Somewhere I can let out my inner crafter without being labeled as even more insane.

Posts tagged ‘butterfly’

WIPocalypse the fourth

So, we’re now more than a quarter of the way through the year (and that’s a rather scary thought!), and it;s time for another WIPocalypse post. The question this time…

Which specialty stitches do you love doing on projects? Which do you dread?

I don’t do those needlework projects, so I’ve never done such things as eye stitches, or butterfly stitches (or whatever they’re called- I usually just skip to the pretty pictures!)

However, I do enjoy beading projects, and will commonly swap out confetti stitches or French knots for them (not that I hate French knots, just that I much prefer beads, they’re so pretty!)

Wow, I’m coming across rather strangely this month! I totally blame the cold I’ve got, but hey ho.

Anyway, I’m not so fond of back-stitching, but the effect of it makes it totally worth-while! As long as I don’t need to do it all in one go, but can stitch a section and then back-stitch it.

Another thing I love is using sparkly thread, although I’m not sure if that counts as a specialty stitch. I think so, as it takes more effort, but I suppose that you’re still making the standard cross for cross stitch, or back-stitch, which I’ve already mentioned.

I can’t really think of any other specialty stitches that I do really. So, onto the pictures!

I managed to finish my butterfly! Woot!

butterfly7It has been ironed (gently, so as to not ruin the beadwork or blending filament), and is off at the framers. My parents will pick it up tomorrow, and then bring it up to me in July when they come up to help me move. I can’t believe that it’s so close(and yet so far still) to getting hung up!

I haven’t done much other cross stitching- I’ve been busy working on my mum’s birthday presents, but they’re sewing, rather than cross stitch, so I’ll talk about those in another post.

However, now that butterfly has been finished (and I’ve worked through a few cards to get it out of my system!), I’m ready to pick up another big piece. And next I will be working on Stained Glass again. This is how far I have gotten so far


and so hopefully I’ll be able to put a few stitches into it at some point πŸ™‚ I also do have a few cards I need to get done, but they’re not especially urgent right now, so we’ll see what I feel like working on.

Woot! I did it!

I finished my butterfly!!!! Woot!!!!! I’m ridiculously happy with it- I think it’s great, and since I’m going home soon, I’ll be able to find a nice frame and frame it soon πŸ™‚

Here it is in all it’s un-ironed glory:


In case you can’t read the writing, it says ‘The butterfly counts not months but moments and has time enough’ … ‘Just like the butterfly, I too will awake in my own time!’

I’m ridiculously happy that it is now finished, and soon I have have it up on my wall πŸ™‚

What to do now…what to do now? What do you do immediately after finishing a (relatively!) large project? I don’t feel like starting anything big again right now, I think I’ll stick to cards for a while πŸ™‚

ISHW the third

Once again, ISHW has been sprung upon us. This time, it corresponds with the clocks going forwards into BST for British stitchers, which means either an hour less stitching or an hour less sleeping (which might lead to visits from the frog…)

I’ve been busy knitting recently (more on that later), so there hasn’t been much progress on any of my cross stitch pieces. My main piece, the butterfly, looks like this

butterfly6I’m hoping that a weekend spent stitching (and watching The Mentalist, which might involve frog visits…) will re-awaken my desire to see it finished already!

And if I get bored of the butterfly, there are still lots of cards to stitch, including a Graduation card for my sister, who is graduating this year πŸ™‚

so what will you all be stitching on this weekend?

WIPocalypse the third

Time for another WIPocalypse meeting! Wow doesn’t time fly? Well, this full moon, the topic is:

If money – and time – were not limiters, what projects would be on your stitching bucket list?

This is an easy one- all the Goddess faces from Joan Elliot. Starting with the Green Goddess

je049green-goddessThis has been tentatively promised to my parents for the conservatory, to cover a rather ugly box on the wall which has all the wires and things for the lights. So I already have an excuse to stitch this…just need the time!

There are also faces for the four seasons:


and a Rose Goddess

smallrose-goddessThey all make a lovely set πŸ™‚

There’s also a Sun God, but I’m not so sure about him- probably because I haven’t seen it all stitched, just in progress in one of my fb groups πŸ™‚

I also have plans to restitch Frederick a few more times, again, just need to find the time!

At the moment, I’m still fairly new to cross stitching, and I’m quite young, so I haven’t reached SABLE (stash acquired beyond life expectancy) yet! I fully intend (and believe that it is possible) to do all of these, soonish.

So, onto the next part of WIPocalypse- my progress. (I had to go back to the previous WIP post to see what I’d done that long ago!)

My butterfly:


The border is more than half done now, which is really exciting! Hopefully I can get it finished in March…


Love is…


This was finished in a month??? I’m fairly surprised by this as well- I thought that I would get massively bogged down in the backstitching! But it was such a small piece I didn’t mind all the backstitching! Woot! When the baby is born, I’ll put their details underneath, and hopefully frame it in a double frame so the couple can have a baby photo in it as well πŸ™‚

Mother’s Day card


Something else I finished very quickly (just over a weekend). To be fair, there isn’t exactly a lot of stitching in it! I even took a trip to Hobbycraft to get a quilling kit to make the hearts πŸ™‚ I need lots of practice, but I really like the idea of adding some quilled bits to my stitched cards πŸ™‚

Another card


Clearly, I am currently loving these small pieces! this was a great stash-buster, and I’m already planning more of them, with different coloured cats. Yes, there is a lot of confetti and backstitching, but it looks so darn cute! I didn’t even get bored of it as I was doing it, which was amazing!

At the moment, I’m having fun creating a ‘stash’ of completed stitched cards so that when a special occasion pops up, I can just get one, rather than having to make a new one. I would love to hear whether or not you have one? What sorts of cards do you keep on hand? Special occasions, or just generic cards which can be used in any situation?

A second successful ISHW

Hello everyone! I hope that your weekend was as productive and awesome as mine, whether you took part in ISHW or did anything else. I spent the Saturday (around taking the bike back to the shop again, and going food shopping!) stitching on the butterfly. And the border is more than half-way finished now(the bottom part is half way done, and the top more than)! Yay! I cannot wait to see this finished!


Then, on Sunday I was struck by my conscience of ‘I’m doing a Phd, so let’s do it already!’,and so I spent a fair few hours working. I did get quite a bit of stitching done as well- I did a smidgen more on my butterfly, before remembering that Mother’s Day is coming up (it’s March 15, for those in the UK), and therefore I should maybe start making a card for my mum (quick question: how do people keep track of various holidays necessitating cards? I would love to hear about any way you remember?)…Which naturally necessitated a look through my big book of cross stitched cards.

Big mistake. Half an hour later, I escaped from inside there. There are just so many pretties, I want to make them all! The Mothers Day cards are right at the beginning, so at least I’m not in danger of ‘falling in’ again! I’m planning a quite simple pattern- just a flower in a glass of water. I’ve made a good start already, and I’ll be concentrating on this until it gets finished πŸ™‚


Also, I recently got this utterly adorable miniature scroll frame πŸ™‚ And I think it needs a name- any ideas? My hoop is called Lark, from the Circle of Magic books, where the character who has control of thread +weaving etc is called Lark. I’m thinking that I would like to use another female character from another book/series for this scroll frame (my two ‘normal’ sized scroll frames don’t have names… maybe they should as well). Does anyone have any ideas? Or maybe you name your props as well? I would love to hear what you’re names for things are, as well πŸ™‚

As well as all my stitching, I’ve been doing quite a lot of knitting, but I’ll update all of that later on in a knitting post, rather than derail this stitching one πŸ™‚

Also, I’ve been nominated (again) for the Liebster award. I’m not going to go through the whole rigmarole again, but thanks to The Redhead Stitcher for nominating me! I’m very happy that she did, her blog looks awesome. And she has regular book reviews, which is awesome since my local library recently reopened, and I want to start using it more.And again, I would love for all my followers to accept it and answer the questions I posed in the previous post πŸ™‚

ISHW weekend

So, another ISHW is incoming! (Don’t worry, I only just remembered now as well!). This weekend, I will be working primarily on my butterfly

butterfly4I would love to have this one finished soon! I can’t wait to frame it and hang it up somewhere πŸ™‚ But…the border needs finishing first, so onwards!

I may also do some more work on my ‘love is’ piece πŸ™‚ It’s coming along very nicely

loveis2They’re really my main pieces for now, until one of them gets finished (I wonder which one will get finished first?)

Wow, what a week!

Well, this week has been rather hectic. I’ve been busy using a computer (something I don’t like that much) so when I get home, the last thing I want to do is any crafting, but some has been happening. And having the rota has been useful- I don’t need to think about what I want to work on!

Firstly, my ‘love is’ piece. I haven’t quite finished all the stitching, but I’ve started the backstitch, so here’s a photo of it

loveisThe ‘love in’ pieces all have a saying with it, and this one is ‘love is… a healthy baby’. I’m going to change that, so it’ll read ‘love is…[details of baby], and put it in a double picture frame, so there can be a photo of the new baby as well πŸ™‚ So when I finish all the stitching, just need to wait for the baby!

And I also did some work on my butterfly piece, over the weekend.

butterfly3Almost done all the stitching I had to frog *mutter mutter*. But shouldn’t be much longer now! I can hardly wait πŸ™‚


Also this week I finished and sent off my item for a swap with squarebird. I love what she made me- handprinted covers for a notebook.

swap3 swap4Isn’t that deer gorgeous! I love his tines- he looks quite young (in my opinion, anyway!) but still rather proud. I'[m totally over the moon about this swap πŸ™‚

And this is what I made for the swap:

swap2I got the inspiration for the bird from an embroidered piece very similar to it- an embroidered bird with a feather as a tail, and then found a suitable quote. I’m pretty please with it, all in all πŸ™‚ And I can’t wait to make another one, with something else in the middle πŸ™‚

And, finally. A few days ago, theunfinishedcrafter was nominated for the Liebster award (totally deserved, you should go and check out her blog).

The rules for this particular award are to answer the 11 questions given, then ask 11 questions of your own, and nominate 11 blogs to also receive this award. So here goes with the questions I have to answer:

1) What is your favourite craft and why?

Right now, I’m doing more cross stitch than anything else, but knitting is my favorite. It’s the one I learnt first, it’s got a wonderful range of complexity, from intricate cables when you need to have something to concentrate fully on, to basic socks for when you’re distracted and just need something to keep your hands busy.

2) Are you an early bird or a night owl?

Early bird, hands down. Naturally I work on a 23.5 hour day, which is really annoying- I have to force myself to stay awake until a suitable time for bed, and the alarm on my phone is predominantly so I stay asleep until that time (otherwise I wake up in a panic that I’ve forgotten something important…)

3) What’s your guilty pleasure?

Crafting. It sounds cliche, but while I used to have others (reading, and sweets), I’ve kinda grown out of them recently. Crafting is the one thing that keeps me awake at night, and is the main distraction from the work I should be doing.

4) What did you want to be when you grew up?

A professional mathematician. When I was 11, I heard a talk from someone who said that she grew up wanting to be professional geographer, but didn’t really know what that meant, and ever since then, I wanted to be a professionalΒ  mathematician. It’s only recently, when I went to Uni for my under-grad that I understood that was a lecturer, who researches new maths when they’re not teaching.

5) What’s your dream job now?

Something involving problem solving. Either a lecturer, and discovering new maths, or working for a company like IBM, which ‘solves problems’ their clients give them. For example, it’s IBM who designed the board for all the stats at Wimbledon.

6) If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

The UK. For all that I moan about the weather, I’m British born ‘n’ bred πŸ™‚

7) What’s your favourite season: winter, spring, summer or winter?

Summer. I love the heat (even if I do get close to heatstroke at times…). Although the autumn is also pretty cool, with all the different colours for the leaves.

8) What book are you currently reading/What is the last book you read?

I am currently reading Malice, by John Gwynne. I haven’t gotten far enough into it to tell you what it’s about though πŸ™‚

9) If you won the lottery, what would you do/spend it on?

I would buy a house on a large area of land, so my parents could live in a summerhouse, and I could have a crafting room πŸ™‚ I wouldn’t quit my job though, even if I had enough to live comfortably- I need the discipline and structure a job provides.

10) If you could time travel, would you go back in to the past, or forwards into the future?

Umm, how far? I’d quite like to go back to the 1800s, so be able to meet Riemann (a famous mathematician). Otherwise, the future. My own personal history I’d rather leave alone.

11) Do you have a favourite thing you’ve made?

Frederick the literate cat πŸ™‚ Fred8I have plans to make more of these- I made this for my next door neighbours, and they love it. I’d quite like to have one myself, too :).

And now, my questions:

1) Do you make gifts of your crafts for other people, and if so, how do you keep working on something you don’t like for a deadline?

1) What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given with regards for your craft of choice (for those who do multiple crafts, do you have different advice for different crafts)?

3) How do you overcome the feeling that what you’ve made isn’t that good, even if everyone else says that it’s great?

4) How much time a day/week (on average) do you spend on crafting?

5) What was your biggest crafting disaster (pics if you’ve got them)?

6) How did you recover from your biggest disaster?

7) How long have you been crafting?

8)Why did you start crafting?

9) How do you store your stash(not WIPs)? Pics?

10) When crafting, do you do anything else (e.g. reading/watching TV)?

11) What craft(s) do you think more people should take up? (Bonus points for links to tutorials/introductions)

And now we get to the part I really dislike (and usually don’t do)- nominating other blogs. The thing is though, with this, I already know some of the answers to these for most of the blogs that I follow…Β  And anyway, if I nominate blogs, I always miss off some of them that I feel deserve it- there are just too many blogs.

So, this is what I think: I want all the bloggers who follow me to consider themselves nominated πŸ™‚ I would love to read what all your answers are to these questions, and then drop me a comment so I can have a look at what you’re like and drop you a follow (if I’m not already following you!) πŸ™‚

WIPocalypse the second

So, the question for this check in is

How do you overcome that feeling that you’re in a rut with a particular project?


My version of ‘stuck in a rut’ is that I want the damn thing finished already. If I don’t want to work on a particular project, then I simply don’t. Last year, when I was still working on pokemon, at the end I stopped wanting to work on it, and just wanted to get it finished. So I put it down.

I am a slow stitcher, and setting myself arbitrary deadlines is a very silly thing to do, and the best way to get it out of my system is to just ignore the project until it calms down (yes, I know I didn’t do that for the OUAT, I was nearly finished with that). Obviously, this doesn’t really work when projects are nearly finished, because by that time they are nearly finished, and there is no way I will not get excited about them! Then I just try to stay fairly level-headed, and hope I get enough sleep!

Strangely enough, I don’t ever get the ‘I want this thing finished already’ feeling with my knitting. Which hopefully means that it’s just a juvenile thing, and eventually I’ll stop feeling like this at all.

So, that’s all about me and dealing with that feeling. Onto progress pics of what I’ve been working on. Umm, which really hasn’t been that much on any of these things… I did some more work on the butterfly,

butterflyand then quite a lot of what I had done needed frogging…

butterfly2I also decided that I’m not going to carry on working on pokemon. This was a difficult decision for me to make- I found the pattern and started working on it when I was with my ex, then, well, he became my ex. I still intermittently worked on it, but I haven’t worked on it for a while now, and I guess that now I can accept that we don’t really work out as ‘just friends’.

However, I have done some other cross stitching. I made this card for a friend who was going through some bad stuff

card3and some on a small piece for my cousin, who is expecting a child. It’s a ‘love is’ kit from DMc, and the quote is ‘love is a healthy baby’. However, all that I’ve done is some white and pink, neither of which are ideally suited for photographing, so that’s going to have to wait until I start backstitching.


ISHW weekend- what I did

So, this weekend just gone was ISHW so naturally I just battened down the hatches, and got to it.

On the Saturday, I decided to stitch a card for my friend, who is going through a bit of a rough time right now, and (amazingly enough) I finished it in 1 day! I’m pretty chuffed about that πŸ™‚


The writing says ‘If friends were flowers, I’d pick you!’. It’s from the same chartbook as all the flower fairies I’ve been stitching. I used beads rather than all the confetti stitches that are supposed to be on there(the flower buds that are scattered throughout), I didn’t fancy starting and ending 3 colours for 4 stitches without having anywhere else close by to start/end threads. *Fingers crossed* that she likes it πŸ™‚

Then, on the Sunday I picked up my butterfly piece. I’d been working on it throughout the week as well, so this is where I started.

butterflyThen… Mr Frog came to visit. It was a very dignified meeting, there were no tantrums, no tears, just me calmly unpicking the border, and telling him that he’d better not show his face here again for about a decade…

butterfly2After that, I couldn’t stand the sight of this piece any more, so away it went and out came a new piece- a ‘Love is’ kit from DMC. There isn’t enough of that to show you all yet (I can’t get a decent photo of pink on white!), so that’s going to have to wait until I’ve done more for a photo!

This week I think I’m going to concentrate some more on my knitting. I did a bit yesterday on a train to Sheffield and back, but again, not enough for a photo. Maybe this Saturday…?

September’s OUAT block

So, umm, September’s OUAT block is very well known. Disney recently did a film of it (and the heroine was a bad-ass, despite not having much contact with the world before the story really begins). So, how to give you some clues but not too many… all the characters are human (although in the Disney version they added in a couple of animals, which, while intelligent, do not speak), and the main character (in every version that I could find online) was named after a plant her mother craved whilst pregnant.

It’s also a Brothers Grimn tale, so it can come across as very dark, although naturally Disney glossed over it all. I think that’s enough clues for now, after all, if nobody gets it I can always add in more clues next week πŸ™‚

So, last weekend I managed to finish the Stained Glass SAL as well, so I’m basically completely caught up with everything πŸ™‚ (Ignoring the fact that the next bits of the SALs are out, but eh).


Even more impressive (in my mind!) was that after I finished Stained Glass, I still had a few hours left over so I pulled out the butterfly I had been working on, and did about half the flowers and hearts and things around it! I’ve fallen back in love with this project, and now can’t wait to finish it and show it off πŸ™‚


And then I even got quite a lot of stitching done this week, after breaking my brain (don’t worry, it’s on the mend now πŸ™‚ ) so I’ve finished 4 outlines, pretty much.


This coming week I’ll concentrate on filling them, after I come back from another conference, this time in Cardiff! I’m really looking forward to it (I’m even going to be co-presenting a presentation! Eep!) but it does mean that I won’t have much time to do anything crafty. I’m planning a pair of socks to take with me, as they are the easiest thing to pick up and put down as required πŸ™‚

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