Wednesday, 2 January 2019

Happy New Year and Wrapping up 2018 finishes

First of all, Happy New Year. I hope that 2019 does not fly by as quickly as 2018 did. Last year just passed so quickly. We had a number of visitors throughout the year, especially during the summer and I think that, coupled with our own travels meant that time passed quickly.

I'd like to show you the quilted cushion cover that I finished just in time for Christmas. The design is Daybreak from Jaybird Designs. This was a trial run before I make the cushion with some daschund print fabric that I bought in the summer. I'm so glad I did as the finished cushion with border is approximately 50cm (around 19.5 inches) square! Ideally I want a cushion cover that is around 45cm (18 inches) square so I have reduced the templates to get closer to that on my next cushion cover. I didn't do the maths upfront because I lacked confidence that I would get it right because Daybreak is a hexagon design. I only made the necessary adjustments to make it a square when I got to that point and then I wanted my border. I felt it needed a border to finish it.

Daybreak - Jaybird Designs
My final finish of 2018 was a first for me - a pair of knitted socks! Many thanks to Julie (Julie's Stitchyknitter Journal) for her encouragement and Winwick Mum's easy to follow Sockalong instructions and YouTube videos. I've already got wool line up for my next two pairs of socks. I learnt a lot about using variegated wool while knitting these which I will hopefully use in the future.

Berger de France - Goomy 50, shade Imprim Prun

Monday, 24 December 2018

Gifted Gorgeousness - December 2018

Here's my final Gifted Gorgeousness (GG) post for 2018. As Christmas approaches, it's been a busy month for gifting and receiving. The other participants in this month's GG can be found on Jo of Serendipitous Stitching's blog post here.

Here is a collage of this month's stitching that I gifted:
On the left:
 Mitten Men - Just Nan for Deb
I believe in Santa - The Primitive Hare for Julie
Top down on right:
Oh Christmas Tree - Little House Needleworks (TBC)
Il Neige - Francoise Prax for Gill
Wee Snowman - Hand in Heart Needleart for Clare

From Deb (no blog) as part of Needlecraft Haven's Christmas Exchange, I received this ornament;

while Clare (Aimetu's Stitching) sent me this beautiful felt stocking to put out for Santa tonight.

Finally, Deb instructed me in how to make this Christmas wreath for my tree. I look forward to making more of these next year.

Wishing you all a Happy Christmas.

Friday, 14 December 2018

Needlecraft Haven Christmas Exchange 2018

I love a Christmas exchange so there was little chance that I would not take part in Needlecraft Haven's. Christine organised this secret exchange for us. All but one of the participants received their ornament by 1st December, which was our opening day. We therefore delayed posting pictures of our exchange gifts until the final one had arrived.

Deb (no blog) sent me this beautiful 'Stitchmas' tree ornament with ribbon and snowman fabrics.
Needlecraft Haven Christmas Exchange 2018 - from Deb

I stitched this snowman for my partner, Gill (no blog) and I also included some charms that I thought she would like. Until now I hadn't stitched any of the designs from the book 'Miniatures au point du croix' as miniatures but just as standard projects, two over two, Since I enjoyed stitching this design as a miniature, I've decided to complete some more designs from Francoise's book in miniature as she intended.
Il neige - Francoise Prax from Miniatures au point de croix
Fabric: 32ct (I think) White opalescent linen. Stitched one over one
Threads: DMC 498

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Winter knitting

You can tell it's getting colder as the knitting needles come out.

I recently finished this snood for my sister. I call it 'Mary's Sampler Snood' as it was knitted with a selection of stitches that I like. Fortunately my sister likes them too. I don't think the photo does it justice but it was the best I could get.

Snood - knitted with my choice of stitches
Wool: Rico Design - Ito Iro
Having admired the sock making of Julie (Julie's Stitchyknitter Journal) for a number of years I've taken the plunge and have started knitting my own socks. I'm using Winwick Mum's basic 4ply tutorial and here is my progress so far. It looks small but it fits. I've tried it just to be sure. The fun and games will start when I get to turning the heel.

Basic 4ply socks - Winwick Mum
Wool - Bergere de France goomy 50, Imprim Prun
Until next time, I'll leave you with another Christmas song. This time it is Chris de Burgh and 'A Spaceman came travelling'. As a teenager, I was a big Chris de Burgh fan and saw him play at Dublin a couple of times.

Friday, 7 December 2018

Online Advent Blog Hop - 7 December

I'm taking part in Jo of Serendipitous Stitching's advent blog hop. This link will take you to all those taking part.

The Christmas design I wish to share with you today is the one that got me back into cross-stitch when I stopped working full time. It is Victoria Sampler's Jingle Bells Christmas Tree Farm. I fell in love with this design and had to have it. It was stitched quickly as I wasn't busy with other craft projects as I am now.

Jingle Bells Christmas Tree Farm - Victoria Sampler
Fabric: Zweigart 28ct Smokey Pearl linen
Threads: VS Accessory Pack

The theme of this year's Advent Blog Hop is "My favourite Christmas Song". It was hard selecting one but in the end I opted for a more modern song. I use the word 'modern' loosely as 'Fairytale of New York' from the Pogues featuring Kirsty McColl was released in 1987, reaching number 2 in the UK singles chart. My favourite lines from the song are:
"I can see a better time
When all our dreams come true".
which I think captures the hope that many of us feel at this time of year.

I hope you enjoy listening to it.

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Gifted Gorgeousness - November

It's Gifted Gorgeousness time again. This is a SAL hosted by Jo of Serendipitous Stitching where we show crafting that we are gifting to others or that has been gifted to us. Full details are here.

I have at last finished the cardigan for my mum and it is in the post on its way to her. I liked this design and I have plans to knit this again but next time it will be for me.

Flat Collared Cardigan
Stylecraft Alpaca Tweed

Saturday, 3 November 2018

A Halloween Exchange

At Needlecraft Haven we had a Halloween exchange and I stitched this Just Nan design for my partner, Dusty. Thankfully, although my parcel to her got damaged in the post, my ornament was undamaged.

Pretty Wicked - Just Nan
Fabric: Crafty Kitten 32ct Belfast Lavender Haze
Threads: Suggested DMC threads

I received this lovely pack of goodies from Deb (no blog). Needless to say the chocolate didn't last long. I think the socks must have been scary as we had no 'Trick or Treaters' come to the door this year.

Needlecraft Haven Halloween Exchange 2018