Christmas progress!

I’ve been working like a busy bee the last few days…

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I tracked down another skein of the DMC 115, so I managed to finish the stitching for one of my Christmas presents.

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Which meant I could get started on this one! It’s also a Gail Pan design, but this one is stitched in Cottage Garden Threads “Bush Christmas”.

I must say, I love having a local patchwork shop – and Jess over at A Patchwork Quilt is AMAZING. I had the original thread this pattern called for in my stash but I wasn’t feeling it with this particular pattern so I browsed a few of the other CGT colours. If you haven’t checked them out, you seriously should – they’re hand dyed and the colour changes are so subtle, but the best thing is they’re pre cut strands!  I messaged Jess on Facebook to see if she had this in stock and she popped it in the mail for me the next day (because I do so many BOMs through her, she had my details on file ;P) and so I was all ready to go.

I also learnt from the previous design that I am pretty awful at freestyle drawing straight lines, so I made sure to use a ruler when tracing this pattern. I think it looks a lot neater.

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I also made a start on the Moda Bakery “Trifle Dish” sew along that Jess is doing on FB – there’s a group of us who are sewing this, some with fabrics she has chosen, the rest with their own from their stash.  I am remarkably behind – this is month one, and we’re already on month two!

When I went to sew this though, I realised that I’d never actually sewn HST before. I thought I had, but apparently not!? So a few google searches later to get a couple of tips and I had a pile to trim up and sew together.

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I think I did okay for my first go! This is block one of five – I haven’t done any of the other cutting but I’m planning on cutting up the rest of the blocks this week and at least putting the pieces into bags so I can get it out of the way.

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And despite seeing a few “whoopsies” on the FB group, guess what I promptly did? Argh!!!

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All better now! I still need to sew the border on, and give it a press, but I’m pretty proud of myself. The points don’t line up perfectly but I think it’s a decent attempt for my first go, and I’ve picked up a few tips for the next blocks.

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I also came across the Farmer’s Wife Quilt. FabricDirect.com.au are doing a sew along – it’s about to go into month 8, so I’m already behind, but seeing as that seems to be the story of my life I messaged Eve to see if I could still join in. I’ve seen so many pictures and blog posts of this around and I love the modern take on this – I need a new BOM/project like I need a hole in the head, but I’ve been really interested to see all the different colour schemes people are using on this, as well as the stories behind the blocks. Plus, it’s going to (hopefully…) be great at skill building, especially as for this QAL it’s starting with the easier piecing and moving up to the more complicated.

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I went into Spotlight today to pick up some needles and some template plastic. Turns out they had a 30% sale on fabric. Someone take my credit card away from me, honestly. I picked up these GORGEOUS fabrics though to make a quilt for my nephew – still tossing up a few designs, and I want to see how my interwoven quilt turns out to see if I want to do something like this, or if I want to get a few more different fabrics in, but it’s the first quilt that I’ve decided I want to make without following the exact pattern, so fingers crossed!

Back to some more stitching – with all these projects I’m aiming to do at least some kind of craft each day otherwise I’ll never get anything done!

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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.

Less work, more crafting

Phew! Finally at the end of my ‘work week’ – 8 days in a row. I will be looking forward to not having my alarm on at 5am tomorrow, let me tell you …

I did however get a nice surprise at work from my delightful husband – he got oriental lilies (my favourite) delivered to work for me, which are absolutely gorgeous.

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Also pictured – the single long stem rose that one of our residents gave to me, and the bunch of roses that I grabbed from one of our other hotels. They had a regular guest check in who brought in probably a dozen bunches of flowers of the staff, and when I was over there they offered me one. I’m hoping I have enough large vases!

I’ve also had an exciting week with the mail – my Cottage Garden Threads came in yesterday from A Patchwork Quilt and has such a great variety of colours. I’m really looking forward to getting these monthly. It’s got a progressive stitchery which has designs to show case each thread colour – I probably won’t get started on that for a while, but it should look fantastic when it’s complete. Sharon over at Lilabelle Lane is much faster than me and has already sewn her four threads from this month!

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I also got the rest of my supplies for the Once Upon A Time sampler! I’m very impressed with how fast the postage was (especially considering I’m still waiting on something I ordered in October to be delivered – and the resent item – I think I may have to give up on that one!)

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The threads were from The Workroom in Canada – a couple of you asked how come I bought them overseas. It turned out that they had the thread packs all made up, and these turned out to be cheaper, including shipping, than buying them here, because they offered a small bulk discount. I also purchased the thread before I bought the pattern as I was spreading this out over pay cycles, so it meant I didn’t have to wait to find out what threads I needed.

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The fabric is hand dyed linen from Picture This Plus, and is the fabric that the original was stitched on. It’s my first time stitching on linen, so I suspect this will be a bit of a challenge to begin with, but what is crafting without trying new things?? I’m hoping to make a start on the border of this over the weekend, and hopefully get myself up to date in a couple of months so that I’m stitching as each month is released.

And of course, the latch hook of epic proportions is continuing. Not much more progress from the previous picture, but at least I’ve got colours other than green in this section.

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I’m rather impressed with my efforts though – I may just finish this before my August deadline!

I need a Fabrics Anonymous

What have I been up to lately? Well, work has been keeping me busy, so I haven’t had much to post yet. But I’ve been working on a few things here and there…

A bit more of “Enjoy Today” (satin stitch is still doing my head in, but it’s getting there!)

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I finished my Merry Snowmen latch hook…

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And I took another trip to Spotlight because they had 30% off printed fabric!

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I’ve acquired some cream and red fabric for all those Christmas stitheries, as well as a couple of different options for my “New Beginnings” that I want to start soon. And of course, no trip would be complete without a couple more fat quarters!

I also ordered some hanky linen online for some of my projects that are in a set, just to make it easier if I choose to do the other ones – with my track record, it’ll be years and then I won’t be able to find the old fabric! I also grabbed a couple of pieces of wool felt that I need for another project I’m doing as a present.

It’s been a bit of stash building, but in my defence almost all of it has plans – now I just need to set up my study/craft room and give myself some space to put it all!

I can never stop at one thing!

Well, after my post a couple of days ago, I managed to finish off my latch hook yesterday. Which leads to the question – why am I so horrible at finishing my WIPs??

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Now, I have two latch hooks done, and just need to work out how to bind them and finish them off. I’ve had a look around online and pretty sure I have a decent idea, so I’ll be playing a bit of trial and error to see how I go with it. I’ll try and take pictures of the process, as a couple of people have asked about how to bind it. No guarantees it’ll work, though!

So with that, I decided a trip to Spotlight was in order, to pick up some thicker thread.

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As you can tell, I purchased more than the thread. I always seem to do this – trip and accidentally put more things into my basket.

Also pictured – a pile of fat quarters and thread for a project, some buttons that were on sale that I may or may not need (I believe a pattern called for “two” buttons, but they were on sale!), a tin to put my needles in, a pile of Christmas themed fat quarters that were also on sale, a jelly roll that I have no plans for but were great colours, some fat quarters that I can possibly use for those Christmas patterns I keep buying, and because who doesn’t like adding to their stash, some needles, and of course the thread I came into the store to get in the first place!

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A close up of the fabrics I selected for my “Happy Days” needlebook I’m planning as a present, and the matching threads. Technically I didn’t need a fat quarter – I needed far less – but the colours are gorgeous together and I may even make another one.

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I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned this one before, but this is my work on my largest latch hook project to date (it’s quite literally as tall as me), and this got put aside for about a year. I’ve pulled it out again, and am slowly working on 10×10 blocks in the theory that as long as I do a little bit of work on a project each day, I’ll get some progress going. It seems to be going well, although the piece is so large I have to do on the bed, as it won’t fit out on the couch. This one isn’t on my list of goals or working towards a deadline to finish, as it’s just so damn huge. Maybe some day!

More goodies!

Has it been almost a week since I’ve posted? Whoops! So much for my goal of remembering to post regularly…

I’ve found a new store and I’m delighted to say that it’s close to me! A Patchwork Quilt is run by the delightful Jess, and opened at the beginning of this year. It’s currently online only although Jess hopes to open the doors to the public in the future – and just a couple of suburbs over from me, I’m overjoyed. It’ll be so nice to have a store in the northern suburbs.

I promptly went ahead and purchased a couple more patterns to add to my stash – I’ve got plans for one of them, but not the other two (yet..) and am waiting on a couple more to come into stock.

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The middle “Thought of the Month” series has a ton of great quotes, and I can easily see me buying the rest of them …

I’ve also signed up to a couple of the BOM programs – Rosalie Quinlan’s “Best Friends Forever”, and the Cottage Garden Threads club. Both begin in February, and I’m looking forward to receiving my goodies each month.

Not entirely sure when I’ll be able to start these patterns, as I’m trying to get through my WIPs which seem to keep growing out of control…

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I’ve decided this is my next one to tackle, while I take a break from “Enjoy Today” and the cursed satin stitch (it’s really not that bad, it’s just I can’t handle stitching neatly in this heatwave), so I’m hoping I can finish the hooking over this weekend. Then I just have to bind it – and find where I put the binding!

It’s never too early to be planning presents

I got back from annual leave yesterday at work to discover that my most recent online purchase had been delivered – yay!

I tend to get parcels delivered to work, rather than home, because with my work schedule and varying delivery times I never know if I’ll be home, and this is far easier to juggle.

This particular parcel included a number of stitchery projects that I plan on doing as Christmas presents (and will also count towards my goals of finishing some projects). I can’t wait to get started on them, but I really should finish off a couple others first.

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Projects for my nephew, and a couple others to give to family members as Christmas presents.

Now all I need to do is stitch them up – and then go on a trip and find the matching fabrics to finish them!

In other crafting news, “Enjoy Today” is stitching up quite nicely – I’ve almost finished the flower petals and just have a couple left, and am moving onto the satin stitch.

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The satin stitch looks fantastic, but god is it frustrating!