Saturday, 10 June 2017

Gryffindor - finished

Good afternoon!

So here we have another finish from Debbie's Super Duper Ultimate Crazy January February Challenge (DSDUCJFC) 2015. This is the 21st finish of 59 starts and a companion for Ravenclaw which I finished two years ago.

Here's how I left Gryffindor at the end of May with only the name banner left to do:



And now finished with all the boring details:

From theworldinstitches (etsy)
Stitched on 16ct Cream Aida 2 over 1
Stitch count 95 wide by 117 high
Started - 4th February 2015
Finished - 4th June 2017
Total stitching time - 48 hours 50 minutes
(estimated 62 hours)


I like that I overestimated the stitching time so much! I remember doing the same with Ravenclaw and have probably done the same with the others. For some reason these designs obviously stitch up a lot quicker than expected - and that's a really satisfying feeling.

The finished piece has gone into my Box of Shame for the time being but won't be in there long. I've just had some frames delivered so hope to have another framing session soon to further reduce my unfinished-finishes.

As for the other two Harry Potter house crests, I plan to finish Slytherin towards the end of this year and Hufflepuff in 2018 - yes, my stitching plans for 2018 have almost been finalised!!!

Take care,
Rachel x

Thursday, 1 June 2017

May Progress on 2015/2016 Challenge Pieces

Hello all!

It's the end of the month so time for another update on my Challenge WIPs. My plan for May was to finish one piece and work on three more. And I succeeded. Again!

I finished Dreaming of Dolphins (posted previously) and gave attention to the following three:


Gryffindor by Theworldinstitches (etsy)
started 4th February 2015; last stitched on April 2017
filled in the lion, so just the name banner to do now



Cream by Toni Goffe for Heritage Crafts
started 9th February 2015; last stitched on April 2017
worked my way down, filling in the background and continuing  the cream pot
(and I gave the cat his eyes!!)



Red Foxes from the Young-uns Collection by Gloria and Pat
started 14th February 2015; not stitched on since then
finished the rocks and greenery, although ironically haven't started the red foxes themselves!


Once again I'm happy with my progress for the month, finding that finishing one project and changing the others every week or so is really keeping my interest up. For those of you familiar with the term I suppose it's a bit like Turtle Trot..... but on speed!

In June, keeping to my plan, I aim to finish Gryffindor and work on three more WIPs.

Take care,
Rachel x

Saturday, 27 May 2017

Smalls SAL - May 2017

Good morning!

As it's (just gone past) the last Friday of the month it's time to post my project for this month's Smalls SAL. Thank you once again to Heather of Stitching Lotus for continuing to run this fun little stitch along.



I continued with my calendar and had great fun stitching up this lovely little dog:

May Calendar by Durene Jones
Stitched on 16ct Nantucket from Sewitall.com 2 over 1
Stitch count 43 wide by 56 high
Started - 1st May 2017
Finished - 15th May 2017
Total stitching time - 10 hours 50 minutes


Yes, there were a million pink french knots in the flowers, no I don't like doing french knots and yes, they are really scruffy. But it doesn't bother me in the slightest... let's call it my "feature"! I did enjoy the backstitching though and watching each little flower come to life.

Here's the whole calendar so far:

.

I'll be back at end of June with a cute tortoise family.

Take care,
Rachel x

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Dreaming of Dolphins - finished

Morning all!

It should come as no surprise that I've now finished this gorgeous project. It required only a few more hours of stitching, plus a tiny bit of backstitching. I actually finished it a week ago, just haven't got around to posting about it until  now.

This is another finish from Debbie's Super Duper Ultimate Crazy January February Challenge (DSDUCJFC) 2015 and is the 20th finish out of the 59 starts. So, yes, I've now reached the 1/3 mark although, to be fair, 17 were finished in 2015 itself and those I've got left are generally the larger pieces. I've obviously still got a long way to go but I'll get there slowly and surely.

Anyway, here's the last progress picture from the end of April:


And here's the finished piece and details:

Designed by Karen Couchman and featured in Cross Stitch Collection March 2001
Stitched on 32ct Atlantic Depths hand-dyed Opalescent Murano Evenweave
by The Crafty Kitten 2 over 2
Stitch count 211 wide by 122 high
Started - 7th January 2015
Finished - 21st May 2017
Total stitching time - 59 hours 30 minutes
(estimated 69 hours)


It goes without saying that I thoroughly enjoyed stitching the dolphins, especially on the sparkly fabric, which really doesn't show up in the photos. There are only 6 colours in the piece and probably about half of the stitches use blended threads, but there are huge blocks of colour so it was very easy to stitch. Oh and I left out the little fish as I didn't think they were necessary.

However, now that I have unrolled the fabric I am quite annoyed - if you look closely at the top and bottom you might be able to make out distinct stripes where the fabric has more colour. This is where it was rolled on the frame so obviously some of the colour, namely the blue, has faded whilst I have been stitching. It'll be covered by the frame so won't actually show but it is annoying that my finished piece is not on the colour fabric I started out with. I'm trying to remain positive that at least it didn't fade too much and is still a lovely backgound for the dolphins.

I've already ordered the frame for this, along with the frames for a few other pieces, so there will be another chance to see it, and some other finished projects, soon.....

Take care,
Rachel x

Monday, 8 May 2017

New Start - Birds With Umbrella - 10 hours

Hello all!

In between all of my Challenge WIP stitching I have managed to sneak in a couple new starts. They're very slow-going as they're the last projects on my to-do list each month but at the end of April I finally reached the 10 hour mark on the first one:


Birds With Umbrella
Free pattern from my-cross-stitch-patterns.com
Stitched on 16ct Tea Rose overdyed aida by Sewitall.com 2 over 1
Stitch count - 100 wide by 98 high
Started - 25th March 2017


I won't show what the completed pattern will look like but, from the title, I bet you can guess which part I'm stitching first and which parts are left to stitch! It's mostly big blocks of colour which makes it a pleasingly simple stitch. Sometimes less is more.

Take care,
Rachel x

Monday, 1 May 2017

April Progress on 2015/2016 Challenge Pieces

Hello all!

It's the end of the month so time for another update on my Challenge WIPs. My plan for April was to finish one piece and work on three more. And I succeeded!

I finished The Milk Train (posted previously) and gave attention to the following three:


Dreaming of Dolphins from Cross Stitch Collection March 2001
started 7th January 2015; last stitched on March 2017
worked on the final dolphin - not much left to go on this now



Gryffindor by Theworldinstitches (etsy)
started 4th February 2015; last stitched on March 2017
continued filling in the background and started the lion



Cream by Heritage Crafts
started 9th February 2015; last stitched on June 2015
started working my way down, filling in the background
(note to self... please give the cat his eyes!!)


In May I aim to finish Dreaming of Dolphins and work on three more WIPs. I may also reach the 10 hour mark on one or both of two new starts, depending on how I divide my time between each project. As always, I have an exciting and variable month of stitching ahead!

Take care,
Rachel x

Friday, 28 April 2017

Smalls SAL - April 2017

Good morning!

As it's the last Friday of the month it's time to post my project for this month's Smalls SAL. Thank you once again to Heather of Stitching Lotus for continuing to run this fun little stitch along.



I continued to carry on with he Durene Jones cute animal calendar and, boy, did I thoroughly enjoy stitching the little mouse and daffodil this month!

April Calendar by Durene Jones
Stitched on 16ct Nantucket from Sewitall.com 2 over 1
Stitch count 43 wide by 56 high
Started - 1st April 2017
Finished - 13th April 2017
Total stitching time - 7 hours 45 minutes


And the whole calendar so far:



Now that I've finished the first row I'm not sure if I'll keep showing the whole calendar each month. Maybe I show it again at the end of August and December when the second and third rows have been completed.

May's chart is very pretty so should be a lot fun to stitch.

See you at the end of May then.
Rachel x