Wednesday 10 April 2024

Link-up For Fully Finished Gallery SAL - April 2024

Hello!

I'm AWOL again, but have scheduled this post, and hopefully it works!

It's already another 10th of the month, so here is April's edition of the Fully Finished Gallery SAL, the place to show your cross stitched FFOing achievements since your last link-up.



Yet again I have just the one FFO to show. This was FFOd a while ago but kept in reserve until I had FFOd the other three in this set. Well, that hasn't happened so out it comes!

This is Chick Berry by Valerie Pfeiffer, one of her 'Solos' birds, FFOd as a mini pillow with coordinating fabric and barley twist cord:




I really will have to try hard to finish the other three for next month!

Now it's your turn.

Please link-up using the URL of your FFG SAL post and not the home page of your blog, adding a thumbnail of a finish and either your name or your blog name as the caption. The link-up will stay open for 10 days.


Mister Linky's Magical Widgets -- Thumb-Linky widget will appear right here!
This preview will disappear when the widget is displayed on your site.
If this widget does not appear, click here to display it.

And please don't forget to follow other links and support fellow fully-finish-offers.

Back again next month for another FFG SAL.

Take care,
Rachel x

Friday 29 March 2024

Smalls SAL link-up - March 2024

Good morning one and all,

It's the last Friday of the month, so time for the Smalls SAL.

Entries can be anything Small you have cross stitched during the month, be it an individual piece, part of a set, a portion of a big design, or even an unfinished Small if you haven't been able to complete it. All Smalls, or part(s) thereof, are welcome!



I only have this month's Nordic Christmas Sampler, this time Love from day 15. Under the 'Love' banner was a simple geometric design, but I thought it should be hearts so stitched those instead:

Nordic Christmas Sampler Day 15 - love by ZindagiDesigns (etsy)
Stitched on 16ct White with iridescent pearl/opal flecks
Started - 2nd March 2024
Finished - 13th March 2024
Total stitching time - 6 hours 40 minutes


I really like this one; it's definitely my favourite so far.


Now it's your turn.

You know the format - please link up using the URL of your Smalls SAL post, with a title (usually your name) and a thumbnail. The link will stay open for 10 days.

Mister Linky's Magical Widgets -- Thumb-Linky widget will appear right here!
This preview will disappear when the widget is displayed on your site.
If this widget does not appear, click here to display it.

I look forward to seeing your Small accomplishments this month!

Take care,
Rachel x

Monday 25 March 2024

Mischievous March New Start #4 - April Biscornu

Morning all!

Yet another week when I couldn't decide what to start, so took the easy way out with another biscornu.



This is April's biscornu which I chose to stitch in bright spring colours. I've altered the design very slightly to account for it being stitched on aida instead of evenweave, but it doesn't look much different.

April Biscornu by Magical Quilts And More
Stitched on 16ct Rhododendron overdyed aida with Jodyri thread Passionberry Cake
Stitching time to date - 1 hour 30 minutes


Next weekend will be the final Mischievous March new start, a Snuffles in traditional grey/coral colours chosen by Leonore. All I have to do is find the right fabric.

Take care,
Rachel x

Thursday 21 March 2024

Mischievous March New Start #3 - March Biscornu

Morning all!

So having looked through a list of potential new starts, I decided that they were all too big if I wanted to keep to the idea that all Mischievous March new starts should be small. So what to do?



Well, I went back to an old friend - variegated thread - so that I could stitch another biscornu.

It wasn't my intention to stitch the months in order, nor to stitch them as birthstones (as the designer intended) nor in colours relevant to the month. However, having done a lovely-dovey coloured theme for February, and starting this on St Patrick's Day, I thought why not?

So here is the start of March's biscornu. The thread sort of resembles the green of Ireland with the yellow being the Leprechaun's gold and the brown being the pot. And it's stitched on a fabric called Clover, so there are the Irish connections!

March Biscornu by Magical Quilts And More
Stitched on 16ct Clover overdyed aida with Jodyri thread 194 Toxic Banana
Stitching time to date - 2 hours 35 minutes


I love how it's looking so far.

No idea what start number 4 will be yet!

Take care,
Rachel x

Monday 18 March 2024

A-Z of WIPs Challenge 2024 - E and F

Good afternoon!

The A-Z of WIPs Challenge 2024 is a little SAL being attempted by Serendipitous Jo and myself to stitch our way through an alphabet of WIPs at two/three per month, starting with A and B in January and finishing with Y and Z in December. 



A to D have been successfully completed, so now it's the turn of E and F.


E is for... Elixir Of Luck by CrazyBlendShop (etsy)
Started March 2022 - last worked on April 2023.
I'm sounding like a broken record here, but this was another WIP I didn't want to put down after its two days of attention. I was hoping to stitch all of the bits above the liquid but didn't quite make it. The  pale yellows are really soothing to work with but next time (whenever that may be) I've got the lovely richer darker yellows to look forward to.



Stitching time to date - 9 hours 5 minutes


F is for... France, an 'All Around The World' chart by Soda Stitch
Started July 2021 - last worked on April 2023.
I usually stitch from right to left, but just had to finish the iconic Eiffel tower before carrying on with the lady.



Stitching time to date - 6 hours 10 minutes


These may have only been out for a couple of days, but I really enjoyed working on both and am again happy with my progress.

Next month G and H, where I'm hoping for not one but two 'G' finishes before heading off to a magical village for H.

Take care,
Rachel x

Wednesday 13 March 2024

Mischievous March New Start #2 - Halloween Pumpkin

Morning all!

Weekend, and start, number two of Mischievous March 2024 has been and gone.



This week I chose a Halloween project. It's one from a set of four designs, two of which I completed in 2016 and the other two of which have been on my to-do list since. I thought this would be a good time to start another.

And here it is. I spent one day on the border and one day on the pumpkin. Ideally I would have liked to have completed the border but, seeing as it's called Halloween Pumpkin, I thought I'd better actually stitch some of the pumpkin itself!

Halloween Pumpkin (Cross Stitch Crazy magazine chart - date unknown)
Stitched on 16ct Azalea overdyed aida
Stitching time to date - 3 hours 50 minutes


I love how the pumpkin, at the moment, looks a bit like a crescent moon wearing a party hat!

I think I've decided on the third Mischievous March start but as it's not a small-small I'm not totally sure. Still a couple more days to decide.

Take care,
Rachel x

Sunday 10 March 2024

Link-up For Fully Finished Gallery - March 2024 (and Blogoversary winner)

Hello all!

It's the 10th of the month, so here is March's edition of the Fully Finished Gallery SAL, the place to show your cross stitched FFOing achievements since your last link-up.



Despite good intentions, I have just one finished piece again this month, the very pretty February biscornu, a fairly easy and very therapeutic finish:





Now it's your turn.

Please link-up using the URL of your FFG SAL post and not the home page of your blog, adding a thumbnail of a finish and either your name or your blog name as the caption. The link-up will stay open for 10 days.


Mister Linky's Magical Widgets -- Thumb-Linky widget will appear right here!
This preview will disappear when the widget is displayed on your site.
If this widget does not appear, click here to display it.

And please don't forget to follow other links and support fellow fully-finish-offers.

* * * * * * * * * *

Now for the Blogoversary winner...

I asked which colours you thought I should stitch my next Snuffles in. Thank you all for your suggestions which were: 

1 - Linda - blue, green and yellow
2 - Rita - orange, blue and yellow
3 - Clare - bright limes 10, 11 and 12
4 - Leonore - dark grey, light grey and coraly-red
5 - Katie - red, white and blue
6 - Tiff - deep purple (or deep purple and gold)
7 - Faith - red (or tan)


Of course, for most colours, there are a lot of tones so I tried to pick the three shades that went together best. Here are my current Snuffles with your suggestions:



I have a favourite combination (which I won't divulge!) but for impartiality asked hubby to choose his favourite, and he chose:



Congratulations Leonore! If you send me a comment or email we'll discuss what you would like as a prize.

This Grey/Coral Snuffles will be started on 31st March as my final new start for Mischievous March. He won't take long to stitch, so should appear as a finished piece in April's Smalls SAL post (or sooner if I'm too excited!)

Thank you again for your suggestions. Now I have to think up another question for my 11th Blogoversary!

In the meantime, see you for another FFG SAL next month.

Take care,
Rachel x

Wednesday 6 March 2024

Mischievous March New Start #1 - Japan (Mount Fuji) Bauble

Morning all!

For the last three years I have treated myself to a Mischievous March mini new start binge so, not wanting to break with 'tradition', this year is no exception!



If you remember, the idea of Mischievous March is to start a small project each weekend during the month, with the aim of also finishing them all during the month, or reasonably soon afterwards, hence the emphasis on 'small'.

Looking back, 2021 and 2023 were successfully completed but I still have three of the four new starts left from 2022, so I've been far from perfect!

This year I have had terrible trouble deciding which projects to start. I don't think I've ever changed my mind so often! But for week one I finally chose a small bauble. I'm not going to stitch the bauble hanger, instead just add a top row to make the image a circle. Here's how the finished piece will look, and my start over the weekend:


Japan (Mount Fuji) Bauble by 1000sPatterns (etsy)
Stitched on 16ct Cloud Spring Sky overdyed aida
Stitching time to date - 3 hours 30 minutes


I'm really happy with that start.

Now to decide what to start for week two; with only three days left I still have no idea!

Take care,
Rachel x

Sunday 3 March 2024

Tenth Blogoversary Giveaway

Good morning all!

It's 9:22am on the 3rd March 2024 so it's Happy Tenth Blogoversary to me!!



I say it every year but, wow, in some ways I can't believe I'm still stitching and blogging, and fairly successfully even if I do say so myself! Thank you all for continuing to read, comment on and participate in my blog postings - I wouldn't do it without you!

Blogoversary time means it's time for my annual blogoversary giveaway. For the last few years I have asked you to guess the answer to a question, but this year I couldn't think of one!

So, this year, what I'm going to ask you to do is suggest three colours to stitch my next Snuffles in! They could be three threads of the same tone, or three completely different colours (one for the front legs, one for the back legs and darker tummy stripes, and one for the wings and lighter tummy stripes). Then, to avoid bias or subjectivity, I'll get my hubby (who has practically zero interest in my hobby but does like these dragons) pick the colour combination he likes best.

Here's a reminder of the ones I have stitched so far. Actually that's not true; I have stitched three for gifts - a lilac one and two which have never been shown - but I can't tell you what colours those two are!



Up for grabs, as usual, is an e-voucher for the store of your choice to the value of £10 (or local currency equivalent) or a RAK or suchlike for a similar value. I'm always open to suggestions from the winner.

All you have to do is:
1) be a follower of my blog via the followers thingy on the left
2) leave a comment on this post with your colour suggestions

Only one entry per person will be accepted.

Entries will close at 5am UK time on 10th March 2024, so you have just under a week to leave a comment. The winner will be announced at the end of the 10th March FFG SAL link-up post, so keep an eye out for that - it's up to you to contact me, otherwise you will lose out! I'll get the prize out once confirmation emails have been exchanged.

Good luck!
Rachel x

Wednesday 28 February 2024

New Start - Female Rainbow Dragon - 10 hours

Good morning one and all!

One of my planned new starts for this year was a dragon to celebrate (or rather as an excuse for) 2024 being the Chinese Year Of The Dragon.

My intention was to start it on 10th February - Chinese New Year itself - but that didn't work out. So, with 8 being the Chinese lucky number, and 10 mine, I gave myself the choice of then starting it on either 18th or 20th. I went with the latter as I wasn't quite up to sitting over a frame prior to that.

Anyway, here is the pattern and my first 10 hours of progress:


Female Rainbow Dragon by PatternNadGavr (etsy)
Started - 20th February 2024
Stitched on 32ct Opalescent Ink Murano


This doesn't really feel like 10 hours of work, but I did start with the most confetti part; after the autumnal blossom and green leaves, most of the remaining colours are fairly blocky.

It seems a shame to stitch over so much of the opalescent fabric, but I do intend to leave a good margin of bling when it's framed.

I'm 'hoping' to get half way through it this year which will equate to about 50-60 hours of stitching. Fingers crossed, five hours per month should be doable.

Take care,
Rachel x

Friday 23 February 2024

Smalls SAL link-up - February 2024

Good morning one and all,

Here we are again - the last Friday of the month - so it's time for the Smalls SAL. Entries can be anything Small you have cross stitched during the month, be it an individual piece, part of a set, a portion of a big design, or even an unfinished Small if you haven't been able to complete it. All Smalls, or part(s) thereof, are welcome!



I have three Smalls this month - a Christmas piece, a new start, and a monarch.


Here is this month's Nordic Christmas Sampler. This is the Star which was charted as Day 1. I swapped some of the colours and am not that taken with my interpretation but am not going to frog and restitch:

Nordic Christmas Sampler Day 1 - star by ZindagiDesigns (etsy)
Stitched on 16ct White with iridescent pearl/opal flecks
Started - 1st February 2024
Finished - 5th February 2024
Total stitching time - 8 hours 15 minutes


Second is a new start and finish. After a break from stitching for eight days (yes, I know.... shocking... but rather forced upon me than by choice!) I wanted to stitch something simple so started the February Geometric Square by Magical Quilts And More which will be finished as a biscornu. The back is not as detailed as the front because... well... what's the point?! I thought it apt that I should start this on St. Valentine's Day with appropriately coloured love-themed fabric and thread:


February Geometric Square by Magical Quilts And More
Stitched on 16ct Cloud Pink aida with Jodyri thread #53 Tropical Bay
Started - 14th February 2024
Finished - 19th February 2024
Total stitching time - 10 hours 25 minutes


Finally, at the end of last month I was at a bit of a loose end so stitched the next monarch, Victoria. Goodness knows when her actual 'A Monarch A Month' post will appear but at least she's ready to go!) I'm not sure I like her features and expression, but she was rather haughty so they kind of work:

Victoria from Kings and Queens by Bothy Threads
Stitched on 32ct Vintage Grey murano
Started - 27th January 2024
Finished - 30th January 2024
Total stitching time - 6 hours 45 minutes


Now it's your turn.

You know the format - please link up using the URL of your Smalls SAL post, with a title (usually your name) and a thumbnail. The link will stay open for 10 days.


Mister Linky's Magical Widgets -- Thumb-Linky widget will appear right here!
This preview will disappear when the widget is displayed on your site.
If this widget does not appear, click here to display it.

I look forward to seeing your Small accomplishments this month!

Take care,
Rachel x

Monday 19 February 2024

A-Z of WIPs Challenge 2024 - C and D

Good afternoon!

The A-Z of WIPs Challenge 2024 is a little SAL being attempted by Serendipitous Jo and myself to stitch our way through our alphabet of WIPs at two/three per month, starting with A and B in January and finishing with Y and Z in December. 



Last month you saw A and B so this month it's C and D.


C is for... the Happiness Delivery Couple (and the Christmas Tree) by Soda Stitch
Started June 2020 - last worked on April 2023.
I thought I'd continue working my way down this one so concentrated on mainly the hair and skin. I don't like the boy's big mouth so will be adapting it into a grin similar to that of the girl. This WIP will probably reappear for Christmas In July.



Stitching time to date - 8 hours 25 minutes


D is for... Dragon Shelf by CrossStitchAlexaKiss (no longer on etsy) stitched on Fairy Dust Multi Pastel aida
Started July 2021 - last worked on July 2021.
After having not stitched on this one since the day I started it, this soon became a WIP I didn't want to put down, hence the amount of progress. Another couple of years of this SAL, and little Horace here could become a finish!



Stitching time to date - 6 hours 40 minutes


As with last month, I'm again really pleased with the progress I was able to make on these. This Challenge is working well so far.

Next month E and F, involving some sorcery and a trip to Continental Europe!

Take care,
Rachel x

Saturday 17 February 2024

Link-up For Fully Finished Gallery SAL - February 2024

Hello all!

It's supposed to be the 10th of the month but I'm a week late; thank you for your patience!

But here it is, February's edition of the Fully Finished Gallery SAL, the place to show your cross stitched FFOing achievements since your last link-up.

And, seeing as it is this SAL's 5th birthday, it's an extended version, where I've asked willing participants to show some (or all!) of their Box Of Shame so that others can not only be nosey, but also perhaps help with pieces where you are stuck for ideas.

Now, you've probably all posted your SALs but seeing as I haven't read them I have no idea what you've done so I'm going to post this as if it were on time.



I have just the one finished piece I want to show this month, Golden Snitch In A Bottle, finished as a mini pillow with coordinating fabric and barley twist cord. That's three of these four Harry Potter themed bottles FFOd; maybe the final one will appear next month.



Now it's your turn.

Please link-up using the URL of your FFG SAL post and not the home page of your blog, adding a thumbnail of a finish and either your name or your blog name as the caption. The link-up will stay open longer this month, closing on 29th February.


Mister Linky's Magical Widgets -- Thumb-Linky widget will appear right here!
This preview will disappear when the widget is displayed on your site.
If this widget does not appear, click here to display it.

And please don't forget to follow other links and support fellow fully-finish-offers.


Now for the Box Of Shame!

I currently have 60 pieces in my Box, many of which form complete or partial sets. I'm not showing everything, but most, starting with the ones I know what to do with, and ending with the ones I don't. It's an insight as to what might appear in this FFG SAL in the coming year.


Ten Dragons by StitchItPicasso. These are going to be made into bunting using the coordinating felt, fabrics and ribbons as shown, but I haven't decided quite how, i.e. whether to have the fabric on the back or the front, and whether to mount the dragons on card, or leave them as they are:



Five Durene Jones Doggies. I've made a start FFOing these into a patchwork cushion. Getting the warp/weft of the fabric straight and to line up with the aida is a bitt fiddly, so it's small steps on this one. The paler bottom fabric will probably be the backing fabric:



Four Valerie Pfeiffer Solos. These will be FFOd as mini pillows. I've done one, but hidden it as I want to complete all four before showing them:



The three Dolphins and three Scarlet Macaws are going to be triple hangers, with the pieces hanging one below the other. Looking at the photos, I think I need brighter fabric for the Macaws:



Let's Be Frozen, Grow Your Own and Pandas are all going to be framed. I just haven't got around to ordering them yet!



The cross stitched finishes I'm a bit stuck for inspiration are:

Eight Moonrise/Moonset finishes by Whispered By The Wind. Flat hanging ornies seem the best way forward for these, but I already make enough of those and would like to do something different with these two sets:



Five Winnie The Poohs by Designer Stitches. Originally I wanted to FFO these as a patchwork cushion, the same as the doggies above, but they don't quite work so the jury's still out. What I do want to do, however, is definitely use the fabric:



If you have any suggestions for the two above, my ears are open!

I hope you will also take time to open up your Boxes Of Shame (or whatever you call them). In the past I have been told that Box Of Shame is a bit negative; they should be Boxes Of Pride or Delight, or something more positive. I just use Box Of Shame because of the shame and guilt I feel about stitching projects but not finish-finishing them.

Hope to see you again next month... and on time!

Take care,
Rachel x