Come visit with me as I stitch and craft my way from one Christmas to the next - I like to have Christmas projects close by me all year. I have a particular fondness for Santas and Angels. If you have the time, leave a comment so I know you've visited.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Gifted Gorgeousness, March Report

It will be a brief report from me this month.  I've worked on just one project, which I started on 16th February.  I would have liked to report it as finished, but I'm afraid I'm a long way from that!  I'm stitching this as a surprise gift for my niece, who actually gave me the kit.  It's a Dimensions kit (my first ever kit in over 30 years of stitching.  I won't bore you with the details, but just let me say that I have already decided kits are not for me!).  He's quite a beautiful Santa, and he is a little over half finished now. Well, I should say the design is a little over half finished - Santa is well on the way to completion, just the missing stitches in his hat (has to wait till I find matching floss - again!) and the rest of his beard to go. I hope to have finished him by the April report.

Santa's Secret - The Gold Collection Petites by Dimensions, Design by Patti Gay
I have no idea why he is on his side.  He looked perfectly upright in the pic I imported.  I also don't know how to turn him around.  Maybe I will have worked it out by April 15!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

WIPocalypse Report (March)

I was astounded when I looked at my calendar and saw it was once again time for the WIPocalypse report.  This past month has just slipped by.  The topic set by Measi for this month's discussion is about what projects would be on the bucket list if money and time were not limiters.  Hard for me to answer - I'm pretty much out of wall space for hanging framed projects, so for me that is my major limiter.  Maybe a couple more Santa designs by Michele Sayetta / Dona Gelsinger  of HAED.  Perhaps a few more L&L Angels.

This month I have started Secret Santa, a Dimensions Gold Collection Petite kit.  My niece bought it to stitch, but a new baby (her first) has left her with little time for stitching, so she passed the kit on to me.  I will stitch it and return it to her.  It's actually my first ever kit, in 30 odd years of pretty obsessive cross stitching.  I can't say I'm impressed.  The fabric that came with it was Aida 18, a cut piece so neat that left no room for mounting on my lap-frame.  I didn't fancy stitching the design on Aida anyway, so I substituted 25 count evenweave.  The larger count size meant more floss used per stitch, and that combined with my wasteful floss practice of discarding any unused portion of floss each time I thread my needle with a different floss shade meant that I quickly ran out of many of the floss shades.  Fortunately I found a Dimensions to DMC conversion chart on line, and I have so far replaced 13 of the floss shades - and I'm not even half-way through the design yet..  My other major issue with this kit was the coloured chart - I found it difficult to read initially(particularly the green symbols) but I have adjusted to it over time.

Enough whining - here's a pic.  I'm almost half way through the chart (commenced on 17th February 2015), and I have done some of the backstitching as I went.

Since the last WIPocalypse report, I have also made up the ornaments I stitched for James, Alex, Chloe, and Dylan in January. And I have stitched and made up an ornament for Ruaidri & Edin.

 I also stitched a baby's First Christmas ornament for a new addition to the extended family, expected to arrive in New York this month.  I can't make this one up until baby arrives and is named.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Gifted Gorgeousness Report for February

I can hardly believe it's the 15th of the month again.  It's come around so quickly.  So, it's time to do an update for Jo's Gifted Gorgeousness SAL (there's a link in the sidebar).

In the past month, I have made up into ornaments the designs I stitched last month, and a few extras I stitched since the last report.  Here are the pics:

A gift for a friend's grandson.  It's actually a replacement for the one that went missing in the mail in 2013.  The stocking design is loosely based on one in LA's Christmas Caboodle leaflet, and the little bear is adapted from a design in one of the Graphworks Christmas Miniatures leaflets.

Christmas gifts for young sisters from a family partial to nutcrackers.  The Nutcracker designer is Jeremiah Junction.

Christmas gifts for three of my great-nieces and nephews.  The teddy is a Dale Burdett design (I changed the floss colours), the Santa is a Barbara Mock design (floss colours and trim on parcel changed), and the stocking design is adapted from LA's Christmas Caboodle leaflet and the teddy bear adapted from Graphworks Christmas Miniatures design.

The Santa is a gift for a nephew and his partner, and the stylized tree design is a gift for a young friend who will be receiving her twentieth Christmas ornament from me this year.  The Santa design is adapted from a chart in LA's Celebrations magazine Premier Issue.  I decided on floss colours and added back-stitching, as it was originally designed to be stitched with fabric strips on a jute mat.  The only part of the stylized tree that needs to have a designer credited is the 'Merry Christmas' teddy bear design, which was in a Graphworks Christmas Miniatures leaflet.

 Christmas gifts for another great-nephew and niece (siblings).  These designs came from Barbara Mock's Christmas Quickies II booklet.  I've shown the front and backs of these ornaments.

And finally, I have stitched a Baby's First Christmas ornament for another great-nephew who is expected to arrive in March.  I will have to wait for baby's name before I can finish this one up.  This baby will be born in USA to Aussie parents, so I added a koala to the stocking.  I may stitch a kangaroo or two on the back before I finish it up.  The koala design is adapted from Di Noyce's design printed in Jill Oxton's Cross Stitch magazine, and the stocking design is adapted very heavily from the stocking design in LA's Christmas Caboodle leaflet.

That's it for me.  I think I'll take a break from ornaments now and start stitching on the secret santa chart for my niece Aislinn.

Valentine Day Blog Hop

Isn't this just so sweet?  It's the pic I received in Jo's Valentine Day Blog Hop .  I'm off to see if I can find the stitcher of the lovely bunnies.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

I'm a little late with this WIPocalypse report, as I've just returned home from a seaside holiday with friends.  It would have been very relaxing except for the fact that my 7 month old puppy was so exuberant and  overpowering in her desire to play with the hostess's three tiny dogs that she had them cowering in the corner every time she appeared on the scene.  So we're off to obedience training classes on Sunday. 

This month's discussion topic is an interesting one for me to ponder.  I've never really had a time when I felt that I was in a rut with a project, but I have felt overwhelmed and stifled by one project - the largest I have attempted.  I'm 'a one project at a time' stitcher, but when I was stitching my HAED Jolly Old Fellow, I knew that I would have to have a break from stitching it from time to time. So I decided to stitch solely on it for a block of four to six months each year then pack it away and stitch my other projects for the rest of the year. That worked for me. 

I've had quite a busy time in the past month, but I have managed to stitch up three more ornaments.   

These two are for my great-nephew and great-niece, brother and sister.
The dog and cat charts come from Barbara Mock's Christmas Quickies II booklet.

This one doesn't have a designer to credit,except for the "Merry Christmas" Bears design, which was in a very old 'Christmas Miniatures' leaflet.  It is for a delightful young lady who will be receiving her 19th Christmas ornament from me this year.

And I finished up the three nutcracker ornaments (charts from Nutcracker Factory II by Jeremiah Junction).

and I also finished up the three ornaments I stitched for Amelia, Finley and Angus:
The Santa Teddy Bear is designed by Dale Burdett, the Santa by Barbara Mock, and the stocking is heavily adapted from a design in LA's Christmas Caboodle leaflet.

I hope to get more stitching time in  February than I did in January.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

My first 'Finishes' for 2015

Yesterday and today were spent with cardboard, felt, beads and floss, finishing six of the seven Christmas ornaments I have stitched this month.  The nutcracker designs come from Jeremiah Junction's 'The Nutcracker Factory III' booklet (1993).  The Santa teddy bear is a Dale Burdett design from 'A Mini Christmas' booklet, the Santa design is by Barbara Mock, from a 'Christmas Quickies' booklet, and the little stocking is very heavily adapted from LA's 'Christmas Caboodle' leaflet.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Gifted Gorgeousness SAL

I was pleased to find the SAL as most of the cross stitched items I make each year are destined to be gifts - usually Christmas gifts.  This year I will be making around 50 Christmas ornaments and also several framed works to give as Christmas presents.

So far this year I have stitched six Christmas ornaments, but not yet made them up.  I usually batch my ornament finishing, and I plan to finish up this batch after I  have stitched one more Nutcracker ornament.

Here's what I have stitched:

Nutcrackers from Jeremiah Junction Nutcracker Factory III booklet(for a pair of sisters)

Ornaments for a young niece and her baby brother.  The Santa is from Barbara Mock's Christmas Quickies I booklet.  The Santa Teddy is from a Dale Burdett Christmas booklet.

and two little stocking ornaments - one for my great-nephew who will be celebrating his second Christmas, the other for a little English boy born a few years ago (the original ornament I stitched for him got lost in transit).  The stocking design is adapted from one in LA's Christmas Caboodle leaflet. The tiny teddy is adapted from a design in Graphwork's Mini Motif Designs Christmas Vol 8.

I have just one more Nutcracker to stitch, then I will make these up before I start anything new.