Smalls SAL – June 2015 Check-In

It may only be the 24th, but it is already the last Wednesday of the month. That means it is Smalls SAL check-in time. How time flies! (It is also the penultimate day of school around here, so it is extra exciting!)

Monster Mash, designed by Mill Hill

Monster Mash, designed by Mill Hill

This month I stitched yet another Mill Hill kit–Monster Mash from the 2014 Autumn Harvest collection. It is stitched as per the chart, except I was lazy and attached the petite beads with a half cross stitch rather than a full. :/ I made a pretty big mistake with it yesterday which is why this post was a little delayed. And why was I working on it yesterday? Because last Friday I split boiling water over my hand and it needed to heal. (Thankfully it wasn’t too badly damaged. After keeping it cold for hours, it was mostly just stiff and tender all weekend.)

2015SmallsSALSo, what did you stitch this month? I can’t wait to see! Be sure to add your Smalls finish to the list at the end of this post. The list will stay open to new entries until about midnight on July 1st. (That’s Canada Day! Yay!)

Next Month – We are quickly coming up on July and I thought it would be fun to have a little bonus for anyone who finishes and shares a Christmas small in July–one extra entry into the end of the year draw! Yay! Stitch Christmas smalls with me and help encourage me to finish (or at least make a lot of progress) the Santa’s Journey Stocking. Of course, I’ll be sharing a Christmas small too. It is already sitting by my stitching spot waiting for me to get started. We’ve all got until July 29th to finish. If you don’t like stitching smalls, I’ll also give an extra entry for any July or summer/winter (depending on your hemisphere) themed finishes.

Do you need reminders? If you are worried about missing a check-in date, you can sign up for my reminder email here. I only send out emails once a month, and your email address is super safe with my provider, Tiny Letter (aka MailChimp, or MailKimp depending on your preference πŸ˜‰ ).

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Stitch from Stash – June 2015

It is Stitch from Stash check-in time again! Yay!!

Stitch from Stash 2015AJune marks the end of the A group, so this is a good time to reflect on how I have done.

Month – June
Spent – $44.01
Earned – not tracking

I have a small correction to May. I actually spent $57.91, not $55. Close enough, and it doesn’t make any real difference in the end. For the six months of Stitch from Stash A, there is a combined budget of $150. Overall, I spent $149.44. I spent the least in February ($0) and the most in May ($57.91). I didn’t go over budget for any month, since by May I had enough banked. Yay!

June Stitch from Stash Purchases

June Stitch from Stash Purchases

So, what did I spend my budget on this month? Well, I bought the Lizzie*Kate kit I shared a few days ago, and two more Mill Hill kits! Exactly what I needed, right? They really are my weakness. πŸ˜‰ And, as I’ve said, my little Halloween tree does need some more ornaments.

Stitch from Stash 2015 BI have signed up for the B group of Stitch from Stash, which will run from July to December. Essentially, it will continue with the same rules: $25 per month as the budget, with unspent money being bankable. If you’d like to find out more, head over here.

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Sweet Summer

Happy First Day of Summer!!!! (Also, Happy Father’s Day!)

Sweet Summer, designed by Lizzie*Kate

Sweet Summer, designed by Lizzie*Kate

The design is the new Lizzie*Kate limited edition kit Sweet Summer. The kit includes the pattern, fabric, shell trim, beads, and metallic thread. It is charted for WDW and CC, but I stitched mine mainly in DMC. I did have two of the WDW colours, so I used them (the periwinkle and the tropical blue colours).

The linen in the kit has a very, very open weave and feels very loose. To be honest, I didn’t like it at all. But, I decided to use it since I paid for it. πŸ˜‰

The kit also includes finishing instructions so you can finish your piece to look like the cover picture. It took me a while, but here is my finished piece:

All finished!

All finished!

I used some really cute sailboat fabric that I have no recollection of buying. (Did one of you lovely ladies send it to me?) I laced all of the pieces to their boards (acid-free comic bag inserts–available super cheap at your local comic shop), and sewed on all the jute trim. I did use glue to attach the shell trim and to attach the stitched design to the fabric covered board. Yes, I know some of you hate the idea of using glue on finished pieces. But, this is not meant to be an heirloom piece, handed down to my great-great grandchildren. It is meant as a bit of seasonal fun–to be displayed for a few years and eventually misplaced and forgotten about. So, I’m okay with using glue. πŸ˜‰

All in all, I really enjoyed stitching this design (excluding the poor fabric). I really hope that there will be similar kits for the other three seasons.

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Charming Bat

Remember me mentioning smalls yesterday? Well, I’m not just working on them for the Smalls SAL. (The next check-in is on June 24th! Don’t forget.) I finished up this little design last week.

Bat Charmings, designed by Xs and Ohs

Bat Charmings, designed by Xs and Ohs

It is a small kit from Xs and Ohs from their Halloween Charmings line. It includes the chart, ghost charm, a length of Kreinik Facets, and finishing instructions. I stitched mine on some random black linen using DMC variations in colourway 4122 Fall Harvest. There are four designs in the series, and a free chart for a border design is available on the Xs and Ohs website.

Bat Halloween Charming, designed by Xs and Ohs

Bat Halloween Charming, designed by Xs and Ohs

Amazingly, I have actually finished this into a proper ornament! I laced the fabric to the boards and then stitched it all together by hand. No glue! (I use comic book bag boards. They are acid free and available very cheaply at your local comic book shop or online. Buy the no-name ones, not the branded ones.) The hanger is simple twisted cord, and I stitched the included Kreinik Facets around for the trim.

I thinkΒ  my little Halloween tree is going to look very nice this year. πŸ˜€

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Even More Santa

It has been a little while since I shared my progress on Santa’s Journey Stocking. It is going well, but not as quickly as I had intended.

Santa's Journey Stocking, designed by Dimensions (WIP)

Santa’s Journey Stocking, designed by Dimensions (WIP)

I’m very happy with how it looks, and I am very excited about finishing it. But, I had hoped to have it done by now and to have moved on to the stocking for my dad. :/ I’m a little disappointed with myself for not working more quickly. I’ve been far too sidetracked by smaller designs. I think “Oh, that will be quick to stitch. It will hardly take any time away from the stocking.” And, while that is true, after doing so many of them, it adds up to a lot of time away from the stocking.

Which small designs am I talking about? I will share one tomorrow. πŸ˜‰

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3D Diamond Embroidery Kit Review

I will admit it: I’m having too much fun with AliExpress. I’ve ordered super cheap cell phone cases, pretty earrings, inexpensive knock-off Perler beads for the little man (not as good as the real ones, but better than the ones from Ikea), and more. I thought that you all may be interested in one of my recent crafty purchases:

3D Diamond Peacock

3D Diamond Peacock

This is listed as 3D Diamond Embroidery, and cost about US$15.75. It is, essentially, a thick canvas coated with plastic and printed with a design. Over sections of the design numbered circles are printed, and those areas are covered with a thin adhesive.

Fill-in area on canvas

Fill-in area on canvas

You also get a whole pile of little “diamonds” that look a lot like Swarovski hot-fix crystals sans adhesive, a cool little tray, and a pair of tweasers.

Lots of "diamonds"

Lots of “diamonds”

The design is huge (approx. 50cm x 75cm), and the printing is very good. The diamonds all look very nice; I haven’t come across any duds yet. The whole kit is really well put together. The tray they send has even been engineered to flip the diamonds the right way around when you give it a little shake. Very cool!

Working on the project is simple: pull up the protective cover on the area you are working on, grab a diamond and stick it on the right spot and give it a little push to ensure it has stuck. The baggies of diamonds are numbered and the colour key is printed right on the margin of the design. (To help me keep things sorted, I’ve bought some resealable mini-ziploc bags from the dollar store.)

Peacock head and diamond tray

Peacock head and diamond tray

All in all, this is a fun project for a really good price. I may never finish it, and even if I did I have no idea where I would display it, but I have really enjoyed working on something totally different.

If you’d like to take a look at these kits yourself, here is a link for AliExpress. (Not affiliated, etc., etc.) Do be aware, copyright infringements abound. Use your common sense and only order what you are comfortable with.

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Argh!!

Don’t you just hate it when this happens?

No!!!!

No!!!!

You finally make it all the way around the border only to discover you are out by one stitch, one row, somewhere back in the middle. It is always the middle where you make the mistake. It is even worse when you find this problem in a project that you’ve put away for a while. Never, ever put away a project with a mistake. Your future self will be very disappointed with you.

How do you handle this? Do you fudge it? (Not possible in this case, sadly.) Do you neatly pick out all the stitches and maybe even try to save the thread? Or, like me, do you grab the scissors and ruthless cut all the stitches that need to be removed? Being careful to make sure you are cutting the right ones, of course. πŸ˜‰

Lots of fluff.

Lots of fluff.

These is something oddly satisfying about pulling out all that thread.

And it is all fixed.

And it is all fixed.

And there it is, all fixed.

The pattern is Celtic Charm from Enchanting Lair. The colours is my pictures are really off. :/ Now that I have the mistake fixed, hopefully I will have it finished soon and then I will take proper pictures. πŸ˜‰

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