SAL update – #5 “Getting Ready”

Oh dear . . . another 3 weeks zoomed by and I allowed myself to get totally distracted with festivities, plus spending way too much time drooling over reborn dolls I can’t afford on ebay, instead of crafting!

The result is . . . another very sorry progress report to show you.

GR SAL 10 12

This was the photo from 10th December, and on this last day of 2017, here’s how things look, in very bad lighting.

GR SAL 31 12

Oh well, tomorrow is another year, new year’s resolutions, and all that.  Surely I will be able to find more time over the coming weeks to be a bit more productive?  Fingers crossed.

In the meantime, hop over to see what everyone else has been up to. 

AvisGun, Carole, LucyAnn, Kate, Jess, Sue, Constanze, Debbierose, Christina, Kathy, Margaret, Cindy, Helen, Steph, Linda, Catherine, Mary Margaret, TimothyHeidi , Connie and Jackie.

And join us again on 21st January for the next update!


SAL update “Getting Ready #4

I’m ashamed to say, Christmas preparations have been getting in the way of my SAL stitching.  I’ve been busy crafting, as you’ve seen, with tissue pouches . . . also made my 2017 batch of xmas decorations and have been crocheting madly on some last minute presents.  Crochet has been happening in the evenings, which is usually my cross stitch time so . . . after this photo for the last update


I only have this to show for this time.

GR SAL 10 12

Fairly pathetic, I know.  Just a little bit of red and darker red on the lady’s dress.  Oh well!  Christmas takes priority over everything else at this time of year.  Pressies are all wrapped.  Those that needed to be posted have been posted.  Fresh foie gras has been bought.  Christmas tree is up.  And guinea fowl are very plump and almost ready for slaughter. 

Hopefully I’ll have more to show you next time (which will be New Year’s Eve!) and perhaps other SAL members have been more industrious than me.

AvisGun, Carole, LucyAnn, Kate, Jess, Sue, Constanze, Debbierose, Christina, Kathy, Margaret, Cindy, Helen, Steph, Linda, Catherine, Mary Margaret, TimothyHeidi , Connie and Jackie.

Next update, therefore, on 31st December. 

another finish #November


Such a Spring-like happy dance in the house today, with a brand new finished project – yay.  You’ll remember this small butterfly design I showed you not long ago (a very easy kit by Dimensions).  I bought it because my sister loves butterflies and I thought it would be excellent as a gift for Christmas. 

When I first finished it, I had a cursory rifle through my fabric stash and was originally going to use a much darker fabric


Here is the butterfly stitching just lying on a large piece.  It looked very effective, I must say, but after further rummaging, I found this piece


Where the green in print just happened to match the green threads of the cross stitch, so that is what I chose to use for my borders.  Now, when I said I’d be making a wall-hanging, I had a few comments from people interested to see how I go about that . . . so I’ll be posting a step-by-step account of that tomorrow to show you in more detail.  For today though, I just wanted to share.  Back view, of the little hanging (in case you’re wondering how it will hang), looks like this.


I usually make loops which are visible from the front through which to slide a wooden rod. On this one I’ve made triangular pockets which can take any thickness of rod (here a wooden chop stitck) and will keep the top of the hanging nice and rigid, so it doesn’t gape when hung.

Anyway, stay tuned . . . step-by-step coming tomorrow.

“Warning”–finish one a month #November

Earlier this month I showed you a sneak preview of a finished cross stitch & quilting project . . . showing only a full photo of the back.  I can now show you the front!


This is an original design by Lindashee and the chart is now available to buy as a pdf download in her etsy shop LindasheesStitches

She has also designed a warning sign for cat lovers.  So dog-lovers and cat-lovers, hop over to have a look.

I stitched on 20 count aida, in 1 thread, because I wanted to keep the cross stitch panel small enough to have fun with contrasting fabrics and make a 16” cushion cover. But the design can be stitched on any type of aida/evenweave and is perfect for beginners because there are only full stitches and no backstitch.

When I first started the patchworking, to make my cushion cover, I originally made it like this.

warning 01

However the outer fabric kept making me go cross-eyed because of the white on black, so I ripped apart and added a softer grey instead.

warning 02

“Getting Ready” #3 SAL update

GR cover photo

The cover photo, to remind you what Avis and I are stitching for the SAL at the moment – as you know, tackling things totally different ways this time.  A Design Works kit, with artwork by Ronald West of some very quirky characters in this lively café scene.

Last time I showed you this much – my start being top left.

GR stage 2

For this stage I’ve been working here and there . . . and things look like this


Not quite as much progress as I’d hoped for, but I’m being side-tracked by some Christmas crafting and there are only so many crafting hours in the week . . . still, with a little bit of backstitch on the blackboard, we can at least order a coffee and large slice of cake to give us strength until next time!

Don’t forget to pop over to the following links to admire the very varied craftiness of other SAL members.  We are a very talented group of people, stitching world wide, and coming together every 3rd Sunday to show progress.

AvisGun, Carole, LucyAnn, Kate, Jess, Sue, Constanze, Debbierose, Christina, Kathy, Margaret, Cindy, Helen, Steph, Linda, Catherine, Mary Margaret, TimothyHeidi , Connie and Jackie.

Next update on 10th December.

butterfly happy dancing


I’m having a little happy dance, with the last backstitch on a lovely blue butterfly.  This is a design by Dimensions.  Stitched exactly as the model suggests, with “Welcome” in the corner.  I’ve already pulled out some (possible) fabric for the proper finish.  Planning on making this into a small wall-hanging for my sister’s Christmas pressie.  So that will be added to my Christmas sewing pile but I will give myself a few days to think about how to do it.

The other day, I was all excited because the postman brought a parcel, containing a book I’d had on pre-order.


It’s packed full of the most colourful monsters, all more friendly than scarey but I’m going to have to be very strict with myself!  No new crochet projects until I’ve finished the current WIPs (which have been waiting for months!).  But that didn’t stop me from nipping into our local discount store for a few (more like 12) colourful balls of yarn.


Hihi, I actually bought 3 x 50g of each colour because several of the monsters in the book look quite big.  I already have white & black in the same brand, so as soon as I finish my current crochet projects, I’ll be dithering about what monster to make first, and in what colour.

let the present making begin!

Like many crafters, I enjoy the run-up to the seasonal festivities because it’s a good excuse to have some quality crafting time.  And rather than crafting simply because I love crafting, it’s the time to come up with a few ideas and make gifts for friends or family.

This year the present making has begun.  So no actual seasonal crafting (although I will soon be making some tree decorations) simply making things that can be used all year round.  At the moment I’m concentrating on cross stitching, patchworking and sewing, but I may find time to add knitting and crochet to the list of pressies to be made.  The following photos are gifts for two sets of people who never visit my blog, so I can safely share.

On the cross stitch front, I’m busily working on a butterfly


This is a very easy Dimensions kit I bought because I was looking for something fairly quick to stitch for a butterfly lover.  Leaves & backstitch to come . . . then some patchwork & sewing to make the actual gift – in theory, a wall-hanging.   And a sneak peek . . . 


of a finished cushion cover which I’m very excited about. 


You’ll notice I’m not showing you the centre panel . . . just the patchwork and quilting detail.  This is because . . . the cross stitch design I stitched is a brand new design by my daughter, aka Lindashee, and has not yet been made available in her new etsy shop:  LindasheeStitches.   From what she tells me, it should be available in her shop by the end of November.

I offered to be her proof stitcher and thoroughly enjoyed stitching this new chart which is perfect for dog-lovers.  So, while I can’t show you the completed front properly, you are allowed to see the back of the cushion.


Made using a velvety silver-grey fabric with contrasting red poppers to fasten.

I am also busily making a few small un-birthday gifts for November – hope to get them posted very soon.