Monday, 31 December 2012

Should Auld Aquaintance be Forgot...

Happy New Year Everybody...
I think if we were all together IRL, we'd be standing together, arms linked singing in the New Year. 
Where once upon a time - in the not too distant past - I felt so isolated as a cross stitcher, I now feel as if everybody I know stitches!  They don't, of course, it's just that I've met so many people on line who share this stitchy obsession, that there's no way I could ever feel isolated again,  Firstly, to the ladies whom I originally met on the cross stitch board - you all hold a very special place in my heart.  We've walked through a lot together over the past few years.  To the stitchers I have met in the blogosphere and in the facebook groups - it has been fun getting to know you all in the last two years and I look forward to getting to know everyone better in the time to come.
Ok, must stop or I'll get all mushy and end up crying!  LOL.
We're being very boring tonight.  The kids are in bed.  No company over.  Just DH and I watching tv and DSS playing x-box... I'm stitching.  Correction.  I will be stitching.  Desperately trying to squeak in one more finish, so I can say I finished 12 in '12!  LOL.  I've been "almost finished" Nora Corbett's "L" for almost two years.  Tonight is the night - and there's a little Bubble upstairs who will be demanding in the morning; "Did Mama finish my "L" last night?"  She's been very patient but is not willing to wait any longer.
It was supposed to be finished for her fifth birthday...ummm... *cough, cough* May 2011... Mama got a bit sidetracked with other stitchy business.  I know, I know, I'm hanging my head in shame.
I'm ending 2012 feeling very satisfied. I've finish 10 of the 15 pieces I started as part of the Crazy January Challenge. I had one extra start and finish and have put in a few stitches here and there on other WiPs, even though I didn't end up participating in the WiPocalypse after all.
So... the outstanding WiPs would be...

From CJC2012
  • Celtic Christmas (Conversion with cape and hood)
  • O Holy Night
  • Train of Dreams
  • Woodland Enchantress
  • EMS Garden Alphabet (Afghan)
WiPs started prior to 2012
  • Lizzie Kate ABC for Parents
  • Dimensions Precious Moments Advent Calendar
  • HAED Queen of Hearts
  • Joan Elliott's Little Summer Fairy
The 2013 Crazy January Challenge begins in a little under three hours but I've decided to do things a little differently this year.

I really love the five WiPs that are left from the 2012 challenge.  I've decided to spend the first 15 days of January giving those pieces some love.  Then once we hit January 16, it's all on!!!  LOL, I WILL be starting another crazy 15 pieces.  If you're interested in my list for the year - click on the tab at the top of this blog page. 

Happy New Year to you all.  Be safe, be merry and above all, be blessed!  May all your hopes and dreams for the year ahead come to pass and I pray your fears amount to nothing!

Much Love.



Sunday, 30 December 2012

Super-Duper Happy Dance!

I'm pretty simple to please, really. (My DH might disagree...)  It doesn't take much to keep me happy.  The thing I've most wanted of late, is time.  Just time.  Time to myself.  Time to stand in the shower without having to rush so that I can't enjoy the hot water.  Time to move leisurely 'round the supermarket and not have to dash in, dash out. Time to do stuff without having to yell at the kids to "Hurry up, Mummy's got to go to work!"  Most of all I've wanted time to stitch...

Amazingly, time is exactly what I have had over the past week! 

You all know I finished "Hope" a few days ago.  Well, last night (actually 12:50am, this morning) I finished "Imagine".

Wooooooo Hoooooo!!!

I didn't think I'd get a chance to do any more to Imagine this year, let alone actually finish it!

Remarkably, against all odds,  here it is:  Joan Elliott's "Imagine" on 32ct Blue Whisper linen.  DMC floss, Kreinik 032 BF added for a little sparkle in the starbursts (I did that for all four words - I do love sparkles!) and Mill Hill beads attached with YLI invisible thread.


All four words on the one piece of fabric...

 Like I said, it doesn't take much to make me happy...
xxx K

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Happy Dancing!

'member how I wished for more stitching time for Christmas??? 

Well, guess what Santa brought me? 

Woo Hoo!

I actually had time Christmas Eve, Christmas Night and then again this morning to sit down and stitch.  I've finished "Hope!"

I didn't think I'd be done before the weekend but not only have I finished my Crazy No 9 but I've got a recognisable unicorn appearing on No 10!

Thank you Santa.

"Hope"  Joan Elliott's Inspirational Words
Crazy January Challenge 2012
Finish number Nine
32 ct Antique Blue Whisper Linen

Here's "Imagine".  We're going away for the next two days.  I don't expect to get much stitching done but I didn't think I'd get my stitchy Christmas either.  I'd like to finish this one at the weekend... Fingers crossed... or maybe not fingers, that would make it difficult to stitch!  I'll cross my legs instead. *wink*

Finally, here's the three completed words, all together.


I hope you have all had a wonderful Christmas.  I'm looking forward to re-connecting with all my stitching friends here in the blogosphere.  I have missed you in the past few crazy months.

xxx K

Monday, 24 December 2012

All I want for Christmas... some extra stitching time! It's not going to happen but a girl can wish, can't she?

I'm very close to the final Happy Dance of the year. I really wanted to finish the final two Inspirational Words but finishing three of the four words this year is a reasonable achievement.

 At least it is in my very humble opinion, LOL.

I stitched and frogged (and stitched and frogged and stitched and frogged) and finally stitched again and finished the left hand dove on "Hope"

aaand then I realised that the dove's back looked really weird.  *sigh*
I really didn't want to frog again, so I stitched the right hand dove, then went back and fixed the poor deformed bird. No, I didn't re-frog.  I bluffed.  I clipped a couple of backstitches, put them in the right spot and voila, looks okay. *wink*


Last night, I made some headway on the starbursts and I'm hoping to finish them tonight - if hubby will help with wrapping pressies then I'll definitely get them done.  That will only leave the beading, which I'll get done at the weekend.

Final pic... Believe hidden on the scroll, Dream finished, Hope nearly done and Imagine to come...


Saturday, 22 December 2012

It's the End of the World as we know it...

and I feel fine!

I love that old REM song - especially the version they performed on MTV Unplugged...

Well, we're still alive and kicking down-under in the Antipodes.  How 'bout all you Northerners?

I guess this means I've still got a shot at finishing my 10 out of 15!

Wish me luck, I'm off to set my needles afire.

x K

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Christmas Is...

I got itchy fingers a few weeks back.  Even with a bazillion WiP's to choose from, I still wanted to do something new.  I figured if I started something little, then at least I'd get it finished and it would be enough to satisfy those itchy fingers.

I ended up pulling Lizzie*Kate's "Christmas Is..." out of my stash, hunting up some suitable thread from the stash to substitute for the Weeks Dye Works that is charted - I've never yet bought any WDW.  Don't know why.  I'm sure I'll get around to remedying that this coming year *wink*

It was a super quick and easy stitch.  Loving the Crescent Colours I used - They're a little brighter than the original charted colours. Stitched on 32 count Lambswool linen by Permin.


Monday, 17 December 2012

IHSW and Finish number Eight!

Woah, hold me up!  Two blog posts in a row!

So, I just realised that I've come back just in time for the last hermitting weekend of the year - yay!

I stitched for several hours both nights of the weekend and as a result have now completed crazy number eight.

Here is "Holly and Ivy" from Shepherd's Bush.  It came in kit form with gorgeous silks and linen provided.  I've never used such a beautiful piece of linen.  It's so soft - it's a 30ct R&R, I believe and I think I will be saving my pennies to invest in a few pieces.  It's hot off the hoop, please excuse the "un-ironed-ness."

The words are stitched one over one.  The crosses in the top part are one over two...except for the moment I realised I had stitched the centre motif using two threads!  Aaargh!  It was a moment of panic and then a realisation that my stinginess with thread really is a blessing in cases like these!  I had plenty of silk to spare and am already planning on using these leftovers to substitute in a LHN piece next year...

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Time Flies...

...when you're having fun - and also when you're so ridiculously busy that you don't have time for the fun stuff!

I cannot believe it's this close to Christmas.  I also cannot believe I kept my blog for a whole year, hit my first blogoversary and then promptly disappeared from the blogosphere!

For those of you who have stayed on my list of followers, thank you! 

I've had a very, very busy year and although my opening sentence was a whinge about no time for fun stuff, there actually has been some very cool fun stuff in among the exhausting work schedule.

You all know I joined the Crazy January 15 challenge.  Well, I've managed a few finishes. Seven actually.  I'll finish the eighth tonight.  So there'll be a happy dance here around midnight.

(I will post photo's, promise.  Just thought I'd get something at least on the blog before we see December out.)

I joined the WiPocalypse and although I haven't managed to make the required posts, I have managed to stitch on all of my WiPs at some point during the year.

So - the fun stuff... well, aside from stitchy fun (eg the aquisition of OoP Mira TTAS) I got to go home to New Zealand for a week, my sister came over from NZ to visit us in Sydney and we had a family trip to Melbourne to go to the Phillip Island MotoGP.

Ok... so, photos...

These are the seven finishes of the fifteen starts.

First Bass, Ink Circles "First Bass". 32ct antique white lugana. Crescent Colours overdyed cotton floss.  First finish of the Crazy January Challenge, aka Crazy 15, 2012. Jan 21 2012.
Ink Circles
"First Bass"
Alto Gether Now
Ink Circles
"Alto Gether Now"
Here Comes Treble
Ink Circles
"Here Comes Treble"
Joan Elliott
Dream Finished
Joan Elliott
Lilly- Pixie Couture
Nora Corbett
"Lilly Pixie"
Christmas Elf Fairy
"Christmas Elf Fairy"

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Happy Blogoversary to Me!


I missed it.  Apparently it was yesterday.


*smacking forehead*

I've been berating myself for neglecting my stitching and my blog so badly these last couple of months but today I realised just why I've found it so hard to keep up with basic stuff like housework, let along fun stuff like stitching and blogging...

I added up my actual face-to-face teaching hours over the past 10 weeks.  I didn't realise but I've put in a 45 hour week, every week for 10 weeks straight.  This doesn't count travelling time between lesson locations, preparation time or "make-up" lessons...  No wonder my house looks like a tip, my stitching hasn't progressed and my kids wonder who on earth this person demanding to be called "Mama" could possibly be!

So, my dear fellow stitchers, please forgive me for my lack of participation in those activities we all hold so dear: IHSW, WIPocalypse, TUSAL...

Our school holidays begin on Friday - Two whole weeks off, beginning with Easter.  I'm looking forward to hanging out with my kids, doing a heap of stitching and maybe even cleaning my house!



Saturday, 17 March 2012

A Little Bit of Progress and an Award!

Wow!  Wow!

Adrienne from Trylla Craft has awarded me the "Liebster" blogger award! 

Liebster is a German word, meaning favorite, dearest or beloved, and the Liebster is awarded by bloggers to other, newer bloggers who have fewer than 200 followers, to spread the word and help the new(er)bies gain wider recognition.

Thank you so much.  Such a surprise - I feel truly honoured. 

I'm now required to post some previously unknown facts about myself and also pass the award on to four other bloggers... I'm going to take some time to think this through carefully so watch out for my next post or two...

...and it seems that plodding along really does make progress! 
I've finished all the stitching on the Christmas Elf Fairy.  The final crosses were in Rainbow Gallery White Wisper.  I've never used Wisper before and really didn't know what to expect.  I've read many different opinions and find I'm still somewhat undecided myself.  I'm yet to try "fluffing" the Wisper, figuring I'll wait until I finish beading, to get the final "fur cuff" effect. 


I love the Kreinik #4 braid in the Christmas tree.  Mixed in with the Crescent Colours variegated green, it has a lovely effect.

I've only just started the beading and I was a little worried that they might disappear on the white opal lugana but so far, I think I really like the subtle bling...

If I can stay focussed, I plan to finish the beading on this in the next night or two, then onward to Crazies five through eight!  I need to order some beads though... 123stitch, here I come!

Have a fabulous stitchy weekend everybody!


Monday, 12 March 2012

Plodding Along

Huge apologies for my extended absence!

Life has been crazy busy and stitching has had to take a back seat.  I've been plodding along on my Crazy January number four - the Christmas Elf Fairy - and I feel like I've finally got something worth showing you all.  Getting near to the home stretch!

This is how she looked when I put her away last night:


I hope you are all well.  I've very much missed all the goings on around the blogosphere and will be endeavouring to catch up asap.

Apparently I have my blogoversary coming up in 22 days - might need to do something about that!

Happy Stitching everyone.



Monday, 20 February 2012


Ummm... ok, so I think I stitched myself out over December and January.  I've done nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Nothing.  The mojo has left the building.  I sat on the couch next to my stitching and didn't even open the bag.  I did take said stitching to work on Friday, I did open the bag.  But I realised upon opening the bag that it didn't contain my hoop.  Can't stitch this one without my hoop.  D'oh!

Ah well.

I must confess that although I haven't been stitching, I have still managed to add to my stash! 

My name is Kirstin and I am an addict.  A cross stitch addict.  It's been 18 hours since my last purchase...
I finally, finally made a decision on a piece of fabric for Winter White Santa (Mirabilia) - so I have made my very first Polstitches purchase.  It's a 32ct Opal Belfast - Blue Moon. 

I bought the Evening in the Park PDF - but I think I might have told you that already.

I visited my favourite (Not So Local) LNS - they who have The Basket and I once again just had to have the contents of said basket. I got a heap of Mill Hill charms for 50c each - I think 11 different packets. That's a fortune's worth in Aussie Dollars for just $5.50! I also ended up with a couple of Little House Needleworks charts that had been reduced to $2 each - can't leave those just sitting there feeling lonely and rejected...and whoops - a couple, well three, actually, Shepherd's Bush charts just kind of fell into my hands too... I have to confess they were not in The Basket.

Oh, and I stopped off at my other (NSL) LNS and picked up two pieces of fabric - This (NSL) LNS don't have a "Basket" so I have to be very well behaved when I visit.  I bought a little piece of 32ct lambswool linen and a piece of ...oh no!  The name has escaped me.... aargh!  Brain fart!  Um... it's ... oh help, I'll go grab it...    .... *phew* it's 28ct "Sambuca".

I now have two largish pieces of this Sambuca stuff.  I've got lots of ideas but so far none of the charts I've had "a-ha!" moments for have actually fit the squares.  They are 47 x 47 if you stitch over 2 and 94 x 94 stitching over 1.  Everything is either too big or too small!

I'm going to stalk all your IHSW posts tonight.  I'll use this as an excuse for not stitching myself and just keep my fingers crossed that you can all motivate me to kick start my mojo :)

Ooo, and as a little Off Topic snippet, I just got back from visiting the Harry Potter Exhibiton which is currently in Sydney.  It's moving along in three weeks or so but DH and I had a very rare morning off together and decided to go.  It was fabulous.  If you're a Harry Potter fan and you get the opportunity to go - DO!

Right, back to work now, there's no rest for the wicked.  Seven music lessons to teach back to back this afternoon.

Happy stitching everyone!


Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Didn't I just have a Holiday?

Well, I want another one!

I feel I've worked a half years' worth already and It's not even halfway through week three of term.

Next to no stitching - a little done but not much. Hoping I'll get some in tonight so I've at least got something worth showing for WIPocalypse.

One the stitchy front, even though there's not been much actual stitchery, I bought Evening in the Park!  The PDF arrived in my inbox last night.  So exciting!

I'm flying out the door but thought I'd better poke my nose in and say "Hi".  All is well, just hectic and crazy as it always is getting the school year underway.

Happy Valentines Day to you all!

Newton's Law
18ct white aida
Anchor floss
For my daughter, Lily.

Friday, 3 February 2012

So this is Summer?

Ummm... yeah, right. Not.

For some reason, Summer appears to have almost completely bypassed Sydney.  It's February.  The children all went back to school this week after our supposed Summer Holidays.  Typically, Tuesday, the day most started school, it was a scorching 34 degrees Celcius (that's 93.2 F) but now here we are on Friday, it's only 17 degrees  (62.6F) and it's pouring with rain. There are severe floods in the north of the state and even here on the coast we are getting rather soggy.

I'm still keeping up with my stitching.  I haven't done anywhere near as much but there has been at least a few stitches each day.  I'm currently working on my Mira Christmas Elf Fairy, which was my #4 Crazy start.  Not much to show as I'm working on her wings and it's just an endless sea of white...

The past eight nights we have watched our way through the entire Harry Potter series.  Of course we had seen them all before but thought it might be fun to watch them all back to back.  We did and it was.  Even picked up on a few little things we'd missed on prior occasions.  If you're a HP fan and you've never done the marathon, it's worth it.

I hope you are all well, I'm so far behind on everyone's blogs!


Saturday, 28 January 2012

Here Comes Treble!

I finished my Crazy #3 this morning!

Here Comes Treble

Ink Circles "Here Comes Treble"
32ct antique white lugana
Crescent Colours overdyed floss

All three, ready for framing!
(Sorry, not the best photo.  Looks a bit washed out.)


Thursday, 26 January 2012

You Enabler You! (and a Happy Dance)

Thank you so much for all the replies encouraging me to have a go at a Chatelaine.

I will be saving up my pennies to get the chart and supplies for Evening in the Park.

Now for opinions on fabric - 28ct or 32?  I prefer 32ct but have no experience with Delica beads or Swarovski crystals - how closely embellished does Martina design these? 

Ooo, now, just 'cause I feel the need to justify to myself that it's ok to add another new start to this year's list, I finished "Alto Gether Now" last night!

Alto Gether Now

Ink Circles "Alto Gether Now"
32ct antique white lugana.
Crescent Colours overdyed threads.

First Bass and Alto Gether Now
Here Comes Treble is on the same piece of fabric, off to the right...
I wasn't happy with the ends of the stave lines.  The chart has them
all uneven lengths.  I re-did the lines on First bass and changed them
on Alto, so they are all even and square off the designs.  Much
happier with the look now.  It didn't look finished to me before.  Now it does.
 I also made a little more progress on Here Comes Treble, so I'm anticipating another finish before the end of the month. 

Uh-huh, uh-huh, see, I can do enough to be allowed a Chat!


Happy Stitching


Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Q's?? for "Chat" Stitchers...

I've been lusting after, drooling over, admiring the Chatelaine designs for a while now. I've seen so many incredible WiP's and HD's on various blogs and boards and now I think I'm going to take the plunge and have a go myself.

I've spent way too much time reading through old threads on the yuku board. I've googled and found umpteen bazillion blogs belonging to "chat" stitchers but I'm still left with a couple of questions though...

*  First one, specifically to those of you who have stitched Evening in the Park:
I'm intrigued... I love the stitched centres of the other mandala gardens and I want to know what's up with this one.  Does it come with an optional centre?  Is it 'cause it came out as a mystery?  Did it not have a centre originally and now does - or vice versa?

EitP is the design that's yelling at me most loudly but I don't want to spend a bucket load of money and not have a charted centre when that's one of the principal things drawing me to the Chatelaine designs.

*  Secondly, the yahoo groups.  Are the past groups still there and do you have to join the group to stitch the piece?  I can't get the hang of the yahoo boards.  I joined the Specialty Stitchers and the Crazy January Challenge but I just can't negotiate my way round the board.

*  Thirdly, There's no way I'd keep up with one of these and get it all done to a schedule.  For me, a "Chat" will be a long - very long - term project, so if there are rules and regs about stitching them, I probably shouldn't start...

*  Should I start with a "mini" or "micro" or is it ok to just jump right on in with a biggie?  I've never really been a "beginner" stitcher.  I leapt in at the deep end when I started cross stitching.  My first stitch had fractionals and tweeding, my second had fractionals, tweeding and blending filament and my third had all of the above and was on linen... I'm not overly experienced with specialty stitches but I don't have too much trouble learning something new if I've got decent written instructions or a good you-tube vid.


I know there's plenty of support out there if when I do take the plunge.  I just want to make sure I get it right from the beginning!



Monday, 23 January 2012

IHSW Sunday

and the end of SWAT too.

It was really hard to get the mojo revving yesterday.  I'm feeling the fatigue.  I've stitched every single day since Christmas Day - including Christmas Day - and I was stitching almost daily in the run up to Christmas.

The thought of achieving another Happy Dance before the end of the month is spurring me on, however, so I summed up my stitchy courage and got cracking on "Alto Gether Now."

This was my CJC day two start and it really does stitch up quickly. 

I love the Crescent Colours floss and I'm pretty happy with the 32ct lugana.  I did spend a little time wondering if perhaps I should have gone with linen after all but I like the heavier look of the lugana with the pieces.  If the clefs were delicate and lacy then linen would have been the right choice.  These remind me of  old Illuminated letters.  I think the lugana echoes the heavy parchment pages of those old books and scrolls...

I'm over half way with Alto... if I can get the mojo bubbling again, I might get close to finished.  I have a rehearsal tonight, so definitely not as much time today but enough to get close...

Alto Gether Now
Jan SWAT Day 9
Ink Circles "Alto Gether Now"
32 ct antique white lugana
Crescent Colours Cotton

I hope you have all had a thoroughly successful IHSW.  I'll head off and start stalking blogs from the list soon!

Have a fabulous stitchy day!



Sunday, 22 January 2012


I want to say thank you to all of you who have become followers of my blog.

I have just seen that there are now 100 of you...

When I started blogging, I didn't seriously think I would manage to keep it up for more than a couple of months.  I underestimated the level of support, the friendships and the sheer joy that could come from the blogosphere.

Thank you all. 


First Bass.

I said I was going to make it to a HD this week and by golly, for once I actually did it!


Appropriately, my first finish for the year and first finish from my crazy 15, is the aptly named "First Bass" from Ink Circles!

32ct antique white lugana. 2/2 with Crescent Colours floss.

*Happy Dancing! Happy Dancing*

First Bass
CJC #1 start and #1 finish!

First Bass
Ink Circles "First Bass"
32ct antique white lugana
2/2 Crescent Colours overdyed cotton floss

Friday, 20 January 2012

Celtic Christmas

Oh my!  I've gathered some new followers in the past week or so! 

Welcome, welcome!  It's lovely to have you here.  I try to keep track of everyone's blog, so if I'm not following you yet, please leave me a message and a link to your blog so I can become a follower asap :)

SWAT days five and six - I'm really seeing some shape starting to happen.  I understand now how some of you have been able to stitch multiple Celtic Ladies - she comes together fairly quickly!

I had a moment yesterday - I freaked Guy out, when I woke up, the first thing in my head and out of my mouth  was "It's all wrong, I've chosen the wrong red.  I'm ripping it all out and starting over."  Poor DH just rolled over and looked at me with a "WTH" expression as I flounced out of bed and down the stairs.

By the time I got to really looking at it in the light of day, I calmed down somewhat and eventually decided to keep going.  I think I'm ok now, the frogs have been banished for a while longer.



Anyway, here she is:

Jan 2012 SWAT Day4 &  5

IHSW starts tomorrow - I want to finish First Bass. Are you all signed up?  If not, head over to Joyce's blog via the Hermie linkie in my sidebar and you'll find the Hermit sign-up sheet.

Happy Stitching


Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Not Starting, Progressing!

and it sure feels good!

As much fun as it was, starting something new every day, I was reaching that point of fatigue where all I wanted to do was see progress.

January 16th, I continued to work on Celtic Christmas - no photo for now, it's just more of the endless sea of red, LOL, and I went back to First Bass.

This is as I left it on January 1st:

CJC Day 1

 This was after a little more time on January 16th:

Jan SWAT Day 2

It's not going to take much more to get this one finished.  Yay!

I was picturing myself surrounded by a pile of UFO's at the end of the year but somehow, I WILL get these WiPs whipped into shape asap!

Happy Stitching y'all, don't forget IHSW coming up this weekend!


Monday, 16 January 2012

Fourteen and Fifteen!!!

These last two days have been the most stressful starts!

I had intended to start a Sweetheart Tree piece for day 14 but just could not decide on the fabric.  I know if I'd just settled for whatever I already had, I'd regret it.  So I set it aside until I find the right piece.

Whilst rummaging through my fabric I had a sudden lightning bolt moment and realised I have a piece of fabric that will look great for another piece I've got kitted up, minus fabric, 'cause again, I couldn't decide. I pulled out the chart and bits and bobs, found the fabby - checked the measurements, LOL, and then started pulling bobbins from my boxes!

It's another Stoney Creek.  If I get it done this year, that will be three SC finishes, three years in a row.  The amount of confetti and the sheer number of flosses in an SC is enough to rival an HAED - imho anyway.

Day Fourteen
CJC Day 14
O Holy Night: Stoney Creek
32ct Antique Ivory Belfast Linen
DMC floss

And now, for number 15....

The beginnings of my L&L Celtic Christmas Conversion...

Day Fifteen

CJC Day 15
Celtic Christmas (Conversion)
Lavender and Lace
32 ct Black Belfast
DMC floss

Stitching the fifteen has been a whole lot of fun.  I've stitched more in the past few weeks than I had in ages.  I think I'll spend some focus time on Celtic Christmas and rotate back through the 15 in short bursts for a while.

The fifteen now become part of my WiPocalypse, along with the L*K alphabet, the Advent Calendar, Queenie and JE's Little Summer Fairy...  My goal is to finish "Twelve in '12."  I made it past the "Eleven in '11" goal, so I should be able to get pretty darn close I think :)

In other news, it's SWAT time at - come on over and join us if you're keen to get some focussed stitching time this week and if I'm not mistaken, we're about to hit the first IHSW of the year too! Click the little "Hermie" linkie over there -----> if you need more info!

Happy stitching everyone.  I'm all stitched out for tonight.

I'm off to bed to dream about rainbows of little crosses!



Saturday, 14 January 2012

Number 13!

Nora's Lilly :)

She was going to happen back on day five but I was missing ecru (and several other colours as it happened!)  Lucky for me, my order from 123stitch arrived (Courtesy of Sharine's Gift Card, THANK YOU!) so I had everything I needed to start tonight.

I had to work today and take the kids to swimming and then Miss Lily to a picnic/playdate at the park.  Started stitching around 9pm I think.

Lilly was so easy after last night's crazy confetti.  A big block of ecru to start - so refreshing.  LOL.

The linen I'm using is a lovely buttery coloured, "ivory" Belfast from Permin.

Day Thirteen
CJC Day 13
Lilly Pixie.  Nora Corbett.
32ct Ivory linen (Permin)
DMC Floss

Two days to go!  Two choices for tomorrow... What shall I do?!?!?!

Night all, I'm off to bed.  



Friday, 13 January 2012

CJC Days 11 and 12

Just a quick fly by tonight.  Must go to bed.  I have a brand new clarinet student in the morning and it wouldn't do to appear hung-over in her very first lesson would it!

Yesterday, Day 11, I started work on Woodland Enchantress by Ruth Sanderson for Dimensions Gold Collection.

I love it!  I haven't worked on aida in yonks - this is 16 count, really stiff (feels like stitching on cardboard!)  I'm using a huge needle and the thread strand count varies between three and five!  One lot of tweeding so far combining two strands each of two different colours. All the background is done in half crosses.  It was a fun piece to get started on and difficult to put down!

I strongly suggest you stand back to look at this one - the percieved effect of distance in the picture is fantastic.  The dark strip on the right is a tree trunk.  The blue/grey on the left is a tree in the far distance!
Day Eleven
CJC Day 11
Woodland Enchantress.
Ruth Sanderson/Dimensions Gold Kit
16ct Cove Grey Aida.
Currently working only in half stitches.

Day Twelve.  Today, I started a piece that has been hanging out in the wings for years.  I bought a Charles Craft Baby Afghan before Jacob was born.  I never found just the right pattern to stitch on it and now, obviously, my babies though they still are to me, in reality they are big kids now and don't need a baby blanket anymore.  

One day a couple of years ago now, I discovered Ellen Maurer-Stroh's gorgeous (freebie) Garden Alphabet and that was that.  So now it's finally underway!  Yay!
Photo makes the flower look blue - it's actually the 300's shades of purples (333, 340, 341...)

Day Twelve
CJC Day 12
Garden Alphabet: Ellen Maurer-Stroh
Stitching 3 over 2 on18ct Afghan Cloth. 

Only three days left of the crazy 15... nearly there!  Oh my goodness...  Tomorrow, hmmm... stay tuned :)



Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Arriving on Platform Ten: Train of Dreams

Thank you so much everyone for your comments on my Crazy 15 so far and on my Wipocalypse too.

Gabi, you asked about The Basket so I thought I'd better explain for my followers that haven't heard about my sad case of Basketitis.

I am one of the unlucky Southern Hemisphere stitchers doomed to pay outrageously expensive prices for everything related to our addiction art but I am lucky enough to have a gorgeous (not so local) LNS that stocks many of the things that make our addicted arty little hearts so happy.  Now and then on my very rare free Monday mornings, I'll take a little drive just to experience the sheer joy that only you my fellow "floss fondlers" can possibly understand.

The only problem with this wonderful little shop - The Crewel Gobelin - is *cue drum roll* The Basket.

This is the account of what happened when I inadvertantly stumbled across said woven object back in April last year.

Now the last time I trundled off to have a little looksie, I ended up coming home with ten of the twelve Blackbird Designs: Anniversaries of the Heart charts!  Now seriously, I had NO intention of spending money that day.  But they were in very close proximity to The Basket (They're too big to fit in there, so they were in a bin close by...) and they were SO cheap!


I'd love to take a jaunt out there right now but it's currently our school summer holidays.  This translates as  "No $$$ to spend on anything that isn't rent or food."  I'm really, really looking forward to February and regular income... which translates as spending a whole lot of $$$ on stash once all the bills and kids school fees are caught up!  Yay!

Actually, I'm pretty thrifty.  The majority of my stash purchases come from 123stitch.  It's much cheaper to buy from the US, particularly with the AUD so strong against the USD.  Means I often get double or even triple the amount of floss or fabric that I would get at any store in Australia.  I try to support the LNS's here but it's hard when typically a Mirabilia chart that is say $13 at 123 could be anywhere between $22 and $40.  My Titania chart cost $35.00 - she was my first Mira purchase long before I discovered the joys of on-line shopping overseas.

Ooops... I've really wandered off on a tangent tonight!  Sorry about that folks.  We will now return to our regular programming!

Day Ten heralded the arrival of Randal Spangler's "Train of Dreams" from HAED.  I've put in a couple of hours during the day and a lot of hours tonight.  I think I stitched a total of six hours on this one and managed to get in just over 700 stitches... that's a lot really...

The thing is, it doesn't look like anywhere near that amount of work and typically, you can't see the colour changes yet, 'cause there's not enough of it done.

Day Ten
Randal Spangler: Train of Dreams
1 over 1 on 25ct antique white Jobelan
DMC floss

Yes, that really is 700-odd stitches.  Doesn't look like it though.

I thought I'd show you a snapshot of my chart - just to prove it.  LOL.


Night night all.  It's way past my bedtime... see you all tomorrow.



Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Nutty Nine and the WiPocalypse Begins!

I started my first ever Shepherd's Bush sampler today.

I'm in love.

I fell in love with the SB designs mid last year.  I was extremely lucky to pick up several kits, ummm... five...yes, five... at an utterly ridiculous price at my (not so local) LNS - you know, the one with The Basket that has trapped me more than once this past year... They were discounted down to $10. Uh-huh, yes, I said $10, each, for the chart, fabric, silk and embellishments. Actually, one of them may have been $30 but it's original price was $55.  One just cannot leave that sort of thing in The Basket now, can one?

So today I decided to start "Holly and Ivy."

It is the loveliest piece to work on.  The fabric is soft, the silks even softer! They are a mixture of Gloriana, Belle Soie, Thread Gatherer and another that escapes me right now.  The chart is so much fun - one over two on 30ct linen for the crosses.  I also got to do some Rhodes stitches for the holly berries.

The frogs came to visit yet again but I think they're getting the message (finally) that they are not welcome here.

Day Nine

Day Nine
Shepherd's Bush "Holly and Ivy"
30ct Parchment Linen, Mixed Silks.

Ok, so now I'm checking in for the WiPocalypse:

Before I got stuck into the 15, I managed to stitch bit on my Lizzie Kate ABC.  I really love this piece and I'm hoping to have it finished by the middle of the year.  It stitches up fast and is one I'm able to take to work.  It's surprising how much I can get done in the odd three minute window three or four  times a day.

January WiPocalypse
Lizzie Kate 
Progress from the Tent

Lizzie*Kate "ABC for Parents"
28ct linen.  Crescent Colours floss.

I'll head over to Measi's Blog now to post my check in - if you haven't signed up for the WiPocalypse yet or somehow you've completely missed what WiPocalypse is all about, then I strongly suggest you hit that link I just added and scoot over there yourself!

Even if it's just to drool over all the WiP's people are checking in!


Happy Stitching!



Monday, 9 January 2012

CJC 7 & 8

I can't believe it's already the ninth of January.  This crazy stitching caper is helping to make the days fly by!

Day Seven was pretty much a write off.  I think I managed maybe an hour, hour and a half perhaps.  We took the kids to see Cars 2 at the twilight cinema at Sydney Olympic Park.  Great fun.  If you've never seen Cars 2, it's well worth watching.  Only problem, most of my stitching is achieved at night after the kids go to bed and we didn't actually come home to put the kids to bed.  We all had a "sleepover" at the house of the friends we went to the movies with.  They live on the other side of the city and it just made more sense for us all to crash there.

Ok, here we go..

Day Seven
Joan Elliott "Hope"
Vintage Blue Whisper Belfast Linen
DMC floss

Day Eight
Joan Elliott "Imagine"
Vintage Blue Whisper Belfast Linen
DMC floss

Days Seven and Eight 
Hope and Imagine are vertically below
Believe and Dream on the same piece of

Hmmm, now on to Day Nine... I'm feeling spoilt for choice today.  Should I start a Shepherd's Bush sampler or a Nora Corbett pixie?  Maybe I could be brave and jump into Train of Dreams?  I need to find a piece of fabric for my Sweetheart Tree "Dragonfly Dreams" or I could finish sorting the thread for the Enchantress.  Oh what to do? *insert dramatic Scarlett O'Hara swoon* LOL

I'm taking my little fishies to their swimming lesson this morning.  They've had three weeks off over Christmas and New Year and now it's time to get them back in the water.  I'll decide what today's stitchiness will be before we go, then if I'm lucky, I'll put a few stitches in during the day as well as tonight.

Happy Stitching Everyone - I'll be back to make my first WiPocalypse check-in some time today too!  How exciting!




Saturday, 7 January 2012

Day Six Silliness

Day six... not so much stitchiness yesterday but still well and truly acceptable as  CJC start.

I didn't pick up my needle until 10:30pm!  

I wanted to start Nora's "Lilly" but discovered I am actually missing ecru!  What colour turns out to be smack in the middle of the chart?  Ecru of course.  I'd already kitted this up a couple of weeks ago but somehow missed this important fact.  


*smacks forehead*

I sat down with my box of crazies at 9pm and decided to do  couple of floss tosses with Lilly before I started.  I bought the chart and fabric (antique white, 32ct Jobelan) for Lilly ages ago, long before I discovered the Mira/JE forums and the amazing hand-dyed fabrics so many of you use.  I don't have a stash of hand-dyed fabric - yet - but I do have some other beautiful pieces of linen and evenweaves.  I settled on a lovely piece of antique ivory permin linen.  It's a gorgeous pale buttery yellow and sets off the colours in this particular Pixie beautifully.  

So I was all set to go...and then, no ecru.  Poo.

I could have counted across and started with another colour but the plague of rabid rip-its has been hovering so closely over this crazy 15 that I wasn't going to chance yet another miscount!

By this time, it was now after 9.30 and I was no closer to getting started.  I grabbed out the kit of the Enchantress instead.  Figured I could start a BAP.  It would mean starting with half stitches which would mean fairly speedy progress and then day six wouldn't be a total write off.


Forgot I hadn't yet sorted the floss bundles in the kit.  It's not difficult, just time consuming.  It's an excellent Dimensions Gold kit.  The floss comes in four bundles.  The floss cards make it very easy to sort them correctly but after one bundle, I checked the time and put it all away again.

Alright, I'm getting to the point!

I ended up starting "Dream".  Should have sat down with it from the beginning being that everything was there already, because I'd worked on "Believe" the day before.

Ahh well...  so 10.30 rolled around and I finally got going.  Stitched until 1.30am and this was the result:
Day Six
Joan Elliott "Dream"
32ct Belfast Linen Vintage Blue Whisper
DMC floss

There was a  minor amphibious attack around 1am but I was able to fix it with minimal trouble.  


I now have "Believe" and "Dream" on the one piece of fabric.

Day Five and Six

To minimise time wastage today, I'm just going to continue on with the theme and start "Hope."  Should be safe with that!  I have this whole piece on my small scroll bars.  They will all need beading before they're done so I thought the scroll would be safest in the long run.  I can bead from the top and roll each one away.  

Onward into another stitchy day - no stitching tonight.  We're going to see Cars 2 at the Olympic Park Twilight Cinema - but I'm hoping to get a couple of good hours in during the day.  I'm going to be a bad Mama and let my children be amused by electronic devices.

Happy Crazy Stitching all!



Friday, 6 January 2012

Crazy Day Five!

Today I started Joan Elliott's "Believe."

I wish the camera would capture the colours more accurately.  They are such jewel-like shades.  It's gorgeous.  I'm missing the two colours I needed to finish the letters.  I placed an order at 123 stitch before Christmas and a three week wait is usual before my package will arrive in Australia - so fingers crossed they'll arrive tomorrow, ready to work on day six!

These designs have plenty of beads but no braids or filaments.  I wanted a bit of sparkle, so I've started adding some Kreinik 032 BF to the stars.  Just one strand of BF with two strands of floss, I only want a hint of sparkle.
Day Five
Joan Elliott "Believe"
32 ct Vintage Blue Whisper Belfast Linen
DMC floss.  Kreinik Blending Filament

Well, off to bed.  Onward to day six.  I intend to start JE's "Dream"  but there will be far less stitching time tomorrow as we have visitors coming for the day.  I won't get to stitch at all until the kids are in bed.

Happy Crazy Stitching Everyone :D



Thursday, 5 January 2012

Attack of the Frogs!

OMG!!! There were swarms of the croaky pests last night!

I spent several hours on my Day Four start.  Was congratulating myself on making such great headway in one day when the chorus started: Rip-it.  Rip-it.  Rip-it.

I'd once again failed to double check the chart against what I'd already stitched and I ended up leaving  double coloumn of empty space where empty space shouldn't ought to be.

*insert rude words here*

Lucky for me, I realised sooner rather than later.  I lost about an hours work I think so it could have been worse. If it had been a mistake at the beginning of the day I think I would have chucked it and started over.

Well, without further ado, 'cause I want to get onto my Day Five start, here are my Day Three and Day Four starts:

Day Three
CJC Day 3
Ink Circles "Here Comes Treble"
32 ct antique white lugana
Crescent Colours floss

Day One, Two and Three
CJC Days 1 2 & 3
First Bass
Alto Gether Now
Here Comes Treble

Day Four
Mirabilia/Nora Corbett
Christmas Elf Fairy
32ct opalescent white lugana
Crescent Colours floss

I hope those of you partcipating in the CJC are having as much fun as I am!

Happy Stitching.