Tiny Greek Islands!

My islands are finished and mounted onto a canvas, placed on a tiny easel – Greek Islands Finished

I had used a different count of evenweave to that suggested in the pattern, so the design actually turned out quite a bit smaller than the model. I was lucky enough to find a canvas that was almost the right size, so I stretched and mounted it on the ready-made canvas rather than making a new one especially for it. I’ve got too much to do leading up to Christmas to be starting any woodworking!

Anyway, I love looking at the colours in this, it’s like a little ray of sunshine in the middle of Winter. I hope it reminds the recipient of our lovely holidays together in Santorini.

I thought I would also show you how I set up new projects from charts. Kits are easy – everything is there for you already! Charts require a bit of preparation though, and some sort of organisation too. I know everyone has their own methods, some of which I’ve tried in the past, and I’ve evolved my own over time.
New project setup

I like to use a binder to keep all my work together, and have a separate plastic wallet for each page of the chart and key, and one for the work itself. These are great for preventing wrinkles or dirt getting on to my charts or embroidery. I use cigarette card holders for the threads I need also, and I tend to arrange them in the order I’m likely to need them. If I lay them all out together like this, I find it easier to see which colours go well together and which I want to replace before I actually start stitching. These card holders are the perfect size for paper bobbins and full skeins alike, I bought an absolute ton of them and I use them so often.

This way, my project materials are all together, with a pouch in the front of the binder for some small scissors, spare needles, highlighter and a needle threader. I can just grab the whole binder and stick it in my bag to take it wherever I happen to be going, and I know everything I need will be there. No worries!

Lastly, as I’ve now finished this project, the original chart (not a photocopy or scan) is now up for grabs. If you want to stitch this yourself, I’d be happy to post the chart and key on to anywhere in the world, first response will get it, just leave a comment and I’ll get in touch. It’s got a few numbers scribbled on it next to the key, but there are no marks on the chart at all.

Card Making Lessons!

I’ve been so busy this week that I barely stitched a single little X on any of my projects! Instead, a very kind lady at my office has been giving me a sort of introduction to paper craft, and I’ve been trying my hand at something a little different. I’ve made a few paper craft cards before for Christmases past, but I’ve never had a proper lesson on the basics, I’ve always just sort of made it up as I go along.

So, instead of a stitching post this week, I want to proudly show off my first ever decoupage card!

Poinsettia Christmas Card 2015

I know that to my very talented and experienced readers, this is probably laughably simple but nevertheless, I’m really pleased with it! I spent so long with my little craft knife cutting around those petals oh-so-carefully, hoping it would turn out how I wanted. I have so much new found respect for papercrafters who make it look so easy to just swoop their knives around and produce perfect swirls and curves!

I hope with practice and a few more lessons I’ll be turning out a batch of beautiful decoupage cards to go with my stitched ones this year. And of course, as the weeks count down, I wish all my readers the very best of luck and speediest of needles for their own Christmas preparations!