Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

(Well, it will be in 1.75 hours)

Looking back, 2009 was good to me
- I got back into cross stitch in an obsessive and almost psychotic way
- I finally accepted that I couldn't just eat my mum's food and bum around. I'm now back in school with goals for the future!
- I started blogging and have met so many wonderful people *waves* *hugs* *sobs with gratitude*

I'm pretty sure 2010 will be good to me.

Usually for the New Year, I get a favourite old book, read while I wait for the hour, and then look up to see that it's 3 in the morning~ This year I'm going to listen to a good book and stitch the year in.

Happy New Year!

December Achievements & January Goals

Goals for December:
1. Finish the floss tag Done
2. Finish Christmas Angel Everything except some beads I'm still waiting for
3. Finish Bluebell Nope. Ran out of one colour so I have to go pick it up.
4. Stitch at least 20 hours on Ganesha Nope (Again!)
5. No new starts I was good until two days ago when I went insane and couldn't hold off for the last 3 days of the month

Other things I did that were unplanned:
1. Started Holly
2. Finished Think on These Things.

Goals for January:
1. Finish Holly
2. Start Legend of Dragons
3. Start Autumn Winds
4. Stitch a needlebook
5. Stitch a bag
6. Stitch at least 20 hours on Ganesha

Wrapping-up December worked pretty well. I didn't really finish anything other than Think on These Things. I got very close with Christmas Angel and Bluebell so I'm pretty happy with that.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Last HD of the year?


"Think on These Things" by My Big Toe.
Start date September 22, 2009
Finish date December 27, 2009
Fabric 28 count antique white something. It's stitched over one.
Total hours 30.75

This is just the right half. The left is your regular 123abc sampler and I don't care much for those.

That brown bit is some random dirt and not part of the design!

Actually this photo is just horrible. The green is not khaki-green. It's a very bright 369, and very subtle in person. I wanted the words to stand out, not the motifs around them.

I had everything except the top and bottom blue borders done. I didn't like what was charted and didn't really want to do it myself because I was convinced that I'd miscount it and muck it up horribly. Several pins, a pencil, an eraser, scrap paper, a calculator and lots and lots of counting later, I got the border to look symmetric and that itself is a mini dance!

I'm waffling between making a pinkeep or a bellpull...any suggestions?

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Nearing Cloud Nine

Last progress on Christmas day~

Pre backstitch and beads:

And 17 hours of backstitch and beading later:

The green beads haven't arrived at my LNS and I ran out of the transparent ones so that will be later. I still have about 3 snowflakes to go.

I made quite a few changes
Some of the snowflakes are supposed to have grey centres but I didn't like it, so they're all transparent.
No halo because I think it looks better without.
No french knots because a)I hate them. b)It seems fine without.
No backstitch on the sleeves. I may go back and add that in.
I also used 002 instead of 102 for the inside of the wings.
Replaced the transparent beads in her earring with white ones.
Hmm, that's a lot more minor modifications than I thought!

Edit: I just realized that the white around her waist is missing it's beads. I'll just add those when I add the rest...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Other blogs

Now while I've tried to be good about stalking following folks that follow me I'm pretty sure that I've missed a few of you. Can't quite figure out how to find home blogs from the follower widget. So if you could take a quick peek to see if I do and if I don't, leave a comment and I'll get right on it.
Also if you have any that you really enjoy let me know. It's always fun to find new blogs. My future projects list is getting more ridiculous by the day.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

And now back to our regularly scheduled programming...

My last final was yesterday and I'm pretty sure that I aced them all. Admittedly almost everything was stuff I'd learnt previously, but still!

Anyway, I apparently left the light on when I borrowed my mum's car yesterday and the battery died. So today my dad and I used his car to jump start the other one. On the one hand I feel like a moron for forgetting the light. But on the positive side, I now have practical experience using jumper cables to boost a car!

Lastly a plug: Julie over at I'll Cross That Leg When I Get To It has posted pictures of her Christmas village. It's incredible! Go look.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Karyn's Giveaway

Karyn over at The Teakettle Corner is having an amazing New Year's Giveaway. Check it out

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Angels weep

No, this title has nothing to do with carols, but it's probably quite true.

The most crushing part of my guilt:
I went from 18.5 hours to 50 hours on Christmas Angel.

All the cross stitching is done, except for that missing blue and a metallic where I managed to buy the completely wrong colour.

And because I'm lazy and want to get back to my audiobook, today's angel fact is a link to the insanity that is angel hierarchy.

A win

Adding to my guilt is the fact that I completely forgot to mention that I had won Nita's giveaway when I won it. It arrived on Friday.

Dimension's kit "Palm" which my mum has already demanded for her kitchen (why? no idea). And G.P.Taylor's "Shadowmancer" and "Wormwood".

My guilt is slightly lessened by the fact that I haven't started reading them yet. I have self-control. *pats shoulder smugly*

Crippling guilt

For the last few days I've been reading and commenting on blogs, but studiously avoiding my own because of a horrible sense of guilt.
I mentioned having finals (week of December 14).
I also have several assignments etc. due right before.
I have not been working on them.
Guess what I've been doing instead?

When I stitch I sometimes listen to music but usually listen to an audiobook. This is perfect because I feel doubly productive. Currently it just doubles my guilt.

I started listening to Jim Butcher's Codex Alera. Fantasy-stuff. Lots of cliches, but still so entertaining! It's a series of 6. I'm on book 3 right now. It's very gripping and I'm putting off studying to listen.

As a bonus I get a lot of stitching done. On the downside I can't do much else.

Item one: my first floss tag
Dragonfly fob from Cross Stitch Happy.
I used my own choice of bright blue and pale yellow to come up with this truly mutant insect.

Don't look at the edges too closely if you're obsessive-compulsive. There are little bits of fabric sticking out.
It was fun to make. But I don't like finishing small finicky things. I kept dropping it and had trouble getting the edges lined up and I think I went though the wrong backstitchs a few times and...wait, why am I saying that I had fun?

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Success at last!

Actually, success was last week, but after dancing like a madman around my sofa I put it away carefully and forgot to take pictures.

What am I babbling about? Why this:

Ages ago (October to be precise) I mentioned that I was trying to make a patchwork bag which wasn't working out too well. Meari demanded pictures, I nodded my head, and ... didn't follow through (I'm sorry, but it's all done now~~~)

A short while ago, I whined about my Space Invaders having problems. A lot of people told me to buck up and take it like a man. (OK, no. They said that 3rd time's the charm and they were right!)

I went back to my patchwork and finished it~

The "S" in the middle is from Passione Ricamo's free Arabesque alphabet. It's on 18 count aida with two strands of black. The dimensions of the bag are 10.5" x 11/5" x 2.5"

It has a layer of heavy sew-in interfacing so it stands up by itself, even with the heavier-than-they-look handles. It has one pocket inside, which I placed a bit too low. I also cut the inside and the outside to the exact same dimensions, but when finished the lining is actually a tiny bit bigger, so it's a little loose on the inside. Next time I'm going to make the lining smaller, so that it fits properly. I forgot to take a picture of the inside, but it's the same fabric as the handle loops.The handles can be slid out of the loops so I can switch them onto another bag.

I haven't actually taken this out of the house. It's getting colder here, and I like to keep my gloved hands in my jacket pockets, so no handbags in winter. But when summer comes this will be going places!

Monday, November 30, 2009

November Achievements & December Goals

Goals for November:
1. Stitch Space Invader Sampler and finish as a bag Sort of...I finished the pattern, but messed up the fabric cut, so I have to pick up extra to work around the mistake
2. Finish "S" bag Yes! And I love it. (I can't believe I haven't posted pictures yet... Tomorrow!
3. Finish Shamrock Biscornu Finished all the stitching, but I had put all the beads in a "safe" place. And can't find them. .
4. Stitch at least 20 hours on Ganesha Nope. Why do I keep listing this as a goal? A sad pathetic hope...
5. Stitch and finish a few floss tags I got started on one but got nervous about the eyelets and went off to eat muffins. (Honestly, it's a two inch piece that took an hour to stitch! You'd think I'd realize that if I muck it up I can just try again!)

Other things I did that were unplanned:
1. Finished When Witches Go Riding
1. Started Minx
2. Started Christmas Angel

Goals for December:
1. Finish the floss tag
2. Finish Christmas Angel
3. Finish Bluebell
4. Stitch at least 20 hours on Ganesha (Hey, one of these months it's going to happen!)
5. No new starts

I'll be done finals by the second week, and then I'm free to stitch, stitch, stitch! I'm going to try to make December a wrapping-up month.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Jennifer's Giveaway

Why do I post giveaways? Because I love winning stuff and it's always nice to know about giveaways. Plus I enjoy reading the owners' blogs and think more people should read them~

Anyway, Jennifer is having a lovely giveaway for Christmas.

From the Realm of Glory

I haven't been stitching much this week because of too many assignments and I'll probably stitch even less the next 3 weeks because of finals. *Sigh*

I did get a bit more of Christmas Angel done.

This is at 18.5 hours. I didn't feel like stitching the white, and I can't find one of the blues, so there are some giant patches.

For the curious, and the gatherers of useless trivia:
So last time I mentioned that angels are asexual, only to be informed by Annie, that no, Jewish angels are usually males.

Today's angel fact: there are only 5 angels named in the Bible: Gabriel, Michael, Raphael, Apollyon or Abaddon (the keeper of the abyss) and Satan. Yes, Apollyon and Satan are devils, but technically they're fallen angels.

And if you're really obsessed about trivia: Apollyon is mentioned in Revelations 9:11.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Nike loves me!

No, no. Not the shoe people! The Greek goddess of victory!

Lindsay has just informed me that I've won one of her really cute beaded ornaments~ Yay! I love winning stuff!

A while ago, Annie (who appears to be reading every stitching blog under the sun!) finished off a beautiful Altoids tin. I commented that I've never seen one IRL, and she sent me one! Isn't that just wonderful of her? She sent me cinnamon flavoured ones. I ripped it open in a mad frenzy, popped one in my mouth, and almost died! They're very spicy! I was going to gobble them all up, but apparently I can't indulge my piggish self...

On a really random note: I was drooling over Autumn Winds (my new start for 2010) and it occurred to me why I like this so much! My subconscious tells me that it's Snape as a girl, or a very effeminate boy! Can you tell that I watch far too much anime with pretty boys who look like girls! Now I'm even more anxious to start!

Monday, November 23, 2009


What seems like ages ago, I won day 12 of Missy's giveaway. International post has seen fit to drop it on my doorstep today.

Isn't Bunnicula just awesome? Note the bat-pin that tops the pinkeep. He's on a lovely white-with-white-swils fabric, and the back is a lovely black velvet-like fabric. As of typing the candy corn is gone, but the gummyball eyeball is staring at me. I'm a little nervous to bite into it...

The black bit is the bag everything was in, and the purple mess is the really cute wrapping paper. I'm one of those people that rips apart wrapping, no reusing for me!

This was my first stitchy mail, and it was so much fun finding it inside my front door!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Stage Two Failed...Try Again.

Today I dragged out my sewing machine and got everything together to assemble my Space Invaders bag. As I was cheerfully threading my needle I glanced at my cut fabric and came to a sad realization:

When you square the bottom of a bag, the width of the bag decreases as part of the width becomes the sides. I had not accounted for this decrease. Which means that my bag doesn't have sides. I thought about the logistics of using my strap as the side, and this seemed to be a good idea until I got my tape measure, did a bit of pretzel-like twisting and figured out that the resulting strap would be too short for my purposes.

Since I have no fabric left, it's off to Fabricland on Monday.

This is the second bag I've attempted and the second one with "issues". I think the universe is trying to tell me something...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Hark Now!

First, thanks for
a) the spatula advice
b) letting me know that brownies from boxes are not punishable by death.

So when I said I wanted to stitch Joan Elliot's Christmas Angel I had a whole bunch of people encourage me (*tears of joy*). So I started her...on Tuesday and here's where I'm at.

She's on 32 count Pewter lugana. I was looking for a pale grey to stitch her on and I really like this one.

She's at 9 hours and I'm done the purple part of her skirt! Well, the photo makes it look blue, it's purple. And such a lovely deep purple!

Angel fact of the day: Traditionally angels are asexual. So all this female angel business is...questionable.

Erynne's Giveaway

Erynne over at Be-Stitched is having her giveaway. And it's a doozy. A GC worth $75.

Enter! (or don't, and increase my chances! *grin*)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Baking brownies

The only "domestic" art I'm master of is the needle.
Self-acknowledged failure in the kitchen, I can boil noodles, make a grilled cheese sandwich and microwave any number of things. In a fit of madness I decided to make brownies. Before folks get excited this is brownies from a box (which I'm sure is some kind of sacrilege).
Anyway, the brownies are currently in the oven. Having followed the instructions on the box, the batter was very thick and I could only get about 2/3 into the pan. I'm currently eating the rest (and it's good!).
So my question is: how was I supposed to get all the batter in the pan? Unlike a cake mix this was really really thick and didn't flow...

Out of the oven

Had a few bites, and I swear I could feel my teeth rotting from all the sugar, and my dentist rubbing her hands in glee!

Clarification: I couldn't get all the batter out of my mixing bowl. It just got stuck everywhere.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Stage One complete

A total of 1 hour frogging, 7 for the border, 2 for the text and 1/3 for removing the waste canvas and I'm done!

You'll notice that some parts look puckered. They are. I'm trying to figure out how to flatten it. Possibly an iron and some interfacing?

Assembling the bag will either be tomorrow or Tuesday.

Thinking of using waste canvas? Learn from my experience:
1. Try finding an alternate way. Maybe stitch it on your linen/evenweave/Aida of choice and patchwork it?
2. Baste around the edges and then baste in a grid pattern. This will hold the waste canvas close to the fabric and reduce buckling/puckering.
3. Use a frame/hoop. Also to keep everything flat.
4. Use a very pointy needle.
5. Use tweezers to pull out the waste canvas. Might just have been the waste canvas I had, but when wet the canvas feels very gluey, utterly disgusting, and hurts your fingers when you pull it out. It has to be thread by thread because it's too tricky trying to pull multiples.
6. Try finding an alternate way.

Will I use waste canvas again? Probably. Do I like it? No.

Anybody have any waste canvas tips/experiences?

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Cosmic Horror!!!!!

Moving on from the abuse of the exclamation mark!
(OK that's enough)

I started the "Space Invader Sampler" today. It's a
freebie from Sprite Stitch, a blog documenting video game based crafts.

The quote is from the epilogue of "The War of the Worlds" by H.G.Wells, and the little guys are from the old arcade game, which I have never actually played. But the geekiness and the quote were just irresistible.

The fabric is black twill, the waste canvas is 12 count, and the floss is B5200. The white on white makes taking a picture nigh(word of the day) impossible. The chart gives a better idea of what it is.

What follows is a skippable epic backstory:

I want an over-the-shoulder black bag with a flap, but no zips. I leave zips open, so why add one? Went to Fabricland last week to look for black canvas. Apparently canvas only comes in white and tan, and Fabricland carries only tan. So I asked the lady helping me if I could just buy a bottle of black dye and turn the tan into black. She very gently and firmly suggested that I change my idiotic idea and pushed me towards black twill. Stopped off at the LNS and picked up 12 count waste canvas.

Forward to last night when I spent about an hour figuring out the dimensions for my bag. I've already mentioned my inability to "get" the measurements right. On to today morning when I went to cut the fabric and realized that I had exactly enough to make the bag. And by exactly I mean the strap, the inside, the outside and possible a pocket. With nothing left!

So I happily cut my waste canvas, basted it, and started to stitch. Two aliens later I realized that twill has a right side and a wrong side. I was, of course, stitching on the wrong side... Frustrated sigh and then 15 minutes of frogging later I was ready to get started. Again.

Because I felt gung-ho, I decided that "sticking with masking tape" counted as basting and found the centre with the very scientific "that looks about the middle". I happily stitched until I reached the edge, and realized that I was running out of fact the leftmost rightmost stitch is actually out in space. Not only was "about the middle" not the middle, I'd brilliantly managed to cut the waste canvas too narrow (it's .25" wider than the stitch count). At this point I was incapable of shock and accepted it with a calm Zen-like manner. I'm now halfway done and am aiming to finish by tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


It seems like a lot of folks hate large blocks of colour and like changing needles. And this is fine too.
But right now I'm in the mood for utterly brainless stitching. Which for me is giant blocks of colour with very little thread changes. The background of this piece works just fine!

Of course I'll probably get tired of large blocks soon, but while the muse is willing I'm going to get as much done as possible!

I've also been listening to Terry Pratchett's "Unseen Academicals" on audiobook. I have about 2 hours to finish. While entertaining it's a bit odd, because the blurb makes it sound like the entire book is about the UU's football endeavours, but that takes up about a 1/5 of the book. Usually I find Terry's twists unpredictable, but not so in this: I saw certain things coming miles away. I wonder how much of this is because I've read all his books (and therefore am familiar with this style) or how much has to do with his Alzheimer's affecting his writing...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Angela's Giveaway

Angela, from my old town Toronto!, is giving away a beautifully finished box for her End of the Year giveaway.

Go enter

Sunday, November 8, 2009

And to wrap it up

I have a baker's dozen of followers! (I apparently didn't notice when I hit a dozen. So we'll just celebrate my baker's dozen!)

Prepping for Christmas

I stunned myself almost senseless when I went through my stash and picked out my Christmas stitch. She probably won't be started until December, but I have chosen!
The settling point was the eyeshadow. No idea why.

She's Joan Elliot's Christmas Spirit. Oddly not at all red or green. But hey, an angel is pretty Christmassy in my book!

Why Such Strange Pieces?

I won this a few years ago in a really weird Christmas game. I think the organizer called it a Dutch Auction.

Basically you picked something in your house that you didn't like and wanted to gift away. Then you wrapped it in old newspaper, so that it looked generic. Everyone who had a present to donate could participate. Everything went under the tree. You drew a number from a bowl. In order of the number you picked a present and opened it. If someone else liked it they could "steal" it from you. You'd then have to pick a different present. Repeat until no one wanted what you had and the next person would go. I remember there was a really nice shelf that people kept "stealing". Someone put this up in order to get rid of it. I saw it and had to have it. Don't know why. It was funny because I saw it and stole it with great enthusiasm, and got a lot of baffled stares.

I have idea what it says, so she's been named "Minx".
Anyway, I put a few (~5) stitches in a few weeks ago and a lot more this weekend. So it's a new start now.

On 18 count Aida.

Why am I stitching her? I find her compelling. And I've given up trying to justify my very odd taste...

Bringing Order to Chaos!

I spent yesterday organizing my floss. Moved all my DMC from messy piles of skeins to plastic bobbins. It was a pain! I only buy floss for a project as I do it. Or right before I start it. And I thought I didn't have much. Apparently I have 2 boxes worth!

This is about halfway through. By the end I had those plastic binds all over the carpet making a horrible mess.

I also discovered a lot of doubles. White and black were understandable because they show up so much. But neon orange? Lint grey?

Friday, November 6, 2009

A late Halloween HD

Last week I whined about there being too much brown ground and how I didn't want to stitch it. Wah wah wah.
So Zeb and Deb (hey, they rhyme!) suggested that I just leave out the ground.
"Of course!" says I. Planning to also leave out the orange around the cats and the black frame.
Fast forward a few days and I realize that without the ground the base of the house looks odd. So I decide to stitch a bit of brown. It didn't look enough, so I added a bit more...
The end result was that I filled in all the brown.
This made it look bottom heavy. So I filled in the orange.
And since it didn't seem like that much more work, I added the frame.

Hands up anyone surprised by my ability to make a decision and then fail to stitch to it.

I see no hands.

When Witches Go Riding
Started on October 24
Finished November 6
Total time to stitch 40.5 hours
Fabric is 32 count Peach Whisper

Fabric hasn't been ironed, hence the wrinkles.It was pretty fun to stitch and I stitched on it exclusively. That laughing moon makes me smile. And I love that lone sad pumpkin. Actually, I just realized that I haven't done the backstitch on the cats and the pumpkin at the top. Grrrr. Just imagine whiskers on the cats and a grill/braces on the pumpkin.

I've been trying to find a Christmas design but so far haven't fallen in love with anything. Anyone want to bet that I'll find it a week before Christmas, stitch madly, whine about it around January and finish in February, just in time to repeat everything for the Valentine stitch?

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

What I said

about being done When Witches Go Riding? Not true. At all. I just haven't had time to stitch. Last night I realized that I hadn't done an assignment for school, tonight I picked up J.D. Robb's "Kindred in Death" and Nalini Singh's "Blaze of Memory" and I HAVE to read them. So let's just push that ETA over to Saturday shall we?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Yet another project.

Well, technically I just went out and bought waste canvas and fabric to make my "Space Invader Sampler" bag. While at my LNS to pick up the waste canvas I picked this up:

A kind of farewell to TW who's moving to bigger and better things. (Than cross stitch! What sacrilege!) Anyway, my best wishes to her and my thanks for all her awesome patterns. I haven't stitched very many, but they are on my list.

And for Pumpkin, who wanted to know. Bluebell is on 32 count Waterlily Jobelan. I picked it so that she'd match Poppy (who looks awesome IRL but not so much in that photo...)

And remember last time I mentioned that I was getting a bit bored of Witches? I looked at everything else and went right back finishing it. I'll probably be done tonight tomorrow.

I have no willpower...

Saturday, October 31, 2009

October Achievements & November Goals

Goals for October:
1. Finish Beautiful Bird DONE! Now I just need to mail it out
2. Finish Think on These Things I just have the entire border to go
3. Start and stitch everything except the beading on Nora Corbett's Bluebell Almost, just the backstitch left. So I figure it counts...
4. Stitch at least 20 hours on Ganesha Nope. Somehow I'm just not inspired
5. Stitch Sweetheart Tree's Shamrock Biscornu Started, but I'm getting annoyed with the central Celtic Knot

Other things I did that were unplanned:
1. Started Prairie Schooler's When Witches Go Riding
2. Started to finish Arabesque S as a bag

Goals for November:
1. Stitch Space Invader Sampler and finish as a bag
2. Finish "S" bag
3. Finish Shamrock Biscornu
4. Stitch at least 20 hours on Ganesha
5. Stitch and finish a few floss tags

I won! I won! I won!

Oh My God! I'm so excited. I'm the Day 12 winner at Missy's contest!
I'm floating about two feet off the ground. (Can you tell this is the first time I've won anything? ever?)

And since I have no willpower whatsoever I'm waiting for Missy to put the picture of my winnings up!

Again: YAY!!!

ETA: The picture is up at Missy's, my very own Bunnicula, with really nice pins, a set of fangs and magnets! Now to spend the next week stalking the mailman...

Friday, October 30, 2009

A red house and a few pumpkins

is all I got done. I've been stitching with two threads and I have to admit that the coverage isn't too good for the witch or the house...

I think I'm going to finish all the pumpkins and their stems and then put this away for a bit. It'll be that vast amount of brown ground, the two cats at the top and their orange background and that frame. I'm loosing my gungho-ness for this piece so I need to move on before I start to hate it.

Halloween has always been a bit odd for me. I came to Canada too old to go trick or treating, none of my little cousins go trick or treating and I've always lived in apartments or condos, so no door-to-door treaters.
I think I'll spend tomorrow celebrating the true spirit of Halloween: by eating CANDY!

(Actually what is the true spirit of Halloween?)

Anyway, Happy Halloween, Happy Samhain or Happy All Hallow's Eve, if you celebrate any of them, and if not celebrate the candy!

Monday, October 26, 2009

More Witchy Goodness

Ok, so I haven't reached the witch yet. But I picked op the missing floss, finished off the moon (which I love, it's so awesome!), and am almost done the tree.
I never actually noticed that there were two crows in the tree! That was a pleasant surprise. (Yes, I've only actually stitched one crow, or maybe it's a raven?)

I think I'm going to seriously push to finish this by Saturday. Of course it won't be framed for ages, but it'll be done by Halloween!

I've been on a slightly insane rampage of reading and following new-to-me blogs. In the nature of things, this means I have about a dozen new patterns I MUST stitch. Topping the list for next Halloween (yes Mum, I can plan long-term!) are "Something Wicked" by La-D-Da and "Sleepy Hollow" by Glendon Place.
Actually I haven't seen a finish of Sleepy Hollow yet, but it looks so cool. Now I feel like reading "Legend of Sleepy Hollow"...

I'm off to Fabricland tomorrow to see if I can find some decent handles for my patchwork bag (Michaels has nothing) and then I shall share my magnificent marvel. I hope.

A Question:
I picked up a couple of those DMC floss rings because they were dirt cheap. And I want to make a few floss tags. The internet is filled with awesome tutorials, so I'm set for the "How-to" bit.
BUT, none of them tell me what size the eyelet should be. I was overwhelmed by choice: 1/8", 3/16", 1/4" etc. What size is big enough that the ring slides easily, but not so big that it...well, looks too big?

Kathy's Giveaway

What is it about Halloween that's bring out all these lovely giveaways?

Check out Kathy's 1 year blogversary here and admire her dog Rory!

Hey, I figure if I enter as many of these as I can, karma has to let me win one!)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

April's Giveaway

A ton of mystery stuff including 5 Halloween charts, 5 Snowmen charts and, and, and... a whole lot more.

Check her out here

Craftymoo's Giveaway

"Alphabet Pumpkin", because she had an extra, WDW Thread and Silkweaver Boo 28ct Lugana, because she's awesome~


Daffycat's Giveaway

To celebrate her 2nd blogversary is giving away two copies of Simon's Cat.

Visit and enter here

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Witches, and cats, and pumpkins

Oh my!

This month I've been suffering from chronic startitis and a lack of desire to finish anything. I finished my "Halloween" piece for this year, Trick or Treat, ages ago, and wasn't planning on another till next year. Best laid plans of ...etc.

I dug up Prairie Schooler's When Witches Go Riding. It has only 7 colours! Only 7. I'm a bit used to ones with a ridiculous number of colours. And it so happened that I had a piece of Peach Whisper (the fabric I did ToT on) in the right size. AND I had 5 of the flosses. It was meant to be.

My needle was on fire and I started it today and got 7.5 hours in.

I'm missing the red and orange, which is why certain words are missing. I'll probably pick them up on Monday.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Just 10,000 ways that don't work...

I've always wanted to quilt/patchwork. Since my crafts are all self-taught, I've been trying to teach myself. Unfortunately I'm not good at spatial visualization, and can never get the seams right. I usually forget to add them or if I do I somehow miss them when I stitch. I have a few unfinished pieces(ie utter failures) lurking in a pile.

Today was going to be different. Today I was going to succeed!

I sort of did. I originally planned to make a bag about 14"x12". It appears that it will be about 10"x10" in reality. About an hour in I started making mistakes and so put it away. Still I haven't royally messed up (besides the unexpected resizing). I won't be able to work on it this weekend but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this bag will come out fine!

Pumpkin Horror!

My entry for Cathey's giveaway.

I've seen many people rave about Twilight. I couldn't get past page 70... different strokes, I guess.

But I am a fan of the original Transylvanian. This is the pumpkin I'd carve if I carved pumpkins.

It took me quite a few tries. I'm particularly fond of his fangs (even if they aren't very visible)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

It's not easy stitching green...

It feels like miles and miles of green. And most of it's backstitch too.

I got about 10 hours into Baby Shamrock Biscornu and realized that I hadn't taken a picture. I'm not working in any particular order. I do as much backstitch as I can handle and then switch for a short while and then slough through more back stitch.

The Celtic Knots in the corner are over one. And I kept on frogging the backstitch. There are parts where a faint green line is still visible... I haven't figured out to get the thread fuzz out yet...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Midterms and such things...

Mostly midterms.

I haven't had much time to stitch because of term tests and midterms. Hopefully the coming week will be better.

I did get all of the words in "Think on These Things" stitched. I just have a green motif and then the border. I think I will make this a pinkeep and start a pinkeep collection.

After saying that I would never ever ever stitch a HAED, I've realized that sometimes you just have to accept that the universe doesn't listen! My main reason to refuse/resist the HAED call is that either the picture isn't my style, it's too big for my goldfish attention span or that it looks better as a picture than as a cross stitch. Well, I saw this:

Autumn Winds.

Even worse (or better) I saw a finish of it on a red opalescent and was a goner. A quick check of my floss showed that I'm missing half, so I'm not starting this week (a good thing). However I'm close to a couple of HDs, so maybe Autumn's closer than I thought...

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Well, the Pixie Couture competition one anyway.
I finished off all the DMC. Since I actually managed to get my hands on all the metallics I'm going to do those too. Two of the beads are on order, so I'll have to wait to bead.

Somehow it doesn't seem all that different from yesterday's picture...

Now the pattern calls for Caron Waterlilies 204, which I don't have and keep forgetting to pick up at the LNS. I wonder if I should just sub in a random green DMC...

Monday, October 12, 2009

Hooray for long weekends!

Thanksgiving being something my family doesn't do, I spent the weekend stitching. I feel like I had a good bit of progress on Bluebell.

I'm almost done the DMC. I was originally going to stitch her without the wings because I thought they were too dragonfly-ish. But now that I've seen a few finishes with them...I'm leaning towards stitching them too. I'll admit that she looks like she has a really weird tanline!

I also picked up a few pieces from my framer. Pictures eventually. Since I live in a pretty small apartment, and there really isn't any wall space I can put them without being tacky...they're under my bed. Until I figure out what to do: move somewhere with more wall space, or give up and have all my walls covered in cross stitch. Very little of which goes with everything else.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

More bluebell

I got most of her skirt done. There's a large patch of #800 that was just boring to stitch.

I also started The Sweetheart Tree's Baby Shamrock Biscornu, but there isn't enough progress to warrant a picture.

And, when I was coming home yesterday it was snowing! Giant clumps of snowflakes. And the roads were icy. It's still the middle of October! Where's my nice fall weather? *grumble grumble*

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Peacock HD!

All done. It took me 43.5 hours. I finished last night. Now all I have to do is figure out how to mail it to London...

Now to work on Bluebell

Monday, October 5, 2009

Just the backstitch...

and the French knots. That's all that's left.

I slept through the weekend. Friday was wonderful. I fell into bed at 6 in the evening and woke up 5 the next morning. OK the waking up at 5 in the morning wasn't that great, but sleeping for 11 hours was refreshing!

The blue inside was tedious but it went pretty fast.

Saturday, October 3, 2009


I'm stitching Nora Corbett's Bluebell for a contest on a board. Just the DMC. My LNS lady is on vacation, so I can't get the beads or metallics . I think her wings are too bright and if I can make them paler I will, or I might just leave them out.

I didn't get much time on her. I'm just been tired with midterms and assignments.
She's on 32 count Waterlily. As always, the picture is weird...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

September Achievements & October Goals

Goals for September:
1. Finish TOT DONE!
2. Start & finish another Ty Wilson print Nope
3. Start Peacock Majesty or Stretch (just one TW, thanks!) Started and finished Stretch
4. Start Ganesha He's very very slow.

Other things I did that were unplanned:
1. Started Dimension's Beautiful Bird
2. Started My Big Toe's Think on These Things

Goals for October:
1. Finish Beautiful Bird
2. Finish Think on These Things
3. Start and stitch everything except the beading on Nora Corbett's Bluebell
4. Stitch at least 20 hours on Ganesha
5. Stitch Sweetheart Tree's Shamrock Biscornu

Also, I just figured out how to do strikethroughs and change colours! (Ok, so I'm a little slow...html is weird...)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Adding background...

or Why I Hate 1 over 2 Half Crosses:

I spent the weekend putting in the border and the background of half crosses. It went on forever and I'm still not done and I hate "Pale gold brown" with a vengeance!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

More words

A realization: the "whatever is" all start along the same column. It gets a bit repetitive after a while, but I switch to the green so I don't get too bored. Plus it's a small piece. Of course I have no idea what I'm going to do with it when I get done...

This picture is via scanner. Based on this and Stretch I have learnt that a scanner gives much better pictures when the fabric is black or white. I'm sure it's the same for other colours, but a camera is so much easier...and I'm so very lazy!
Oh, and the green isn't that odd muddy green, it's 369 and quite bright. The purple is 550.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

A start of Biblical proportions...

A while ago, when randomly surfing blogs I came across another "Love" from 1 Corinthians 4-7(I think. my Bible knowledge is lousy, and Google is giving me conflicting answers). I like the sentiment, but it's just too sappy. But it was new designer so I went off to check My Big Toe's catalog. And found a bunch of droll ones that I may do. And then I saw "Think on These Things" and something about the words struck a chord. Google tells me that it is Philippians 4:8. It's the King James Version but instead of "whatsoever" it says "whatever".

So I started it.
I'm leaving out the alphabet and numbers part, and just stitching the left side. I also want it to have a rounded bottom, which shouldn't be too hard since I just have to turn the top upside down.

It's on 28 count antique white over 1. I'm planning on purple letters, green motifs and blue border.

A horrible picture at 2 hours:

Sunday, September 20, 2009

That went well...

Or not. My plan to work on Ganesha for 10 hours failed. Mostly because I didn't stitch at all. I got completely distracted rereading Kresley Cole.
I also decided to take part in the Mirabilia BB Pixie Couture competition by stitching all the DMC in Bluebell. (Yes, another new start).
Then I dropped off a bunch of stuff at the framers. All in all it was a lazy weekend.
And I realized about 10 minutes ago that I have a test tomorrow for which I am not prepared and really don't feel like preparing either.
How I wish that Lotto 649 would be mine!

Friday, September 18, 2009

A bird and a birdbrain

More of the bird

Not much shows because I stitched all the flowers and they're white. They'll be visible when the bluish background is stitched, but right now they're faint.

The birdbrain part: As I was stitching I realized that I've been referring to the peacock as an "it". However a peacock is male, so I should be saying "he". I was proud of myself for all of a second... before I realized that I was an idiot for not remembering. And as a biology major, I should really know this. Not be proud I figured it out after a week!

After that disappointing realization about me and my brain, I came to a conclusion that made me feel a bit better. I really need to buckle down and stitch Ganesha. So weekends will be for him. And him alone. To the tune of at least 10 hours. This way I'll be done in an year (I hope). I mean, it can't take more than 520 hours, can it?

So the peacock is set aside for now and it's Ganesha for the weekend.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

More of the peacock

So it's moving fast. I'm skipping around on this one, not filling everything as I go. Since it's smallish and pretty simple difficulty-wise that isn't a problem. I was, however, taken aback by the realization that there is a backstitch only chart. This is in addition to the main chart which has some backstitch. Looking at the tiny model picture I really can't tell that there's so much... but oh, well.

Monday, September 14, 2009

A dragon

So I didn't quite end up finishing Stretch on Sunday...but I did finish him off today. I decided to leave off the border. I took a look at a few finishes with the border and I think that there's too much border and it overwhelms the dragon.

Instead of another horrid picture, I tried scanning him and it came out quite nicely.

So stats:
Start date September 12, 2009
Finish date September 14, 2009
Total time 15.25 hours
Fabric 28 count black

and a peacock...

Rose of Sharon went back into deep storage and because I can only take Ganesha in small doses I had a new start. Technically it's an obligation piece. When I went to London in the summer I stayed with my aunt and uncle and they wanted something for their wall. And they told me they were fine with anything... Thanks for making my life easy! Much pondering later I decided on a peacock. It was going to be TW's Peacock Majesty. The one I've been waffling on starting since I got back. And I decided that TW has too much confetti. A search of peacock patterns drove me insane. There really aren't very many of them out there. Either they're way too big, or the focus isn't on the peacock. Then I found Dimension's Beautiful Bird.

Switched the fabric to 28 count so that it would come out bigger. (Originally called for 18 count over 1). And then I actually started it. Got about an hour done. And cross my fingers that I'll be done soon and it'll be mailed out to London.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

I was undecisive

So I dug out my Red Rose of Sharon. I last worked on her in April.

But about 2 hours of stitching later, (no pic) I got tired of her.

So I went and dug out my stash to start Peacock Majesty. And found that I was missing the floss for the 1st symbol I was going to stitch. So I promptly put it back.

Then I waffled for a bit. And I just printed out TW's Stretch. We'll see how that goes. I really need a fun new stitch to get me out of my blues. (And yes, I started Ganesha last week...)


So it turns out that I had all the floss for Stretch. And I started him and he moved fast. 7 hours later I took this picture... And learnt that it's impossible to take a decent picture of black fabric at night because the flash mucks everything up. The picture shows where I am, but is otherwise absolutely horrible.

I haven't decided yet if I want the border or if I'm going to leave it out. Either way the dragon itself will be done by tomorrow. It's too fun and going too fast for me not to finish!

This week...

I went back to college and my stitching time dropped horribly.

I got a bit more work done on Ganesha.

And then I got tired of all the thread changes.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Labour Day long weekend stitching!

Or not. My big plans were to do nothing and get some serious stitching done this Labour day weekend. I did nothing, and did not do much stitching. I spent about 4 hours gridding a piece of Aida for Ganesha.

There is a reason I don't grid and it's that it's a pain and takes way too long. But Ganesha needs it. He has too many confetti stitches and too many colour changes in small areas for me not to grid.

So the mindbendingly boring gridding later I started him and got 6 hours in. That six hours involved more colour changes and blended threads than any picture has any right to be. I think he rivals a few TW's for blended threads! And my god (haha) the confetti!!!

A horrible picture taken in the middle of the night with the flash glaring on the white fabric.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

PINN Ganesha

At an epic 18"x18" and 250 x 260 stitches (from wall to wall) this is my largest piece to date.

Ganesha, also known by a horde of other names, is the Hindu god of new beginnings, obstacles and the removal of obstacles. He is one of the gods you worship regardless of which sect you belong to. And he's the one to pray to first before praying to the other gods.

After looking for ages for any cross stitch of Hindu gods I found him towards the end of last year. He was one of about 3 designs around at the time. Now PINN has released most of the very major gods of the pantheon... and I'm left wondering if I want a matched set!

Anyway he's definitely a long term project. And by long term I mean about 3 years. Anything longer than that is too long for me to plan for!

Friday, September 4, 2009

TOT finish

Yay! She's done! Well, she was done a couple of days ago...
I enjoyed working on her, but somehow she wasn't as much fun as I thought she'd be when I started. I think it's because of the spelling thing. (Mixing capitals and simples in the "Trick or Treat" part).

Start date Aug 20, 2009
Finish date Sept 2, 2009
Total time 43.5 hours

The fabric is 32 count Peach Whisper. The beads have been changed due to the following epic saga:
My LNS didn't have the requested orange beads, so I used a different one
The replacement orange beads were too similar to the required red beads
I replaced the reds with a darker red
I didn't have enough of the darker red
I used the darker red where they are near the orange at the top, and used the original reds at the skirt and the shoes.

Instead of backstitching with the Kreinik, I couched all of it. A habit I picked up after I couched the Winter Queen's hair and adored it way more than backstitching.

I think I'm going to take a break from Nora Corbett/Mirabilia. I feel slightly ODed on them.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

September Goals

I didn't quite get to making goals for August, so depending on how you look at it, I either succeeded wildly by exceeding them or failed by not meeting them at all...

For Sept:
1. Finish TOT
2. Start & finish another Ty Wilson print
3. Start Peacock Majesty or Stretch (just one TW, thanks!)
4. Start Ganesha

Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Promenade finish

This piece finished a lot faster than I thought it would. It only took 17.5 hours.
Start date August 24, 2009
Finish date August 30, 2009
Total hours 17.5
Fabric 28 count opalescent white

And yes, the picture makes the fabric look grey. The light was gone when I took the picture and the flash simply washes everything out, so this is the current horrible picture until I figure out how to take a better one.

I then went back to TOT. Apparently my ability to stay away is pathetic. I finished all the crosses and most of the back stitch. Then I ran out of one of the flosses so I have to wait. I started the beads... but the red and orange beads are far too similar and I really can't tell any difference between them. I'll try seeing how they look in the sun, but I have a feeling that I'm going to try switching the red for something else.