Wednesday 24 December 2008

Merry Christmas

I'd like to wish you all a Very Merry Christmas
and a Happy and Healthy New Year

PS Check my Yahoo Group (link in sidebar) for a small Christmas Present

Thursday 18 December 2008

OK, so I lied...

... its not like I meant to. When I said that was it, no more ornaments this year, I really meant it, but then Paulette had to go and post this beauty on her blog, and I couldn't resist it (I know, I'm weak). I just love the mediaeval illuminated manuscript look of this one. It should have some text and another flower on the vine at the bottom, but due to a slight misjudgement regarding the size of my scrap of raw linen I had to miss those off!

I also recieved my ornament from Dusty in the Stitch & Stash ornament exchange. Dusty stitched me an exquisite Hardanger tree and bookmark. Thanks Dusty, they are beautiful

Wednesday 10 December 2008

Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

Well it is in our house anyway. Here is a small small part of my display of stitched ornaments. I've recieved so many wonderful ornaments in exchanges that this year for the first time I've had to hang some from the banister rail too! The rectangular one, with Christmas 2008 on it, was the prize I won in Sally's blogoversary draw. Isn't it just gorgeous? Sally also sent me a little pink angel bear for my tree, and some yummy Thornton's too but you'd need an XRay camera to see a picture of that ;D.

Last night was the Christmas Workshop at the florists in the village. First we made a topiary tree, which you could then decorate as you chose, I decided on cones, orange slices and cinnamon sticks and wrapped the base in hessian. Unfortunately the hessian decided to wick up every last drop of water in the shop and let it all go again onto my trousers in the car on the way home, but you can't have everything.

After that we each made one of these table arrangements. I'd just bought a set of charger plates, exactly like the ones we used, that afternoon, so this goes perfectly.

Wednesday 3 December 2008

Ornaments part 2...

Some of the ornaments I made for exchanges have reached their destination, so I can now show them here. The first one is "Rudy" by Glory Bee from the 2007 JCS Ornament Edition, and was stitched for Dusty in the Stitch and Stash exchange. Notice how I cunningly altered it to read 2008 ;D

The second one is "Nordic Hearts" by Scandinavian Stitches, from the 2002 Ornie Edition, stitched for Deb (no blog) in the TGOSM exchange.

Next we have a Hello Kitty ornament taken from the horrendous chart I mentioned on here a few months back. No prizes for guessing it is for Naomi.

And, of course, I couldn't make Naomi an ornament without making Eloise one as well. This one is a free design from . It is called Christmas Cat. Bet they sat up all night thinking of that one! I altered the colours a bit from the original, which was in more pastel shades.
And that is officially it for this year. I am not making any more ornaments...

Friday 28 November 2008

Look what the Postman brought!

A couple of weeks ago I was thrilled to win a draw on Sharon(Daffycat)'s blog for a penguin floss tag (I love penguins). Well the parcel just arrived, and wow! A plethora of penguins! More penguins, in fact, than you can shake a stick at. Not only the lovely little floss tag (the pattern for that is on Sharon's blog by the way), but also a whole pack of coloured gaolor's rings, some penguin gift tags, a piece of penguin print cotton, an adorable penguin tin, and a penguin Christmas tree ornament.
I love penguins!
Just look!
I'm going to make myself a Christmas Stocking out of the fabric (it doesn't show too well in the picture but the print has lovely glittery snow effect patches). All the rest of the family have stockings that I've made for them, now its my turn! Did I happen to mention that I love penguins?
Thankyou Sharon, I'm overwhelmed.

Sunday 23 November 2008

Ornaments, ornaments, ornaments

I seem to have been stitching a lot of ornaments lately, anyone would think it was nearly Christmas or something! I can't show them all, as some are for exchanges and still en route, but here are a couple I can show. The octagonal one is for Clare's Ornament Tree. The design is by With My Needle and comes from an old (2002) JCS Ornament Issue.
The little 3D stable is for my friend. The design is a free one I found on this blog. The other two sides have the three Wise men and an angel on them.
Finally this beautiful Hardanger ornament is one I recieved in an exchange from Barbara (no blog that I'm aware of).
OK, off to watch the footy now!

Sunday 16 November 2008

Naomi's Birthday and I've been Tagged!

Yes, my baby girl is twelve today. Doesn't seem like 5 minutes! Here she is all dressed up for her party - she had 4 friends over for a movie marthon sleepover yesterday night. I don't know about her, but I'm exhausted!
Happy Birthday Sweetheart

I was tagged a few days ago by Mylene. Here are the rules:-

1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post.
5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know your entry is up.

Well, it has taken me days to come up with six things about me that are even remotely interesting but here goes:

1. I've had a wide range of jobs, including working in a police forensic science lab, pharmaceutical analysis, and teaching chemistry in schools.

2. And now I design needlework....go figure!

3. I have a thing about shoes. Who am I kidding, I LOVE shoes, they call to me and I am powerless to resist them. Look at this one. I can hear it now, whispering inside my head. "You're not in Kansas now, Dorothy"! And boots. Don't get me started on boots...

4. I'm a bit of a sci fi geek. I can name all the actors who've played The Doctor, I can tell you which ship made the Kessel run in less than twelve parsecs, and I like Picard better than Kirk. Make it so.

5. I love Shakespeare

6. And penguins. The feathery sort, not the sort covered in silver paper.

I'm not going to tag anyone specific with this, because I've already seen it on a lot of the blogs I visit, so if you are reading this and you fancy having a go. Tag! You're it!
Oh, and for the people who fancied sharing the hot chocolate in the previous post, you need to make your way to the Harbor Light tearooms in Boscastle.

Thursday 13 November 2008

Happy Dance Time!

I have a finish to share (as opposed to finishes I can't share because they are for exchanges, which is why this has been a quiet blog of late).

Here (drumroll please) is Blackbird Designs "Beyond My Heart".

I got the frame from these people . They've got a rinky dinky "upload your picture & try it out in all the frames" feature.

I'm really pleased with this one, even though Naomi said "Mum, that is the sappiest poem I've ever seen". Pah! What does she know? She isn't even twelve till Sunday! (Might not make it either if she keeps making comments like that.)

Anyone care to join me in a celebratory Hot Chocolate?

Sunday 2 November 2008

Autumn Exchange

It is reveal day for the Stitch and Stash Autumn Exchange. Here is the gift I recieved. A wooden box topped with the sweetest little Quaker Hedgehog, and filled with lovely autumn coloured threads and buttons. The colour isn't very clear in the photo, but the hedgehog is stitched in a variegated thread in lovely soft apricot shades.

Unfortunately I don't know who to thank yet as partners names haven't been revealed, but if you are reading this, Thankyou, it is beautiful.

And here is the exchange I sent to Jane (no blog as far as I know). I adapted one of the Little House Needleworks fruit pack designs, and made it into a pinkeep trimmed with some vintage braid. The original design said "Acorns" and was quite wintry looking, so I changed the text to "Autumn" and turned the snow into grass. I also replaced some of the stitched leaves with leaf buttons, and look! What a small world! I recieved some of the self same buttons in my gift so they are already replaced in my stash :)

Saturday 1 November 2008

Princesses of Darkness

Look at these spooky creatures!

This is how the girls went out last night...

...and this is Naomi's "Halloween Cat" Pumpkin, which won the village pumpkin competition

Sunday 26 October 2008

A Carnival and a challenge...

The weather is always a worry with Autumn carnivals (of course this year the weather was a worry with the summer ones too!), specially since the float was no longer fit to use (waterlogged - no surprises there) which meant we had to take the girls in a car, but in the end it worked out quite well and we were able to use my car with the roof off.

It wasn't too cold (they did have trousers and moon boots on under their dresses)...

...and it only rained a little bit...

And the challenge? It is reveal day for the Monthly Challenge at the Jaynes Attic forum. This month, instead of all doing the same design, we chose from a range of Breast Cancer Awareness designs. I chose a simple pink ribbon design from Gloria and Pat and finished it as a needle nanny. Check out the album for all the other finishes.

Monday 13 October 2008

Autumn, an Austen moment, and a Competition reminder

Funny old year isn't it? Autumn has obviously heard that "purple is the new black" or whatever else it is that the fashion world is telling us now and decided to jump on the bandwagon and become the new summer this year.

We've spent the weekend out and about enjoying the weather. This first picture was taken up on Bodmin Moor.

The next ones were taken at Pencarrow House. It has the most beautiful gardens, and can't you just imagine Mr Darcy walking towards you up that path? No? Just me then...

Finally, don't forget the Competition at Jaynes Attic to win six months free membership to my collectors club, the first part being Mr RolyPoly here. (I've put up another picture because this one shows the red colourway better, though its not so good of the white one)

Friday 10 October 2008

RolyPoly update...

RolyPoly is now available from Jaynes Attic. He is the first part of a new, and as yet un-named, Bi-monthly Collector's Club of "smalls".
For a chance to win six months free membership of the collectors club visit the Competition Page at the Attic and suggest a name for our club. Competition runs until 1st November.

Good Luck!

Friday 3 October 2008

Introducing RolyPoly!

Here is the 2008 Father Christmas from Alchemy Stitchcraft. He is called "RolyPoly" and can be stitched in any colours (white one is DMC 115 & 3072, red one is plain old white stranded cotton with Rainbow Gallery Wisper for his beard, pinkeep version is Gloriana Poinsettia, again with Wisper). Stitch count is 75 x 85 (flat) for the 3D version or a teensy 15 x 31 for the pinkeep, so he is a nice quick stitch in time for Christmas. He should be available from Jaynes Attic very shortly, where he will form the first part of a "collectors club" of differently finished small items.

Wednesday 1 October 2008

The time has come, the Walrus said... talk of many things,
Of shoes and ships and sealing wax,

Well, shoes and seals actually, but its close. The first picture is for Julie, who wanted to see what the beaded shoes I mentioned in my last post were like.

What can I say? I have a weakness for shoes.

The next picture I've posted specially for our friends Jayne and Klaus, who visited a couple of weeks ago. We tried to go and see these little chaps then, but were beaten back by the armpit deep mud. This weekend it was much drier. And no, I didn't wear THE shoes!
Sorry about the quality of the picture, but its taken from the top of the cliff. There isn't a way down to the beach at that point, which, come to think about it, is probably why the seals are always there.
And finally some stitching. I promised Naomi a "Twilight" piece like the one I'd made for Eloise. This time I stitched it over 1 for a bit of a challenge, then Paulette posted a second free design for the "dog-lovers" among us, so I stitched that one as well and made them up back to back as an ornament. I think I should call it "Bella's Choice"
Oh, by the way, I got the sequin waste on ebay, Sally.

Sunday 28 September 2008

Monthly challenge and stash shopping

Yesterday was reveal day for the Monthly Challenge at Jaynes Attic. This months design was from Windy Willows. I stitched mine on Zweigarts opalescent lugana, using Anchor 1033, 1034 & 1035. As usual there are some wonderful finishes in the album . I finished mine a Christmas card hanger, here's how I did it:-
I cut two ovals of cardboard and gathered and laced the stitched piece over one of them, and a piece of print cotton over the other, lined them up together back to back and stitched around the edges catching the evenweave to the cotton. So far so much like a pinkeep except that at the centre top I caught in a small loop of ribbon for hanging, and at the bottom edge I sandwiched the top edge of a 1m length of sequin waste between the two cardboard pieces. It is quite easy to pierce the sequin waste with a sharp needle so I just stitched right through it as I stitched the front and back together. Finally I trimmed the edge with a length of braid, fastening it onto the front section rather than around the outside edge as you would for a pinkeep. The cards are hung onto the sequin waste with tiny clothes pegs (the sorth they sell for card making).

Oh, and I mentioned stash shopping. My friend and I went to Exeter yesterday for the Stitching and Creative Crafts show. Not a huge amount of Cross Stitch there, but lots of beading. I got some beads, a highly discounted DMC kit (I didn't really want the kit, but it was so cheap it was worth buying it for the nice piece of eau de nil linen that came with it), a pretty pair of Premax scissors with flower patterned handles, and a kit to make a Machine embroidered piece from organza, where you use a soldering iron to melt away parts of the design, which sounds like a lot of fun.

I got some drop dead gorgeous beaded shoes too. Because they were there...

Monday 22 September 2008

Sunshine and Twilight

What beautiful weather we are having (at last!). Yesterday we spent the morning catching up on some much needed gardening, then in the afternoon we went for a walk along the cliff path,

Follwed by this very welcome refreshment ;D

Not too much stitching to show today. I've finished the Jaynes Attic Monthly Challenge, but I can't show that until reveal day. There is this though. This "Twilight" design was a free gift from Paulette of Plum Street Samplers, and the moment I saw it I knew it had to be stitched for Eloise. The thread is Carrie's Creations' Hearts on Fire by the way, I thought that was kind of appropriate. The only problem is that Naomi is now completely jealous, and I have to stitch it all over again!

Monday 8 September 2008

Back to school!

The girls went back to school today, and it seemed really quiet without them (they are making up for it now of course).

It was Naomi's first day of secondary school. Where did my baby go????

Note the difference in colour between the nice new school sweatshirt and the one thats been washed a few times. You'd think with what they charged for them they'd wash a bit better than that.

I got stash post today. As soon as Naomi got her eye on this she wanted me to stitch it for her. Well, the chart is horrible! Not only is it in colour, which I hate, but it is a HUGE single sheet (A2) folded in four. I think I'm going to isolate the Kitty motif, stitch it up as an ornie, and forget the rest.

Wednesday 3 September 2008

This is me today...

"And what is the reason for your boundless joy?" I hear you ask.
I have just discovered I can buy
Rington's Tea online. I have so missed getting my tea delivered since I moved down south, but no more! No more bland Supermarket Tea! No more pining for the Tea Man! No more ringing my mum and begging her to send tea packages! I got so excited I ordered three different types of tea and two caddies (but I was very good and didn't order the caramel wafers).
I've been in a finishing mood today. I got my August Challenge from the
Jaynes Attic Forum finished. This month the design was from A Mon Ami Pierre. Mine is stitched in Gentle Art Shaker colours on 32 count raw linen and I finished it as a pinkeep, but there are plenty of much more imaginative finishes in the album. Looking forward to September's challenge now.
I also made up this little pinkeep. This is NOT a frog (honest). This is "Tiny Toad" a free design from The Cricket Collection. He is stitched in random bits of leftover threads, and it is my first attempt at a gathered ribbon trim. I'm not 100% happy with it, but its OK, and I think it kind of suits him.

Sunday 31 August 2008

Back from Holiday

I love Brittany and as usual, I took dozens of photos. Here is a selection of a few of my favourites

And here are a few highlights
Crepes with Cider!

A French Needlework Shop...

and the stash I got there ;)