Another omnibus post coming at you. Brace yourself.
This summer, I rediscovered the stabby joy of cross-stitch. The first project I made was the fun little Nessie for Aaron, so then of course I immediately set out to make something cool for Lily. Fair's fair.
She picked this Savage pattern from StitchyLittleFox. It is MUCH larger than Nessie. The pattern is something like 9x11 inches versus 5x7 inches, both on 14 count aida. Otherwise though, the techniques at play were quite similar. I did have this puppy professionally framed because I couldn't find a suitable premade frame – and, also, it would have likely looked like crap.
As for me and my house
Next up was a stitchalong – actually, the Steotchalong. Like any "craftalong," you get some info upfront to help you decide whether to participate. For me, it was the sassy attitude, pop culture-oriented previous projects, and the whole notion of a mystery project at a much lower cost of entry than a typical knitalong that lured me in.
Each week over 6 weeks, parts of the pattern were released. On the final week, participants could choose who their house would serve from 14 official endings. To be honest, none of the fourteen were fandoms that our house is a part of but – without exception – each of the four of us laughed with delight over wee little spikey-headed, flame-beshirted Guy Fieri. Turns out, he's our blasphemous leader.
Not all those who wander
I love this guy. Another pattern from StitchyLittleFox on Etsy, but this one I adapted liberally to my own liking. It was the first time I added my own flavour like that, and it was a real confidence builder.
I wanted to use the full proper quote from Tolkien because I gotta be me, and I wanted the sasquatch to be in his natural forest habitat. I also added the moon for a nighttime ambiance. It doesn't have great contrast with the cream background. I also wish I could have gotten those arrows to fly straight on the bottom. But still, I lurve this guy.
I also love the vintage-y looking black frame. It's on our bedroom wall, and a few feet over is a black oval mirror that looks just awesome with it. Rule of threes tells me I need something else a few feet further again to the left of the mirror, but I'll wait for inspiration or serendipity to strike for that.
Oh hot damn!
This piece makes me smile every time I look at it. That checkerboard frame around the edge was tedious as anything, but it really sets it off, doesn't it?
I also love that I didn't buy a single item to make this piece. Every little bit was stuff that I had on hand. Even the frame came from my Grandma's house with an old, duplicate photo in it. Warms the cockles of my heart. (Turns out my heart's cockles are thrifty and sweary, with a sense of humour thrown in. Sounds about right.)
Shed sweet shed
Have you heard of a "she shed?" It's like a man cave, sort of, but for a woman. Anyway, a friend of mine created a workshed for herself in her backyard and laughingly told me about the concept of the she shed. Thus the idea for her Christmas gift was born.
I googled around for ideas. Shockingly, there were few patterns for sale that were even in the neighbourhood of what I was imagining so I started sketching designs from scratch. This friend keeps bees and, in a newer hobby, makes soap. Soap-making requires lye, which is POISON POISON DANGER. So there were my starter ideas: I needed bees, flowers and some sort of poison sign.
A few sketches and a bunch of free-wheeling later, here's where I ended up.
I am particularly thrilled with my skull and cross bones and my bee. I also love the colours together, and the rustic frame. Let's not talk about that wonkus W in "sweet" though, kay?
And no, I don't sign my work. People have commented to me about it that I should. I don't know. Just never have. Feels weird. I make enough mistakes. I guess I feel like I leave a signature in other ways. Maybe someday I'll start.