Stitch From Stash – July 2015 Check-In

I may have totally blown my craft budget out of the water this year with the purchase of an embroidery machine, but I’m still trying to stay on track with my cross stitch-related spending. That means, I’m joining in for the next round of Stitch from Stash.

Stitch from Stash 2015 BThere is nothing like starting off right:

Month: July 2015
Spent: $24.95
Earned: $0 (not tracking)

Yep, I totally blew my budget this month. Why? Well, to make a long story (and a long search) short, I finally bought a Christmas stocking kit for myself. There as a sale at Mary Maxim and I decided to take advantage of it.

Candy Cane Stocking kit, designed by Dimensions

Candy Cane Stocking kit, designed by Dimensions

It is Candy Cane Stocking, a kit from Dimensions. (Don’t worry! I haven’t finished it yet. That’s just a catalogue picture. I suppose that’s obvious since my name isn’t Alexander…) I figure it will be, oh, maybe 5 or 6 years before I get to it, but I’m happy that I now have a stocking finished, in progress, or waiting to be stitched for everyone.

Smalls SAL – I know I’ve been pretty quiet this summer, but that doesn’t mean I have forgotten about the Smalls SAL. July’s check in date is coming up soon–this Wednesday! I’ve stitched my small, and I hope you have too!

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My New Machine

It seems like nearly everyone was disappointed with Amazon Prime Day. Weird BBQ parts and foam exercise rollers aren’t everyone’s idea of a hot deal, but there were some great prices on things that, well, we may not have needed… but, you know how it goes. I had my eye on a pretty Singer sewing machine that went on sale at 8am. I missed it, though, since I needed to get my little guy ready for camp.

It was all for the best.

At 5pm a great sewing/embroidery machine came up at a super price and after being stuck on the waiting list for over 30 minutes, I managed to buy one! I am now the proud owner of a Brother LB6810, an entry level embroidery machine! Yay!!!

Brother LG6810

Brother LG6810

I’ve messed around with it a little bit, but it has been slow going since I need embroidery thread (which I had no idea was different than sewing thread), stabilizer, cool designs to stitch, and some courage to try it out. I’ve got lots of great ideas though!

My first attempt at machine embroidery

My first attempt at machine embroidery

This was my first test–stitching two different designs together and aligning them nicely. I think I did a good job, but there is a bit of puckering under the crown. I’m sure I will get better with practice.

Do any of you have an embroidery machine? Do you have any advice you can offer?

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Coin Purse Finish

I wasn’t kidding when I said that I finished a couple of projects! I have been doing more than playing Fallout New Vegas (I have to finish it before Fallout 4 comes out!) and reading. This is Canvaswork Coin Purse, designed by Jenifer Aikman-Smith for the 2013 Creativ Festival.

Canvaswork Coin Purse - front

Canvaswork Coin Purse – front

I think I finished stitching it back in November or December of 2013 (here is a WIP post), but I was very afraid I would wreck it if I tried to sew it together. But, when I was reorganizing my craft room (again! One day soon I will get it right), I came across it and decided to do my best.

Canvaswork Coin Purse - back

Canvaswork Coin Purse – back

It turned out so much better than expected, although I would like to use a different button and make the look look a little nicer. Those are things I can change later. Now I just need to come up with a good use for it. 😉

Canvaswork Coin Purse - open

Canvaswork Coin Purse – open

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Heart Tin

Hello, Stitchy Friends. Summer is in full swing and we have been blessed with some lovely, cool weather with just enough hot days to reminder us of what we could be having! The little man has spent the last three and a bit weeks at day camp (which he is loving!), and I decided to take some time to get some projects done around the house. Between weeding, finally sorting out Lego sets that got damaged when we moved (last August!), decluttering, and more, I did find time to finish up some projects.

Heart Tin, designed by Lori

Butterfly Heart Tin, designed by Lorri Birmingham

This is Butterfly Heart Tin from Lorri Birmingham. The kit included everything–floss, fabric, beads, and tin. And thank goodness. I don’t know if they have been discontinued everywhere, but finding an Altoids heart-shaped tin around here is impossible.

Queen stitches and Rhodes butterflies

Queen stitches and Rhodes butterflies

I actually started stitching this several years ago, but put it aside because I really don’t like doing queen stitches. I don’t find them very attractive. But, when I was tidying up my craft closet, I came across the kit again and figured I should finish the darn thing so I can stop feeling guilty about it.

It is finished as per the directions in the kit–the design is laced to a board that has been padding with thin quilt batting and then glued to the top of the tin. I made twisted cord to go around the edges to finish it off. I haven’t done anything to the interior yet, but I have some plans (once I find my felt!). Many of you do great jobs with your tins, so I am very inspired and want to do something equally as nice.

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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 😉 ).

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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. 😉 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. 😉

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. 😉

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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