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.

Unseasonable Stitching

Happy Halloween everybody!

This week, I’ve taken a break from Christmas stitching (even though I’m never going to hit my card making deadlines at this rate!). Instead, I’ve been working on this absolutely stunning Michael Powell design – nearly finished now!

Michael Powells Mini Greek Islands 2

This is the design ‘Mini Greek Islands 2’ by Michael Powell, which can be purchased HERE. I used the chart only rather than a kit so I could replace a couple of the colours for ever so slightly brighter ones. I want to make this into a little Christmas gift for my Mum, because we both have such wonderful memories of holidays on beautiful Santorini when I (and she! – haha! ) was younger.

As I stitch I think longingly of the Greek summer sun, and wish my fingers weren’t so numb from the cold that I can barely hold the needle! I think it will be done in one or maybe two more days, and then it’s back to the Christmas cards and the mad dash to the December finish line.

Here’s a little gallery I put together so I can keep track of how much progress I make in each stitching session.

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Oh, and one final thing – Can anyone recommend to me some decent cross stitch charting software that doesn’t break the bank please? I’ve become dissatisfied with KGChart, which is what I’ve used up until now, and I have a couple of new patterns waiting to be uploaded which I’d like to try a different program with. Thanks in advance!