Thursday, 31 December 2015

2015 Cross Stitching Review

Hello all - Hope you've had a very Merry Christmas and looking forward to a happy, prosperous and stitchy New Year!

I've had a brilliant year cross stitching wise, a couple of finishes and one too many starts as well!

My year in numbers:
  • 8 current WIPs
  • 2 finishes
  • 6 starts
  • 456.5 hours stitched
  • 12 WIPs at the end of the Year!
That last figure is more than 100 hours more than 2014 so I've been very busy! I'm hoping to do around 500 this year linked in with my 10 hour rotation - 50 rotations- but my goals and targets will be in my New Year blog!

So here goes, all the pretty pictures and last year's goal (if applicable) and a before and after picture.

I'll start with my finishes and my proudest Achievement.

Samantha - GOAL - finish by the end of March - COMPLETE 

I was so proud of finishing this since it was one of my longest WIPs and did for the 10 year anniversary of my Nanna's memory.  It was also featured in the World of Cross Stitching magazine.

Samantha by Lanarte
STARTED: May 2006
FINISHED: 24/03/15
28 Count Peach Linen, 2 over 2
Approximately 170 hours (146.5 timed hours plus estimate)


Embedded image permalink

After 61.5 hours:

Strawberry Ice - No goal as this was started and finished in 2015

I decided to have a new start for the Great British Bake Off as I'm a huge fan and managed to finish it for the finale!

Strawberry Ice by Michael Powell
14 count cream aida, 2 over 2 & back stitch
19 hours work

Frogs Kissing - GOAL - Start and Finish - INCOMPLETE

Unfortunately this was a design that I initially struggled with and it's not got finished this year, however it will get finished, hopefully next year.

Here's what it looks like so far after 147 hours work:

Moving onto my new starts for this year:

Playtime Kitten

This one was from the World of Cross Stitching magazine and I've really enjoyed using the hand dyed fabric, it's got a hint of sparkle in it too!

15 hours work:

Sammy Squirrel

This was a design I fell in love with from Gecko Rouge which was the first of two SALs this year.

No start picture, but this is what she looks like now:

As you can see I completed page 2 on the last rotation! So happy I made this much progress.

Beverley's Owl

Another Gecko Rouge Design, the SAL comes to an end in February, but I'm happy to make some decent progress on her.

23.5 hours work:

Love Spring

My final new start was actually my Christmas Day new start since my hubby bought me Love Spring which is in the same series of Love Tree both by Bothy Threads.  I'm really enjoying this and have made loads of progress in such a short space of time!

10 hours work:

The tree branches are actually in metallic, but it doesn't show up too well here. What do you think?

Now moving onto my existing WIPs.

Snowy Friends - GOAL Finish Page 2 - INCOMPLETE

This target just wasn't going to happen with all my SALs going on, but I am happy to have made some progress.  Apologies for the quality of the before picture, it really shows the difference on my phones!


After: 11.5 hours

Beacon Ridge - GOAL Finish Page 2 - INCOMPLETE

I'm so close to finishing page 2, it's definitely going to be finished next year. So excited about page 3 too - there's a bit of the lighthouse on there! 


After: 26 hours

Ladybug Love - GOAL Finish Page 1 - INCOMPLETE

Once again a failed task due to the unplanned new starts. However, I'm pleased with the progress.


After: 10 hours

I love how the detail is coming out and you can see where the lips are going to be and the wings are looking beautiful!

Lakeside Village - GOAL Get Halfway - INCOMPLETE

I've actually finished over a quarter of this beautiful design so shouldn't feel so disheartened on this large design - looking forward to this appearing in my rotation again in the New Year!


After: 12 hours

Frederick the Literate - GOAL 20 Hours Stitching - INCOMPLETE

Almost did this with 12 1/2 hours stitching complete, but the progress is pretty good!


After: 11.5 hours

Greek Steps - GOAL Finish Page 1 - INCOMPLETE

I've been stitching this one over the past week and a bit and nearly finished page 1 as you can see! The building is almost appearing now!


After: 24 hours

Loads of progress, really pleased, maybe a finish next year???

Happy New Year and Happy Stitching all! xxx

Thursday, 10 December 2015

New Year New Starts!!!

Morning all! 

I know my WIP count has risen substantially this year, so I've joined a group to pledge no new starts or purchases from Jan 15th for 6 months (although I'm doing it from the 10th since I'm going to Paris on 10/06/16!!!) 

However that's made me have itchy feet and wanted to start one (or two!) over the festive period but I just can't decide which one(s)!!!!

So my lovely followers, please can you vote on which of the following you'd most like me to start?

Top row:

Napping Kitten
Cats in Needlework
Bottom row:
Love Tree
A day in the life of Hello Kitty
Christmas Moonlight

Unicorn sillouette 

Loneliness of Autumn

Hard decision eh? 

I'll close the vote on Christmas Eve, 6pm GMT. 

Thank you and happy stitching!

Monday, 30 November 2015

My rotation update!

Sorry I haven't posted for a while, it's been a hectic month making Christmas cards and even did a Christmas fair yesterday. I didn't sell much but it's useful knowledge as to what sells if I do any more.

Back to stitching, I started the month finishing 10 hours on Beverley's Owl. I'm actually stitching her again as she came out of my bag again so there's actually quite a bit more done than shown here. Anyway here she is!

Next out was the return of Frogs Kissing. I actually finished this column which I'm so pleased about! I love how this is stitching up even though it's been a pain to stitch!

Another of my SAL pieces came out this time, although as this SAL has now finished, I call it one of my WIPs now. So Sammy Squirrel came to play and as you can see I've nearly finished page 2 now. 

Last Friday I went to the Knitting and Stitching show at Harrogate. I go every year and always have fun but thought this time the prices were higher than I can get online. Possibly why it seemed quieter than usual. Anyhow, here's what I bought! Along with some toppers for my cards, I got Love Tree from Bothy Threads and a Hello Kitty design since I'm a real fan! Oh and some magic guide to start a new design on! 

And finally, tonight I got out my row of penguins advent calendar which I stitched years ago. It's so much more homely than a cardboard one I think. 

I hope you all have a fab Christmas, but I hope to post an update before then!

Happy Stitching! Xx

Thursday, 29 October 2015

October update and a FINISH!

Hello all!

Sorry it's been another month since my last post. I've evidently been busy stitching and I went on holiday to North Northumberland this month. 

As I mentioned last month, my next 10 hour rotation choice was Beacon Ridge so here's what it looks like now:

Nearly page 2 complete and can't wait til I get to the top of the lighthouse. 

Now I promised you a finish - Strawberry Ice by Michael Powell was my British Bake Off piece and I've had so much fun with it! 

Not sure if I'll make it into a bookmark, but we shall see. 

Next up for my rotation was Ladybug Love and again felt I made good progress. Still a way of a page finish, but enjoying it all the same. 

Whilst on holiday, I did 10 hours on Frederick the Literate where loads of progress was made and you Camsey the cat's ears now!

I then returned to Beverley's Owl by Gecko Rouge as part of their SAL. 

At first I was struggling with the confetti, but the more that's done, the easier it gets. I will probably move onto something else on Sunday, but I will put this back in the bag as part of the SAL. 

I'm really enjoying the variety of my WIPs and seeing progress in many of them so the rotation is here to stay. 

Happy Stitching xxx

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

September Update!

Hello all,

Well I've done it again, a whole month between posts, but I have lots of pictures to show you!

Last time I told you about me picking up my UFO Millenium Sampler and that I was working on another square, here it is finished:

And here's what it looks like in total, as you can see i did the outline of the next box and started the wings of the Spitfire!

Although I've decided to walk away from my target of finishing Frogs Kissing this year, I still want to progress it.  It's been really difficult to stitch it with all the pale colours, but I do like how it's looking.  And look! They're kissing! So I'm over half way now and hope to go on to finish them next year. 

As I told you before, I have a British Bake Off WIP, Strawberry Ice Bookmark, it's such a joy to stitch and should be onto the backstitching for the final next Wednesday! How exciting. 


Oh and confession time! I really loved stitching my first Gecko Rouge SAL piece Sammy Squirrel, so what could I say to the second SAL? I chose from the designs Beverley's Owl and although the start date isn't until the 1st October, I just had to start it early! I started with the black on page one (of four) as I wanted to see the outline first! What do you think?

I've re-instated the 10 hour rotation as I find it so exciting not know what I'll be stitching and I'm so rubbish at making a decision on which to stitch next that I spend more time deciding than stitching!  I'm currently stitching the background on Beacon Ridge, so I'll have an update pic on that one soon.

Happy Stitching! xx

Sunday, 30 August 2015

My update at long last!!!

Hi all,

Sorry I haven't been posting for a while, I have been stitching...a lot!

Since I last posted, I have reinstated my 10 hour rotation, but with Frogs Kissing alternating in-between random selections (hubby picks a name out of a hat and then that one goes into another bag so I don't have any duplications).

Firstly, here's my update of Frogs Kissing, I've finished the first 2 columns of pages and 5 and have started columns 3 and 4, but you'll have to wait for more pictures! I love the fact that left frog is very nearly finished and I'm almost half way through the pattern - a finish for the year is still on!

My first 10 hour rotation was Playtime Kitten, it's on hand dyed fabric, but the bright sunshine when I took the photo bleached out the colours in the picture.  I'm hoping to make a lot more progress the next time this one comes around.

Then it was the turn of Greek Steps, I've made quite a bit of progress, 10 hours really does mean a lot of work on these smaller designs! Page 1 out of 2 is set for a finish in 2015 I hope!

Then came along Lakeside Village!  I really love stitching this one and actually managed to finish page 1 out of 4.  I think because this was a yearly goal, I may take it out of my selections, but I've not decided yet.

Oh and I also had a New Start! I'm a big fan of the British Bake Off and to celebrate it's return, I started Strawberry Ice Bookmark by Michael Powell.  I will dedicate every Wednesday during the series.

This is what it is meant to look like when finished:

Strawberry Ice Bookmark

And this is what mine looks like at the minute:

Really slow progress because I'm too focused on the delicious bakes!  It's a little off centre, but because it's for me, I don't mind all that much - the quirkier the better!

And finally, there was a UFO that I didn't talk about because I could envisage me stitching on it for a while.  Anyhow, I got it back in 1999 and had planned to stitch it for my Mum and Dad.  My Mum has recently had it tough after her major car crash recovery, but has also just been diagnosed with breast cancer.  The prognosis is really good, but she's in a bad place and I thought about this design, so much so that I had a vivid dream about it.  

The design I'm talking about is Millenium Sampler.  I had finished roughly half the last time I put it down and that is so long ago, I can't remember when that was.  It got picked out at the last draw, so 10 hours here I come!  This is what it's meant to look like:

Millenium Sampler

Here's where it was last time:

Last night I nearly finished the Battle of Hastings square (top right) but the back stitch bit me on the bum and frog will visit today!  I've decided to leave the gold metallic thread until everything is done and washed.

Phew, a lot of updates! 

I'll post at least once in September to make up for all this!

Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

I'm famous (again)!

My finished Samantha features in this month's World of Cross Stitching. I'm totally stoked and they printed my whole letter. 

A tad emotional today looking at my stitching and my Nanna and Grandad remembering the happy times. X

Friday, 10 July 2015

Frogs Kissing Pages Complete!

Hello all,

Well I did it - pages 1 and 4 (a tiny one) are complete! Do you want to see it?  Of course you do...

I was going to stick to it, but hubby insisted that I restart my rotation, with Frogs Kissing being my focus piece.  I'll do 10 hours of another design and then switch to Froggies for a while.  

The first one out of the bag is Playtime Kitty so look out for an update picture soon! 

Happy Stitching! xxx

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

June 2015 update

Hello all,

We're in the middle of a particular warm day here in the UK but I refuse to call it a heatwave as for me that's a week or longer!

Anyway here's my Froggies (Frogs Kissing) with page 4 started on the bottom! The bottom row is only 8 stitches deep so I've stuck it to the bottom of pages 1-3.  Hoping to have these 2 pages finished within a week. 

On the days I've fancied a change, I've done a little on Greek Steps for a change as all of my other designs are very complex. This is still is a challenge but less so. 

I'm not sure when I'll go back to Squirrel, I'm determined to continue working on the Froggies until it's back on track to finish this year! 

Happy stitching!