Tuesday 31 December 2019

December Pie and Stitch from Stash

It's Old Year's Night and time for a look back at the past 365 days of stitching.

First of all, here is the Pie for December:

Two weeks on the Discworld Mappe which went from here:

to here:

stitched on 32 count Murano custom dyed by Sparklies

Not so much progress this month, I didn't even finish my owl.  But here is where it was last year so you can see just how much 166 days of stitching is:

8 days to complete the 12th Christmas Ornament of the year.  I started all 12 as part of last year's 12 Days of Stitchmas and completed one per month this year.  This is the fourth design from The Sweetheart Tree called Merry Christmas Bellpull.  I will be fully finishing it like the Noel and Joy Bellpulls.

stitched on 32 count linen

For this year's 12 Days of Stitchmas I am stitching the JBW designs.  Here are Days 5 and 6:

stitched on 40 count white linen

In my WIPocalypse post I showed you my 13 finishes from my "19 in '19" list and now here are the rest of my finishes for the year:

Plus this one I forgot to include in the Collage!

Let's have a look at the Annual Pie Chart now:

The top four individual projects were:

The Discworld Mappe - 163 days
Marie Suarez My Lovely Sewing Tools - 31 days
Lavender & Lace Enchanted Alphabet - 23 days
Chatelaine Gardens of London - 21 days

I also stitched on a number of Just Nan projects, totalling 39 days when I only stitched those projects.  More often they were part of a daily stitch project.

I have actually finished the Enchanted Alphabet and I do intend to dedicate a post to my conversion, but here's a picture to be going on with:

stitched on 32 count Tiger Lily Murano from Sparklies

I came into the year with 20 WIPs and started 31 projects over the course of the year of which all except three have been finished.  I also completed 2 projects started prior to 2017 and 6 started in 2017/18.  My current WIPs are:

Prior 2017 9
2017 3
2018 0
2019 3
Total 15

Yes, just 15 WIPs.  I plan to complete another 2 of those older ones this year and gradually whittle the total down.  Leaving me space to make more starts!

How did the spending go last month?  My magazine subscription came out and that was it.

CS sub£8.72

I also tallied up the spend for the whole year:


That figure is about the same as last year.  Once again, I spent more on charts and less on fabric and threads.  Literally 95p on one skein of DMC the entire year!  The money spent on charts was nearly all Christmas and Birthday money so that's OK.

As well as getting the JBW 12 Days of Christmas charts, I also got these charts from my family:

Yes, another BAP!  The plan is to start that one when I complete the Discworld Mappe.

This is a series I have had my eye on for a while.  I am considering stitching them as sets of six cubes.


Have a very Happy Old Year's Night

and a very Peaceful New Year's Day

Sunday 29 December 2019

December WIPocalypse Annual Review

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 "19 in '19" for this year.
  1. Lavender & Lace - Enchanted Alphabet  - Finish
  2. Chatelaine Designs - Gardens of London - WIP
  3. Lyndisfarne - Discworld Map - WIP
  4. Nora Corbett - Gathering Eggs - WIP
  5. Mrs Peggotty - Alice and Flamingo  - Finish
  6. Just Nan - Summer Typography  - Finish
  7. Nora Corbett - Raven  - Finish
  8. Satsuma Street - Nest Egg - Finish
  9. Marie Suarez - My Lovely Sewing Tools - Finish
  10. Cottage Garden Samplings - Hallowe'en Alphabet
  11. Primitive Needle - Mystic Sampler  - Finish
  12. Just Nan - Wee Witchy Mice
  13. Mirabilia - 25th Anniversary Cameo  - Finish
  14. Just Nan - Summer Night  - Finish
  15. Mill Hill - Easter Egg - Finish
  16. The Sweetheart Tree - Merry Christmas Bell Pull  - WIP
  17. Dragon Dreams - Never Too Big  - Finish
  18. Sue Hillis - Victorian Christmas Tree  - Finish
  19. Ink Circles - Poinsettia - Finish
A fantastic 13 finishes for this year!  

Current pictures of the four WIPs:

Chatelaine Designs - Gardens of London

stitched on 32 count Cotton Clouds Belfast by Crafty Kitten

Lyndisfarne Designs - Discworld Mappe

stitched on 32 count custom-dyed Murano from Sparklies

Nora Corbett - Gathering Eggs

stitched on 35 count Vintage Country Mocha Linen

The Sweetheart Tree - Merry Christmas Bell Pull
(this will be a finish before the end of the year!)

stitched on 32 count linen

The remaining two projects were intended to be new starts for Dark October but by then I was Focused on Finishes so I decided to leave them for another time. 

Finally, I am currently working on my "20 in '20" list.  People keep giving me new ideas!  I have already added my "12 Days of Stitchmas" projects.  I think these might count for four entries as there are four leaflets!

Day 3

Day 4

Friday 27 December 2019

December Smalls SAL

The Smalls SAL is hosted by Mary's Thread

This year I have been stitching Christmas Ornaments from the Just Cross Stitch Ornament Specials 2001 to 2009.  I have almost finished this month's ornament which is a design by The Sweetheart Tree called Merry Christmas.  So here is the top part only:

stitched on 32 count linen

I just need to add beads and fully finish it as a bellpull ornament like the other two, albeit slightly larger.  Here are the other Sweetheart Tree Ornaments I stitched for this SAL:


I did complete another Word in the Jessica Savage series for Cross Stitcher magazine.  This month it was Embrace:

stitched over 1 on 25 count blue evenweave

All five so far:

At the end of November I joined in with a new SAL - 1 small snowflake for 26 days by Stitchonomy.  I did well to start with but work and pre-Christmas busyness caught up with me and I finished it after Christmas.  I decided to use all beads instead of the charted colours.  The blue are some unbranded beads I had in my stash and the white and crystal are Mill Hill (00479 and 00161).  The fabric is a random piece of opalescent blue linen from stash:

I made a few changes, the blue beads are a bit bigger than Mill Hill and wouldn't all fit so I tended to leave them off where they got too crowded.  The "sparkles" she added on the 27th day are the little single stitches and small motifs inbetween the snowflakes.  I used a Madeira silver metallic for them.  Finally, I added a snowflake charm that Mouse sent me for Christmas.  Now I need a round frame!  For maybe just a round mount for a square frame.

This was a lovely SAL, not too demanding, any other time of the year I would easily have managed one motif per day.  You can buy it from her Etsy store now - Stitchonomy Etsy

I have now started the 12 Days of Stitchmas, originally I intended to stitch a band sampler but serendipity demanded a 12 Days design which I received as a Christmas gift.  Here is the cover:

And here is Day 1

And Day 2:

My plan is to stitch one length of green  border on each day and one colour on Day 1.  If I complete Day 1 then I'll stitch one colour on Day 2.

Then throughout 2020 I will finish one ornament per month.

Finally, I had a Smalls Tree this year!  Usually I have a section of our main tree for stitched ornaments but this year I decided as I had made quite a few myself there were enough to put them on their own tree:

How many do you recognise?

The gifted ones are mostly on this side:

Thursday 26 December 2019

December TUSAL


The final TUSAL of the year and my jar is not full!  I am very parsimonious with my ORTs, rarely more than an inch.

Edit to add - I keep my ORTs to stuff ornaments.  I do not put them outside.  Although they are cotton, they have been dyed and longer lengths can be very dangerous for birds.  Rather than risk a longer piece being in the pot I would rather keep them safe indoors.

There are three of my current projects in that photo.  The first being the Discworld Mappe by Lyndisfarne Designs.  This week I have been stitching an owl:

It's very fiddly and I am so glad I am stitching on evenweave!

The second project is Christmas Friends by Just Nan.  This was my travel project earlier in the year but I put it aside to focus on the Mirabilia 25th Anniversary Cameo.  December seemed an appropriate time to get it back out:

stitched on 28 count beige evenweave

The third project is my new start from the 12 Days of Stitchmas:

Originally I was going to start a Just Nan Christmas Band Sampler from my stash but on Christmas Day I opened a present from my friend which contained all of the new JBW 12 Days of Christmas ornaments.  Who can resist a 12 Days of Christmas series?  Not me.  So this became my new start. I wanted to stitch them on 40 count and searched through my fabric stash finding a piece which was big enough to stitch them three in a column and make four long hangings.  I started the border and soon discovered that the fabric may have been an average of 40 count but it was actually 38 count one way and 42 count the other so the circle became an oval!

Start again on some 40 count white linen instead.  This piece is a little smaller in size but I can make do with smaller borders.  The plan is to start one each day for the 12 Days.  Technically 25th  December is the first day but I'm starting from today and will finish on Epiphany, 6th January.

Finally, I do hope you all enjoyed the Advent Calendar Blog Hop this year.  I certainly did!  All the links now go direct to the relevant posts so it's easy to find them if you are catching up with your blog reading.  Which is what I am going to do right now.

Tuesday 24 December 2019

2019 Online Advent Calendar

Here is our Online Advent Calendar, it will be updated every day. 
Scroll down to see the latest picture and a link to the poster's blog.

This year I have asked each participant what their favourite Christmas film is.
It could be a traditional Christmas story, a modern tale or just a film they love to watch every year during the festive season.

Sunday 1st December
Favourite Film - Love Actually

Monday 2nd December
Favourite Film - National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

Tuesday 3rd December
Favourite Film - Christmas Carol (Disney Version)

Wednesday 4th December
Favourite Film - It's a Wonderful Life

Thursday 5th December
Favourite Film - The Bells of St. Mary's

Friday 6th December
Favourite Film - Elf

Saturday 7th December
Favourite Film - It's a Wonderful Life

Sunday 8th December
Favourite Film - The Holiday

Monday 9th December

Favourite Film - Muppets' Christmas Carol

Tuesday 10th December
Favourite "Film" - The Nutcracker Ballet

Wednesday 11th December
Favourite Film - Muppets' Christmas Carol

Thursday 12th December
Favourite Film - Miracle on 34th Street

Friday 13th December
Favourite Film - The Shop Around the Corner

Saturday 14th December
Favourite Film - Polar Express

Sunday 15th December
Favourite Film - The Little Drummer Boy

Monday 16th December
Favourite Film - The Bishop's Wife

Tuesday 17th December
Favourite Film - La Bȗche

Wednesday 18th December
Favourite Film - Scrooged

Thursday 19th December
Favourite Film - It's a Wonderful Life

Friday 20th December
Favourite Film - It's a Wonderful Life

Saturday 21st December
Favourite Film - Scrooged

Sunday 22nd December
Favourite Film - Joulutarina ( Christmas Story)

Monday 23rd December
Favourite Film - White Christmas

Tuesday 24th December

Clare from Aimetu's Stitching contacted me to say that she wasn't able to post today but could I choose a photo from her blog.  I chose her gorgeous hardanger themed Christmas tree for the annual Tree Festival at her local church.  The link goes to the post where she talks about the festival and her tree in more detail.  She also said that most of her favourite films have already been chosen but "watching an Andre Rieu concert especially at Christmas is always festive"

I hope you will enjoy visiting each person and finding out more about them and their favourite films.  If you are not taking part this year, please leave a comment with your favourite film and I'll add them to the list!

Finally, people have been asking about MY favourite film  - it has to be The Muppets' Christmas Carol.  I read the book when I was about 8 years old and loved the story and they do a fabulous version in their own inimitable style!