My poor left thumb feels like it’s never going to recover from all the cutting with pinking shears that I’ve been doing of late. Normal scissors don’t seem to give me blisters, but my pinking shears do. Mind you . . . I have counted the total number of decorations I have made over the past days . . . and would you believe me if I say I have 197 ^^ Yep, you read correctly, almost 200 decorations made this year so it’s hardly surprising that thumb is feeling a bit worse for wear.
Won’t bore you with all the photos, but here are just some of the last batch
And . . . since the sewing machine was still plugged in . . . I finally got my act together and made up the straps for my patchwork bag. Wonders will never cease! For the moment, the straps (or handles, if you prefer) are attached by safety pins so I’m not going to show you a full-blown photo of “the bag” . . . hehe, I’m going to be really cruel and keep you in suspense . . . and only show you the straps lol.
Cold wet and windy again outside, so best place will be indoors today. Just as well, since my plan was to assemble yet more tree decorations. I had a good sewing session last night and have added this lot to the “done” pile
You may recognise those fabrics as ones I showed the other day (bought on ebay). I had 33 squares of the old fashioned print, and 66 of the green & red designs. I haven’t finished ALL squares yet, but think I made another 60 yesterday. Also came across a few odd xmas squares left over from last year so will continue my decoration workshop this evening.
Other photo to share . . . more bookmarks for my collection, thanks to Flo. She was in London only the other week, so sent me a postcard lol AND two bookmarks, the bottom one in photo is from one her trip to Israel.
That’s the “this and that” now for “the other” . . .
Took Blackjack to vets yesterday, main reason being annual jab, but also to talk about his apparent anxiety attacks. Vet agreed, it’s all in his head, and aside from trying to make his life more interesting when I’m home, there’s no way I can stop ever leaving the house again so we’re going to have to resort to medication. For the moment I’m starting Blackjack on Zylkène to see how he goes . . . and vet is going to discuss his case with a colleague (who is also an animal behaviour specialist) because Prozac is apparently a recommended option.
Christmas is less than one month away, so I have begun some serious preparation. Since my sewing machine is out of order at the moment, I borrowed my daughter’s (she’s not home so she won’t mind lol). First stage for today was to sort materials. I have bought more printed fabric squares, felt and ribbon, not to mention some iron-backing so I began by ironing my fabric (uncut) onto the backing and then cut up all my squares. Used pinking shears for a nice zig-zag as I think it looks prettier. Then cut my felt squares (just roughly) and lengths of ribbon . . . and then I was all set.
I began with red thread on the sewing machine and zoomed through some red felt squares
then changed over to green to add to the pile
The next stage gave me some lovely blisters on my thumb . . . as I then trimmed each decoration with pinking shears but it was well worth it as I then had 50 cute tree decorations
However, it was not all plain sailing . . . oh no . . . when I was trimming the felt, I discovered I’m made a mistake with some of the fabric squares . . . spot the error
For some reason, I had a brain glitch with this particular print and I’ve assembled them upside down lol. So they don’t count in my final score of 50 for the day, and will need unpicking.
A few more pictures of some of my favourite prints from this fabric
With November almost into its second week, I realise I ought to get my act together and finish off a few little projects I had stitched with a view to sending for charity sales. This year, I signed myself up to make some items for two Christmas fêtes.
One, “Les Blouses Roses” raises money for a hospital. I made a few decorations for them in 2010 and again in 2011 BUT the 2011 fête didn’t take place, so I put things to one side until I got the green light for 2012. They will be having a small stall this year, so here’s what I’m sending: a little framed design, four little ladybird coasters in serviettage, and various tree decorations.
For the second good cause . . . it’s a cat shelter: “Les Cat’pattes du 49″. They are looking for xmas-themed, or cat-themed items to sell to help raise money to keep the shelter running . . . so today I finished off the two monochrome designs I had stitched into small wooden trays, and am sending some tree decorations along too. Le Bleu came to inspect . . . more interested in the tinsel and ribbons than the actual sewing ^^
Now I just need to find two boxes to pack everything up and post.
Scissors have been snipping and needle has been stitching to make up some xmas decorations (still with the animal shelter xmas fête in mind). Nothing “frilly” about these decorations as I’m simply trying to make up as many as possible (for as low a cost as possible) so that the animal shelter has lots of little goodies to sell. I am working along the lines that it’s best to have lots of small items to sell at 1 or 2 euros apiece, than large items to sell for more. People are usually willing to part with a few coins, at this kind of event, so I’m hoping that my little tree decorations will hit the spot.
I often use felt when stitching with fabric squares, but don’t have in my stash at the moment (and don’t have any spare cash to go buying this month either) . . . which is why I’ve gone for the “cardboard” technique again. I always keep empty cereal packets so it’s a great way of recycling. With these fabric squares, I decided to go for a 8cm square so cut up my cereal boxes into 8cm squares . . . laced fabric onto cardboard
and then sandwiched two squares together, with loop of ribbon in middle and did some “whip stitching” all around the edge.
The cutting and lacing take up more time than the actual assembly, but once that’s done, I have a nice pile of laced squares on the shelf unit next to my armchair, and I’m trying to assemble a couple every evening.
I don’t know about you, but I always like to prepare for xmas early. I have already begun my xmas shopping (in fact, I think I began that way back in July ^^) and I’m buying the odd gift each month so that I won’t have to go out on a big shopping spree in December. I’ve also been making the most of evenings to do a few small stitchy projects to make a batch of tree decorations for 2012. I showed you the “Winter” Lizzie Kate design all stitched, and this afternoon I finished that off very simply with a piece of felt and ribbon.
And since I was assembling . . . I also finished off two identical pieces, in the same way.
“Meilleurs Voeux” is a design by les bonheurs de sophie
I stitched this design several times a few years ago but kept it in my archives because I like the simplicity. Stitched using Threadworx threads, seed beads and a little button as the door of the birdhouse. I didn’t use traditional xmas colours at all, as I’m in a “using up end of skeins” phase, but I have to say, I think they look very pretty in pinky mauves.
Also . . . Lovely Lionel stopped by the other day with a nice thick enveloppe from Sandrine . . . and more bookmarks for my collection. So a big thank you to Sandrine.
A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to win a blog candy thanks to pOmme . . . who sent me a limited edition Lizzie Kate Fab Fob kit. Chart came with fabric, seed beads, button and tiny pair of scissors. This design is only small, so a nice “one-nighter” project and hey ho it’s done.
I didn’t actually use the fabric that came in the pack as it was rather on the large size and I thought I would keep it for a slightly bigger project. So instead, I just used a left over piece of evenweave I had to hand. Changed colours slightly too and hence didn’t use the little pale blue button AND I realise I made a mistake with my “W” ^^ but not to worry. Finished stitching looks a bit on the big side to make it into a scissor fob (in my opinion) so I’m probably going to finish off into a tree decoration.
I have a few small designs I plan on stitching over the next weeks (with xmas in mind) so I’ll have a grand finishing off session and show you all later.
I seem to have lost incentive for my larger more colourful projects over the last few days . . . but to keep my hands busy in the evening I have been stitching several small Nancy Pederson blackwork designs again and again . . . and again lol. These will be going into my “Christmas” box as I am already making good headway with present making . . . which explains the coins placed stategically in the centre of three of the designs, to hide the intials and not give any hint as to WHO I am stitching for ^^
It’s the first Saturday of the month – time to show you my latest Xmas stitching for the SAL I’m following on Diary of a Domestic Goddess.
I haven’t done the finishing bit yet, as I don’t know whether to make another tree decoration or simply finish this little fellow off as a card. He’s a freebie design by Corinne.
I got a little bit ahead of myself, as I realise that we’re supposed to be stitching this challenge the first Saturday of each month (organised by Lady Kell on her blog http://diaryofadomesticgoddess.wordpress.com/ ). Not to worry, I’ll make sure I abide by the rules from February onwards.
Anyway, decoration for January is a free design by Talons Aiguilles http://talonsaiguilles.over-blog.fr/
Stitched on pale green aida with Pomme de Pin “Forêt Enchantée” thread and 12 little seed beads. Then finished off as a “ravioli” with a small amount of stuffing on red felt.