Sunday, January 31, 2016

3 WIPs update

Hello Dear Reader

Who says blogging is on the way out? I recently read that there are 175,000 new blogs launched a day!  No wonder people are saying they don't get many comments  - there are just so many blogs to visit! 

I was wondering why I hadn't had notification of some comments made on one of my posts and then I was shocked to see I had approximately 300 emails in my junk file! And no they aren't all junk, there are comments from other bloggers and especially from some of you, who have commented on my blog!

Where I have been conversing with you previously, your emails will be recognised and Google will have allowed them into my email box, but I have commented on a lot of "new to me" blogs recently, whose email addresses are not being recognised, and those comment emails are "hidden" in my junk file. 

As far as I can tell this started in early January this year. 

So please accept my apologies if I haven't replied to any of your comments. 


The last couple of weeks have whizzed by. We've had a very nice man decorating our bedroom, but within 15 minutes of his arrival it was obvious he had the most foul cold (or possibly flu - and I don't mean man flu!).  

We thought we were doing well by the weekend as we hadn't caught the germs, but by Sunday night I knew my throat wasn't feeling right! So for the last week we've all been fighting the germs. DH seems to have had a worse germ than myself and is still suffering, whereas I think my cold has almost gone.

Updating my WIPs 

In the same order as last week:

1. Cocoa Sampler

No stitching on the Cocoa Sampler this week. But if you'd like to follow me over to Kitten Stitching and the Friday Frolics you can see my most "recent" cross stitch project.

2. Mini Needlecase

There has been progress here, starting with the divided pocket for thread ripper and pencil.

Placing the pockets.
Apologies for the awful picture - not enough light!

Attaching pockets.
Attaching pockets.

Attaching pockets, handles and scissors lanyard

Gathering and finishing pockets.
Gather the bottom of the pockets, pin, and slowly stitch in place.

Pockets closeup

The fabric for the handles was cut on the bias as previous handles made by cutting the fabric in line with the weft and  not on the bias didn't lay smoothly when they were topstitched, and as you can see it has paid off !


Close up of attachments.

Pockets and lanyard attached.

Once the pockets and scissor lanyard were stitched in postition I placed the Right Side of  my front on top of the back piece, pinned them, and then slowly machine stitched them together.

Front and back pieces attached.

3. Knitting

I've almost finished the second front of the waistcoat to be, so hopefully I am on course to finish by March, as planned.


The other day I wanted something to stitch on the train for a journey of approx 30 minute (in each direction). I remembered that I had seen on Amanda Jean's blog Crazy Mom Quilts, her mini Nine Block pincushion and quilt which gave me an idea, and about 5 minutes before walking out the front door I cut out some 1" squares, grabbed a reel of cotton, et voila!... a little project to keep me busy on the train!  So that's my newest hand stitching project of the year!

mini 9 patch
1"squared nine patch

I am linking to the following blogs on the relevant day:

On Monday I am linking to - Super Mom - No Cape - for hand stitching, and also - Bits n Bobs - Design Board Monday.
On Wednesday I am linking to -  Esther Aliu for her WOW - WIPs

If you haven't visited them before, why not pop over to see what everyone else is stitching!

Thank you for looking in today.  Have a great week!


Barbara xx

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

3 WIPs - Cross stitch, Patchwork and Knitting

Hello my blogging friends,

Thank you to those of you who have been leaving such lovely comments on my blog posts, they are all very much appreciated!

Currently I have been replying to all comments by email, although I prefer to reply here on the relevant page!  However, I appreciate that many who comment have a lot more followers than I, and consequently don't have time to return to each of the blogs that you have commented on looking for replies. I trust that by my replying directly via email it will assist you.

Warning to "No Reply bloggers" - Are you aware of this problem:

Being a relatively new blogger, I've only recently discovered the problem with "No Reply" bloggers - in that I have been replying to lots of you by email but hadn't spotted that when I press the reply button on the "comment generated" email I need to check the address below the space where the reply message is typed - and that's when I discovered the person I had been trying to contact hasn't been receiving any of my emails, and that is simply because they are set up as "No Reply" bloggers! It's such a shame because if you are set up as a "No Reply" blogger you won't ever know what lovely things people have written about your work and have tried to tell you, as you simply won't be receiving the emails!


These are 3 WIPs (Works in Progress) which I am hoping to finish by early March, in time for my handicraft group's triennial exhibition! If I can finish these sooner, maybe I can turn to some of the many other hidden away projects that are calling to me!

1. Cocoa Sampler:

 Progressing slowly!
Cocoa Sampler update.
I have been stitching
at the bottom right hand corner.

Slow progress!
A little slow stitching!
Unfortunately I cannot find some of  threads I need..... but I know they are here somewhere! I guess I will just have to stitch a different section until I find them!

2. Mini Thread Catcher 

Maybe I should rename this, as it is becoming more of a mini needlecase!

2. Mini Needlecase: 
Fabric choices for lining and pockets.
Deciding what fabrics to use for lining and pockets
Pockets and handles on Mini Needlecase.
Pockets and handles in progress.

3. Latest knitting project:

A waistcoat to be! I'm quite excited about this as it is quick to knit and growing fast! (When I get time to knit it that is!)

Back of waistcoat.
 I didn't get a chance to show this last week!

Back of waistcoat, almost finished!
I've stopped knitting the Back so I can
 knit the fronts,to make sure
 I have enough wool to finish.. 

First front, well on the way!
Excuse the shadowy photo!
Here is the first front piece.
Since taking these photos of my knitting I have almost finished the first front, but I don't have a photo yet! I hope to have a lot more done by my next posting.


No doubt many of you will have seen: The Splendid Sampler organised by Pat Sloan and Jane Davidson. Sorry no flash button here, as I have forgotten how to add them! Perhaps one of my lovely readers could remind me?

It's going to be a year long SAL, 100 block quilting adventure, starting on Valentine's Day.

Looks like fun, although I'm not sure how far I will keep up with them, but I have joined up!  Are you joining in?


I thank you for taking the time to visit me today. Do call again, some time soon!

And don't forget if you leave me a comment I will be able to visit you too!

Today I am linking to Super-Mom No Cape's Stitchery Party, and Design Board Monday at Bits 'n' Bobs. Why not pop over to see what everyone else is stitching!

Until next time, have a great week!


Barbara xx

Thursday, January 14, 2016

January 2016 - TUSAL

Hello Dear Reader,

Today I'm linking to Daffycat's TUSAL.

The first post for this link, coinciding with the New Moon, was 10th January.  I hope Daffycat will excuse me being late, as I am a "Newbie" and I'd like to show my ORTs (leftover threads), which I have collected over the last month.

When I first visited Jo's Serendipidous Stitching for her Halloween blog hop I noticed mention of ORTs on a few of the blogs I visited, and wondered what this was about.

Having now discovered that Daffycat is the organiser, and read her explanation I decided I needed to join in. 

I used to drop my embroidery thread ends in a pile on my carpet, picking them up every once in a while - mainly just before visitors arrived!

Now visitors are welcome at anytime - we'll be neat and tidy! And you can see here how many ends used to drop into that pile on the carpet.

ORTS - January 2016
My December ORTS next to a pink Mini Needlecase WIP.
For any new readers: I have been working on the pink Mini Needlecase (previously named, and filed as, Mini Thread Catcher, before I decided it had become a needlecase!) for some little while.

ORTs, needle case WIP
The little blue and fawn thread catcher was
made a few years ago, and hasn't really
been used it for its proper use, until now!

ORTs, and WIP
The little elastic loop on the side of the thread catcher loops
over a button on the side of
the main needlecase (see last photo on this page).

Quite a collection of ORTs!
i.e. all my cuttings for the last month!

Needlecase and thread catcher
My travel sewing kit with matching
 needlecase and thread catcher
The thread catcher loops over a button on the outside of my needlecase, and the side with pockets then stands upright for easy access to the pockets.

That's it for today!  If you are new to my blog, I hope you can spare the time to have a look around - I hope you find something you might be interested in, and that you will return to visit me another day!

If you leave a comment I will be able to visit you too! And maybe we can become buddies!

Barbara xx

Friday, January 08, 2016

A Cross Stitch Shout Out!

Hello Dear Readers,

Imagine my surprise!  On opening up my Blogger Dashboard the other day and paying a visit to Serendipitous Stitching, hosted by Jo who can't think of a clever nickname, and seeing my blog name in her alphabetical blog call!  Thank you so much for the shout out, Jo!

As the lovely Jo has encouraged her readers to visit my blog, I thought it only right and proper to introduce myself to any new readers today!

I've been a cross stitch fan for many years, but more recently after joining a local handicraft group I became hooked on embroidery, and that was when my "Cocoa Sampler" found its way into the dreaded store cupboard! However earlier this year when I aired the Sampler here I was inspired by some of the kind comments I received to start working on it again!

Cocoa Sampler
Cocoa Sampler

I finished the "house" square in the middle of the picture, by deciding to stitch 10 stitches a day - which meant if I picked it up to stitch ten I would generally stitch more than that!

Close up of Cocoa Sampler
Cocoa Sampler - close up!

But then, a couple of months ago, my handicraft group started a project involving Crewel Work. I found this most absorbing and the poor old cross stitch sampler again found its way back into the store cupboard!

You can see a larger cross stitch project posted here, and a more recent update about my Crewel Work and some smaller cross stitch projects here.

Having finished the Crewel Work picture I will now be returning to my "Cocoa Sampler" stitchwork (and other recent projects, of course!).

Crewel Work
Crewel Work

I thank you for taking the time to visit me today, and hope you've found a little to interest you!

Do visit again, some time soon! I have a few posts lined up ... I just need to pretty them up a little!


Barbara xx