Friday, 27 September 2013

Wedding WIP September Update #2

Hello again! I have been stitching like a mad woman and tonight I present to you this washed out night-time image of my stitching! I forgot to get a picture in daylight but have tried to edit to show the colours correctly. I'm so happy I've gotten to the point where you can see my Mums face, its a little more motivating to show it coming together now!

Also, I have done a terrible silly thing. Notice that torn edge on the right side? I decided to "trim" the edges so I didn't have so much fabric hanging off the edge of my frame and instead sheared off most of it. I completely forgot to leave some for the frame and stretching!

So guys, have I ruined it? Could a professional printing place frame it with that much fabric there? I was planning on just the stitched area showing anyway. Oh well, thats a mistake I won't be making again!

I'll post some more progress in a couple of weeks :) I've been so busy working and doing other hobbies (drawing/video games etc.) I don't think I'll be updating this more than bi-monthly, but I will be updating and thats all that matters!

See you next time ladies and gents.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Wedding cross stitch WIP Update!

Hello ladies and gents! It's been a few weeks, but I thought I'd try and leave enough time to show a substantial update - and here it is!

So I've done the entire top 3 rows! I've parked my threads for the next (massive) page and will start it tomorrow when I have more natural light. I'm really pleased with how its going so far although it is slow! Should be able to see my dear mothers face soon :)

Also got these beautiful things in the post today from sewandso! (I highly recommend this company if you are from the UK like me!)

I adore these scissors, reminds me of one of those big black vintage sewing machines! They're nice and sharp and I don't have to 'saw' at the threads to cut them anymore.

This neat little thing is called a Needle Minder, it has a magnet attached to it, with another magnet that sits on the otherside of your fabric and holds it in place. When you're not using your needle you pop it on the needle minder and it'll keep it nice and safe for you! I have two kittens so making sure that a stray needle doesn't fall on the floor is my top priority, this helps a little for my anxieties!

So thats it for this update, hope to get a little more done soon as my due time is looming!
Thanks for looking!

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Knitting and Cross stitch Progress in August

Its been a couple of weeks since my last post, I would show more frequently how I'm getting on, however I'm not the quickest! I don't want to inundate you all with daily posts of the few stitches I've managed to do here and there... so here's a more substantial update!

Now, I feel like the worst knitter in the world. If you're a knitter you may know how enjoyable knitting teeny clothes for newborn babies are and how satisfying it is to knit up pieces so quickly. I'm fighting a losing battle with my Suzette cardigan and stopped knitting at all for a few months (Hello cross stitch!) and didn't think there was any point doing baby stuff as noone in my family were close to having babies!

However my brain failed to notice that MY OWN MOTHER has had a bun in the oven for 6 MONTHS! 

Yeah, thats 6 entire months of lost knitting time, how many little baby booties and mittens is that?!
So I scoured my digital copies of The Knitter and found an adorable baby pattern called Little Vine (Ravelry link) 

I went out and spent a ludicrous amount (£11) on 2 gorgeous balls of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino, because every baby needs cashmere in their life, even if it will be 12 weeks before they grow out of it.

Its knitting up so fast its awesome, although I'm used to doing adult clothes that take forever. Alas my camera has absolutely butchered the colour of this yarn. Its not this sickly red colour going on right now, its a gorgeous deep purple, like wine and mulberries. Here is the swatch from the Deramores site, it's much more accurate: Cashmerino in Plum

As always, I'm using my trusty Knitting Needs by Signature Needle Arts which are hands down my favourite knitting purchase ever. These are 3.5mm with the super sharp Stiletto tips (great for lace!)

The little vine pattern is easy to memorize and enjoyable to do. Nothing too taxing, a few YOs and SLKPs and the usual knit and purls!

Here's the back knitted up and the left front, just the right and arms left!

I've done lots more on my Wedding Cross Stitch, although it seems to take forever. I'm cutting time by using lots of needles with each colour so I'm not rethreading all the times, and using the parking method!

I took this photo this morning so you can see the colours better (hadn't stitched as much then) but I love doing the little greens, oranges and purples that pop up, and it all works so well together!

While I'm not sure that I'll get it done by December, in fact we all know that'll be a small miracle, I'm enjoying the process as I go, and I'm adding up a small collection of patterns I want to do once its finished!

(To see the wedding cross stitch progress in its entirety, click the wedding label down the right hand side of the blog, it will show all posts!)

'Til next time.

Saturday, 27 July 2013

What I've been busy doing these past few weeks...

So, me being the type of person to run before I can walk, I embarked on my first proper cross stitch project of my own!

This is the design, all ready to stitch with DMC threads:

Its my Mother and my Step-Dad on their wedding day last year! I adore this picture and their entire wedding was vintage themed, with vinyl and cupcakes and a rock 'n' roll band. I thought what better than to cross-stitch their photo to enjoy for years to come?

So a few weeks have passed and I've been trying to do a 10x10 square a day. I'm not doing so well, but after learning the "parking method", my stitching has sped up tenfold! As you can see from the pattern, in 100 crossstitch squares, there can be 30 or 40 colour changes! So parking has suited me very well.

Here is some progress pictures, and how my "cross stitch caddy" is set up!

I have approximately 27 colours, and many more skiens in storage just in case I run out! My caddy has removeable sections which is really useful, as I've made a little bin for my waste threads, and a section for my pens, needles and scissors!

This is the first (and smallest!) page I'm doing, as it starts in the top left. I didn't like the idea of starting in the middle and spending months rubbing my wrists over finished needlework and making it tatty!

I do try to wind my bobbins neatly but sometimes it just doesn't happen!

I used a thin sharpie to write the symbols and numbers on the bobbins, this helps for quick selection. As I'm using at least 10-12 colours at a time, I like being able to quickly find a colour bobbin and check it against the thread to make sure I'm using the right one!

1500 stitches so far (I think!) if you compare it to the picture above you can see it coming together! I gridded with a wash away marker, that will disappear when I wash it (or I hope so, otherwise tears will be shed and tantrums had!)

I'm using an R&R Frame, which is a plastic snap frame to hold your embroidery. In the US a similar brand is Q-Snap! I really recommend these as you can keep them in the frames for long periods of time, and unlike embroidery hoops, doesn't leave harsh line marks!

I'm using the largest size available, 17" x 17" which is quite unwieldy to be honest, but I've gotten used to it, and I like being able to eventually see the entire cross stitch on it! My local needlework shop has ordered in some smaller sizes for me for future projects, as I can't see myself going back to hoops after this!

Thankyou for looking!

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Cross stitch kitty!

So continuing my cross stitching adventure, I found an adorable kitty pattern the most recent CrossStitcher magazine and HAD to do it. Luckily I had some leftover Anchor thread from an old kit I left years ago which did me perfectly! I'd say it probably took around 6-10 hours total, I didn't really time it but I was very very slow! I also tried to take the time to make the back as neat as possible and I think I did pretty well!

Anyway, here are the pics :D

I ended up keeping the wooden embroidery hoop and using it as a frame, I love the look! It also kinda goes with the kitties fur.

Here's the back, I did reasonably well until I did the backstitching and I was so impatient to get it finished I wasn't as disciplined with making sure it was all tied togther! Still happy with the result.

So thats my first proper project done! What was yours? When did you feel like you'd become more of an accomplished stitcher?

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Back into Cross Stitching!

I thought it might be time to introduce another craft onto my blog. I can't always knit and I find my blog posting schedule is suffering for it as I don't have much to show!

I adore cross stitching, I've only done a few hours worth in my life but the artwork is stunning. I can spend hours browsing other peoples handiwork!

I think I could look at making my own patterns in conjunction with my tattoo designs and artwork, it would be so  much fun!

So here is my afternoon in pictures with an old cross stitch magazine and some free threads! I had to pop into town to get a tension ring and some needles as I'd lost everything but after that I settled down with some Downton Abbey!

I highly underestimated how useful my iPad would be when it came to digital magazines! I get the issues straight away, a couple of quid cheaper and I can follow all the cross stitch patterns on there! I was browing for inspiration while I stitched this tiny teapot.

This is around 2 hours in, seriously, I'm so slowwwww! But I adore the little squares and watching it grow colour by colour is addictive.

R.I.P kitty cross stitch. This was the first one I tried to do over a year ago and I think I was a little over ambitions. I still have around 15 colours from the kit that I haven't used and I've lost the pattern now, so I'll have to think of something else.

The pattern in the magazine, I got some lovely pastel coloured threads free with the magazine that work well with all the designs there.

Finished this evening! Sorry for the poor lighting but there wasn't much left at this point! The colours aren't quite right (check out that yellow!) but I didn't have them all in the free threads. Still think it looks okay though.

I'm officially addicted. If you know anyone who has a cross stitching blog that still updates, I'd love to read it!

Today's Outfit!

I really enjoy browsing through most types of blogs, and fashion blogs in particular fascinate me, purely because I find it so difficult!

I was  never into clothes and fashion until I was about nineteen... (two years ago!) As I was always a bit of a tomboy and put more time into hobbies than I did clothes. But people who can put outfits together and look good in unusual and striking outfits just amaze me. Its almost like a  new skill I'm trying desperately to learn!

As most crafters go though, the majority of my money goes into art supplies, yarn, threads... anything that isn't clothing! I am hoping this will change though.

I do enjoy wearing and buying clothes nowadays and I'm hoping that recording and blogging about them will give me motivation to put more time and effort into it! Who knows, maybe I can look back in years to come and see a massive improvement!

I have a love affair with maroon right now, and I love a slouchy cardigan (especially after a week of junk food!) It was pretty warm on the day so I didn't feel like wearing jeans or shorts. I decided on a light dress and woolen tights incase it got cooler later on. Knowing the british weather you have to be ready for anything!

 I went for a pulled back pony tail as I have very thick hair and can get too hot on sunny days! I decided on matching my lipstick with my dress and heavier eyebrows to give a more dramatic look!

Dress and belt is H&M
Slouchy cardigon F&F for Tesco
Studded ankle boots are New Look

Ring is New Look and the wrist cuff was given to me by a friend. I don't usually wear jewelry as I wear gloves so much for my job!

Thanks for looking, let me know what you think of this feature as I hope to continue it now and again!

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

New Project! WIP Candle Flame Scarf

Finally managed to put some photos together for a new WIP I've been working on recently! My older project Susette is currently stalled at the stage where I'm joining the sleeves and body together, I'ts become above my skill level and I've ripped back several times. So it looks like its sitting in the bottom of my knitting drawer, and I'd rather start on new projects to keep my blog nice and active.

So here we go! I've done around a foot or so now, a lovely 24 row lace pattern, the yarn is James C Brett Cotton on and is loooovely and soft. Although I didn't think about how it would block, being part acrylic. I just hope it does!

The pattern, I can't wait to see how the lace blocks out, I love it how it is but I hope it will look even better afterwards!

My beloved Signature Needles. By far the best I've ever used. If you like using magic loop this will give you the most stress free experience!

More Signature Needle love

Only around 12" long currently, much more to go.

Lovely easy pattern consisting of a few YOs and KTOGS, otherwise it's standard Knit and Purl. I recommend this to everyone including beginners who are trying out lace for the first time.
As always, thankyou for reading, I really appreciate it! I'll hopefully start having some more projects to blog about soon, and maybe introducing a few new topics.

PinPicks: Favourite Pins of The Week!

I browse Pinterest daily, whether its in between appointments at work or in the evenings before I go to bed. It seems to be very popular in the blogging community and is a great way to share your own interests to your readers! I figured I could post a few of mine every now and again, as my knitting progress is rather slow and so my posts have slowed somewhat!

I will be posting up pictures of a new project I've been working on tonight, Ive gotten everything ready to take pictures and realised my camera is out of battery!

Anyway, here are a few Pins that have caught my eye.

Chinese Waitress Cast On by Knit Freedom

Beautiful Lace heart tattoo by MikeyC

Birdy Floral backpiece

This makes me want to learn to crochet! Little camera bag

I love all things grumpy cat! I'd love to cross stitch this or make it into a sweater!

That's all for now :)

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

No knitting!

I feel pretty bad, I got so motivated with this blogging and once I'd started a project that overwhelmed me, I couldn't carry on with it! I'm very much a starter and not a finisher, although I was trying to change that.

Instead of waiting 6 months to finish this current project I've just started a new one, and hopefully the other will get done in time. So then I'll get to blog about my smaller projects.

As I've said on here before, I'm a tattoo artist, and I've got heaps of work to show those of you who are interested! (If tattoos aren't your thing then that's completely fine with me - feel free to skip the rest of this post!)

These are a selection over the past couple of months, I'm super proud of some of the work I've done. I've been concentrating on my artwork and not on my knitting, and I feel I should be able to balance both, so more work is needed!

I have a little lace scarf project on the go right now, so I'll post about it in a few days once I've got partway through it!

Thanks for reading!