A Different Type of Embroidery

If you follow me on Instragram (@stitchinglotus), then you’ve probably seen a few pictures of my embroidery machine at work. I’ll be perfectly honest, years ago I thought people who used an embroidery machine were “cheating”, but now I totally understand how useful they are. Hand embroidery and cross stitch are one thing, and machine embroidery is a completely different animal.

I’ve recently upgraded from my first machine, a Brother LB6810, which was capable of only stitching designs up to 100mm x 100mm, to a Singer Legacy SE300 that can handle designs of 260mm x 150mm. Both are single needle machines–one day I’ll upgrade to a multi-needle machine, but for now they are a bit out of my price range.

I’m still getting to know my new machine, but last month I stitched out some Easter egg ornaments for a children’s cancer ward in the UK. They are simple but super cute designs from Nonnie Noo Creations, and they were just the right project to get me used to my machine.

Easter Eggs from Nonnie Noo Creations

There is some bobbin thread showing in a few places, and a few little snarls on the backsides (covered by the backing), but overall I think I did pretty good given that my Singer acts a lot differently than my Brother. This project also gave me the courage to try a few other things.

How about this…

Sugar Skull, designed by DisorderlyThreads

It is a fully lined sugar skull bag, measuring about 6″ by 8.5″. I love it! The design is from DisorderlyThreads. Her instructions are great, and the design stitched out so well. There are a few changes I’ll make the next time, mainly with regards to colour choices (you can see some colour shadowing through because my fabric is thin and I probably should have used a different thread colour). Otherwise, I could not be happier. I will definitely be buying more projects from her. Like maybe this one as a gift for my SIL (who runs her own very successful lingerie company) or this one… for me. πŸ˜‰

Shabby Chic Pin Cushion and Scissor Case, designed by Embroidery Library

I also made this lovely pin cushion and scissor case set using files from Embroidery Library. (Available here and here.) Luckily I had the perfect linen fabric in my sewing stash.

I love working on in-the-hoop designs. It almost feels like magic! I put a piece of fabric (or two, or three) in the machine, add some thread, and a little while later I end up with a finished project. I can’t wait to make more things!

Do you machine embroider? If so, I’d love to hear all about it. What machine do you have? Where is your fav place to get designs? Let me know!

5 Comments | Posted in Machine Embroidery | Tagged , ,

WIP Wednesday – Two Types of Socks

Hello, Stitchy Friends! It’s time for another Wednesday update. Right now we are in the middle of March Break, which means I need to fight my son for computer access… to play games. (Most of my blogging I do on my laptop, but Final Fantasy must be played on the desktop.) We are having a great time, though, sleeping in, building Lego, and hunkering down and hiding from the wind and snow.

Candy Cane Stocking, designed by Dimensions (WIP)

The cold, snowy weather has put me in the perfect frame of mind to work on the Christmas stocking. Progress is slow, but at least it is progress.

Meandering Socks from Knit Picks

I’ve also picked up these socks again. They are Meandering Socks from Knit Picks’ book Artful Arches. I knit up the first one way back in the summer (!) without any problems at all, but I’ll be darned if I can get the heel to work this time. I just keep losing count no matter how carefully I keep track. (Maybe I shouldn’t be watching Drag Race at the same time…) The yarn is one of my new favourites, Lana Grossa Meilenweit Solo Cotone Print in colourway 4002. It is a lovely cotton/polyester blend with a nice bit of stretch to it. It knits up like a dream, but only if the knitter can keep count! πŸ˜‰

More tomorrow, I promise.

4 Comments | Posted in Cross Stitch, Knitting | Tagged , , , ,

WIP Wednesday – Yes, I still do stitch

My goodness, it has been ages and ages since I posted a WIP Wednesday update. To be totally honest, I’m stitching a little less now because if my darn elbow. It just doesn’t seem to want to get better, so need to take things easy. I plan to stitch until my dying day, but I’ll have to pace myself a little bit to make sure I can!

Right now I’m stitching away on two projects. The first is Halloween Fairy from Mirabilia, one of the limited edition Fairy Holiday Collection kits that was released several years back. I’ve borrowed the chart from a friend since (to be totally honest) I was too cheap to buy the kits when they first came out. Now I regret it, but what is done (or not done) is done.

Halloween Fairy, from Mirabilia (WIP)

She is, sadly, missing half her wing because I ran out of thread. Thanks to a very nice lady on the Canada trade group on Facebook, a new skein is on the way. Yay!

Candy Cane Stocking, from Dimensions (WIP)

I’m also working away on one more stocking, Candy Cane Santa Stocking from Dimensions. I’ll be honest, it isn’t getting as much attention as it should be because at this point I am pretty much over stockings. I know, I know. Push through and get ‘er done, right?

What else have I been up to? I’ll share some more in a day or two.

9 Comments | Posted in Cross Stitch | Tagged , , ,

Smalls SAL – February 2018 Check-In

Hello, Smalls Stitchers! I don’t know about you, but I sure am ready to see the end of this winter. January felt like it was actually five months long, and now February can’t decide if it wants to cover us in snow or drown us in rain. Bring on the warm and sunny weather!

Regardless of what month it is, or what the weather is doing outside, it almost always the perfect weather for stitching. Like many of you, I stitch for all sorts of holidays throughout the year. My focus piece right now is for Halloween, and my small this month was another Christmas ornament.

Christmas Trees, designed by Kathrin Ellison of Gitta’s

Just like last month, I’ve stitched another little chart from Kathrin Ellison of Gitta’s, a lovely needlework store located in Mississauga (one of the cities next to Toronto; they all kind of run together around here). It is stitched on super cute polka-dot fabric using Anchor threads (not my favourite) and Rainbow Gallery Treasure Braid. Like last month, I meant to finish it into an ornament, but somehow it is already the last Friday of February. I always forget how fast February goes by!

What did you stitch this month? A Valentine for your sweetie? Something for Easter, Halloween, or Christmas? A dragon, a bird, or maybe some cheerful flowers? Head down towards the end of this post to leave a link to your finish for this month. Please be sure to use the permalink for your blog post. Also, please remember to use a picture of your small as your thumbnail.

The link list will remain open to new entries until about midnight Eastern time on Friday, March 2nd.

Next Month

The next check-in will take place on Friday, March 30, 2018.

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16 Comments | Posted in Cross Stitch | Tagged , , ,

Birthday Cricutting

My little man celebrated a birthday a couple of weeks ago, and what is a crafty mom to do but craft? This year we kept the celebration small (he chose a extra special big gift over a birthday party with friends), but that doesn’t mean I didn’t decorate.

I used my Cricut to made a big paper balloon using regular and glitter card stock in my son’s favourite colours. And, I also created the card, matching the theme of his big gift, using my Cricut. I love that I can make things that are so personalized. A bit of glue, some paper, and I have something extra special.

Birthday Card and Balloon

The balloon comes from Thoughts & Phrases – Good Times Cricut cartridge (available through Cricut Access) and the card comes from Classically Modern Cards Cricut cartridge. I mainly used Reflections paper from Michaels.

And, since the Cricut was out, I decided to make him a couple of shirts as well.

Spaceman shirt

This awesome Spaceman helmet was a freebie from LoveSVG.com. I used silver Cricut iron-on foil and applied it using my Cricut EasyPress. The shirt is from Old Navy (so cheap! but also pretty good quality for what you pay).

Just Five More Minutes

This shirt is a combination of two files from LoveSVG.com–Game Zone and Just Five More Minutes. I just loaded both files into Cricut Design Space and manipulated them until I got something I liked. I used HTV from iImagine Vinyl (bought on eBay) and glitter vinyl I bought on AliExpress. And, again, the shirt is from Old Navy.

I love the whole new worlds of papercrafting and clothing decoration that my Cricut is opening up for me. One day, maybe, I want to upgrade to the Cricut Maker so I can add a bit of Cricutting to my sewing too.

5 Comments | Posted in Cricut, Papercrafts | Tagged , , ,

Smalls SAL 2018 – January Check-In

Hello, Smalls Stitchers! It is time for the first check-in of the year. But first we have a little bit of 2017 business to take care of.

It has taken a little longer than I planned, but I’ve finally sorted through all the data for the 2017 SAL. We had 334 total links shared, with a high of 47 in January and a low of just 19 in December. This is on par with past years. It seems we all start out with good intentions, but some of us fall away for lots of different reason. Do keep in mind that the link list stays open for about a week, so if you aren’t finished your small on time you can still enter your link a little later. Remember–you get one entry into the end of the year draw for every month you share a link.

That brings us to 2017’s winner:

Jo of Serendipitous Stitching!

Jo’s entry from September was the lucky winner. She is a longtime participant in the Smalls SAL and also takes part in, and hosts, several other SALs. Be sure to pop by her website for a look at all her wonderful stitching if you aren’t already a subscriber.

On to 2018! A new year and a new SAL, with mostly the same rules. Check-ins will continue to take place on the last Friday of the month. However, I will no longer be sending out reminder emails. The link list will remain open for about a week, so you have lots of time to get your link added (and finish up your stitching!).

January has been a rough month for me and I haven’t been able to find much time (or inclination) to stitch. But, I took advantage of the encouragement provided by International Hermit and Stitch Weekend to work on my small for this month.

Reindeer Sampler, designed by Kathrin Ellison of Gitta’s

I stitched Reindeer Sampler from Gitta’s, a Christmas giveaway from my LNS. It is stitched on 18 count Teal Green aida using Threadworx in colourway 1090 Red Lipstick. I intended to get it all finished up into an ornament so that my first small of the year was nicely finished, but, umm, I thought that I still had one more Friday to go before the end of the month. Oops!

What did you stitch to start off 2018? Head down near the bottom of this post and add your link to the list. Please be sure to use an image of your small as your thumbnail, and also make sure you link directly to your blog post (not your blog’s front page) by using the post’s permalink. If you have any problems please feel free to email me. I’m always happy to help.

The link list will remain open to new entries until about midnight Eastern time on February 2nd.

Next Month

The next Smalls SAL check-in will take place on Friday, February 23rd. See you then!

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12 Comments | Posted in Cross Stitch | Tagged , ,

Smalls SAL – December 2017

Hello, Smalls Stitchers! We’ve made it to the end of yet another year. I hope everyone has enjoyed working on their smalls. I know I was so happy to be able to pull out a bunch of new ornaments and hang them on my tree.

As I’ve mentioned before, the SAL will continue in 2018. If you’d like to participate, please be sure to check out all the details here.

On to this month’s stitching!

Evergreen Sleigh, from Mill Hill

What else could I do but stitch another Christmas ornament? This one is the Evergreen Sleigh from Mill Hill’s Sleigh Ride series. And, like all the others, it is stitched as per the pattern on the materials included in the kit (perforated paper, Mill Hill beads, and DMC floss).

I think I had a pretty productive year overall. I may not have got many big projects done, except for my stocking, but I sure got a lot of little designs stitched up.


What did you stitch this month? Please head down near the bottom of this post and share your finished small for this month. Please be sure to use an image of your small as your thumbnail and also make sure you are use the permalink for your blog post.

The link list will remain open to new entries until about midnight Eastern time on Friday, January 5th. Shortly after it closes I will draw for the end of the year prize. So, make sure you share your post! This is the last chance to earn an entry.

If you’ve put together a review of your stitching for the year, make sure you leave a comment with a link. I’d love to take a look.

Next Month – New year, new SAL. πŸ˜‰ The next check-in will take place on Friday, January 26th.

Thank you very much for stitching along with me this year. I hope you will continue to stitch with me in 2018.

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