Sunday, December 28, 2014

Belated Merry Christmas!

Oops, I'm slacking again. Better late than never, right? I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas spent with loved ones. I spent Christmas Day at my sister's place and had Boxing Day lunch at home with hubby's brother and his wife.

As promised last time, I'll add crafty pics until I'm up to date, and then hopefully keep on top of things. This is one I don't think I've posted in its complete form yet. It was a WIP for a while, then became a UFO because I don't know what DMC thread I used and after trying unsuccessfully to match it I put it in the "too hard" basket. I finally made myself match the colour (somewhat unsuccessfully I think) and finish it. I think it became a birthday gift for my mum.

  • Name of the design is "L" I guess
  • Chart is a freebie from this blog
  • Fabric is 28 count lime green evenweave fabric from Stitches and Spice
  • Thread is DMC something or other. I think it might actually be 2 different green threads
  • Stitch count is 82 x 118
  • Started in October 2011 I think!
  • Completed in August 2014

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Sunday, December 7, 2014

I'm still alive!

I can't believe my last post was from August!!! :-/ Oops! I'm finding I'm posting most of my finishes on facebook these days. I've been into card making a lot lately but still keeping the cross stitch up too, in fact I've had a few commissioned pieces I've been working on. I'll have to go through my pictures and start posting some of my finishes since August. I'll be back later to do just that.
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Saturday, August 30, 2014

A Pikachu finish

I have another very quick finish, it only took a few days. This one will become another no-sew cube for my nephew who loves Pokemon. I found some Pokemon ribbon online and I'll just use some co-ordinating fabric for the cube. Here it is:

And here it is, fully completed:

  • Name of the design is, well, Pikachu
  • Chart is a freebie I found by googling
  • Fabric is an off cut of white opalescent evenweave - my photography skills suck
  • Thread is DMC cotton
  • Stitch count is 40 x 39
  • Started on August 25th 2014
  • Completed on August 27th 2014

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Saturday, August 23, 2014

3 finishes in one!

Yes, I'm still alive - and yes, I'm still stitching. So little time and so little energy, it will kill your speed at which you finish I have found. Anyway, here's my latest one - or three. It actually has a run in the fabric which occurred during stitching. I'm thinking I'll just go over it with ric-rac or something but I am open to suggestions. Again, I'm not sure what will become of it but I really liked the designs so decided to stitch them altogether.

  • Names of the designs are, from top to bottom, Gingerbread Sewing Basket, Gingerbread Sewing Machine & Gingerbread Thread & Buttons
  • Charts are freebies from 2009, from San Man Originals but I don't believe they are still available
  • Fabric is 28 count pink evenweave
  • Thread is DMC cotton
  • Stitch count is approximately 58 x 55 for the smaller 2, and 110 x 60 for the middle one
  • Started in June 2014
  • Completed on August 22nd 2014

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Saturday, July 19, 2014

Some of my handmade cards

Card making has taken my fancy lately and I've been churning a few out. I've opened a facebook page so I can try and sell some. Feel free to take a look, like my page, and share with your friends. :-D. Here's a few pictures of some recent finishes:

Many of these are still for sale, so feel free to come by my page and purchase. Thanks.

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No-sew cube x 3!

I have a few more finishes to show, all no-sew cubes. The first one was a gift for hubby's niece. It's a "Sofia The First" design, not that I had heard of her before I knew she liked Sofia. Nothing a little googling can't fix though, and I found myself a pattern and off I went. Here it is:

I don't have details of the this one but it didn't take much googling to find it, but I chopped off the bottom half to make it fit. I finished it with some pink trim and some Sofia ribbon that I got on another facebook de-stash page. I bought some iron on letters and stuck them on the back, spelling out her name. It's stitched on white opalescent evenweave fabric using DMC cotton.

The next one is a cube for the niece's twin brother. He loves Minecraft, which is on my radar due to my son's love of the game. Again google was my friend and I found this design:

My son loved it too, so I made 2 exactly the same so he could have one for himself. No point adding another picture exactly the same though. I also used the iron on letters to add their names on the back. This was stitched on white opalescent evenweave with DMC cotton. The fabric is just a mottled green and the minecraft ribbon I found online too.

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Sunday, June 22, 2014

Check out my son's blog please :-)

My 12 year old DS has just started a blog about minecraft and LOVES getting traffic. If you'd like to make a little boy happy, stop by and leave a comment. His blog is here. Thanks :-)
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Saturday, June 21, 2014

It's been a while.... and a karate catch up

Yes, I know - I've been quiet on the blogging front for the last few months. I do have a few finishes to show but they will eventually get their own post. I have been spending far too much time on facebook lately and have started up my own page to try and sell some of my homemade stuff. I've also joined a few crafty buy/sell groups and am buying way more than I'm selling which was not the intent when I joined :-/. I've also been dabbling in making greeting cards which is fun and quicker than cross stitch.

However....on to the karate news. On the Queen's birthday weekend DS & I carpooled with another lady and her 2 kids and headed to Mount Gambier in South Australia for the S.A Training Camp & Open Tournament. We were to share a 2 bedroom cabin and let's just say I've seen bigger bathrooms! We got inside, looked at each other and thought "where's the rest of it?" LOL. The bathroom/toilet was through the bedroom that I shared with the 3 kids. Thankfully we managed alright and didn't want to kill each other after 5 minutes.

Saturday was the training camp for the kids so we dropped them off, stayed for a while, then headed out for lunch. When we signed up for the camp it was to be 1 1/2 hours in the morning, and the same in the afternoon. However, by the time things were finalised it became 9.45am-4.30pm with a lunch break. The kids thought we were trying to kill them! Afterwards we headed out for dinner to a place that had been recommended to us. We ordered simple pasta/pizza/calzone meals and waited. And waited some more. Finally we asked about our food after 45 minutes - it was coming. My son's pasta was the first to arrive and because it was late and everyone was hungry he started eating. He'd finished by the time the calzones and pizza arrived and we were half finished by the time the final pasta arrived. My calzone was tasty, although burnt on about 1/4 of the top. By this stage the kids were exhausted so we headed home.

Sunday was the tournament and both myself and the other lady volunteered to help as the call went out for parents who knew what they were doing. Haha! There were only 2 mats, plus a 3rd one for a few hours in the morning. She requested mat 1 and I requested mat 2 as that's where our kids were competing. Let's just say we had our hands full from start to finish! I hate being responsible for the scoreboard, but got to do it for all the events on my mat, including some of the more full on events such as the mens and male veterans kumite. You can not tune out for a second as you'll lose the plot - or is that just me?

Ok, so to DS's results. In his kata division he had the 3 time national champ, and in kumite the 4 time national champ to contend with. Awesome! However he had good draws and both boys were in the other half of the draw. There were 8 in kata and DS won his first round 3-0, but lost the next round 2-1 in a decision not everyone agreed with, including a coach and referee. Had he won he would have made the final against the national champ. However, he was able to win one more round 3-0 to gain third place. :-). In kumite there were about 14 kids. DS did really well, winning his first round 2-0, and his second 3-0. Next up was a boy I never wanted him to fight. He's a fellow Victorian and very strong and powerful and far better than DS. It wasn't pretty to watch, with this boy knocking DS off his feet and slamming him down onto the mat several times. DS put up a good fight, but pulled out with a few seconds on the clock after consulting with the medics. He lost this fight 4-0, which was a good score considering. It was pointed out to us that it took half the match for the other boy to score. Had he won this match he would have faced the national champ in the final. However he was able to fight one more round to try for 3rd place. He was still  feeling the effects of the last fight and not in great shape but decided to fight anyway. He did well, although you could tell he was hanging back a little. He lost this one 3-0. I was very proud of him for his efforts on the day and giving it his best shot.

Afterwards we had a quick dinner and headed back to our cabin as we were all exhausted after a loooong day. The next morning we had planned to do some sight-seeing and head home at a leisurely pace. However our plans soon changed when my friends daughter woke up and vomited. Then vomited again. DS woke up complaining of a sore tummy too. We soon learnt that at least 14 South Australians, 95% of kids from our club (and a few adults), and several other Victorians had come down with some sort of gastro bug. All had to travel at least 4 hours to get to either Melbourne or Adelaide. We put the kids in the car and headed off, thinking we may need all the time we could get. We did have to make a few stops along the way for the kids, for obvious reasons. We got ourselves some bags which we attached to the head rests just in case and my friends 6 year old DD used hers with perfect aim, while travelling at 100km! Thankfully it turned out to mostly be a 24 hour bug, and none of the rest of the family got sick. At least the bug hit everyone AFTER the camp and tournament or it would have been a disaster of a weekend!

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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na, Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na, Batman!

Here's a couple of finishes I did on the sly for my son for his birthday, not that he would even notice if I stitched them right in front of him! He is a Batman freak and his room looks like a shrine to the great superhero.

  • Name of the designs are, well they didn't have names
  • Charts are freebies I found by googling
  • Fabric is "Wicked Brew" monaco from Fabtastic Fabrics
  • Thread is Black DMC and the yellow is a silk from Carries Threads
  • Stitch count is 98 x 56 for the top one, and 66 x 36 for the bottom one
  • Started in April 2014
  • Completed in May 2014 using Batman fabric I bought at a craft fair, ribbon, a batman logo made from cardstock and a block of wood and a foam cube.

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Saturday, April 19, 2014

A birthday beetle

No-sew cubes are my go-to finish technique at the moment because they are so easy, yet look so impressive. I decided to make one for my niece, who is turning 22 next week. We got together for her birthday and Easter yesterday so I was able to give it to her then. She likes red and black so I decided the best thing I could do would be to make her a ladybird one. I got a hold of some small ladybird print fabric through a facebook de-stash group, added some red and black ribbon, a little bit of bling and a red bow. Here is the completed cube, although it's much more vibrant and red in real life:

  • Name of the design is, well it didn't have one
  • Chart is a freebie from here
  • Fabric is an opalescent white evenweave
  • Thread is DMC cotton
  • Stitch count is 36 x 37
  • Started in March 2014
  • Completed in March 2014
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Ladylike Exchange

A few months back I participated in a "ladylike" exchange - we were to stitch something pertaining to the theme and send it along with 6 other "ladylike" items to our partner. Everybody has received their items so I can now show you what I chose to stitch. My partner didn't have a blog so I had to guess what she may have been interested in. Here's a pic of all the items I sent:

Included was a black and silver sparkly scarf, lipgloss, a butterfly notepad & envelopes, sweet treat magnets, butterfly notebook, nail art, a handmade card and the stitched piece. Here's a close up pic of the stitched piece I chose:

  • Name of the design is an adaption of "Ooh la la"
  • Chart is designed by Sue Hillis
  • Fabric is 28 count lightly mottle pink and white evenweave. I think this might be "strawberry milkshake" 
  • Thread is DMC - cotton and rayon
  • Stitch count is 98 x 115 on the original design, but I omitted the wording around the border
  • Started in February 2014
  • Completed in March 2014. I finished it with a string of beads around the edge of both the black fabric backing piece and the pink stitched piece, buttons in the corners, assorted beads, the included bag charm and made some ties for the dress out of black thread. 
Here's what my partner sent me:

There's the stitched piece, blue printed fabric, tea bags, thread, fabric, chart and magazine.

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Monday, April 14, 2014

Crazy Karate Weekend

Whew! DS & I traveled interstate over the weekend for both the Australian Open Karate Championships & the Schools & Universities Championships and what a whirlwind trip it was! We had to leave home at 3.20am Thursday and somehow I managed to sleep through the alarm for the first time ever. I woke up at 3.15am - you do the maths! Needless to say the trip started with that crazy, jittery, panicked feeling and it only slightly improved from there due to early starts, late nights, waking almost hourly, a constant headache and stress.

Friday saw DS compete in 3 events - both kata and kumite in the school's event, and kata in the Aus Open. He performed really well in his first round kata but lost 2-3 in a decision that was surprising to many, not just me. Let's leave it at that. ;-) . Had the decision gone his way there was a good chance he could have gotten a bronze medal in that event. Next up was kumite and he only needed to win one fight to make the final. He was up 1-0 with about 20 seconds left on the clock but managed to get 4 penalties and be disqualified. He has only even been disqualified twice in his life, the other time being at the same event last year. This tournament just doesn't seem to be a good one for him. However, this still allowed him to win a bronze medal in this event.

Next up was kata again and he did really well, losing in the 3rd round to the finalist. This meant he had a chance to try for 3rd place but lost one round short of it, but he was very happy to have gotten that far. The next day was kumite and again he had to win his first fight to make the final, but unfortunately he was against the multiple state/national champ but went down fighting and lost 0-4 with the other boy scoring just twice on him. This is a vast improvement on past fights against him as he is from the same state and regularly fights DS in local tournaments. DS seems to have improved and was definitely in the fight, being more aggressive. He then had to fight for 3rd place and at time scores were tied 1-1. The 5 judges then vote on who they feel was the better fighter and scores were 2-3 against him, so one vote between him and another bronze medal.

All up it was a positive experience and it shows he is in the mix as all the best kids in the country were competing and he held his own. Next up - Kobe Osaka in May.

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Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Another day, another finish

This one took far less time than I expected, but it is mainly small stitched areas, blackwork and a lot of "air". I can't even remember how I came across this, but I did discover the designer (Kirsten Schmidt) is the owner of a blog that I've visited before and I've even stitched a few of her freebies that she posts there. She also has a website where this pattern came from. I'm not sure what drew me to this as I'm not a huge fan of Autumnal colours, or birds. I do however like blackwork and things that are a little "out there" and different.

  • Name of the design is "Blatterflug" or "Leaves Flight"
  • Chart is from Kirsten Schmidt, available on her website
  • Fabric is 28 count opalescent fabric called "Frangipani Opal" from Sew-It-All. It is a lightly mottled peachy/tan kind of colour. 
  • Thread is the called for DMC cotton
  • Stitch count is 180 x 170
  • Started on March 7th 2014
  • Completed on April 1st 2014. I think I'll frame this is a brown wooden frame, and give it to my dad for Father's Day.
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Sunday, March 30, 2014

I'm still here! I have a finish too!

Yep, life has been crazy again - still - and blogging has fallen by the wayside. I have still been stitching and have a few finishes to share, but I'm not sure I kept all the relevant details on my projects. You'd think I'd learn by now! Here's a finish I haven't posted about:

  • Name of the design is, well it doesn't have one. It was one of many mini designs
  • Chart is from the December 2011 issue of XS Crazy magazine
  • Fabric is an off cut of white evenweave
  • Thread is DMC
  • Stitch count is 27 x 22
  • Started sometime in January 2014
  • Completed in February 2014, using a finishing form, some padding to round out the design and some red ruffled trim
I have another couple of finishes but they are gifts so I don't want to share them here yet. Watch this space!
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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

A new finish and a new blogoversary winner

First off, I have heard nothing from the original December winner so I've chosen a new one - Barb aka Crazybeads. I will be in touch shortly, or you can email me Barb.

Next up, I have another finish. I started this back in September for the "Christmas Joy" exchange I joined. It soon became apparent that I would run out of thread to finish it, so I ordered more from the USA in late October. It was shipped on November 7th but it took it's sweet time arriving so I gave it up and fished out an old finish to turn into an ornament so I could mail it in time. The thread FINALLY arrived on January 7th - 2 months after it was mailed. I had originally planned to stitch the word "joy" in the tree with silver thread to suit the theme, but it seems pointless now.

  • Name of the design is Boule De Noel
  • Chart is a freebie from this blog
  • Fabric is a variegated green evenweave with yellow tinges
  • Thread is silver metallic thread that came free with a magazine plus "Aquamarine" silk thread from Carrie's Creations
  • Stitch count is 102 x 112
  • Started in September 2013
  • Completed in January 2014

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Sunday, February 2, 2014

It's Christmas again..... and again.... and again.... and again....

Yep, Christmas 4 times over! When hubby asked me what I'd like for Christmas, I sent him some links to a few of my favourite online stores and he chose to buy vouchers to all 4 places! So, not only did I get surprise vouchers for Christmas, I got to shop 4 times, and look forward to 4 packages in the mail. First to arrive was this lot of monaco from Fabtastic Fabrics:

Indian Paintbrush, Wicked Brew, Berry Frost & Hollyleaf Cherry

Next came my order from 123 Stitch:

Mantel Mischief by Imaginating, Gingerbread Street by Sue Hillis & Bear Christmas Ornament by Dimensions

Then I got my order from Steph's Fabbys:

Butterfly by AAN & Lady of the Lake thread

Then finally my order from Colour Cascade Fabrics, again both monaco fabric:

Pink & Purple ice dye & My Island Home

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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Another finish for 2014

Here's a kit I've had for years and made a very, very small start on at some point. I recently discovered it in my stash and decided it needed to be finished. There's a few similar designs in the series which I may buy. At some point I might even stitch them too!

  • Name of the design is Sweet Greeting Gingerbread
  • Chart is a beaded kit from Mill Hill. I changed the wording to "sweet treats" from "sweet greetings"
  • Fabric is the included 16 count aida band, but I backed the whole thing with stiff white felt
  • Thread is the included DMC cotton
  • Stitch count is 42 x 79
  • Started on January 11th 2014 - this time around
  • Completed on January 20th 2014

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Look what my hubby made!

For a while I have been wondering what the best way to store my ribbons is. I've gone back and forth on a few different ideas and hubby has made some suggestions and we finally decided on a solution. I have seen many similar designs for cotton reels so you could call this an inflated one. Here it is:

And here it is filled:

Now I'm just trying to decide if I should paint it or not. FYI it cost less than $10. If I wanted another one - I'm thinking my braid collection might need one too - we would just need to buy some more dowel, there's plenty of the other wood left over.

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

My first finish for 2014

This one took far less time than I was expecting as it's a large project - well, to my anyway. I started this one in late 2013 and finished in early 2014. It's not a great pic, but here it is:

  • Name of the design is "Happy Snowman" although I made a few small changes and left some parts out
  • Chart is a design by AAN
  • Fabric is 28 count snowflake patterned opalescent evenweave from Sew-It-All in Australia
  • Thread is DMC #807 for the main cross stitch and #3765 for the back stitched areas
  • Stitch count is 157 x 191
  • Started on December 28th 2013
  • Completed on January 7th 2014

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Some tiny finishes - and still seeking Kay!

I've been very slack on posting finishes lately. I have about 6 to share but I'll start with a collection of 4 minis from late December. I've had the frames for about a decade so I thought it was time to dust them off and put them to good use. From memory they were a whole 70 cents each.
Here they are:

Details of them, from left to right:
  • Name of the design is Candy Cane I guess, it wasn't listed
  • Chart came from a random leaflet or magazine, I didn't keep the details
  • Fabric is an offcut of white opalescent evenweave
  • Thread is DMC cotton
  • Stitch count is 20 x 22
  • Started & completed in late December 2013
  • Name of the design is another unknown freebie so I've called it blackwork heart
  • Chart is a freebie I saved from the internet with no details
  • Fabric is a random offcut of evenweave 
  • Thread is a variegated sulky thread
  • Stitch count is 17 x 17
  • Started & completed in late December 2013
  • Name of the design is Joy I guess, it had no name
  • Chart came from a random leaflet or magazine, I didn't keep the details
  • Fabric is an offcut of white evenweave
  • Thread is DMC cotton
  • Stitch count is 21 x 20
  • Started & completed in late December 2013
  • Name of the design is not listed so I've called it blackwork owl
  • Chart is a freebie from Kincavel Krosses  
  • Fabric is an offcut of light mauve evenweave, maybe from Fabtastic fabrics ?
  • Thread is a random variagated pink thread, maybe a silk?
  • Stitch count is 25 x 29
  • Started & completed in late December 2013
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Sunday, January 19, 2014

Desperately seeking Kay!

I have not heard from Kay so I'm sending out one more shout-out. This is the Kay I'm after. If this is you, can you please email me?
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Friday, January 10, 2014

Christmas Joy Exchange

A while back I took part in a "Christmas Joy" exchange through the "Stitch, Create, Exchange" blog. I started a design for this back in September but realised I'd soon run out of the silk thread I was using. I ordered more from the USA late October, and it was shipped early November. I hoped I'd get it in time to finish the project but that soon became evident it wasn't going to happen as the deadline to mail was December 1st and I had to mail to Hungary.

As the guidelines indicated I had to stitch something of a fairly decent size I was worried about starting something new with not much time left. I took a look through some old finishes and came across something that would do. I finished into a large ornament and managed to mail it at the last possible minute.

Here's what I ended up sending to Barbara in Hungary - not my best finishing as I didn't have much in the way of excess fabric around the edges.

This was a secret exchange so the person who sent to me was not the person I sent to. This is what my partner Lisa in Australia sent to me.

Oh, and it was a good thing I didn't wait for the silk to arrive - it came on January 3rd, 2 months after it was sent. Here's a pic of my WIP on the original piece. I planned on adding the word "Joy" in silver inside the Christmas tree to go with the theme, and making the bow which goes at the top in silver too.

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