Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Jane Marshall 1857 is finished

The world has changed so much in recent weeks with the spread of coronavirus. It seems no time since our news was full of reports on the fires in Australia. Like many others at that time I bought the Jane Marshall 1857 sampler to support Hands Across the Sea Samplers' initiative to donate the proceeds of this chart to two brigades of the NSW rural Fire Service.
I enjoyed stitching this sampler. In fact, I liked it so much that I purchased Mary Stead 1854 from them last week.

Jane Marshall 1857 - Hands Across the Sea Samplers
Fabric: 32ct Zweigart Antique Ivory linen
Threads: Suggested DMC threads

Monday, 30 March 2020

Smalls SAL - March 2020

Mary's Thread hosts the Smalls SAL and details can be found here.
Since I had two small ornaments completed for St. Patrick's Day, I couldn't resist showing them again. So here they are.

Leprechaun Cottage - Blue Ribbon Designs
Fabric: 40ct Zweigart Natural linen
Threads: Recommended DMC threads

March Quaker - ??
Fabric: 40ct Zweigart Silvery Moon linen (7011)
Thread: DMC 3818

Wednesday, 25 March 2020

Gifted Gorgeousness - March 2020

Most of my March work has been for me but I finally quilted and finished this cushion cover for my sister. The cushion top has been completed since April last year. I have no idea when she will get it as all my local post offices are closed during the coronavirus restrictions in France. At least it is something that will keep :)
For further information on how Gifted Gorgeousness work, all the details can be found here on Jo's Serendipitous Stitching blog.

Tuesday, 17 March 2020

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day and 'Sláinte' as I raise a glass to you. (If I'm completely honest, it's a cup of tea 😄 ).

This year I was determined to get some stitching completed for St. Patrick's day and I managed to finish two small pieces.
My first piece is Leprechaun Cottage from Blue Ribbon Designs. I've had this on my 'To do' list for a number of years. I finally stitched it.

Leprechaun Cottage - Blue Ribbon Designs
Fabric: 40ct Zweigart Natural linen
Threads: Recommended DMC threads

This second design is called March Quaker and I have been unable to find out who designed it. It's ages since I've made a biscornu so I enjoyed making this finish.

March Quaker - ??
Fabric: 40ct Zweigart Silvery Moon linen (7011)
Thread: DMC 3818
May you all stay safe and healthy in these unsettling times.

Saturday, 29 February 2020

Jane Marshall 1857 update

I am enjoying stitching this sampler. Here is an update of where I finished on Friday. Now that I have a Lowry workstand I feel that I am stitching more quickly. At my current rate I could be finished next week. However, I have some other things I need to work on so it might not happen.

Jane Marshall 1857 - Hands Across the Sea Samplers
Fabric: 32ct Zweigart Antique Ivory linen
Threads: Suggested DMC threads

Saturday, 22 February 2020

Gifted Gorgeousness 2020 and Needlecraft Haven Valentine Exchange

Gifted Gorgeousness is hosted by Jo of Serendipitous Stitching where we display the crafted gifts we have made, used or received. Full details about how it works and how you can join in can be found here.

As it's February we had a Valentine's Exchange at Needlecraft Haven. No stitching was required this year. Instead we exchanged socks with a heart or floral theme and included two skeins of threads that matched the colours in the socks. This is what I sent to Katie.

Needlecraft Haven Valentine Gift
sent to Katie

Justine sent me this lovely selection. As always the chocolate didn't last long.
Needlecraft Haven Valentine Exchange
received from Justine

I think it was back in late 2017, maybe early 2018 that I stitched this mini quilt top for a doll's bed. As part of my intention to complete outstanding projects this year I finally finished it this week. It will be posted to its new home shortly. While making this mini quilt I found that half square triangles are not as straight forward as I thought they would be!
Doll's quilt

A friend of my sister is competing with their dog in the agility section at Crufts this year so I stitched this card for them. I hope they do well.
Good luck card for Crufts 2020

Friday, 14 February 2020

Secret Stitching Sweetheart

Happy Valentine's Day.

Jo of Serendipitous Stitching has organised a Blog hop for Valentine's day. Those taking part have received something stitched which is suitable for Valentine's Day to share on their blog.
Here is the stitched piece I received. As well as the design, I love all those rich reds in this Little House Needleworks finish. I hope whoever stitched this comments soon so that I can find out who you are.

The list of who is taking part in this blog hop can be found here. Please visit the participating blogs to see more Valentine themed loveliness. I know that is what I'll be doing today and tomorrow, so come and join me.

Thursday, 13 February 2020

Jane Marshall 1857

I first heard of the Jane Marshall 1857 sampler on this Mid-week FibreTalk podcast which went out in January. It is a reproduction sampler from Hands Across the Sea Samplers and it is being sold in aid of the Rural Fire Services (RFS) of Katoomba/Leura and Wentworth Falls. With a beautiful sampler and being able to help an important service, I lost no time in placing my order.

Here is a photo of the completed sampler and ...

here is my progress so far. Sadly my photo doesn't do it justice. I hope the lighting is better when I take my next progress photograph.
Jane Marshall 1857 - Hands Across the Sea Samplers
Fabric: 32ct Zweigart Antique Ivory linen
Threads: Suggested DMC threads

Saturday, 8 February 2020

Crochet finishes and Knitting starts

In January, I crocheted a shawl for my mum and a scarf for my sister. I'm glad to say that both of them were delighted with their gifts.
I ended up crocheting each item twice! I have no idea why but even though my tension swatch was fine, the finished products ended up shorter than they should have. However, all's well that ends well, the dimensions were better second time around.

Nordic Shawl - Annette Ciccarelli
Wool: Bergere De France IDEAL wool. Colours as suggested except
 I used purple instead of light pink and navy for turquoise.
This meant changing the order of some of the colours.

Granny square triangle shawl
Wool: Mille Colori Socks and Lace Luxe No. 859.0059 - 2 skeins
I love the gold 'thread' woven through this wool and my sister fell in love with the autumnal colours.
Here is a fuller view of the final crochet if worn as a shawl.

Even though our winter has been very mild, I wanted an Aran sweater so I've started this design from Hayfield.

My mum's local wool shop didn't have the Hayfield Bonus Aran wool I wanted so I bought Stylecraft Special Aran in Denim instead. I love how this is knitting up. It is lovely and soft. I'm going to have a new jumper for next winter.

Hayfield Bonus Aran Pattern No. 9219
Wool: Stylecraft Special Aran in Denim

Friday, 7 February 2020

(Re)Organisation of craft materials

For the past year I've been dreadful about having 'everything in it's place and a place for everything' when it comes to my crafting materials. It's got to the stage that I'm delaying doing things because I can't find what I want easily!
So it was time to bite the bullet and (re)organise my materials. To be honest it's more of an organisation, as to date I've tended to work on the principle 'that this carrier bag has A, that one, B'. However, when you can't find what you want anymore, something has to give.
I've decided to rearrange the spare bedroom so that I can use it as a craft room while making it available as a bedroom at short notice, if needed. The room is only used for two to three weeks in a year, so this way, it will be be used more.

Here are two photos of my cross-stitch materials - threads, charts, kits and fabric. I've probably got about the same amount combined for my wool, patchwork and finishing materials. It's been something of a revelation to DH how much stuff I have now that he sees it all laid out in one place!

Fabric and Kits
Those of you from the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean area might recognise the Chepstow Needlecrafts carrier bag. This was a terrific needlework shop in Chepstow in the mid 1990's. It was thanks to Carol(e), the owner, that I discovered cross stitch and Just Nan designs. She was (and I'm sure still is), a lovely, helpful lady.

As this project is being carried out at a leisurely pace, it will be a few weeks before you see nicely organised shelves.

Wednesday, 1 January 2020

Happy New Year and June-December 2019 catch-up

Happy New Year everyone. May the year ahead bring the best of what you wish for.

My Granny always said to start the year as you mean to go on, so I decided to write a catch-up blog post. During the summer we had terrible internet problems. More often than not, there was no internet nor telephone. Consequently I lost the habit of updating my blog and of reading blog posts. So it feels like I'm starting again.

I didn't do alot of crafting during the summer months as it was far too hot. Quite often, the temperature was in the high 30 degrees Celsius. If I hadn't taken part in some exchanges I might not have done anything.

For the Friendly Stitchers' Christmas in July exchange, I stitched Frosty Friends by Blue Ribbon Designs for Mouse and finished it as a flat, felt backed ornament. Sadly, I forgot to take a photo before posting.  I also forgot to take a photo of the mattress pincushion I made for Clare of Aimetu's Stitching but you can see it on her blog here. The pincushion had to have a cat or dog theme. We both chose dogs and would you believe it, we both chose the same pattern: Lizzie Kate's Dogs Leave Paw Prints. You can see Clare's exchange to me below.

Dogs Leave Paw Prints - Lizzie Kate
Received as a ring box  pincushion from Clare, Needlecraft Haven.

Next thing I knew it was time for Halloween at Needlecraft Haven. For Christine (The Alchymyst's Study) I stitched Penny's Potions from The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery. Naturally I changed the name Penny to Christine.

Penny's Potions - The Frosted Pumpkin stitchery
Just Cross Stitch, October 2019
Fabric: 32ct Murano The Crafty Kitten, Winter Sunset
Threads: Suggested DMC threads
I received this lovely set of goodies from Dusty. 

Finally it was time for Christmas. In Needlecraft Haven I stitched Joyeux Noel for Angi (no blog).
Joyeux Noel - 123 Citrouille
Mains & Merveilles, No.93, 2012
Fabric: 32ct  Zweigart Natural linen
Threads: Suggested DMC threads

I received this gnome ornament and stamped Christmas card from Christine.

Needlecraft Haven Christmas Exchange from Christine

Finally for the Friendly Stitchers Christmas exchange, I stitched Les Rennes Rouges for Meg.

Les Rennes Rouges - 123 Citrouille
Mains & Merveilles, No.93, 2012
Fabric: 32ct  Zweigart White linen
Thread: DMC 817
In exchange, Meg sent me this beautiful beaded ornament and some chocolates which are long gone.

Received from Meg
Christmas 2019
To close here is a photo of the Christmas presents I received from Clare and Deb (no blog).
Received from Clare
Christmas 2019

Received from Deb
Christmas 2019

Thursday, 30 May 2019

Gifted Gorgeousness - May 2019

Where has the past month gone? It seems no time since my last Gifted Gorgeousness post. Gifted Gorgeousness is hosted by Jo of Serendipitous Stitching where we display the crafted gifts we have made, used or received. Full details about how it works and how you can join in can be found here.

The hand quilting on Holly's baby quilt is about half done. It will be now be put away for a couple of weeks as I won't be around to work on it.

Holly's baby quilt
Fabric: 'TAO' Modele Depose, 'Black Tie' Oasis Fabrics
design 60-137, teal fabric with orange/white stripe

My main focus recently has been stitching this Good Luck card for my sister and our mum's dog, Sonny. They took part in the dog World Agility Open Championships at Ermelo (Netherlands) earlier this month in the N. Ireland team. She and Sonny didn't win any prizes but they managed to reach one final which I thought was good given that this was their first time in an international competition.

Poodle on dog walk frame - design worked from a scanned photograph
Fabric: 32ct Jobelan Sunlit Pool, The Crafty Kitten
Threads: DMC- 318, 3799, 3787, 931, 927, 612, 677,
738, 728, 402, 950, 841