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Friday, 10 July 2020

Fully Finishing Fun for July

FFG SAL - 10th of each month
Hosted by Rachel the Ten Hour Stitcher

This SAL is designed to motivate us all to do something with that box of Finished pieces instead of just storing them under the bed.  We will all be linking up on Rachel's blog on or after the 10th of each month (10 Hour Stitcher - 10th of the month).

You have already seen my big finish for the month and unfortunately that is the only thing I finished!  I had good intentions of doing some scrapbooking but between making an exploding card for one friend and a Birthday Countdown bag for another, my "not cross stitch craft time" was all used up.
Here's the bag:


Here is my lovely Alphabet Book again.  This is a series of free charts from Brooke's Books which I stitched over the course of 26 months for the The Alphabet Club SAL on this blog.  Then the project stalled while I procrastinated over actually fully-finishing it.  I deliberately put it on my WIPocalypse list this year to force me to do it!





I have been busy stitching this month.  I started with my 12 Days of Christmas by JBW Designs.  We are up to Day 7 - Swans a-Swimming:

stitched on 40 count white linen

This is a beautiful design.  But look at the water and the darker blue in the swan.  Now look at the cover picture:

JBW Designs Twelve days of Christmas - Book 3 - Cross Stitch ...

Is that water stitched in the charted colour like mine is?  No.

But I was not about to frog it so I made the swan lighter, DMC 3753.  You expect the odd error, but every chart in the series so far has errors.  They need a new proof reader!

The next project in my rotation is the Scary Apothecary series by Hands On Design.  I started the third one this month:

stitched on 28 count linen in Radioactive by Chromatic Alchemy

Once again I am using the DMC conversion except for the black which is Weeks Dye Works Kohl.  One skein has done the first three designs in the series.

The pink in the middle is a blend of DMC 316 and 3726 rather than the charted variegated CC thread.

I find using blends instead of variegated threads often works better than the charted colour.

I did the same for my new SAL with Leonore.  Earlier this year we decided to do a Summer SAL together.  She gave me a list of the Just Nan band samplers she has and we chose one we both have.  The plan is to stitch a portion per week over the summer.  The design is Morning Meadow.

I started mine the first weekend in July and stitched the top row:


I substituted the charted Caron Waterlilies for a variegated Jodyri Thread which looked great on the skein but stitched up like a radish.  So I tried a blend of 3687 and 3688 and stitched the remaining three strawberries.  Much better.  I frogged the radishes and restitched them.

stitched on 32 count pale green Belfast linen.

The second row is another Waterlilies thread.  There are some beads in this row so I looked up the DMC to match them and got 3689 which was serendipitous as it goes with the blends I chose for the first row.  I am blending that with Ecru and it looks great so far.




Finally, the Summer Blog Hop.  Anyone want to do a Summer Blog Hop this year?   I thought we could do a Know Your Blogging Friends Hop.  I allocate you the name of a fellow blogger and you make a post about them, showing something you think they would like to stitch.    Could be something you have stitched or something you found online you think they would like to stitch.

So, for example, if you got me as your Blogging Friend you would write a post about my Blog Hops and show a dragon design (or 2!).

To take part, leave a comment here.  I'll take sign-ups through to the 28th July and then allocate names with the posts going up on 8th August (It was my Nana's Birthday).





Saturday, 4 July 2020

The People Chose The Designer They Have Stitched The Most


This SAL is all about what you want to see on the blog.  Each month I ask for suggestions for themes and then put them up to the members of the IHSW Group on FB to vote for their choice.  This is what they have chosen:

July - The Designer You Have Stitched the Most
August - Freedom
September - Geometric

I mentioned last time that this was a special post for me - it's my Nine Hundredth and Ninety-Ninth post!  So that deserves a special theme for The People Chose.  This is not your favourite designer, this is the one you have stitched the most.  (They do NOT all have to be finishes either.  You might have 97 Mirabilia WIPs, that still counts.) They may be the same, the answer may surprise you or your followers.  However I don't think my answer will surprise anyone.

In third place I had JBW Designs with 20 finished projects.  In second place was Joan Elliott with 30 finished pieces.  And in the Number One spot....

drum roll

with 80 finishes

Just Nan!

(funny how they all begin with J, isn't it?)

From my very first JN finish in 1999, which was Gabriella:


to my new start today for a Summer SAL with Leonore, Morning Meadow:

stitched on 32 count Pale Green Linen


Just Nan has something for almost every stitcher.

There are seasonal designs:

Seasonal Band Samplers

Seasonal Typography



Seasons in the Square

Spooky designs:


Christmas designs:


Friendship designs:

Memories

Diamond Bouquet

And the smalls, lots and lots of smalls!






Now it's over to you.  All you have to do is make a post on the theme of The Designer You Have Stitched the Most, 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. Any thing, 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 Blue, or Holidays, or Warmth etc. Really anything which could be illustrated in cross stitch.


Looking forward to reading them all!





Tuesday, 30 June 2020

June Stitch from Stash and Pie

Another month ends and another Pie to show:


Once again I spent half the month on the Discworld Mappe and went from here:


to here:


And here:


And then here:


Working my way back towards the left hand side of the piece.

I showed Hands On Design's Bitter Brew earlier in the month:


And the entire Alice Sampler but not the close-up of this month's block:


I spent two whole days on the Longest Day Marathon which you can read about here.

After completing my days for Discworld, I spun my Tiny Decisions App which chose the Brooke's Books Stitcher's Alphabet.  Yesterday's post is all about that one.

The next project chosen by the app was my oldest WIP; Ernie Bishop's Noel Letters.  I had started N for the Marathon so for the final two days of the month, I completed N and then started the little floral bouquets for N and O:


It is easier to do them colour by colour as all four are the same.

Final project to share, is my Bath-time stitch which is Just Nan's Holly Noel:

stitched on 28 count beige evenweave

On to the Stitch from Stash part of the post:

June
Cross Stitcher sub £8.72
16 x DMC @ 68p £10.88
Total £19.60

The DMC are not for anything specific, just to replace skeins which are running low in my master set.  Because of the price of DMC, I rarely "kit" anything up with a separate skein.  I just pull from the master set.  The exception is larger projects, such as Discworld and my Chatelaine where dyelots are important.  There seems to be a lot of green in the bag, must be all the Just Nan smalls!





Finally, the Summer Blog Hop.  Anyone want to do a Summer Blog Hop this year?  I thought we could do a Know Your Blogging Friends Hop.   I allocate you the name of a fellow blogger and you make a post about them, showing something you think they would like to stitch.   Could be something you have stitched or something you found online you think they would like to stitch.

So, for example, if you got me as your Blogging Friend you would write a post about my Blog Hops and show a dragon design (or 2!).

To take part, leave a comment here.   I'll take sign-ups through to the 28th July and then allocate names with the posts going up on 8th August (It was my Nana's Birthday).





Monday, 29 June 2020

Brooke's Books Stitcher's Alphabet Book Finally Finished



I am very excited to be able to show you this FFO.  So excited I didn't even want to wait until 10th July and Rachel's FFO Gallery!

I started this way back in August 2015 as part of The Alphabet Club.  For 26 months I stitched one block per month and then planned to finish it into a cloth book.

I stitched it on an afghan fabric which I cut into a long thin piece.

Here are the individual pages of the book:










I actually finished the stitching in September 2017 and there it sat until this year when I decided to add it to my WIPocalypse and actually fully finish the thing.



The first thing I did was add a title - My Alphabet Book, a bar code and an ISBN to the back:




And, yes, that is a real ISBN.  Look it up and see why it is appropriate.

The barcode also matches that book as close as I could make it.

Then came the tricky part, sewing it together.  What I did was fold over the top edge along the thicker woven part and whipstitched the top of the first page to the top of the page with D,E,F and G.  Then whipstitched the page with H,I,J and K to L,M,N and O.  and so on.
Then I turned it over and did the same with the bottom of the book pages.


Then I cut four pieces of thin card to size and slipped one inside each page, the openings are at the spine end of the book.  Finally I took the two half pages from the beginning and end of the alphabet and whip stitched them to the page with X,Y and Z.   The orange selvedge marker makes a nice line down the centre of the back of the book.

I took some video footage to show you. 


This one shows a little bit more of how the book is constructed:



If you want to stitch the Alphabet yourself, the charts can all be found for free on Brooke's website here - Brooke's Books Freebies




Finally, the Summer Blog Hop.  Anyone want to do a Summer Blog Hop this year?  I thought we could do a Know Your Blogging Friends Hop.  I allocate you the name of a fellow blogger and you make a post about them, showing something you think they would like to stitch.  Could be something you have stitched or something you found online you think they would like to stitch.

So, for example, if you got me as your Blogging Friend you would write a post about my Blog Hops and show a dragon design (or 2!).

To take part, leave a comment here.  I'll take sign-ups through to the 28th July and then allocate names with the posts going up on 8th August (It was my Nana's Birthday).



Sunday, 28 June 2020

June WIPocalypse Half Year Recap

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 "20 in '20" for this year.  This month I stitched on all of the active ones thanks to The Longest Day Marathon.  I also managed to finish 2 of them.



Ernie Bishop - NOEL Letters
(Project 1)



Joan Elliott - Faces
(Project 2)


Brooke's Books - Stitcher's Alphabet
(Project 3 - a Finish)


Chatelaine - Gardens of London
(Project 4)

Lyndisfarne - Discworld Map
(Project 5)


Nora Corbett - Gathering Eggs
(Project 6)


Mrs Peggotty - Queen of Hearts
(Project 7)



JBW - 12 Days of Christmas
(Project 10 - Book 2 finish)


Amanda Butler - Alice in Wonderland SAL in Cross Stitcher magazine
(Project 17)



Finally, Measi always gives us a topic to discuss:

June  – Half-year recap: How are you doing with your goals so far this year?
I am doing very well so far thanks to The Art of Setting Achievable Goals!  Out of my 20 WIPocalypse projects I have completed 8 so far this year with another 6 on target for completion by the end of the year.  The rest are up for debate at the moment but hopefully some will get done.

Here is my current WIP list in total  I started the year with 15 WIPs.  The first column of numbers shows the year they were started.  The second column is how many I have now.  I have also started 18 projects this year and completed 15 of them.  The remaining three will all be completed this year.  My goal is not to start anything which doesn't have a finishing deadline within the year.

Prior 2017 9 8
2017 3 3
2018 0 0
2019 3 1
New 2020 18 3
Finish 2020 18
Total of WIPs 15 15

Of course, you could add in my Just Nan smalls from Maynia but I don't count them until I pick them up to focus on.  I currently have 27 of those.




Finally, the Summer Blog Hop.  Anyone want to do a Summer Blog Hop this year?  I thought we could do a Know Your Blogging Friends Hop.  I allocate you the name of a fellow blogger and you make a post about them, showing something you think they would like to stitch.  Could be something you have stitched or something you found online you think they would like to stitch.

So, for example, if you got me as your Blogging Friend you would write a post about my Blog Hops and show a dragon design (or 2!).

To take part, leave a comment here.  I'll take sign-ups through to the 28th July and then allocate names with the posts going up on 8th August (It was my Nana's Birthday).