SAL “together we are magic” #3

Above is the photo I posted 3 weeks ago of my current SAL project:  “Together we are magic”, a Letitstitch kit with artwork by Jody Bergsma).  I had started out hoping to complete segments of 40 x 40 stitches each time, but I’ve already fallen behind.  Gridding does help, but there’s so much thread changing to deal with, and I noticed there’s also some half stitches appearing now, so I need to concentrate.

Anyway, here is progress for this time.

Here is the list of links to other SAL members. I wonder if there have been any happy dances this time?

AvisClaireGunCaroleConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHeidiJackieSunnyMeganDeborahReneeCarmelaSharonDaisyAnneAJLauraCathieLindaHelen

And we’ll be back on 4th July!

SAL “Together we are magic” #2

Today is the 3-weekly link up with other SAL members, to encourage each other with stitching projects.  Last time, I had just begun a new project:  “Together we are magic” (artwork by Jody Bergsma) a kit by Letitstitch.

Here is the photo I posted 3 weeks ago.

And here is progress for this time.

I’m finding my gridding method to be very helpful so far, although I do sometimes stray outside of the area I’ve set myself.  As you can see, I already have a butterfly taking shape which made things a lot more interesting this time.  Here is a photo of what the piece will look like when finished, in case you missed it last time.

Please feel free to visit other stitchers’ blogs, to see what they’re up to.

AvisClaireGunCaroleConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHeidiJackieSunnyMeganDeborahReneeCarmelaSharonDaisyAnneAJLauraCathieLindaHelen

And we’ll be back again on 13th June.

a bit of diamond painting, a bit of cross stitching

Variety is the spice of life, or so they say, so I’ve been varying my evening activities depending on my mood.  Sometimes, sitting out in the kitchen (because I need to work at a table) having fun sticking down drills on my current diamond painting project. And other times, working with needle & thread on cross stitch.

Aside from the unicorn design I’m stitching for the SAL, I decided to pick up something more relaxing to work on from time to time. And chose to make a start on one of my recently-bought bargain kits.

This is the one I picked up.  Not too many colours. Stitched on 14 count aida, so very easy on the eyes. And no backstitch – yay!  There will be French knots for dolphins’ eyes, but I can live with that.  Threads in this kit came in a bundle, not pre-sorted on a card, so it took me a little while to sort as some colours are very similar.  But it’s very relaxing to work on, and easy to concentrate on certain areas.  I began in the top left corner.  Here’s progress so far.

As for diamond painting . . . things are progressing well, and my canvas has evolved from this

to this

Have completed approximately 22cm so far . . . only another 53cm to go, since finished size will be 75cm x 25cm (the 80 – 30 specified on canvas is total canvas size, not finished picture size).

I have also been crocheting, and doing a few sessions of sewing, but that’s all doll-related, so it you want to know more about that, you’ll have to hop over to:  Claire’s Collections.

ScrapHappy #May

It’s that time of the month again! Time to link up with

Kate Gun, EvaSue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill,
Claire, JanMoira, SandraChrisAlys,
KerryClaireJeanJon, HayleyDawn,
Gwen, Bekki, Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin,
Vera, NanetteAnn, Dawn 2, Noreen,
Bear, Carol, Preeti and Edith

To talk about scrap happiness.  For this month, I’ve been doing more of the same from last month – having fun going through my scrap bag and cutting 2.5″ squares where possible from all sorts of colours & prints, left over from past projects.  And, because the husband rather likes the place mats I made last month, I’m assembling squares to make some more.

Making them slightly smaller this time. Last month I made 10 x 7 squares, so they turned out a very generous size at 20″ x 14″.  This time, I decided 9 x 6 squares would be plenty big enough.

Have got 2 tops assembled, and enough squares prepped to make another four (2 here in progress).

 

 

feathers and a thank you Flo

A couple of feather related photos today . . . first up, I finally got around to stitching a cross stitch kit, gifted to me for my birthday in 2020 by Yvonne!

Lovely bright colours, nice and dinky to stitch, and one very pretty bookmark!  Thank you, Yvonne !

Next up . . . I haven’t got bored yet of the newly discovered hobby, diamond painting, although I’ll admit to having slowed down a little because I’ve been busy with my crochet hook in the evenings.  Anyway . . . I’m currently working on a very large project. Not many colours appearing yet,

but that’s because I’ve still got a very long way to go.  So long . . . it doesn’t all fit into the photo!

Not to worry!  There’s no hurry to get this finished and it’s keeping me quiet!

And last photos for today, to say a public thank you to Flo, who sent me an unbirthday gift recently.

A seamstress project notebook – to keep note of clothes making project and body measurements. I don’t honestly do any proper clothes making for myself. Nothing “fitted” anyway, so I’m thinking this book will come in handy for my dolls clothes making!  I have dolls with varying body sizes in my collection and always seem to be trying to adapt one pattern to fit another, so this could be a good way of keeping track!

SAL “Together We Are Magic” #1

Excitement today, as I’ve started a new project for the SAL, after many many weeks of stitching “Tiny Treasures”.  TT was fun, but now it’s time for something completely different.  Which is why I chose this kit, only recently added to my stash.  Design is called “Together We Are Magic” (from artwork by Jody Bergsma, I believe) and it’s a LETISTITCH kit.  This is a full coverage one, with 42 colours and working on 16 count aida.  I decided it would easier if I work on this in blocks, so I gridded out my fabric accordingly.

Design is 152 x 200 stitches, so I’ve only gridded out part of my fabric (plenty of time to do the rest as I progress). I used a red FriXion pen which will disappear with heat of hot iron when stitching is complete.  Doesn’t look like much but I accomplished approx 1600 stitches.  If I can keep up that pace, it’s going to take me 60 weeks to complete!

Anyway . . . let’s pop along and see what other SAL members have been up to.

AvisClaireGunCaroleConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHeidiJackieSunnyMeganDeborahMary MargaretReneeCarmelaSharonDaisyAnneAJJennyLauraCathieLindaHelen

And we’ll be back again on 23rd May.

outdoors & indoors – what we’re up to

Something of a photo-heavy post today, to tell you what the husband and I are up to lately.

With Spring in the air, the husband has been spending long hours outdoors!  It all started last month really, when he managed to hire a bricklayer who agreed to come and do some work in the veggie garden.  The husband had this idea of having some raised beds (to make life easier when you’re not as agile as you once were).  The bricklayer, name of Atila, worked like a Trojan, I can tell you!  Digging trenches, mixing cement to lay foundations, then building five raised beds with breeze blocks and laying some paving stones to level up with the path.

The husband was then kept very busy because the new beds needed filling . . . so wheelbarrow loads of sand, sifting & weeding of “old” soil to mix back in.  One bed is already planted with strawberry plants & lettuce.  The others will be sowed/planted up in a couple of weeks time once the husband is sure there will be no more night frosts.

He’s also found himself a new indoors project!  When we moved into this house, the previous owners left a very grotty clock up in the attic. Nothing antiquey, or of any value and probably riddled with wood worm.  But there it remained, gathering even more dust & cobwebs.  The husband asked me to bring it downstairs because he fancies a bit of renovation work.  So I obliged.

It’s not even pretty!  but if it keeps the husband amused, at no cost, then I’ll be interested to see how it turns out and if it actually works!

I, in the meantime, keep myself amused with less dirty occupations.  Have just begun a new crochet project.  This was a “M’aidez, m’aidez” call from Mrs Tattoo.  One of her friends is expecting a baby for later in the year. Mrs Tattoo (who can’t crochet) bought a crochet kit, thinking she could teach herself to crochet and rustle up a soft toy lol.  She tried (bless her) before admitting defeat and asking for help.  I wasn’t too enthralled with the design she’d chosen, and didn’t think it was really suitable for a baby. So . . . after sending her a few links to free crochet patterns for her to choose from, she decided on this.

This cute pattern, available on Amigurumi Today.  (I’ll be embroidering eyes and facial details – don’t trust safety eyes on a baby toy!)

I then sent Mrs Tattoo photos of yarns from my stash to choose from, and we’ve settled on something as close to the original design as I could make it.  Stylecraft Special DK in: Spearmint, Lavender, Grass Green, Clematis & Citron.

And work has begun.

I’m using a 2mm hook to keep things nice and tight – don’t want any stuffing coming out!  So far, I have a head, body, tail and one front paw.  Just need to make second front paw, 2 legs and 2 ears!

Stay tuned!  Baby isn’t due for several months, but I should have it finished very soon.

 

zodiac – slow progress

It’s been slow progress on the zodiac quilt, but progress has been made.

All 12 blocks have been quilted, in a very simple straight line design.  I drew lines with my FriXion pen (that disappear with a hot iron) to help me with my straight lines.

And then trimmed blocks to size.  I’ve used a sort of “milky coffee” for backing fabric.  It’s a pretty good colour match for the browns in the cross stitched centres.

So above is what the back of each block looks like.  All twelve have been quilted.  Progress is now on hold though, because I can’t decide on fabric for my joining strips.  I have several options, but can’t quite make up my mind.  “When in doubt, don’t”, is what my Mum always used to say . . . so until I’m 100% certain of what I want on the back and what I want on the front, I’ll refrain from cutting strips.

a bit of this & that

We’re back in lockdown again in this part of the world, which doesn’t make a great deal of difference to the husband and myself as we hardly go anywhere these days.  We’re happy to find things to keep us busy at home, and with Spring in the air, the husband is spending more time outside watching things grow.  He’s also been doing a bit of weeding and general tidying up, as well as supervising a worksite in our veggie garden (more on that another time).  While tidying up in the garden, he noticed an old plant pot he’d been meaning to repair but hadn’t.

I don’t know why, but the husband has a “thing” for crockery, china, and pottery.  A few years ago, there was a proper clear-out in the house opposite. Owner, very old lady, had died aged 96+, and her nephew was in charge of emptying the house so it could be sold.  The nephew was literally loading up the trailer to take most things to the local tip, when my husband spotted an old plant pot and asked if he could have it.  One thing less to take to the tip!  Said plant pot was just a very plain old thing and had probably been sitting outside for 60 years or so.  On arrival in our garden, it promptly got knocked over, by our very exuberant dog, and there it stayed for a few years, with broken pieces gathered together in a pile.

But no more!

The husband did his first attempt at “kintsugi” and plant pot has been replanted (with something or other) and is back out in the garden where, I hope, the dog isn’t going to knock it over a second time!

Gardening has never been my thing so, while I do spend some time outdoors each day, seeing to hens, walking the dog, and getting my daily dose of vitamin D, I prefer to keep busy indoors.  After a month of just lying around, my zodiac blocks have finally been sandwiched, pinned and are ready to be quilted.

Part of the reason for procrastination was: I couldn’t decide on what backing fabric to use.  I didn’t have anything suitable in blue in my stash, and I couldn’t find anything that caught my eye when browsing my favourite on-line fabric shops.  However, I did have a very sizeable piece of a plain “milky coffee” brown in my stash.  Not the obvious colour choice but it almost matches one of the browns in the xstitch designs, so I’ve gone with it.  Next job – decide how I’m going to quilt.  And also decide whether to make 4 additional blocks in same colours (without xstitch centre) to make this a 4 x 4 quilt, or to keep it as a 3 x 4 (or 4 x 3).

I have also been doing a bit of needlecrafting, and a small amount of patchworking (to be revealed on ScrapHappy day!) but my evenings have been spent diamond painting.  Have just finished my fourth diamond painting.  The husband doesn’t like this one but I do, obviously, or I wouldn’t have bought it.  Incidentally, bought on eb@y for 7.88€ including p&p.  Chinese seller, but dispatched from France so it arrived very quickly.

It looks really effective, from a distance, and reminds me very much of our cat, Le Bleu.  That will have to wait for non-essential shops to reopen for me to buy a frame.  In the meantime, I’ll be beginning work on a very big diamond painting project.

This is what the printed canvas looks like.  A very long, thin design which will finish up 24cm x 74cm.  I bought this one on eb@y also.  Cost, only 10.52€, including p&p, and I certainly feel I got my money’s worth here!

 

 

 

dream catcher progress

Steady progress over the past week on my current cross stitch project.  This is “Let your dreams come true” by Letistitch.  I just love feathers, and birds!  Anyway, 10 days ago, I was here.

And now, while I still have to add backstitch to make details pop, here is progress thus far.

Two new birds and several more feathers taking shape!  I’m well on track to getting this finished and framed in time for a birthday, early May.