Sunday, November 30, 2008

For all Scots and those of Scots descent, Happy St Andrew's Day and SlĂ inte Mhath!

(normal service will be resumed shortly...)

Friday, November 14, 2008

Packing Crisis...

I'm off shortly for a craft retreat I've organised for a bunch of friends - the place we're staying is pictured above - and already my little travel case is bulging ...

I'm going to write the following things down and see if that makes a difference to my brain because it's not sinking in LOL

1. Yes, the retreat is only for 2 nights, and 2.5 days. You are going to be asleep for at least some of that time, eating for some of that time, and talking for some of that time. So just how many projects do you think you'll do?

2. Yes, knitting stuff does take up more room than stitching stuff but it was your choice to knit chunky scarfs on big needles so quit grumbling!

3. No, given point 2 above, you don't need to take all four pairs of 2.5mm needles... yes, someone might want to borrow A pair, but no octopi are going (as far as you know)

4. No, other people don't want to see your cute buttons and charms, they can stay home

5. Yes, the washing up does need doing before you go

6. Yes, it would be embarassing to take a bigger bag, especially as you have a meeting to go to on your way to the transport interchange

7. Yes, you should be packing and not writing about packing

See you later, have a good weekend everyone, hopefully I will have some finishes to share on my return :o)

Christmas is Coming - Giveaway 2

This week's giveaway is Just Nan's Christmas Bear Noel, from the Shenanigans range. If you'd like to win the chart for stitching this little chappy, just comment below and I will enter you in the draw, which I will do at 12 noon (GMT) on Tuesday.

Good luck and thanks for visiting my blog! (and feel free to spread the word, I'm going to be giving away at least one chart per week between now and Christmas, possibly two per week...)

And the winner is ...

Thanks to 'The Hat'...the winner of the Lizzie*Kate 'First Christmas' chart is Terry! Congratulations Terry, and commiserations to everyone else, I just wish I had had ten copies of the chart to give away!

Terry, please email your addy to nic[DOT]wray[AT]gmail[DOT]com and I'll pop it in the post to you.

If you'd like another chance to win a Christmas themed chart, there's another post coming up in a second - good luck!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Floss Tag Exchange Received

I had another nice mail day yesterday - which I needed, I've got laryngitis and I was feeling sorry for myself!

sent me this super exchange, which she themed on her local area - Alsace - using colours which reflect her surroundings - a really interesting idea!

As you can see, Laurence stitched a very pretty floss tag, and it's personalised on the back too. I think the design is from The Prairie Schooler. She also included some Waterlilies silk floss in a gorgeous mix of colours, and a ceramic plaque - the folk style will look great with my decor! - and packed everything in a sweet little bag, which I can use for carrying small projecst around.

And here is a closer look at Laurence's delicate stitching.

Thank you Laurence, I love it!

Halloween Exchange

Jill F did a fantastic job on this exchange - not once, but twice - the original exchange went missing in the mail :o( and Jill very kindly (and very quickly) put together a whole new package - so huge thanks to you, Jill!

I am now the proud owner of - and he's on display now, I'm not waiting for next year - this rather cute ghostie and pumpkin - and can you see the beaded edging? It's fantastic!

And here are the super goodies Jill included in the package - metallic pins (as you know if you read my blog, I'm a bit of a pinkeep diva!), a tuck pillow, a monogrammed notepad, an amazing selection of buttons (I think my favourite are the gravestones, I M Knotwell made me smile!), a handmade card, two spools of ribbon, and a felt pumpkin pincushion - it matches my living room decor perfectly, so will be on display all year too!

Thank you again Jill, I love it!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Christmas is Coming - Giveaway

In the spirit of Christmas, I thought I would have a weekly giveaway between now and December 25 :o)

The first one is the Lizzie*Kate Flip It "First Christmas" - ideal to stitch for a new baby or a new couple...

If you would like to be entered for the draw, please comment below with either a link to your blog or your email address. I will make the drawing at 12 noon (GMT) on Monday so you'll need to be quick :o)

Friday, November 07, 2008


I've been working on gifties this week. I now have a little surprise for each of the knitters going to the Knitpickers retreat next weekend - I can't share, as I know one of them reads this blog :o) - and I will be making something else for them too.

My socks for best friend are nearly done, but dark evenings and black yarn doesn't make a good mix, and I will have to finish them in daylight this weekend. I've started a pair of socks for my niece though, and they are bright and cheerful and so cute, as she has tiny feet!

I'm making a scarf for The Hermit, and I'm really enjoying that - it is a simple cable pattern, so it fairly simple but with enough to keep my attention.

And I've been working on the HoE exchange. As well as making a Christmas ornament, I thought I'd add a floss tag, so picked a freebie design... Winter, by Trail Creek Farm (hmmm, freebies appear to have been taken down). Then I realised that, as my partner is in the Southern Hemisphere, it is actually going to be summer there ... sigh...

I have a finish to share too, but that can wait for another day...

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Mattress Pincushion for Anna

Design: Victorian Pincushion Designer: Brenda Keyes Fabric: 28 count evenweave, cream Thread: Stef Francis Fine Mercerised Cotton (hand dyed)

I stitched this for Anna as an exchange on the Hooked on Exchanging blog. This is the first mattress pincushion I have ever made, but thanks to Vonna's great tutorial, it was really pretty straightforward to put together.

The top was the Victorian pincushion design from one of Brenda Keye's books, and I stitched it using a single strand of Stef Francis fine cotton. The motifs from the reverse and for the sides came from my old favourite Bristol sampler by the same designer.

I added some goodies for Anna - some Vikki Clayton silks and a chart from Anna's wishlist, as well as beads, a chart booklet and a chocolate cat.

I really loved putting this exchange together, and learning a new technique!

October Review and New Goals

I had forgotten, over the summer break, just how much of my free time my university classes take up - and I have three this semester! So what with working too, my stitching output is a lot less, although my knitting output is up, thanks to the commuting time.

October Goals Review
  • HoE Halloween Exchange - DONE - I stitched 'Spooky' by SanMan Originals and made it into a treat bag.
  • Purple ZigZag Socks - DONE - my first socks :o) - the start of a new addiction...
  • Lots of Big Knit Little Hats - 78 DONE - I'm pretty pleased with how many I got finished for this good cause, and they are so cute :o)
  • HoE Mattress Pincushion Exchange - DONE - but I've just realised I haven't posted a picture, I'll rectify that later.
  • Mostly Black Socks - nearly done, I've just the toe shaping to do, and that's a Christmas present out of the way!
  • HoE Floss Tag Exchange - I've stitched two floss tags, but I can't show them as they've not arrived with the recipient yet.
  • Summer Into Autumn - The Drawn Thread - still not finished, but I really will try and complete it soon.
  • Trick or Treat - Lizzie*Kate - not finished
Other October Finishes:

  • French Country IV: Pumpkin - JBW Designs
  • Jacquard Socks - one done!
I've decided not to separate November and December, as many of my projects for the next few weeks will be Christmas gifts anyway, so here are my pre-Christmas goals - these are all for gifting:

  • 17 Nov - HoE Christmas Ornament Exchange
  • 20 Nov - Christmas Ornament Exchange
  • 20 Dec - Scarf for Dad
  • 20 Dec - Sampler for Sister
  • 20 Dec - Ornament for Molly
  • 20 Dec - Ornament for Parents
  • 20 Dec - Ornament for Sister
  • 20 Dec - Scarf for BiL
  • 20 Dec - Socks for Ma
  • 20 Dec - Socks for Molly
  • 20 Dec - Socks for Jacquie
  • 24 Dec - Gloves for The Hermit
  • 24 Dec - Scarf for The Hermit
And for me:
  • Jacquard Socks
  • Summer into Autumn - The Drawn Thread