Saturday 30 June 2012

Theme-a-licious Looking Backward & Forward VI

June was Jumanji June, birds and animals.  As I didn't have any pieces with either of those I stretched the definitions to the limit and stitched on two Round Robins and a guinea pig piece where I tested a chart out for a friend's new website.

Here is the second Round Robin I stitched during June.  This one is for the Band Sampler RR and this is Angi's piece:

The threads are all provided by Angi, it's like having a miniature needlework store in your home!  They were all different brands, not a DMC amongst them, it was great fun choosing.
The broader cross stitched bands are from the Antique Lace Band Sampler by Northern Expressions Needlework.  I won the complete back catalogue of Nicole's designs recently and was desperate to stitch one!  I changed the colours to suit Angi's palette.
The narrower speciality stitch bands are from Just Nan Summer Sampler which I just framed having stitched it about 10 years ago.
I put UK for my location as we don't have two digit county abbreviations like the States.

And here is the whole piece so far:

Here's the Just Nan Summer's Day the bands came from:

And some close-ups of the more delicate bands:

Those bead clusters weren't finished so I unpicked the first one and re-stitched it positioning the beads more neatly.

July's theme is 
Jolly July - It's a jolly holiday with your can concentrate on Christmas designs, ornaments, or even pick a different holiday to render in stitchy goodness.

Heather does point out it could be Hallowe'en as well as Christmas (or 4th July for Americans, which is something special about your country breaking away from the parent land like a lot of ungrateful children LOL).

In a perfectly timed fashion, through my letterbox today appeared the Christmas Ornament Preview issue of Just Cross Stitch magazine!  I love both the Second Day of Christmas designs by Praiseworthy Stitches and Plum Street Samplers.  I presume they both did Partridges last year?  I checked the actual ornament special issues (2010 and 2011) and they are not in there.  There is a random Monsterbubble 4th Day of Christmas in one of them so I'm thinking maybe I should do a mash-up of the Twelve Days with a different designer for each day.

Several people have commented on the number of finishes I have so far this year - 37!  It looks impressive but only one is actually a large project, the Dark Alphabet which took over a year to stitch.  I'm band on target to complete 75 projects the same as last year.  Stats-wise we look like this:

BAP - 1
Round Robins - 7 pieces
Small Freebies - 15 (including 5 for the Needlecraft Haven monthly challenge and 1 designed by me)
Cards - 11 (including 6 of the WOCS Flower of the month and 1 designed by me)
Small charts - 3 (2 of which were giveaway prizes I won and the other was my oldest UFO)

So my total stitching spend on charts appears to be zero this year!  My budget thanks the generosity of my fellow bloggers and the amazing range of freebies available on t'internet!

Finally the second postcard in the Summer Postcard Blog Hop is winging it's way to Mouse.  Head over to Tales of a Stitching Mouse to see what Jennifer has sent to Mouse.

There is still plenty of time to join in if you'd like to submit a stitched postcard click the picture below for more details.
Summer Postcard Blog Hop

Thursday 28 June 2012

And Another 11 Things

This is a Brooke's Books design I stitched for a blogging friend's Birthday, I emailed it off to her last weekend.  I stitched it on 32count lavender evenweave using the recommended DMC.  I subbed the 818 for some beads which look great.  I also added some straight stitches to the flower centres.  I stitched the border in one of the variegated threads (105 from memory).  It's a nice chocolaty colour anyway!

I'm planning on stitching all 12 of these, there is one cake for each month, so if you'd like an "e-card" for your Birthday then let me know when it is!  I'm going to scrapbook the originals in pairs as I stitch each one.

Ruth the Musing Badger has just answered her 11 questions and posed these for anyone who wanted to have a go!

1.      Does all of your family understand your stitching obsession?

Pretty much yes.  The Large Boy is very interested in what I'm stitching and the mechanics of it.  Hubby is fascinated but can't understand why I can't sell the finished pieces for large amounts of money.  He points out the hours of work and the fact that they look as good as any painting!  Small Boy thinks "it isn't food, what's the point!"

2.      Do you own an e-book reader (Kindle, Nook, etc)?  If you do, do you think it makes you read less or more, and do you think it will make a significant dent in your physical book purchasing?

No, they are the work of the Devil LOL.  I also really dislike that the word "kindle" is used by the general public to mean an e-reader.  It's a bit like "hoover" and vacuum-cleaning.  Since working in the bookshop I often have several different books in different rooms, some being advance copies not available yet.  If I had an e-reader it'd forever be in the wrong room or lost under a cushion!

3.      Do you have a theme song—or a pet song?  One that you always catch yourself humming?

"It's just another Manic Monday" every Monday!  We use rhymes and songs with the Small Boy alot to help him.  How about "Let's go change your nappy" sung to the Conga tune!

4.      What’s your favourite trip you’ve ever been on and why?  Would you want to go back, or is the experience in one way, shape, or form non-repeatable?

I won a holiday to New York in 2001, we flew back to the UK on Sunday 9th September, 2 days before 9/11.  I guess that trip is pretty much non-repeatable.  I collected my photos 2 hours before the planes hit, I have some of the last pics of the Twin Towers.  Weird.

5.      What stitching piece of yours are you most proud of and why?

Teresa Wentzler's The Castle, my first BAP with a multitude of blended threads.

6.      What piece of your stitching do you sometimes wish you had never started?  Or did you/do you love them all?

A gorgeous alphabet on the most hideous scratchy 14count aida.  I actually have a burn mark on my wrist from where it rubbed!  I'm using a variegated thread too so have to think about the placement of the colours.  It's a UFO for a reason!

7.      You have an entire weekend free and clear to stitch – do you want your stitching time to be enlivened by:  a TV show marathon on (if so, what show), a movie (or series of movies) (which movie/s), a new music release (what music?), or a new audio book (which one)?

At the moment life is so hectic I actually like stitching in silence.  Usually I like an audiobook, it's great if it matches the stitching.  I listened to the Empress Orchid while stitching an Oriental lady for a RR.

8.      What’s the goofiest thing you have ever done because of your stitching?

Stitching standing up to finish a challenge piece to a deadline because if I sit down the Small Boy thinks it's lap time!

9.      Can you cook without recipes?  Or do you only like cooking with precise guides?

I don't enjoy cooking at all.  My idea of precise instructions is "place in a pre-heated oven for 20 minutes.  Remove and eat".

10.  Iron  Chef America or Iron Chef Japan?

I don't do cooking!  Or watch it happening!  I don't think we even have those programmes in the UK unless they're on some obscure cable channel?

11.  Do you have antique stitching passed down through your family?   Have you ever bought antique stitching?

I have two of my Great Aunt's stitched pictures which she left to my Mum and Mum passed to me when she moved into a smaller house.  They are on my bedroom wall well shaded from natural light.  See this post here for pictures.

I hope you're all enjoying these 11 things because Minnie has tagged me back!

Finally, a reminder about the Summer Postcard Blog Hop, the postcard must be a stitched picture rather than a scenic photograph.  You can send a photo too and I'll forward both but this is mainly a stitching blog hop!  I'll be accepting photos until the end of August so there's no hurry!  Hopefully even more people will join in as we go. 

Tuesday 26 June 2012

Summer Postcard Blog Hop Starts Here!

Summer Post Card Blog Hop

The first postcard is winging it's way to Jennifer of Grasp the Stars.  Keep an eye on her blog to see what it is and who it's from.

I will send a new postcard every few days from now on until the end of the Summer so watch out for them.  If you'd like to join in then it's very simple:

All you have to do is email me a stitched picture of something Summery or Holiday themed plus a postcard type message.

See this post for more details.

Two blogging friends had Birthdays yesterday and two blogging friends were sent cards.  Here is Minnie's card:

It is the WOCS Flower of the Month in pink and pale green this time, just for a change.  The rose is probably the most versatile design of them all as you can stitch it in so many different colourways.

Finally, no pics yet but this last week's stitching has been the Needlecraft Haven Challenge and Angi's RR Band Sampler.  This is an amazing piece to stitch on, I'm totally loving it.  It's actually hard to limit myself to a couple of inches, I'd willingly stitch the whole piece but then it wouldn't really be a RR and since I'm only the second stitcher it's mean to use up 3/4 of the fabric LOL.

Friday 22 June 2012

Stash plus some New Things (People, Events and Places)

This week I've been stitching Birthday cards (daytime) and Angi's Round Robin (evenings).  I'll show the cards once the recipients have got them.

I did get some nice new fabric though.  I had a stitching tip printed in Cross Stitch Collection (No 209) and got a £10 voucher from Willow Fabric.  This is the second time I've won a voucher for my handy tips!  Who said Facebook is a complete waste of time?   This is my tip:

"If you're stitching on a budget try stitching over 1 on evenweave.  You need a quarter of the fabric and an eighth of the thread.  Huge savings there.  If you can't manage 28 over 1 then try 25 or 22 count evenweave".

I decided I needed fabric more than anything else.  I'm trying to build up my stock of basic colours in evenweave so I don't have to wait to start new projects!  I choose two new-to-me fabrics, 19count Ariosa in Antique Rose (right) and 18count Davosa in Evening Rose (left).  Both were in the sale and cost £10 together (one FQ and one HalfMetre).

The top photo shows the true colour of the fabrics, the bottom photo shows the true colour of the free threads they sent me as a Thank You for being a customer!  How nice is that?  I don't know what make they are, they seem a little thicker than DMC but not coarse at all.
The fabrics are interesting, quite thick (obviously with the low count!), one is evenweave and the other linen.  I'm planning on stitching over 1 on them but I don't know what yet!

I have a new follower - Sandie aka TigerMum.  You must see the amazing quilt she's made for her grand-daughter here.  At first I thought all the squares were stitched but actually the final block is stitched the rest are fabric.  It's a beautiful piece of craft and I'm sure her grand-daughter loves it.

I also found a new website, Calico Crafts.  One of their picture frames was featured in World of Cross Stitching recently.  They have loads of charms, embellishments, frames and all sorts of knick-knacks to add to your stitching, scrapbooking, random craftmaking.  Check them out!  Their prices are very reasonable too.

The new event is the Passione Ricamo Mistery (sic) SAL.  Do I know what it is?  No, it's a Mystery.  Do I need another BAP SAL?  No, I have no time!  Do I want to sign up?  Damn right I do.  LOL.  It appears to be pinks and purples and features 9 Treasure Braids and 2,500 beads!!  The link has a clue or two for the design, a dark haired lady with flowers and a lovely scrolling border.

Finally, I sent out some cards to 4 random people who entered my Easter Treasure Hunt Blog Hop, they should all be received by now, so for the sake of having a complete stitching record on my blog here are all four:

The charts came from La Contesse blog and the cards were a cover gift from Cross Stitching magazine.  As is usual these days I didn't like the designs they recommended but used the threads and cards to make these dinky Thank You cards.  I didn't use their scratchy old aida either, but used some 22count aida from my stash.

Tuesday 19 June 2012

TUSAL, IHSW and 11 More Things!

First things first - TUSAL:

This month my TUSAL jar is posing with the Queen and the usual calendar.  The goodies surrounding the magazine are a prize from Jenny of One Stitch Closer to Nirvana's 100 Followers' Giveaway.  Look at the sweet rabbit thread-holder and the daisy scissors!  The little bag contains "Made with Love" hearts to attach to my projects.  There are two charts - the April Word Play plus M Designs I and J which are a little extra because I sent Jenny a bird chart as a RAK a while back and she's been wanting to repay it!

For IHSW I worked on Papillon's Around the World in 80 Stitches, Part 2.  Which is good, because Part 3 is now out!!  I'm doing the Speciality Stitch version sans cutwork!

I'm stitching on 28count white evenweave with my choice of pinks, purples and one yellow DMC.  I've changed some of the stitches.  I couldn't get on with the lazy daisies in the Hearts, I tried one strand, I tried two, they just looked untidy so I weeded them out and did a circular ray stitch.  In the Tulip I've stitched them as a four sided parallogram.  I also passed on the Mordvinian Stitch because I did one and it looked lumpy, so I stitched some more Kloster Blocks instead.  I finally chose my metallic - DMC light effects 155 and I'm filling in the left hand heart now.

I need to decide on beads, I want two from pink, purple and silver.  The question is - which two?
1. pink and purple
2. pink and silver
3. purple and silver.

I also got tagged again for the 11 Things Thing (as Julie cleverly called it!).  This time Chiara Grey Tail tagged me.  I won't do 11 more things or tag anyone else but I will answer her 11 questions because they are good ones!

1. how long is it since you’ve last played, sat on the floor, with a kid?
About 30 seconds at any given time.  Also the same answer for "how long since a kid attached itself to your head while you try to read a blog/type an email etc".
2. your favourite school trip?
Not the one where I had an asthma attack in the middle of the night and ending up sleeping in the teacher's room so she could make sure I didn't die and freak the other kids out.  I can still "see" her multi-coloured hand knitted cardigan now!
3. when you go to sleep, do you wake up in the same position, or do you find blankets and pillows all over the place?
I find a small boy all over the place LOL.  But only when it's my turn to co-sleep with him.  The rest of the time I wake up curled in a ball regardless of how I went to sleep.
4. shades, hat or both?
Summer - Shades, with prescription lenses.  Great for "no-make-up mornings" even when it's not that sunny.
Winter - Hat, for "hair is a mess" days.
5. was there a time you thought “I wish I was born there!”, if so when/where was it?
I do love staying with friends who live in cities but it doesn't bother me that I wasn't born there as I could always move there if I really wanted.  Time-wise this is the best era for women so far (which isn't saying much!) so if I was going to be born in an earlier century I'd choose to be a wealthy man!
6. do you know how to make candy corn? could you tell me? I’ve never tried it! :D (if candy corn is not traditional in your country, could you tell me how to make something you’re thinking is way better than candy corn :D )
Cowpat cake - melt some cooking chocolate, take the tiny bits of cornflakes that settle in the bottom of the box and stir them in, pour into a pie dish, pop in fridge.  It looks like a cowpat but tastes better (I guess as I've never tried cowpat LOL).
7. how many years have you been stitching? did you learn by yourself or did someone help you along the way to the stitching madness it’s nowadays?
Since 1993 so nearly 20 years.  It's a special anniversary year next year!  I taught myself but did have a couple of work friends who were also keen. 
8. the perfect sandwich: what is in it?
For a hangover nothing beats a bacon butty!  I do like shop-bought sarnies best, Boots do a Chinese Duck Wrap which is lovely.  When we came back from France the CdG airport food was hideous, expensive and primarily cheese-based which I can't eat.  The wrap I bought as soon as we landed on UK soil was heaven on earth! 
9. honestly, do you think ironing our clothes is really necessary? how do you deal with the dullest house work ever?
Ironing is the only chore I actually like!  You can listen to music and it's strangely therapeutic making a nice neat pile of folded clothes.  My favourite thing to iron is the Small Boy's body vests (the ones that popper under his nappy).  
10. you reckon there’re even duller things than ironing? what is it?! ;D
Vacuum cleaning, dusting, scrubbing baths, toilets etc.
11. is there a TV commercial you like? (makes you laugh, takes you back to old times, reminds you of someone you know, ..)
I'm not a fan of commercial TV, the boys mainly watch the BBC for that reason (see I'm really Middle-Class LOL).  But we do like anything with a cat in it - Krusha milk shake mix and the Cravendale cats with opposable thumbs spring to mind.

Finally, don't forget my Summer Postcard Blog Hop!

Friday 15 June 2012

Theme-a-licious June Update and 11 Things

June is Jumanji June or birds and animals themed stitching.  We're really pushing the boundaries of definitions here.  I have a robin and a guinea pig.

Here's the robin:

What do you mean, it's not a Robin, it's a Lady in a Fur Hat?  It's for a Round Robin hahaha.  This design came from an old issue of World of Cross Stitching.  I added the golden curlicues to fill the corners.  It was a nice quick and easy stitch, great fun and a real "just one more colour" as I never wanted to stop stitching at bedtime!

And here is the whole of Melva's Christmas themed RR:

She's having the four Joan Elliott Christmas Petite Angels in each of the corner blocks then a selection of Christmas designs in the other.  Melva will finish the Lady with Book when it returns to her.

And here's the guinea pig:

What's that?  It looks like a snowflake to you?  That's because I was the guinea pig.  Beverly who blogs as Wee Stitchy has a new website Love Thy Thread.  A while back she offered a free chart to anyone who wanted to be a guinea-pig.  So I said "wheep wheep" which is guinea pig for "Me please" and received this lovely snowflake.  I'm stitching it on navy blue aida using 2 strands of DMC Blanc.

The only comment I will make, as the charts are computer generated the snowflake wasn't quite symmetrical.  I just stitched the top right hand quarter then flipped it for the bottom right.  I've inverted the chart and will stitch the left side that way.

Bev has several of these snowflakes on her site plus a wide range of designs at very reasonable prices.  She also runs a loyalty programme whereby you get a free chart if you send a photo of a completed design.  That's an incentive isn't it?  The charts are available as pdf instant download or by post if you don't have a printer with an ink in it!

Heather from It's Geek to Me who runs Theme-a-licious tagged me with this fun 11 things Activity.

The Rules:
  • Post these rules.
  • You must post 11 random things about yourself.
  • Answer the questions set for you in their post.
  • Create 11 new questions for the people you tag to answer.
  • Go to their blog and tell them you’ve tagged them. No stuff in the tagging section about you are tagged if you are reading this. You legitimately have to tag 11 people.
11 Random Things About Me: 

Number 1. I like to cheat.
Numbers 2. to 11. See this post 10-things-you-might-like-to-know-about

My Answers to the 11 questions from Heather:

If you could choose any profession other than your current one, what would it be? 
I'm a bookseller but I'd like to work in education again, a school librarian or maybe as a Parent/Teacher liaison advocate.

What craft or hobby would you try if money and time were no obstacle?
Nicola from Stitching by a Cornish Seashore is signed up to make this embroidered-cabinet-of-curiousities.  I would love to be able to join her.  Alternatively I'd use the money to pay someone to do my housework then time would be less of an obstacle anyway!

What is the first movie you remember seeing at the movie theatre?
Bambi, in Singapore, when I was about 4.  I clearly remember standing outside the cinema waiting in quite a long line with my Dad. 

What was the last video game you played?
Does Spider Solitaire count?

What are you good at? In other words, what makes you unashamedly yell, "I can do that!" 

What is your favourite holiday that you've ever taken?
A stitching retreat I did years ago, 4 days of stitching and chatting, all food cooked for us and beauty treatments in the evening.  Bliss! 

If you could have unlimited money to spend at one store, where would it be? 
Libertys of London, they have clothes, stitching, home furnishings, the lot!

What's the best book you've read recently? 
This week it has to be The Consadine Curse by Gareth P Jones, a book about a very strange group of cousins.  It's aimed at the 9-12 age range and I read it in one day.  Very interesting ending!

Star Wars or Star Trek? Why? (NOTE: You must pick one. Flip a coin if you have to, and I will be appropriately dismayed. ;) 
No contest - Star Wars!  Why?  Captain Kirk LOL.  I do know that fans of Star Trek are called Trekkers NOT Trekkies though.

What's the best Halloween costume you ever wore? Or, if nothing sticks out...the best one you ever saw.
The best thing about being a Goth Hippy is that we just wear our normal clothes at Hallowe'en and everyone thinks we've made an amazing effort!
The year I was pregnant with Small Boy I was on the door at our music venue (too big to work the bar as I would usually have done!).  I wore a black hoodie with a kangaroo pocket, hidden inside was a baby doll's leg which I used to "kick" anyone who patted the bump, then I'd slip the leg out of the pocket and scream "My baby's getting out!".  That was fun!

If you had to leave your home quickly what 2 items (besides family, pets, and necessities) would you take with you?
Depends on how long I've got!  If there's a fire then I'd grab my New Rock boots and my leather jacket for practical purposes.  If we're fleeing the country for tax reasons then my stitching, books, earring collection, photos etc.

Here are my 11 taggees:

Heather It's Geek to Me (because I want to read her answers to my questions LOL)
Julie and Yes Dear (because I love her writing)
Shirlee the Easily Influenced Stitcher (because she makes me stifle giggles when I read blogs late at night)
Mouse (because she'll make us all a cuppa when she posts)
Topcho Bla, Bla? Bla! (because she has great taste in books)
Alicia Crafty Princess (because she's a stunner!)
Joyce Random Ramblings (because she's like Blogging Royalty)
Sarah-Beth Cross Stitch Blog (because she lost her furbaby recently and deserves cheering up)
Minnie All XXs (because she might include a photo of one of her collections of figurines which I love)
Karen StitchyWoman (because she helps me come up with mad ideas for projects)
YOU! (because I can't choose between about 10 more people so if you want to be number 11 then leave a comment.)  (see, I told you I cheat LOL).

Of course, none of you are obligated, and I fully realize some of you may not be "in" to this kind of thing. No worries, I am not offended (in advance).

My questions for my taggees: 

1. Watch the film first or read the book first?

2. Which book would you most like to see made into a film?

3. Who would play you in the story of your life?

4. What was the first live band you saw?

5. Who is the most famous person you have ever met?

6. Did you embarrass yourself by blushing/clamming up, saying something stupid?

7. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner or Breakfast, Dinner and Tea?  or some other random names for your meals?

8. Does your family have a word for something which no-one else in the world uses?

9. What is the worst job you've ever done?

10. How did you get out of doing it?

11. What is the theme song to your life?

Finally, don't forget my Wish You Were Here Summer Postcard Blog Hop.  Click on the picture to find out more.

Sunday 10 June 2012

Summer Postcard Blog Hop

Here's a fun activity for the whole of this Summer -

The Summer Postcard Blog Hop.

All you have to do is email me a stitched picture of something Summery or Holiday themed plus a postcard type message.  Once I have a few I will start emailing them to the other participants who will post the picture and message on their blog.  I will have a list here so everyone can hop around looking at all the blogs and cards.

The pictures can be anything you like.  It could be a Summer Season piece, a Summer themed sampler, something beachlike, or seasidey, a picture of somewhere you've been or would like to go to, a John Clayton or Michael Powell picture, an activity you like to do on holiday, sailing, horse-riding, gardening, stitching!!

The message can be serious, what you would write on a genuine postcard telling us about the picture, or it can be humourous, recalling a past holiday or one you would like to take.  Maybe your thoughts on what this time of year means to you.

If it's Winter where you are then feel free to send in a Winter Holiday themed picture!

You don't have to stitch something new for this activity, you may have something perfect in your stash already, this could be a great chance to share an old favourite with us.

My email is in my profile, leave a comment on this post to let me know if you're planning on joining in.  I'll take entries from now until 31st August and will have a special page dedicated to the postcards.  Feel free to copy and paste the sunset picture onto your own blog with a link to my page, and invite your followers to join in too.  The more the merrier!

Here's a Summer Sampler to round off the post:

Thursday 7 June 2012

Prizes galore and a Crazy Rabbit

There are always lovely Giveaways going on in Blogland and I do like to show my support for those hosting one!  Recently I was lucky enough to win two gorgeous ones and the prizes arrived this week.

First up was the entire back catalogue of Northern Expressions Needlework.  How about that for an amazing prize?  Nicole was celebrating 100 followers and her 40th Birthday last month.  She's also had the most lovely tattoo inked by her son for the celebration.  Now there's an idea, I could have a tattoo for each 100 followers LOL.

Here are the charts I won:

There is a fifth design in this series which was printed in Just Cross Stitch mag which I just so happen to have.

And close-ups of my two favourites:
This is Celtic Autumn, a lovely mixture of Cross Stitch and Speciality Stitches in beautiful silk threads.

This one is Mother's Garden II.  There is a key for silks and a DMC conversion too which is what I will use.

I had a look at Sew and So's website as they have a wide range of threads.  They stock the mouth-watering Gloriana Silk but at an eye-watering £6.50 a skein!!  That's ten times the price of their DMC!  They also don't have the Belle Soie threads.  So does anyone know of a cheaper UK stockist or would it be better to get them from the USA and pay postage?  There's no hurry as I can't get them until my Birthday later this year.

All of Nicole's designs are stitched in silks but come with a DMC conversion where she points out which ones are/aren't a good match.  There are also lovely chatty notes about how to do the speciality stitches and great clear diagrams.

The second delivery was from Kaye of Kitten Stitching:

The card is made from real flock!  I love flock, it's like my blog background!  I also love velvet devore clothes which is like flock that you can wear.  Fab wrapping paper too.

And inside was this beautiful stitched picture: 
Which is now residing on my kitchen dresser.  I love the stitching, the frame and the sentiment too.

"Believe" is such an interesting word.  It can apply to so many things; your faith in God/gods/spirits, your belief in the inherent kindness of humankind, or simply the hope that your luggage will arrive safely at your holiday destination with you and not a fortnight later!  Given that this was a prize for my travelling tip this last one is most appropriate.

And the Crazy Rabbit?  Well, the Needlecraft Haven have a great monthly challenge.  Christine chooses a different freebie chart and we all try to stitch it before the end of the month to go into the Big Reveal.  "Try" being the operative word there.  May's was this freebie from Patrick's Woods.  I've seen it all over the place and wanted to do something different.  So I was brainstorming to myself - tiny rabbit, giant scissors, Alice in Wonderland, psychedelia, clocks, cogs, machinery, steampunk etc.  So out came the fabric pens and I sketched some swirls on the fabric.  I got the cutest little clock charm from Sew and So then made a trip to the Craft Shop for the mounting card and some embellishments.  Strangely enough there was a man there also looking for clock embellishments.  How co-incidental.  Not your usual request!

And here's a close up so you can see the charm:

There was another Birthday in our Exchange on the Needlecraft Haven, so here is the June card stitched for Lynn:

As usual, I just stitched the backstitch then coloured in the rose with my pens.

I also received an email for Lelia who won one of the Easter Treasure Hunt bloghop prizes.  I stitched her this cute little design and made it into a pillow.  I discovered this design through the April freebie challenge (thanks Christine!).  I backed the stitching with some of the upholstery fabric samples I blagged last year.  They are soooo useful.

The design came from the Sub Rosa blog and I changed the wording from Happy Day to Happy Spring.  I used the same variegated DMC colours in this as in the CCN Cherry Hill Cottage which I stitched at the same time.  There was also a chocolate bunny who went out in the parcel!

Finally, I haven't forgotten the Summer Postcard Blog Hop activity I just haven't got a Round Tuit yet!

Monday 4 June 2012

June WIPocalypse and my Giveaway Winners

Here's the round-up for the progress since the last Full Moon.

Part 1 - My 12 in '12
1. Completed the Dark Alphabet.  Would you like to see another picture?  Just for a change, here's the one with the coffin:

2. - 10. and 12. No progress on anything

11. Papillon Around the World in 80 Stitches.  Finished Part 1 except the beading and metallics.  Started Part 2.  OK, so it's a small start but it still a start!

Part 2 - Just Nan-a-thon
Nothing at all for Nan this month.   But I did buy a new chart complete with button for a very small amount of money.  Well, it's not worth paying P&P for 2 packs of Kreinik on their own, you have to make it upto a tenner!

Part 3 - Theme-a-licious: May Memories

For this I decided to go for Making Memories and stitched A Dark Alphabet designed in memory of Lisa Roswell and also my Joan Elliott Round Robin which is all about making memories for the person who will keep the finished design.  Here's my Butterfly Fairy for Karen:

Funnily enough, two other people stitched the same fairy this round, great minds think alike!

Finally, I did the draw for my 250 followers giveaway sponsored by Yiota's Cross Stitch Kits.  The winners chosen by Random Name Picker Large Boy were:

Marilyn - no blog

Now, Marilyn isn't a follower (yet!), doesn't have a blog or an email in her profile and is a "No Reply" in her comments, so hopefully she'll see this post and say "oooo that's me!" and let me know which of her three choices she'd like to win.  They were:

Kittens in a Suitcase, Butterfly Fairy and Flying Dolphins.

Kaye's final choice was Anne Hathaway's Cottage and this is Patty's, Mushroom Fairy 2:

As a number of people chose Coffee Fairy as one of their choices I will keep their names and chose one person to receive my chart when I finish stitching it.  Maybe next year!  Don't hold your breath!!  I am able to do this because I have a paper original of the chart not a pdf.  Yiota did ask me to draw people's attention to her copyright information regarding pdfs.  They are for one use only and not to be shared/passed on or sold on.  The only exception is for this giveaway when she kindly said I could keep a copy of the winning chart if I want to.