Thursday, May 31, 2018

Really Late TUSAL/a catchup/and a blogging tip!


Thank you everyone for your kind comments on my last post.

I'd completely forgotten to write a TUSAL post this month, until now!

Catching up

I’ve been so carried away stitching this lovely Flamingo from Cross Stitcher - Issue 331 - it has almost become my "one monthly goal".

I should be stitching my quilt for The Endeavourers but what with hindering helping DH in the garden and popping out shopping here and there I haven't had time to start on the quilt yet.

The Flashing

Most of my ORTS have consequently come from the Flamingo, and similar to the Rose I stitched previously, this pretty Flamingo has five different pinks scattered about the picture, and it is taking me quite a time stitching them.

I’m so glad I used a grid again, as it has really helped stitching the colours in the right places.

Help with Grids

Further to Rosey's comment on my last post I thougt it may help to mention how I used my grids:

I haven't actually read up on grids anywhere but I used individual lengths of cotton loosely stitched in lines (10 squares apart) ..... that way it is possible to push the thread to one side of the current stitch so that the grid lines don't get stitched into the pattern. 

In places I had to pull grid lines out while I added a particular stitch, and put them back after making that stitch! And once or twice I've even had to snip out a couple of grid lines, but it was possible (with great care) without damaging the actual work in progress. I guess that's probably why it's taken a while to stitch.

The Flashing Scissors

I'm already eager to start on the latest kit from Cross Stitcher - mainly because of their "Camper van" button. But I will finish the "Flamingo" first!



I was so enthusiastic about joining in with Queeniepatch and her Stumpwork faces tutorial but I haven’t got very far!

DH took one look and said “It’s evil”, “I don’t want it in the house!”
Well, it is, in the house, and I'm sure he'll be back soon!

However, I’m not sure what part to stitch next! I wanted to add a necklace, but I couldn’t even thread the beading needle, the eye is so small my needle threader wouldn’t pull the thread through! So it’s all fallen by the wayside, for now.

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I’ve chosen fabrics for clothes but haven’t started yet.


Hope you don't mind me sharing a couple of photos from our garden: 

One of my favourite all time plants! Not sure of its name ..... never can remember names! that's why I call him DH!

This is the plant that inspired my first mini quilt for The Endeavourers. It has lots of really pretty berries later in the year which is the reason I won’t let Hubbie prune the bush until the birds have eaten all the berries, and consequently he has a job to prune the bush before the next season’s growth starts, and it is now becoming a tree!

The flowers open from the outside of the cluster first, and the centre florets(?) are really tiny. Oh dear! it's taken me so long to write this post most of these lovely flowers have already turned quite brown!

The Flashing Scissors


Apologies to those of you that really hate snakes, 'cos this isn't, it is actually a legless lizard I'm about to mention!

The other day on our way home from the shops we spotted a Slow-worm on the pavement next to a busy road. Luckily I had a beaker in my bag (as I'd been to my stitching group that day) and DH was able to pick the critter up in the beaker ..... not before it lost its tail, but then that's its way of escaping ..... jettisoning the end of its tail which then wriggles frantically, the Slow-worm then discretely slopes away whilst the predator  is fascinated with the wiggling detatched section. More about Slow-worms HERE.

DH virtually took his life in his hands kneeling at the edge of the road as the Slow-worm tried to escape from him by wriggling off the footpath, over the kerb, onto the road's edge, and the crazy drivers raced past as close to us as they could, even though we could both be clearly seen!!

As soon as we got home we popped the little chap into a corner of the garden where we had seen Slow-worms previously. I do hope they get on with each other!

Here's another one we saw recently in our garden:

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In our garden, next to our "vegetable plot"
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and a close-up
Slow-worms are very good for the garden ..... they are reputed to eat slugs! Not sure how true that is as despite our many, many Slow-worms we still seem to have an inordinate number of slugs in our garden!!

This is one reason why we don't use slug pellets in the garden ..... as it would get into the food chain of the Slow-worm.

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Another of my favourite plants, always makes me think
of tiny fairy shoes hanging on a line.
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Couldn't resist this pic either ..... an Alium (new to us this year)


Of course I can't sign off without mentioning GDPR! 

I know many of you, like me, are wondering what we need to do with our blogs now to stay legal!
Luckily though we have a few lovely blogging friends who are already dealing with this on their blogs, and once I finish this post I will be off to see what I need to do.

I'm sure they won't mind me mentioning them:

Jo of Serendipitous Stitching - advised us that we won't be receiving notification of comment emails, and suggests a way around it HERE.

Mia of Craftartista has written a whole page HERE.

And Shez of  "I am" has added a page to her blog too HERE.

I know I am already missing all those friendly comments appearing in my mail box ..... already feeling lonesome!! ..... but I'll be checking the "Comment" facility in the left hand margin of my Dashboard everyday! .... well, most days!

Oh, and if you are still with me this is my tip: 

Don't know if you've had this trouble, but I've had a lot of trouble trying to "Publish" comments when I've been visiting buddies blogs ..... I've found that it is necessary, when you finish writing your comment, to make sure you place the "cursor" within the text of your message before hitting "Publish"! So next time you are stuck remember and try this out!

Hope you still comment,
Hugs to you all,
Barbara xxx

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Gifted Gorgeousness - May 2018

"GIFTED GORGEOUSNESS" is a monthly link party run by the wonderful Jo of Serendipitous Stitching, where we post about stitching gifts we have received or given, or indeed anything related to the word "gift". Link runs from the 15th until the end of the month. If you would like to find out more and maybe join up go HERE!

Read all about who's joining in with the May GG HERE (on Jo's blog).

Not much stitching to show this month ..... I've mostly been working on my quilt for The Endeavourers. And after this post I will be settling down to working on my next one.

Vintage Rose:

Yipee! I have a finish!

This was a free gift from The World of Cross Stitch (Issue 267)

The Flashing Scissors
"Vintage Rose"

Don't forget, if you can't see the photos clearly enough just click on them to see the magnified version.

Wow, I'm amazed I finished this with only very minor visits from the froggy, and I put that down to using a grid. It was so much easier to keep my place on the pattern, despite the colours being so similar. And when I had finished stitching there was only one grid line that wouldn't pull out but it was easy enough to snip out.

The Flashing Scissors

Flamingo Phone Case

Last time I wrote I mentioned this as my latest start.

It's the free gift from June's Cross Stitcher Issue 331. I only started this last week and have mainly been stitching on our train journeys. I was a little confused with the colours (there are five different pinks) and before I started stitching I emailed Cross Stitcher to make sure I was using them in the right order. I had a very quick reply from them and was able to get on with stitching straight away.

I've only worked on the tiniest project ever in evenweave previously and was a little worried that I wouldn't be able to follow the pattern keeping the crosses lined up. Then, when I had been stitching for a while I realised I was happier with grid lines to keep track. I started from the centre and each time I had a few pattern stitches in place I was able to count where the grid lines would go. And, so far, there's been no visits from the frog!

I can't wait to finish! The case is made from pink felt and covered with a pink spotty fabric, topped with the pretty cross stitch. If you want to make one there might be copies of this magazine on sale still ..... the next issue comes out on 22 May .... so you'd probably have to hurry. I'm only saying this because I think its a lovely pattern .....  my opinion, and I'm not even being paid to say this!

The Flashing Scissors
Flamingo Phone Case
Cross Stitcher issue 331


BTW, have you ever fancied making stumpwork faces? For a tutorial on "How to" pop over to visit Queeniepatch on her lovely embroidery blog: Queenie's Needlework.

I've barely started mine, and I'm not sure it will look any good, but I was really excited to see Queenie's tutorial as I have long admired her stumpwork pictures.

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Slow start - Stumpwork Face

Easter Blog Hop:

I don't think I showed you my finished Easter stitching:

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Wish I'd had it finished for the blog hop but that border took waaaay longer than I expected!

Anyhoo, I'm off now to see who else has linked up to Gifted Gorgeousness ..... why not come along too, maybe next month you might want to join in too!! Oh, no, I've just realised I forgot to take a photo of my ORTS!!!!!

Barbara xxxx

Friday, May 11, 2018

Endeavourers / WIP

Hello friends, old and new,

On 1st of May my blogging friends at "The Endeavourers" shared their interpretations of "Changes/Transformation", do have a look at their wonderful quilts.

I'm afraid I was a little late and hadn't finished mine but I joined in with my "Unfinished Changes".

I don't mind admitting I hadn't finished because that's just one of those things, life happens, as we all know! And I'll tell you a story along those lines while I'm thinking of it ....

One of my friends at our local handicraft group was recently debating the best way of attracting new members to the group and said that she had been chatting with a friend who crafts and told her she couldn't understand why we weren't getting new members ..... the friend said that she had thought about joining "but the standard was too high"! 
What can you do? Surely that's all the more reason for joining, find out what those people do, and put it into practice yourself!

So, I don't mind admitting I'm not perfect and have much to learn, for surely half the fun is seeing what others are doing and then joining in! Or is it only me that thinks that way?

Anyway, I digress!

You can read  about my "Unfinished Changes" here, on  The Endeavourers blog.

The Flashing Scissors
Unfinished Changes

And this week I painted another row of colours - the one starting from Emerald Green! One row took around an hour to paint and started my back hurting again, so I won't be painting any more until my back eases a bit.

Over the last week I was working on a couple of tiny sewing projects: 

Luckily hand stitching doesn't aggravating my back! So during a quiet spell I made this little bag from some scraps of muslin and a few embroidery threads left over from my Easter Blog Hop cross stitch project. Eeek, I've just realised I haven't shown the finished stitching yet, and I finished it over Easter too!! Oh well, I'll have found the photo for my next blog post.

I used french seams with an extra scrap of fabric to reinforce the base, and a double folded hem as carrier for the ribbons. The chain stitch flower didn't work very well, and once the bag was used in the shower the flower sadly looked no more than spokes on a wheel!

Its nothing grand really and I hadn't intended to show it on the blog, but I liked it when I'd finished!

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Then I've started another travel project:

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but I was confused as to which threads were which - you might guess it's a kit from a magazine - I'll explain more when I return with "Gifted Gorgeousness" on 15th May.

Oh, yes, DH went to an Open Garden at the weekend (on his own because I felt it would be too much walking for me as my back is still not right) and he bought these home for me:

The Flashing Scissors

The Open Garden is for charity, and amongst other items they had these covered rocks for sale! I've seen people making them before and always admired them, and I couldn't believe they were only asking 10p for each!! Don't worry, he's not a meanie, he also bought a plant for £7 to go towards their charity.

And a photo from our garden to finish with.

This was one of  the most beautiful tulips we had this year, and as they are now rapidly disappearing I thought it would nice to see it again here.

Do have a look at  The Endeavourers' amazing interpretations of "Changes/Transformation":

I hope you are all keeping well, and don't forget to make time for some stitching!

See you soon.