Monday, April 29, 2019

Gifted Gorgeousness 2019 - April Edition

I'm getting my GG post in right before the deadline this month! The draft was sitting there in my unfinished posts, just waiting for me to get back to it. Here we are, and I do have some fun things to share this month!

Number one is a finish!! I've been keeping this off social media so far, but I managed to finish Tribal Dragon!
Tribal Dragon by White Willow Stitching
Stitched 1 over 1 on 25ct pewter Lugana with Waterlilies/Kreinik and Soie Cristal threads

I haven't fully finished it yet of course, but I'm very happy with the finish. I definitely owe it to the FB School of Magical Stitches group as it's really helping me get more stitching done this year. Once I get it put together, possibly a pillow? This will be for DD. 

Fleur de lis - for DH
 Fleur-de-lis by Brodeuse Bressane
Stitched 1 over 1 on 32 ct royal blue linen with Soie Cristal or Waterlilies (unlabelled)

I restarted this one because I had used satin threads initially and I didn't like how messy it looked. I think this is much cleaner looking and I love using the silk thread as well. 

Full Moon - DD
Full Moon by Cute Patterns by Maria
Stitched 2 over 2 with charted DMC on 28ct Lazurite by Chromatic Alchemy

This is such a fun one and when DD was younger she loved Le Petit Prince and his fox and eventually there will be a fox beside this witch. :)

Princess and the Dragon - DD
 Princess and the Dragon by Charting Creations
Stitched 1 over 1 DMC 310 on 28ct Amarinthine by Chromatic Alchemy

Butterfly Quote - DD
 Butterfly Quote by Jodyri Designs
Stitched 2 over 2 on 14 ct unknown fabric with Jodyri Pink Laydee and Sparkling Citrine

Ocean's Curiosity - DD 
Ocean's Curiosity by Who Knew!?
Stitched 2 over 1 on 16ct fabric by Colour Cascade Fabrics

A friend lent me this OOP chart and I'd like to finish it this year too so I can get it back to her again. It's been a couple years. Fortunately, she has enough stash to keep her going for a while as well. 

A Kiss for a Snowman - DD
 A Kiss for a Snowman by Dimensions
Stitched as charted on 16ct Aida that came in the kit
 Stitched 1 over 1 tent stitch on 32 ct evenweave and not much to see yet!

Joy Snowglobe - DD
Joy Snowglobe kit, as charted on plastic canvas

April Flip It - Grandma
April Flip-It by Lizzie Kate
Stitched 1 over 1 or 2 over 1 (because I kept forgetting I was stitching 1 over 1) on 22 ct ivory hardanger

I've listed all my projects as they were as of April 15th. I hope you all have had a good month and Happy Stitching!


Wednesday, April 24, 2019

School of Magical Stitches and Literature Year 3, Week 9

I've been trying to get this post up for a few days now, let's see if I can manage it today. :)

It's week 9 and this week the Whomping Willow, a tree that's not quite sentient, but lives up to its name, has been quite annoyed by students going too close to it, and testing out the magic knot that makes it stop flailing its branches around. Also, a secret room has been discovered in a tunnel under the tree! Therefore, this week, we need to stitch on two separate tasks. This first can be done a couple ways.

Task 1 - Option A
Stitch 300 stitches on a tree, grass or shrubs, actually on that item, not just a project that includes those items

Task 1 - Option B
Stitch 300 stitches with green thread. 

Task 2 
Stitch 300 stitching on a building (not just a project with a building)

The alternative, which is new this week, is to stitch 450 stitches on 2 projects of your choice. I think it can be the same project, but you have to explain how you did not upset the Whomping Willow and how you did not let the secret out. 

I think I'd like to work on the 300 stitches tasks because then I'll have more time for the extra credit stitching. 

My thoughts, well, a finish now really, for the first task were to pull out Do Not Meddle, which was last here:
Do Not Meddle on 28 ct Monaco with charted DMC 1 over 1
And is now here:
after over 300 stitches of DMC 890, a pretty dark green. I think this will help with the rest of the dragon too with the outline started. 

For task 2, I don't have a lot of building options. There's one in Ballerina Dreams that I'm just getting started with:
Ignore the stitching, I'm mostly to the brown wall behind the girl as you can see here:
So this is an option for building, also the Ocean Curiosity has this castle thing on the far right:
I'm just not sure if it's 300 stitches because the rocks may not count. Plus it would involve some very good counting given that I'm only this far on the mermaid:

There's also a chance I could get out the Sleigh Ride Stocking and start on the church. That would take careful counting again, but should be possible. 
I'm only here, but the circular part is just a bit above the church steeple, so a possibility:

Two of these are larger kits that could definitely use some love. If you have any other ideas, please let me know! 

Happy Stitching,


Friday, April 19, 2019

Easter Treasure Blog Hop 2019

Hello everyone! Happy Easter! Please check out Jo's blog for the list of everyone participating.

Here is your letter:

And please visit Sheryl at Sewing After Seven for your next letter. 

I was trying in vain to finish a little LK Easter Flip-it, but didn't quite manage it. 

Instead, please enjoy this blast from the past, Somebunny!
Stitched as charted from WOXS 2 over 1 on Aether 28ct Lugana by Chromatic Alchemy

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Happy Stitching,


Tuesday, April 16, 2019

School of Magical Stitches and Literature Year 3, Week 8

This week's homework will be a little tricky!

We have a few different options this week. The easy/safe options are to pick one store in the nearby wizarding town of Hogsmeade and stitch 1000 stitches on a project that fits the description. The even easier option, in that you don't have to try and be creative with how to fit your project into a category, is to stay back at Hogwarts school and not go on a field trip, and stitch 1500 stitches on whatever project you want. 

The more difficult, and also worth extra bonus points option is to try and find a way to stitch something that relates to each store in Hogsmeade and stitch 100 stitches per project, and there's 5 bonus points if you manage all 10. So you get 10 points each for option 1 or 2, or 25 possible points for option 3. Obviously, I'd like to go for option 3, but trying to fit this in might be a challenge. 

Hogsmeade Store List:
1) Dervish and Banges - Magical Equipment
2) Gladrags Wizardwear- Clothing (done!)
3) The Hog’s Head -Pub
4) Hogsmeade Station -Rail Station
5) Honeydukes Sweetshop- Candy (done!)
6) Madam Puddifoot’s -Tea Shop (done!)
7) Scivenshaft’s Quill Shop - Quills and Stationary (done!)
8) The Shrieking Shack - Abandoned Building 
9) The Three Broomsticks - Pub
10) Zonko’s Joke Shop - Joke Items 

I actually made an attempt on this last night, and managed to find a way to fit an Easter design (that I'm not showing till this Sunday) 

The idea is, be creative with how you got to each shop/area and what you purchased or found there. Some people are weaving stories to interconnect everything. So far, on the few I finished, I've just added sentences. Here's where I'm at:

1) Dervish and Banges - you can find magical equipment here, so I'm thinking I can stitch on Full Moon and say it's because of the lunascope I found in this shop. 

2) Gladrags Wizard Wear - The Easter stitch has a hat on it, so I'm using that as part of this shop, so 100 stitches done already. 

3) The Hog's Head - a local, kind of sketchy, pub

I don't have a lot of stitches that have food or drink on them, or unusual, shifty, magical characters, so I'm not sure what to stitch for this one yet. 

4) Hogsmeade Station - railway station

I don't have anything with trains on it, although I could start Hogwarts in a Bottle, it's an amazing pattern, see Rachel's post, or if you can find a way to talk about trains, like you went on a date with someone you met on the train, that that might work too. 

5) Honeydukes Sweet Shop - candy!

Again, I will use the Easter project, and I'm saying I found these delicious candied flowers there. 

6) Madam Puddifoot's Tea House - I'm going to use the Easter pattern again here for the beautiful floral displays on each table ;)

7) Scivenshaft's Quill Shop - you can find quills and parchment here, the Easter pattern has a bird, so I'm going to point out this bird donated some feathers for quills

8) Shrieking Shack - since this is the most haunted site in Britain, I thought I'd get out my Happy Halloween since it has a ghost on it. 

9) Three Broomsticks - inn and pub

I'm a bit lost on what to stitch for this one as well. If I had something with drinks, that would be easy, but I don't. You can weave a yarn about going to Butterbeer (kids drink) with friends, but then you need a project with friends as well. I don't think i really have that either

10) Zonko's Joke Shop - fairly self-explanatory as well, and I'm not sure what to stitch for this either. I was debating about getting out one of my subversive or joke patterns. I have this one to stitch for friends:

If you have any ideas or suggestions, small new starts work too, then please let me know. I'm enjoying the challenge and don't mind a new start if necessary ;) You can find my WIPs here

Happy Stitching!


Sunday, April 14, 2019

People's Choice SAL - April Edition - Specialty Stitches

Only a week late this time for Jo's great People's Choice SAL. This month we're talking about specialty stitches. I do enjoy these, although wish I could do them a bit quicker.

I've done a few projects with specialty stitches and finished all but one I think.

Lakeside Needlecraft Specialty Stitches SAL by Durene Jones (2017)
Stitched with Chromatic Alchemy special edition thread on 28ct Realgar 

This SAL was a lot of fun, and I even stayed up with the weekly updates and got it finished in good time. I like using the thread to turn it into something interesting. 

Hardanger Cross (2017)
Hardanger cross modified from Hardanger Anchor designed by Mabel Figworthy's Fancies (free)

This was a gift for a good friend that was baptized. He invited everyone to his baptism, and it happened in the local lake, it was quite a sight!

Autumn Elegance (2016)

Stitched with Caron Watercolours on 22 ct ivory hardanger

This was completed for a friend, and the chart called for Autumn colours. I found these four colours that I thought worked well together and finished this as a pillow. It's mostly bargello

Homeward Trail (2015)
Stitched on 28 ct blue fabric, unknown type as charted

This has a cross stitch center piece, but there is a ton of specialty stitches to it as well. I started it in 2012 and managed to finish it 3 years late. It is one of the projects I'm most proud of completing

Box of Delights by Elizabeth Almond (2015)
 Stitched on 25ct Pewter Lugana with DMC 823 for outlines and various other colours for the "delights"

This has yet to be turned into anything, and it should make an easy pillow, so maybe with Rachel's Fully Finished Gallery I can get a move on with this one. :)

Song of the Weather Hardanger SAL by Mabel Figworthy's Fancies

I completed this one with various Watercolours and Wildflowers on 18 count Anne Cloth. I backed it with black fabric and it is now a lap quilt. It was fun to complete, and interesting to learn the stitches, although the wrapping of the bars did tend to make my hand cramp. I was likely doing it too tightly. 

As for my current WIP, I'm trying to finish Fleur-de-Lis by Brodeuse Bressane:
28ct blue linen with unknown Soie Cristale I think

I'm trying to stitch this in the colours of the Quebec flag, and I think it looks pretty nice now that I've changed the colours. I had started with satin DMC, and that seemed a little too much. I'm liking this so far. 

Also, I have a long-neglected UFO, the Tree of Stitches by Abi Gurden:
This has been stitched with various DMC variations on 28ct fabric. Again unknown, possibly cream Monaco, etc. I haven't touched this in about 7 years I think. 

I hope you all have specialty stitches attempts to share as well! 

Happy Stitching,


Tuesday, April 9, 2019

School of Magical Stitches Year 3, Week 7 and Week 6

This week is an interesting one! Part of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is a disagreement/argument between Ron Weasley and Hermoine Granger regarding their pets. Ron has a rat and Hermoine added a cat this year. Her cat, Crookshanks detests Ron's pet rat, Scabbers. At one point it seemed as if Crookshanks had eaten Scabbers! Read the book to find out more. :)

The moderators have decided that this part of the book will play out in homework by choosing 2 projects that are fighting for your attention. You have to stitch 500 stitches on 2 separate projects, or an extra 250 penalty stitches on each project. I think that means if you were to only stitch on one project, you could stitch 750 stitches and 500 stitches, since it would count for one part of the homework, but not both. 

I plan on stitching on 2 separate projects, and already completed one of them. I can't show you since I'm hoping to finish it in time for Jo's Easter Blog Hop. :)

For the other project, maybe Tribal Dragon and try and get a finish this week? I managed to move it along last week to here:

Tribal Dragon by White Willow Stitching
stitched 1 over 1 on 25ct pewter Lugana with Waterlilies/Kreinik and Soie Cristale

There might be less than 500 stitches left, but I can expand that to another project if needed. 

Week 6 and EC

I had planned to work on finishing homework and some extra credit while I was away over the weekend, and I packed my remaining homework on Butterfly Quote and Princess and the Dragon for stitching during lectures, but I forgot to pack needles!! I was so annoyed at myself. 

I did get 306 stitches into Butterfly Quote, even though I had to cram some in Sunday night before the due date. :)
Butterfly Quote by Jodyri Designs
Stitched 2 over 1 on 14ct fabric with Jodyri threads

I also brought along some knitting and almost finished a sock!
Goneril sock pattern with Mirasol sock yarn on 2.25mm needles (addi flexi-flips)

I'm looking forward to finishing up this week's homework early and getting some extra credit in. There's no bonus points for completing all the EC assignments, so I'm not too worried if I don't get them all in. 

Hope you've all had a good week!

Happy Stitching!


Thursday, April 4, 2019

School of Magical Stitches and Literature Year 3 Extra Credit

I mentioned a bit about Extra Credit in another post about how one of my projects was a little further along than the last time it had been posted on my blog. As you may or may not be familiar with extra credit, it's basically extra homework to improve your grade in school. For the School of Magical Stitches and Literature this means both extra stitching tasks and extra reading tasks. Since this is a stitching blog, I won't talk about the reading aspect unless anyone specifically asks, but I will talk about the stitching part!

Again, I don't know why this group has rejuvenated my stitching, but it definitely has. It could be my deep-set love of homework. And yes, I believe I live up to my Ravenclaw designation there.

There are 11 extra credit stitching tasks. They all take aspects of the books, and I'll try and give a bit of background in case anyone hasn't read them.

TASKS - to be completed in March and April

1) 500 stitches in DMC 310 for Sirius Black - a new character introduced in this book

I chose Princess and the Dragon and the starting point was here:
and after 500 stitches:
Princess and the Dragon by Charting Creations 
Stitched on 28ct Amarinthine by Chromatic Alchemy 1 over 1 with DMC 310

It's so nice to get this one out again and work on it. I'll be away at a conference over the weekend and will likely bring this, although I'd also like to get some socks finished, so we'll see what I pack. It is nice to fill it in as I listen to lectures though. 

2) 500 stitches for turning back time - there's a sort of time travel bit in the book and we were supposed to stitch on something either designed in the 1990s or prior, i.e. reproduction sampler, etc. 

I chose Basset Hound, which was here:
and got to here: 
Basset Hound by Brenda Franklin (copyright 1997)
Stitched 2 over 2 as charted on 14ct navy Aida

This one is farther along thanks to other homework that came later, and I think it will be a finish this year too! 

3) 500 stitches on a project that has betrayed you - Betrayal is a significant plot point in this story, and the idea is to stitch on something that took longer than expected, or something you love, but is a real pain to work on, etc. 

I haven't chosen anything for this yet. I'm debating about Ballerina Dreams since I had hoped to stitch that in six months last year, but that didn't happen at all. 
Otto might be another option as that is going to take forever. Or I could dig out my first HAED, Siberian Tiger since that was my first experience at this rigors of confetti. 
This hasn't been touched since 2012. It is pretty cool, although I have another full coverage piece of Tiger Eyes from Charting Creations I might like more. But it would kind of be a rite of passage to complete a HAED, so maybe I could put any of my HAED WIPs in this category. That would be Adobe White, Dragon Under Glass, Mini Winter Magic, and Mini Autumn's Promise. 

4) SPOILER ALERT! (Sirius Black is framed) - so we need to work on frames. I found my Satsuma Street Happy Halloween that had a miniscule start previously from Stitch Maynia 2018:
and after 500 stitches is here:
Happy Halloween by Satsuma Street
Stitched 2 over 1 on 16?ct fiddler cloth with charted colours so far

You're only allowed to stitch on frames for this task, but I added the L with one length of black and didn't count the stitches, I just wanted to make sure I was oriented with which way was up! It took me a while when I got it out to work out what square I had stitched. :) 

5) 500 stitches on something that reminds you of Crystal Balls - be creative were the recommendations, so we had some leeway. I don't know about you, but a snow globe really reminds me of a crystal ball, so my poor neglected Joy Snow Globe got some love. It started here as of last year:
and after 500 stitches:
Joy Snow Globe Dimensions kit as charted on plastic canvas

6) 500 stitches on something that makes you so happy you can produce a Patronus charm - this is a tricky bit of magic to make the Dementors, who suck all the happiness out of you, get blown away. 

I thought this was easy and selected Tribal Dragon again, however, now that I've worked on it so much, I think I might not have 500 stitches left! However, only way to know is to try, so here's where it is now. 
Tribal Dragon by White Willow Stitching
stitched 1 over 1 on 25 ct pewter Lugana with Waterlilies/Kreinik and Soie Cristal

The nice thing with these challenges is you can use multiple projects, so if I only have 400 stitches left, I can put the other 100 to something else and take photos of everything so the graders know what's going on. 

7) 500 stitches on something in a different part of the world - one family went to Egypt, a foreign country, so you're supposed to find something from a different part of the world than where you live. I was thinking of the Under-the-Sea SAL by Lakeside Needlecraft that I abandoned a couple years ago, but it has to be somewhere real, and for some reason, the admins don't think mermaids really exist. :)

Instead I'm going to get out my Heritage Stitchcraft Twilight Le Mans since the race only takes place in Le Mans, France and I don't live there.

It's still here from one of the Crazy January February Challenges 2016:

A few hundred stitches should help a picture start to emerge!

8) 500 stitches for the Marauder's Map (a new plot piece/handy device) - we need to stitch on something map or street related. I'm considering my Vermont project that I also started back in 2016.
Vermont by Mary Margaret Waldock
stitched 2 over 1 on 14 ct Nimbus (I think) by Chromatic Alchemy

I had started this as a gift for a co-worker, but the chart was kind of a pain. It was the first handwritten chart I'd tried to work from and I just wasn't loving this one. I think I would like to get back at it and stitch it for DD since she's starting to figure out where we live and how that fits into the rest of the world. 

9) 500 stitches on a redo of a challenge you weren't able to complete - there's a part of the book where the characters "redo" something they've lived through already, but in a different way, it kind of goes with the Time Travel part. 

This is only for people who have failed one of the challenges. As yet, that hasn't happened for me, so I can redo one of the other challenges. I haven't chosen anything for this yet since it's wide open, I may wait to see what needs a little extra to get to a finish. 

10) 200 stitches in something that sucks the life out of you (Dementor) - Dementors are an evil creature that guard a terrible wizard prison and the punishment for certain crimes is the Dementor's Kiss when they suck out your soul. You're not dead, but worse.

This is an easy one. For whatever reason, the 12 Dragons of Xmas do this for me. I think it's the fabric. I'm really not an afghan fan. I'd like to finish them because now I've started, I'd like to finish the series and display this, but it's not fun.

I'm midway through Day 4, so 200 stitches may finish that one. Depending I may choose this for number 9 too if it's out, see if I can get Day 5 finished as well.

11) Watch the Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban movie - show before and after progress.

Princess and the Dragon came out again for this, getting to this point:
Princess and the Dragon by Charting Creations
Stitched 1 over 1 on 28ct Amarinthine Jobelan by Chromatic Alchemy

And that's it! Good luck if you made it this far and wish me luck getting six more of these finished by the end of the month. 

Happy Stitching!


Halfway Through May

Here we are, halfway through May and I'm sure you've been waiting with bated breath on what this month's project will be? I deci...