart , Cross Stitch Collection magazine , and I made a list of the JE designs that really took my fancy !

So here goes:

CSC issue 225
 I love this Fabulous flapper ! Who doesn't love the Charlston Era with all the fun dresses and headpieces etc ? ! And look at that necklace . . . lots and lots of beads : )

CSC issue 229
 I LOVE christmas ( which is why I have a Christmas blog! ) and I love vintry christmas designs ! This Christmas Rose Angel would be perfect christmas gift for someone : ) Those christmas roses are stunning !

CSC issue 204
 I love all the green foilage , poinsetta flowers , and christmas roses that surrounds this Winter Goddess ! The greens and the reds are really beautiful and there are some lovely gold beads and Kreinik braid used as well : ) It is just a very festive design , and the chart that comes with it is very easy to read , which helps a lot !

CSC issue 212
This Sweet Pea Fairy is simply stunning ! However, it is a rather elaborate and large design so I don't think I'll be stitching it yet . I feel I need a little more stitching experience before I tackle it . It is definitely on my to-do list though ! I've always liked Sweet Pea flowers and this design really reflects the beauty of Sweet Peas : )

CSC issue 214
This Dragonfly Fairy is definitely one of the charts I am thinking of doing next : ) I like those muted colour and the easy, breezy feeling of this design ! I would definitely have to find the perfect hand dyed fabric for it though , since the fabric really is in focus on this design .

So those are my stitching dreams/plans for the moment ! I love the fact that I have lots and lots of beautiful , inspiring , beaded projects on my to-do list ! Whatever else life throws at me , I know that I have lots of lovely stitchy moments to look forward to in the future : )

Oh , I mustn't forget to show you my progress on my present JE project !

At the moment I'm looking to do some of the backstitch on her skirt so I'm trying to finish all those dress folds . It is now possible to see where some of the beads will be positioned on the dress too : ) The hair is also basically finished and just waiting for the beads and Kreinik decorations . I love the feeling of the hair , the way it just falls freely on her (invisible) shoulders . Yes , I know , I'm dragging my feet on the skin areas . . . just bear with me !
Now I bid you all farewell for this time because I'm going to return to stitching my Lavender Fairy by Joan Elliott : )
Happy Stitching Everyone!

Sunday, 3 May 2015

She has hair and a left sleeve!

Hi all!

How I had longed for this day when I had nothing planned except for lots of stitching and lots of tv ! It was bliss ! ! ! Sadly I have been feeling very tired lately and I had to take a nap this afternoon too , but otherwise I just stitched and I also did some crochet : )

Of course I stitched only on my Lavender Fairy by Joan Elliott ! I have other wonderful WIPs hanging around , but right now the Lavender Fairy is calling my name from the moment I get out of bed until the moment I go to bed in the evening. . ! So today I stitched some of her brown hair and her left sleeve . . .

. . . and I just love the fact that I can make out her shape now ! It makes me feel even more inspired to stitch her - if that is possible ! I have a dislike for stitching skin colours since they are so similar and difficult to make out on the chart , but I am going to have to do brave those pesky colours soon. . . ! It is just much more fun to stitch the colourful dress . . .ha ha !

I am hoping that I can get lots of stitching done this coming week , as I have nothing else planned except for dog walks and icehockey matches on the box : ) It sounds like crafty heaven to me !

Happy Stitching Everyone!


Friday, 1 May 2015

A cute stitching companion!

Hi all!

Just a quick update to show you my little cross stitching progress today : )
I have finished the Lavender Fairy's green top . . .

. . . and have now decided to stitch some of her hair. Luckily the hair is only made up of two colours and mostly whole cross stitches so it shouldn't be too tricky. In comparison , the hair of Joan Elliott's Daffodil Fairy is much more complex and the main reason that that particular fairy turned into a WIP for a couple of years . . : (

When I was stitching this afternoon one of my furbabies lay next to me and I just HAD to take a picture of him . . .

. . . since he looked so funny but at the same time so relaxed : )
I tell you , this little chap is quite a  character and the cutest stitching buddy one could ask for !

Happy Stitching Everyone!