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Saturday, 4 February 2023

The People Chose A Way With Words

  


This SAL is all about what you want to see on the blog.  I asked for suggestions for themes from followers of my blog and then put them up to the members of the IHSW Group on FB to vote for their choice.  We are currently working our way through the choices.  This is what was chosen:

February - Way With Words
March - Science
April - to be advised


I do enjoy stitching with lettering, it's quite quick to do and once you have done a couple of the letters it's usually quite intuitive to stitch the rest.  You do have to double check your spelling.  And the designer's spelling, sometimes it's an intentional error (American designers use American spellings not English) and sometimes it's an accidental error and they will produce an amendment.

This is one of my favourite Just Nan series, the Seasonal Typography series featuring the name of the season over and over in different fonts.  Just for fun with these, I changed one word on each design.  You might be able to spot them!



This is a series of 12 of which I have stitched precisely 2.  I don't have the other charts.


January

With Thy Needle by Brenda Gervais

April



Here are two which form stitched poems:


Hear the Sea Call

The Stitcher's Hideaway

Glorious Fall



Another lovely font from The Witchy Stitcher and Witchy Brew:



To finish off, here are two of the Joan Elliott Affirmations:


Believe

and

Hope





Now it's over to you.  All you have to do is make a post on the theme of A Way With Words, mention The People's Choice SAL (you can copy the picture I used at the top of this post and in my side bar) and my blog. Please link up using the URL of the actual blog post, not the home page of your blog.   I look forward to seeing what you all post.

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Finally, I need your suggestions for the next poll.  Anything, no matter how obscure, weird or random will go into the poll.  Keep the theme suggestions to a single word or two - so you could have Cats, or Green, or Holidays, or Warmth etc.   Really anything which could be illustrated in cross stitch.


ps the hidden words were Splendid, Super, Awesome and Wonder!


Tuesday, 31 January 2023

January Stitch from Stash and Pie

Regular followers will know I produce a delicious home-made pie to illustrate my focus projects for the month.  I don't record minutes or stitches so this gives an approximate idea of how much time each WIP got.





I think you can tell that this is going to be a Focus Year already, with 14 days on one project - Halloween at Hawk Run Hollow.  Here's where I started the year:



Working on Block 9


Which I finished:


and then started Block 10:


Here's where I finished the month:

stitched over 1 on 25 count Cassia Rose from Chromatic Alchemy

So far the number of days is:

Block 7 - 13 days
Block 6 - 16 days
Block 2 - 19 days
Block 3 - 20 days
Block 4 - 15 days
Block 1 - 19 days
Block 5 - 25 days
Block 8 - 15 days
Block 9 - 27 days
Block 10 - 4 days and counting


Next up was Joan Elliott's Faces SAL and then Kustom Kraft's Little Snapdragon.  I'd really like to finish this one this year,  I completed the dragon itself last year and now just have the actual snapdragon flowers to do.


stitched on 32 count Evening Sky Murano from Crafty Kitten

I do love this design but it reminds me why I dislike CGI charts so much.  There must be 5 shades of green in those stems.  Is that really necessary?  It's not like they are used to add definition.




Here's my evening pie:

I'm saving the Stitchonomy project for Rachel's FFO Gallery, as it was my first Finish of the Year.  The Amanda Butler's Harrogate House is my second!

stitched on 28 count grey evenweave

This is a series of houses from different parts of the country that I am stitching individually and will make into a long concertina to be displayed like a whole street.  These are fun but there is a lot of backstitch as you can see!

I have the magazine with the next one already so I will start that tonight.


I also signed up for Stitch from Stash again.  This is my 9th year, I skipped 2016 as it was my Big Birthday and I didn't want to restrict myself.



The fabric was bought in the Chromatic Alchemy sale at the start of the month, I need a piece for my Year in the Woods but couldn't decide on what count to do, so bought two pieces!  One 25 count and the other 32 count.  I'll make my decision when the number comes up on WIPGO.

The mag sub is annoying, I started my subscription last April.  So why take the renewal payment in January, 3 months early?  Greedy.

Finally, I will be running the Secret Stitching Sweetheart Blog Hop on Valentine's Day.  Just email me if you want to be involved.







Sunday, 29 January 2023

January WIPocalypse Retreats

    WIPocalypse

WIPocalypse is hosted by Measi's Musings


Each month we have to share the projects we want to complete before the End Of The World.  Since 2011 I have chosen a number of projects to focus on that year, starting with my "11 in '11" and increasing to "23 in '23" for this year.  This month I stitched on 7 of them.

1. Joan Elliott Faces SAL




2. Kustom Krafts Little Snapdragon



5. Carriage House Samplings Halloween at Hawk Run Hollow




13. Mani di Donna Halloween Stitching Basket



17. Stitch it Picasso Temperature SAL



18. Circle Cross Blackwork Tarot



19. Amanda Butler Harrogate House



The full list can be seen here - WIPocalypse and "23 in '23"


Measi always gives us a topic to discuss too.

January - If you have been to retreats, what are your must-bring items and supplies?

I have been to a couple of retreats in the past and I travel pretty light to be honest.  I stitch in hand, I have a project bag with a thread card inside for most projects.  Obviously I have my nice embroidery scissors and an ORTs tin but that's about it.  No fancy lights or magnifiers.

I did attend a sort of mini-retreat this weekend.  A day's Slow Stitching in my local library.  A friend was running it, two more friends wanted to go and we met another friend there!  The inspiration was the Paula MacGregor's Dangerous Pockets exhibition which has been at the Library for a while now.  You can find out more about it here - Paula MacGregor - Dangerous Pockets Project 

Part of the Dangerous Pockets exhibit

The theme of the day was "Puffs and Pockets".  

A Suffolk Puff is not a pastry, but a circle of fabric made into a little puffy item which was stuffed with sheep's wool and used for a variety of purposes.  There is a lovely quilt made from them in our local museum.  You can imagine how warm and cosy that would be on a cold Suffolk night.

There is more information here:
The Unbroken Thread

The display put together by two of the librarians featuring their own work on the table

Some of the books we could borrow

The slightly wonky pocket I made.
It's a triple pocket to carry scissors and other items in.

Some of the projects made by my friends.
A heart-shaped Suffolk Puff, a collaged pocket with small puffs and embroidered lace and a pomegranate pincushion puff with mini puff on top.


Finally, I will be hosting the Secret Stitching Sweetheart Blog Hop again this year.  Do let me know if you'd like to join in.


Friday, 27 January 2023

January Smalls

 

The Smalls SAL is hosted by Mary's Thread

The Ornament/Smalls SAL is celebrating it's 10th Anniversary this year!  Started by Stitching Lotus back in 2013 and continued by our current hostess Mary's Thread in 2019 this is the SAL for the last Friday in each month where we show our ornaments or smaller stitches.

Because I am focusing on my BAPs again, I won't have so many smalls this year but I do have a couple of series with small components so I will share them this month.

The first is the Blackwork Tarot by Circle Cross.  I loved her Art Nouveau style Tarot cards when I first saw them so when I saw she would be releasing the Zodiac Signs later this year AND there was a sale on, I jumped at the chance.  My plan is to stitch the four Elements across the top of the fabric with the appropriate Zodiac Signs under each one.  Earth is first, so Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn will go under her in due course:

stitched on 28 count sky blue evenweave from Silkweavers

The fabric is much prettier in real life, it comes out grey in photos.  I love the stitching style of these cards, it's like drawing with thread.  I usually do the Holbein Stitch for blackwork but experimented with backstitch for the outer border and discovered it does make a smoother line, so I'll be doing that for all the long straight lines in the rest of the cards. 

My next collection of tiny items is the Potion Bottle Temperature SAL from Stitch It Picasso.  Another one I fell in love with when I first saw it.  I was up-to-date but then decided I didn't like the limited range of colours I was using.  I had allocated one colour per every 6 degrees C and it simply didn't change enough.  Plus days which were really cold were coming out the same colour as days which felt warmer.  Blue covered days which "hovered at 2 degrees and peaked at 4 midday" and days which "were 7/8 degrees all day".  However the extended colour range added more green and blue tones which meant the overall design would be skewed to those colours.

In the end, I decided to add one red for the very hottest days and a lime yellow/green in the middle.  That way I can have a colour change every 4 degrees.  And those cold days went lilac instead of blue.  I felt this more accurately represented the weather we actually had last week.

stitched over 1 on 25 count tea-dyed evenweave

The three test-tube bottles on the right will stay blue but the two bottles in the gap will be lilac.  


The next series is from Amanda Butler in Cross Stitcher magazine.  She is designing a different house each month and here is Harrogate House in a style often seen in that town.

stitched on 28 pale grey evenweave

There's a lot of backstitch in these designs, there is a row of railings along the bottom!  I decided not to stitch the names of the houses.


Finally, I will be running the Secret Stitching Sweetheart Blog Hop on Valentine's Day.


Secret Stitching Sweetheart Blog Hop

It's really very simple, all you have to do is email me a picture of something you have stitched which is suitable for a stitching friend on Valentine's Day. It could be a heart, or a pair of cute creatures, or the word "love" or anything which warms your heart. Really anything you think a fellow stitcher would like to receive in her email Inbox. It can be something you've stitched in the past or something you've made especially for this year. It could also be quilted or sewn this year as I know some of my followers do other crafts too.

Send me the email by 10th February.

When I have all the emails I will randomise them and send one to each participant on 13th February. Then on 14th February you must post the picture you receive onto your blog under the heading

Secret Stitching Sweetheart Blog Hop

There will be a list on my blog of everyone joining in, so check out all the blogs and find out who got your picture and identify yourself in their comments as their

Secret Stitching Sweetheart


Does that make sense to everyone? I hope so!

If you'd like to be involved then leave a comment on this post or send me an email if you are "no-reply". I'll be putting little reminders up from time to time and will email on 9th February to make sure you send the pic in time.


Monday, 23 January 2023

January IHSW

 

IHSW or International Hermit and Stitch Weekend always starts on the third Friday of the month.  It's a chance to lock yourself away and focus on your stitching for the weekend.  You can take part on your blog or via the Facebook page - IHSW on Facebook.

I worked on Friday but took my Amanda Butler Harrogate House with me, so with evening stitching it now looks like this:

stitched on 28 count grey evenweave


On Saturday and Sunday I continued to work on the Faces SAL by Joan Elliott.  My goal is to finish this larger block this year.

This is the start photo for Saturday morning:


and here's where I am now:

stitched over 28 count Snapdragon Jazlyn from Crafty Kitten.


In between times, I also put some stitches into the Earth Element from Circle Cross:

stitched on 28 count sky blue evenweave from Silkweaver



And my Temperature SAL from Stitch It Picasso:

stitched over 1 on 25 count tea-dyed evenweave

Lots of blue days (between 4 and 8 C) and one lilac day (0 to 2 C).  I also stitched all the bottle corks so I could see how wide the piece will be.


Finally the next IHSW will be 17th - 19th February so make sure you note the date in your diary or come and join us in the Facebook Group - IHSW on Facebook. If you don't do Facebook then you can check in here by leaving a comment on my post.





Saturday, 21 January 2023

January TUSAL and Stitching Library

        

It's TUSAL time!  

Here is my TUSAL jar with my current project:

stitched on 28 count Snapdragon Jazlyn from Crafty Kitten


The design is the Faces SAL from Joan Elliott, which I started back in 2014 and have been slowly stitching ever since thanks to a decision to stitch all the skin over one...

This is a sweet block with a mother and baby fairy.




What's on my Shelf?

This is a feature I'm going to include on my TUSAL post until I run out of books! I started a Page on my Happy Dance blog for my Stitching Library and realised what a huge task it was so decided to break it down to one book per month. For the next four years...

Title: Cross Stitch Angels
Author: Various
Publisher: David & Charles
ISBN: 9780715316481

This is a compilation of six different designers, all with their own unique take on the subject of Angels.

The cover gives a good indication of the contents:


Inside we have designs from Joan Elliott:



A series of 12 Birthstones Angels from Claire Crompton:


A cute Birth Sampler from Sue Cook:


A Wedding Sampler from Lesley Teare


As well as some sweet little Alphabet Angels/Fairies:


Household Angels from Helen Philipps, who wouldn't want one of these in real life?


Christmas Angels from Maria Diaz, including a cake band:



A pretty versatile selection there.  I love the little cherub on the front cover carrying a pile of books myself!


Finally, I will be running the Secret Stitching Sweetheart Blog Hop on Valentine's Day.


Secret Stitching Sweetheart Blog Hop

It's really very simple, all you have to do is email me a picture of something you have stitched which is suitable for a stitching friend on Valentine's Day. It could be a heart, or a pair of cute creatures, or the word "love" or anything which warms your heart. Really anything you think a fellow stitcher would like to receive in her email Inbox. It can be something you've stitched in the past or something you've made especially for this year. It could also be quilted or sewn this year as I know some of my followers do other crafts too.

Send me the email by 10th February.

When I have all the emails I will randomise them and send one to each participant on 13th February. Then on 14th February you must post the picture you receive onto your blog under the heading

Secret Stitching Sweetheart Blog Hop

There will be a list on my blog of everyone joining in, so check out all the blogs and find out who got your picture and identify yourself in their comments as their

Secret Stitching Sweetheart


Does that make sense to everyone? I hope so!

If you'd like to be involved then leave a comment on this post or send me an email if you are "no-reply". I'll be putting little reminders up from time to time and will email on 9th February to make sure you send the pic in time.