Thursday, 27 February 2014

Stitch From Stash February update



Here's my Stitch From Stash update for February 2014...yes I did spend some money but I managed to stay under budget.

Firstly, of the £25 allowed I spent £6.21 buying this chart and 4 skeins of DMC thread that I will need to complete it.  So that's £18.79 to be carried forward to next month, giving a grand total of £43.79 in the kitty!

And then there was the splurge weekend for Nashville market.  Living in the UK I have never heard of the Nashville market but that didn't stop me taking advantage and buying this...


plus a huge piece of 25 count magic aida and the floss pack to complete it.

Of the $100 allowed, I spent $84.50 in total.

I only had one start from stash this month but I can't show you yet as it's a prize for Bekca who won my little giveaway.  I hope to get it in the post to her today so I can show you next week.  I've spent most of the month working on my CJC pieces.  I had one finish...
and have made good progress on a couple of other pieces.

Until next time

Justine
Tuesday, 25 February 2014

World famous!



Well, not quite world famous.  But I had a very exciting email from Jo yesterday to say that I have been featured as Blogger of the Month in World of Cross Stitch magazine!  I hope Jo won't mind that I borrowed the picture she so kindly scanned to me.

I only started this blog in September 2013 and never imagined that I would be featured in a magazine!  I feel so flattered.  I have met so many lovely people through blogging and have really been encouraged and inspired by reading your generous comments and of course your gorgeous stitching blogs.  Luckily I have a bit left from Stitch from Stash this month so I'll be able to buy a copy of the magazine!










In other stitchy news, I have another CJC finish - this one... 
Lizzie*Kate
Stitched on recommended 32 count Amber linen
with recommended WDW and Crescent Colours floss

We had a little bit of snow the other day but it didn't last for long.  We have been more troubled with wind and rain in the UK.  Thankfully nothing serious where I live in the North West of England, but it's very sad to see the damage that has been done elsewhere by this dreadful winter weather.

I have also been working on something for Bekca who won my giveaway last week.  It will be on its way to you soon Bekca!

Until next time

Justine

Thursday, 20 February 2014

HAED maths

I was thinking about my new HAED to come while on the train yesterday, as you do, and trying to work out how long it will take me. I like to have a target to work towards as it keeps me motivated through the tricky bits, but I want to work on lots of other things as well.

Here is the HAED I have bought in case you haven't seen it before...

I remembered it was 600+ stitches wide by 400+ stitches wide. So roughly 24,000 stitches, right? Working a block of 10x10 every week, which gives me plenty of time to stitch on other things, it will be finished in about 5 years. All good so far?

Erm, no. 600 x 400 is not 24,000 but 240,000. Add on the actual stitch count and that increases to 282,500 stitches. Stitching a 10x10 square every week, it will take me approximately 55 years to complete.

I'm 42 years old. As they say, you do the math.

Justine
Tuesday, 18 February 2014

And the winner is...

Bekca!!!


Please would you let me know what address you would like your prizes sending to? Elder son has chosen what I am stitching for you so I hope you like it!

Thanks to everyone who entered. I'll be having another giveaway soon as I've had fun with this one.

Justine
Sunday, 16 February 2014

New purchase!

Well, I finally caved in on the Stitch and Splash Splurge weekend and bought this in the HAED sale...


Sorry it's a bit small.  You can see it better here or just enlarge on your viewer.

I downloaded it about 20 minutes ago and it's still printing out.  I think this is going to be a labour of love.  It's the first project even close to this size that I've ever purchased.  Still, a bargain at just over $12! (though the threads alone are going to seriously dent my budget for the next few years).

Can I ask for some help?  If any of my readers have ever stitched one of these charts, or are in the process of stitching one, can I ask what fabric you used and how did you get started?  I am keen to make a little progress on this one this year, but really need some help.  The chart suggests stitching on 25 count aida over 1 - is this for real?  I think 18 count is the smallest I could manage.

Grateful for any help.  Don't forget to enter my giveaway in the last post if you haven't already.  Just a note: the HAED will NOT be the stitched prize - otherwise you will be waiting until Spring 2024!

Until next time

Justine


Friday, 14 February 2014

Spring Giveaway!

I am fed up with cold, wind and rain.  As I write this, it is 1.30 in the afternoon and it is so dark and cold it feels like bedtime.  My fingers are too cold to stitch and I can't wait to go and get my boys from school so we can hibernate for the school half-term holiday.

So...how about a Spring giveaway to cheer us up?  I will include something Spring-like stitched by me, plus some lovely DMC threads in bright colours and this gorgeous chart book...

It does have one or two winter charts in but we will ignore that, right?  It's a lovely book that I bought a few months ago when I first started blogging, just in case I ever got any readers and could give something away!

I will make it nice and easy.  All you have to do is leave a comment on this post.  No need to post about it on your blog (as I always forget when entering giveaways by other stitchers) and no extra entries for referring others.  If you would like to, and just for fun, you can share what you like best about Spring, but it's not a requirement to be entered into the giveaway.  I will post anywhere in the world.

Giveaway ends on Tuesday evening as that is when my long weekend holiday from work will end.  I will draw a winner at 9pm - hopefully that will give anyone who would like to enter enough time to do so.

I feel happier already, if not any warmer.  And just to get the ball rolling with the Spring question theme, my favourite thing about Spring is the lighter evenings.

Until next time (and apologies to those in parts of the world who are enjoying summer right now - you can still enter!)

Justine
Thursday, 13 February 2014

It's been a Bothy Week

I am stitching two of the Bothy Threads Cut Thru kits as SALs.  North Pole House with Debbie, Linda and many others on Cut Thru Mondays and Cut Thru Pirate Ship with Jan on Pirate Wednesdays.

This week I stitched on NPH on Sunday and Monday evening as I couldn't wait for Monday night!


Here's a close up of the last part I stitched on...


I love the colours in this project, they are so bright and vibrant.

I got an extra night on Cut Thru Pirate Ship as well this week as I was supposed to be going out on Wednesday night so I stitched on Tuesday instead.  Unfortunately we had to cancel our night out due to a severe weather warning in Manchester so I got a bit extra in last night...


It's Stitch from Stash Splurge Weekend and we are "allowed" to spend $100 before Sunday night, but if it isn't spent it's lost!  I have to keep reminding myself that I do actually have to find the $100 to spend and it's not just free money.  Having said that, I am so happy stitching away on North Pole House and my CJC 2014 pieces that I don't really need anything.  Though when did that ever come into it?!

Hope you are all staying safe in this crazy weather, wherever you are.

Until next time

Justine
Thursday, 6 February 2014

Another finish!

Please be upstanding for my latest finish...

January's Snowdrop
Cottage Garden Samplings
Stitched on 32 count Permin Linen French Lace
with recommended WDW, GAST and DMC threads

I absolutely loved loved loved stitching this.  Every stitch was a pleasure.  I made a little alteration and had my first go at "designing" by changing the birds at the bottom of the piece from Red Cardinals (which I have never seen in the UK) to something that looks a bit more like a Robin.

Now I've photographed it I can see some little ends showing through the linen (see by the reindeer's back leg or on the border on the left).  What do you all do to get rid of them?

I think I am going to finish this one up as a pillow, and when I've done all twelve display them together in a basket in my craft room.  What do you think?

I have really enjoyed reading the answers to these sewing questions on lots of different blogs.  Mine are here: (shamelessly pinched from Jan's blog)

1)      Which fabric do you most prefer?  Linen is my favourite but I like to use aida and evenweave too for variety.

2)      What is your favourite fabric count? 32 count.

3)      What colour fabric do you most enjoy stitching on?  Ivory/white/natural

4)      What is your favourite fibre? I have only ever stitched with cottons so I would have to say cotton.

5)      How many of the 450 DMC Colours do you own? About 200, all neatly wound on bobbins.

6)      Of your last five finished projects—how many used DMC/Anchor as the main floss?  Two.

7)      Of the last five projects, if you didn’t use DMC/Anchor—what did you use? Weeks Dye Works, Crescent Colours and Gentle Arts Sampler Threads.

8)      What needles do you prefer?  I keep changing my mind.  I have used Permin 26 gold-plated needles for years but also like Bohin 26 petites.

9)      What is the UGLIEST design you’ve encountered?  Personally I'm not a fan of patterns of cats and dogs and I think some of them can look quite ugly.

10)   What is the most BEAUTIFUL design you’ve encountered? There are too many to mention!  I really like this one from Scarlet Quince but not sure I have the patience to stitch it...



11)   Who is your favourite designer?  Lizzie*Kate, Cottage Garden Samplings, Bothy Threads and lots more!

12)   Least favourite designer?  I don't want to name names but I met a designer once at a sewing fair and she was really rude so she would be my least favourite one.

13)   Will you/would you support a designer whose personal beliefs offended/angered you?  I wouldn't necessarily know about a designer's personal beliefs but I have never bought anything from the designer "mentioned" in the previous question so I would have to say no, I wouldn't support them.

14)   Do you have a lamp especially made for needleworkers/crafters? No but I have just started using a cheap LED floor lamp and it has made a massive difference to my stitching (much neater) and my eyes!

15)   What brand of stitching lamp do you have/prefer?  I bought the lamp above from Ikea.

16)   What kind of environment best suits you when you are stitching?  I stitch on the sofa, with my legs up to the right and using the left arm of the sofa to balance my chart on.  I would love to have an old lady-type armchair and footstool though.

17)   Have you stitched any design more than once?  No and I don't think I could, unless it was something very quick like a Lizzie*Kate.

18)   Favourite design you have stitched and finished? Always the last one I have stitched!  I think this one has to be one of my favourites just because I have really happy memories of stitching it while waiting for my first son to arrive!



19)   Least favourite design you’ve stitched and finished?  I stitched one for my brother years ago which was a skeleton on a motorbike from one of the Discworld novels and I didn't enjoy it one bit!

20)   Last, but not least, what’s your longest running WIP? Dimension's Holiday Village that I started in 2008 and this is as far as I've got with it.....



Thanks for sticking with me through the questions and welcome to my new followers!  I am still getting round to visit the blogs from the GYB party last week so I'm sure I will be paying you a visit soon.

Until next time

Justine