Stash building

The postman has bringing me lots of lovely gifts this past week! (I think he’s sick of delivering parcels that I have to sign for as well…) A few bits and pieces, and they’re actually mostly all for current projects, which is a change from the usual…

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I’ve ordered some 7 1/2″ and 9 1/2″ hexagon templates for the Best Friends Forever block of the month from Under The Mulberry Tree. I figured that if I’m going to need to make 96 hexagons, having proper templates will be a lot easier.  I still haven’t finished the first stitchery, but it’s definitely going to be worth it.

Also pictured is some of the Cosmo Seasons threads for the Simply Blessed BOM that I’m signed up for. I haven’t received the pack for this one yet (I’m stitching the French version, and the store is waiting for the fabric to come in), but I’ve got enough to start the first couple of months now. It’ll need 16 skeins over the 9 months, so I’ll be needing more either way.

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I also ordered some more fabric from Quilted Fabric Delights, who are closing down. I really only needed a fat quarter, but the minimum order was 1m and it was at a steal, so I couldn’t help myself. I also grabbed a couple more cosmo threads for the BFF stitching – by the time I went to purchase them, most of the colours were sold out!

Lastly, I got the Toymaker kit from Cinderberry Stitches – I have no real plans for who this will be for but it’s the full kit including all of the fabric needed and it was at far too good of a price to pass up.

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Block three of the BFF block of the month came too – every month when I get it, I admire the new designs.  I can’t wait to get to this one (in say, 6 months!?) but it’s been great seeing the fabrics as part of the club, as well as the designs. It’s definitely keeping me motivated.

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And lastly, the April month of the Cottage Garden Threads collectors club came – with an adorable design! It’s also got the thread case pattern which I signed up for – I don’t have any plans for it right now, although I’m going to have to especially as I get more of these each month! But as a collectors club member, we got a 20% (I think) discount of the pattern, so I added it to the pile.

With all of these purchases I’m really going to have to go through and sort out my craft room! I’ve got some things in piles but then I’ve been pulling out various patterns and fabric to decide what I want to do, and some areas are getting totally out of control. Time for an overhaul in the future.

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I’m alive, and crafting!

I swear, I’ve still been doing craft. I just haven’t posted about it. I’ve been keeping myself busy this last month with Oz Comic-Con in both Perth and Adelaide, and the inevitable “conflu” which comes afterwards.  But! I have managed to make a sizeable amount of progress towards numerous projects, and even (gasp) two finishes…

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I’m working on “New Beginnings” by Melly and Me still – this one is getting towards the end of stitching, and even though it’s meant for a December present, I’ll be glad to knock it off the list.

Previously I was doing each animal at a time however that was resulting in a ton of thread changes, as I’m getting closer to the end and past the halfway point I’m working on a different system, of trying to finish one colour each day. I think it’s achievable, and it’ll keep me encouraged to finish it. So, fingers crossed, this time next week, it’ll be done!  Yesterday was finishing off the pink (above), and today I’ve been working on the orange at work because it’s incredibly dead.

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This is a progress picture of my most recent finish – I’m not going to put a full picture up as it’s a Christmas gift. Look at all of the damn satin stitch in this snowman! That being said, working on this project has managed to downgrade my immense hatred of satin stitch down to a moderate dislike, which is always a positive change. Maybe eventually I’ll come to not mind it? (ha!)

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Speaking of satin stitch, look what finally got worked into my rotation!? Rosalie Quinlan’s “Best Friends Forever” block of the month. I’m incredibly behind – I’m about 2/3 done on the first stitchery from installment one. Which has four stitcheries. And I’ve also received installments two and three, and by the time I finish this single stitchery, I’ll probably be onto installment four…

However, I finally allowed myself to buy a couple of things to help out with the quilt that I was refusing to allow myself until I’d started it, which I’ll post about in the next few days. Any excuse will do!

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It’s going pretty well – I managed to do some stitching on the flights (Melbourne -> Perth -> Adelaide -> Melbourne) by pre cutting lengths of thread and taking just one needle. Couldn’t take the scissors but this worked out quite well as I didn’t need to keep tying off the threads. I’m still tossing up whether to do all the stitchery, and make the hexagons at once, or to do the hexagons as I go…

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Doing this one also made me realise that I’ve never actually done chain stitch before, or if I had, it was years ago and I’d totally forgotten how to. I think I’ve managed to nail it! I found an amazing tutorial online which essentially reverses the chain stitch and makes it far, far easier to do than the traditional method, and I think it looks just as good. I was hesitant about doing the chain sttiches (particularly as they’re so prominent – just like my favourite satin stitch!), but I’ve actually become pretty fond of them quickly.

Even though I’ve been making tons of progress, I feel like there’s heaps I still need to do – I’m behind on the Once Upon A Time sampler – April was released and I haven’t even printed off the pattern! Let alone the border and January. I also need to go back to a couple of other stitchery projects that are WIPs such as the “Enjoy Today” I started at the beginning of the year, and keep working on the BFF quilt otherwise I’ll end up having a millon hexagons to stitch and will chuck it in the too hard basket!

Oh, and I also need to work on my latch hook lion at some point, along with “50 shades of grey” cross stitch as it’s become dreadfully neglected, as well as bind my epic latch hook of epicness. And let’s not even talk about the other cross stitch projects that I’ve started and have set aside… I have commitment issues to projects!

It’s finished!

The giant epic latch hook? It’s finally finished!

I am so proud of myself for pushing through and finishing this one – shows how dedicated I can be if I really put my mind to it! I’ve actually found that I’m making a lot more progress towards quite a few different projects, so something I must be doing is working.

I started this one about 18 months ago – and then promptly put it away. I pulled it out again about 6 months ago (if you’ll remember, I made a ‘bet’ with my husband to finish this before August), and finished it a couple of days ago. It still needs binding, and I still need to work out the best way to hang it, but the actual hooking is done.

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Some stats for you: this is approx 75cm high by 125cm high. There’s 16500 pieces of wool in there. And I don’t want to think about how many hours, or how many episodes of trashy TV shows I watched whilst doing it.

In typical fashion, I immediately jumped into a new project.

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I don’t want to post too much, because it’s going to be a gift, but I have about 3 weeks to do this! I’m well on track – 2/3 of the stitching is already done, and I’m just waiting on a mini charm pack of fabric to arrive in the mail so I’ll be able to finish this one. The design is absolutely adorable, by Janelle Wind, so I can’t to share it once it’s finished and gifted.

I also pulled out my mum’s light box (which I apparently borrowed a few months ago, and we both forgot I had), so I could start tracing the above one, and a few others while I still had it.

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Another Christmas present – I probably won’t start stitching this one for a while, but it’s (seemingly) a small and quick one, plus this way it’ll be ready when I want to start.

I also pulled out my other patterns I have waiting for the fabric to be cut up and designs traced onto, because I’m planning on tracing out all of these ones on my days off, so they’re easily ready for me to pull out.

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I have a lot of patterns. Thankfully, a couple of them are iron on transfers.

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Look what else arrived in the mail! Block two of the Best Friends Forever block of the month. Oh dear – two months in and I haven’t even started either instalment. I probably won’t for another month, at least, so they’re piling up (and calling out to me), but I’m loving receiving these and looking at the patterns, and the gorgeous Candy Bloom fabric.

I haven’t forgotten about my cross stitch, either… (although “50 shades of grey is on a temporary hiatus – I need to work that back into my WIP rotations).

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The February block is nearly finished in the “Once Upon A Time” sampler! Which is a good thing, as we’re 1/3 of the way into March and I’d love to get a start on that. Still adore the design, although now I’m down to all the little fiddly bits that require 3-4 stitches in each colour. This is currently my immediate goal, to finish this block, and then move back to another stitchery project.

I have far too many projects on the go, but I’ve been making decent amounts of progress on all of them. Here’s hoping that keeps up, I’d love a couple more actual finishes this month!