Monday, December 31, 2007

Christmas at our house

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. Our eldest Jason was home from the 18th to the 29th so our's was perfect! The day before Christmas Eve we had a lovely time over at my Mum's house with a little family get-together and the day after Boxing Day we had a lovely evening with my sister Sarah and Mark. As always far too much to eat, with some of us also having a little too much to drink! Not me of course I just quietly sip away at my!

This was our first Christmas in our new home. We won't be here for next year though because hopefully we should be all settled into our new self-build at Spire Hill. Christmas 2008 will be our fourth Christmas in a row in a different house!

Before it's too late and this year comes to a close I just wanted to share a few pictures of our Christmas.

This beautiful handanger ornament was sent to me by my dear stitching friend Hilary.

Every year we have a new Christmas puzzle to do. I had a lot of trouble trying to get hold of this one this year! It's Thomas Kinkade's Village Christmas. I had seen it for sale with an Amazon market place seller, used for £25 but got lucky on Ebay and won this one, brand new and the box still sealed for £13.50 including p & p. Not a very good picture I'm afraid!

Thank you so much for visiting my blog and I would like to wish you
all A Very Happy New year for 2008!

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Saturday, December 15, 2007

My Birthday

Last Thursday was my birthday and I had just the best day! First thing my eldest Jason who lives away from home in London rang to wish me a happy birthday and to have just a quick chat because he was at work! It made my day to know he was thinking about his Mum! The rest of the day I spent with my Mum and sister Sarah. We met up in town for lunch and then went birthday shopping for me!! After our girlie shopping spree we went back to Mum's until DH Colin could pick me up on his way home from work.

I had a really lovely handbag from Colin which obviously was chosen by myself, and to hang from my new handbag my Mum bought me the gorgeous Yves Saint Laurent bag accessory you can see in the picture below. The little compacts contain the new Elle in a solid perfume and a lip gloss. I really, really love this...thank you again Mum! The little Momiji Doll came from Sarah wrapped up with some money which I still have to spend with more money! Sarah has just started to collect these herself and I shall have to start collecting them too...they are just too cute! Hidden inside is a tiny card where you can write your own special message. Sarah bought me Sister from the celebrations range. Thank you, thank you Sarah! :o) I also had a few charts I'd been wanting from Carriage House Samplings...couldn't let my birthday go by without something a little stitchy related too! :o)

A few of my pressies:

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Just Nan - Tie One On

Colin remembered to bring the camera home last night so I can now share my Tie One On, Limited Edition Whimzi from Just Nan. I don't know why but it took ages to get a half decent picture of this one, it's still got a slight blur to it even now! This was nice and quick to stitch and finish in the little whimzi frame!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

I'm still around...

...but there's not a lot of stitching going on here! As you can see though I've found a little time to make my blog just a little bit festive!

I do have a couple of little finishes, one I've already made up and will hopefully get to post a picture of tomorrow, that's if Colin remembers to bring the digi camera home! He's been forgetting it for about a week now but has promised faithfully he'll remember it tonight...we shall see! I had so many little Christmas projects I wanted to do which sadly won't get done now before Christmas. I'm sure I'll get a couple more finished this year though and I've promised myself I shall start a lot earlier next year. I've not really been feeling 100% for a few weeks which is why I've not been picking my stitching up in the evenings like I would do normally but I do feel more like doing a little now.

I would like to thank you all for visiting my blog and for all the wonderful comments that have been left, I appreciate them all. :o)

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Another Just Nan Finish

'C' for me, from Just Nan's Ornamental Letters. I picked this up quickly to take with me to stitch when I popped round to see my Mum a few months ago and it's been hanging around since waiting to be made up. Last weekend I decided to get it done and have finished it as an ornament. Stitched on 32ct Flax Belfast Linen using DMC threads. Can you tell that the Flax is one of my favourites! I've used it quite a bit recently and have it also in 28ct and 40ct. I've added Antique MH beads to the whipstitched edges. I've always liked this finish and after seeing Su's gorgeous ornament she had recently finished and trimmed with beaded pink trim, I just had to add beads to this too! It took a little longer to do then I had expected but I'm really pleased with how it's turned out...the beads add just that little bit of sparkle under the lights! I've also added a little of the silk ribbon to the tassel that I had left over from making the hanger.

A simple backstitched date done 1 over 1.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween Fobs

Phew!!! Only just got these finished in time for Halloween. I thought I was doing so well when I had finished stitching them last week but time caught up on me and I only got round to making them up into fobs yesterday! They are Jinx and Jasper from the Just Nan chart Moon Riders. Stitched on 32ct Flax Belfast Linen using DMC threads. I found the little Halloween charms online from Jewellery Enchantments. They are just so cute that I had to add one to each fob.

This is Jasper with the little ghost charm

and this is Jinx with the little pumpkin charm.

This week I have also managed to find a little time to start putting together a web page with photos of our self-build at Spire Hill. I'm hoping to update weekly so if you would like to pop by from time to time to see how we are progressing I have added a link to the side bar which links directly to the page. The weather here has been very kind to us with the build so far and I'm really excited to actually be able to see where the rooms downstairs are going to be.

Monday, October 22, 2007

A Little Stashing!!

I've been stashing and I am really excited to have the Quaker Hornbook by Ellen Chester (With My Needle). I really love this but as it is only available to groups of 10 or more stitchers I never thought I would be lucky enough to have it but thought I would make enquiries with Ellen anyway, who suggested that I contact Linda at The Sampler Guild as she may be able to sell me a single kit and WOOHOO!!! she did and I'm so, so HAPPY!!! I haven't stitched a quaker piece yet but have a nice little collection growing which I'm really looking forward to making a start on!

My other new additions are A Quaker Pattern Book also by With My Needle and Ma Boîte à Trésors (My Treasures' box) by C Mon Monde...these I bought from Amy (Down Sunshine Lane). The Little House Needleworks and Country Cottage Needleworks Frappuccino and Rose thread packs are my October auto shipment from Mary Kathryn (Handcrafts Online). I've been collecting all the LHN and CCN thread packs but so far have only finished the first three fruit packs and I am now half way through Berries...I have a lot of catching up to do!!

No new finishes to share yet but hope to have a couple of small Halloween finishes to post soon! :o)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Prairie Schooler Autumn Pinkeep

I have a finish at last!!! It's just a little one but I couldn't resist this cute little pinkeep from the September 2007 issue of The Gift of Stitching! I've used the listed DMC threads on 32ct Permin Wichelt Lambswool. The pumpkin fabric is what I've used to back the pinkeep. I have to confess that this is my first ever Prairie Schooler finish...I don't know why and it won't be my last because I enjoyed every stitch of it! Thanks so much for looking! :o)

Monday, September 17, 2007

Indigo Rose Pincushion

A new finish to share at last! This has been on my to do pile for quite some time so I'm really pleased to have it done. The design is by Indigo Rose from the Classic Stitches magazine, issue no. 54. I've used the listed DMC threads on 32ct Antique White Belfast linen and have finished it exactly as the model on the chart.

There are a couple of speciality stitches, the Triple Rice Stitch and Ribbed Spider's Web. This was my first time with the Spider's Webs and I was really pleased with how they turned out.

Thank you all so much for taking the time to visit my blog. I really do appreciate it and enjoy reading any comments left! :o)

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Another big day!

It's another big day for Colin and I as we have at last exchanged and completed on the purchase of a plot of land for our next self-build. It's taken us so much longer then we had expected, what with legal issues with access onto the land and then getting our planning application for a 4-bedroomed house passed through planning. There were no problems with the plans, it's just the time that it's taken with the planning department...there's just no hurrying them!!

Obviously nothing much to see yet but here are a couple of photos of the jungle.

This last one is the view I will have from all the rooms to the rear, or so Colin tells me (trees to the left and right of the photo will be gone tomorrow). He laughs at me when he brings the photos home...I just can't find my bearings with the plot being so overgrown! We'll be making the most of this view with French doors with glass panels down each side. These will be in both the lounge and dining room which lead out onto a veranda. I've already got my name on the seat nearest the french doors in the lounge where I will sit and!

Once we've started getting on a bit with the build I shall regularly post progress pics on my website like I did before with our last build. I know family will be interested in seeing these but please feel free to pop along if you would like see how we are getting on!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Our 25th Wedding Anniversary!

This was Colin and I 25 years ago on our wedding day! Looking back now it only seems like yesterday! It was a wonderful day and the sun was shining then just as it is again for us today!

I just couldn't resist editing this!

Sarah Jayne, why ever would this photo embarass you! I think you made a pretty little bridesmaid beside the beautiful Mother of the Bride! :o)

Monday, September 10, 2007

Blackbird Designs quilting fabric

Remember the lovely quilting fabric I bought a few months ago by Blackbird Designs for Moda. I loved it so much that a couple of months ago I just couldn't resist pre-ordering 6 of the new designs! They arrived this morning...aren't they gorgeous...I absolutely love the dark colours!

This time I ordered overseas from Colonial Crafts (scroll to the bottom of the page for the prints I bought). The total for the six ½ yds came to $24.78 (£12.20), shipping was $11 (£5.40). I thought the total of £17.60 was really good, especially with them being ½ yds and from overseas!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

No new finishes to share...

...because I've been having so much fun playing with my new computer!

Isn't it! We've always had the computer set up in the dining room so this time I wanted to go for looks! It's the new Sony Vaio LA3 with Vista...that's the bubbles screensaver you can see on the screen! I'm so excited I just love it! Was a bit worried about compatibility with all my favourite software but so far everything has setup fine. Printer, camera and scanner are all installed too, although the scanner did prove to be a bit of a pain! I thought I was going to have to replace it with a Vista compatible but I persevered and managed to get a driver installed eventually, much to the delight of DH, who's always watching the budget these days with our next new build about to start!

I have recently finished a pincushion that just needs making up, so hope to post a picture soon!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Surprise Package

Look what came in the mail yesterday...the most wonderful package from my dear stitching friend Katrina! We have both been collecting the Whitman's tins for the Fancy Work sewing sets. The Sampler and Bronze Griffin you can see in the picture were the last I needed to complete my collection and dear Katrina has found them for me! It was such a wonderful surprise...thank you so much for thinking of me Katrina and helping me to complete my know how much I appreciate it! :o)

I haven't been stitching much so no finishes to share this time! I could have got a good bit done last night but had settled down for a quiet evening with DH Colin to watch The Prestige on DVD. I'm stitching my first spider stitches so thought perhaps it wasn't a good idea to tackle these while trying to follow the film! It was Colin's birthday and we were home! Our youngest Matthew had caught the train to London earlier in the day for an overnight stay with our eldest Jason...they both went to see Prince at the Millennium Dome in the evening.

Had a wonderful girls night out on Monday with my Mum, sister Sarah and my sister Debra who has been over from Cape Town staying with my Mum for two weeks. We went to the cinema to see Hairspray and then for something to eat after. We really enjoyed the film, it was so funny!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Another pinkeep and scissors fob!

The little fob has been finished for ages but I didn't want to post a picture until I had got around to making up the pinkeep so that I could show them together!

Both are from Brightneedle. The scissors fob is 'Bunny Hop' the complimentary companion piece to 'Tall Trees' which I have finished as an oval shaped pinkeep. I wanted it to look like the model finished on the chart, which has been mounted into a Sudberry House oval shaker pincushion. Stitched 1 over 2 on the listed 40ct Light Espresso R & R linen, also using the listed Olde Willow Stitchery and DMC threads. This was the first time I had stitched 1 over 2 on 40ct and have to say I really enjoyed stitching on such a small count. The fabric in the background is what I have used to cover the back of the pinkeep.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

A little surprise for my Mum!

She's not seen it yet so I wonder if she'll spot her little surprise here first, before I next pop round with it for her!

The little stitching cherub is a Casa Mia complimentary design which you can find here. I've seen it finished as a scissors fob a couple of times now and knew I had to make one for my Mum who loves cherubs and angels. I've used DMC 115 on 36ct Antique White Edinburgh Linen, stitched 2 over 2. I usually stitch 1 over 2 on 36ct but wasn't at all happy with the coverage of the red on the light fabric but was a lot happier with the results of my second attempt. Bet Mum will recognise the ribbon. I didn't have the right shade of red (it's not quite so bright IRL as it is in the picture) and knew I wouldn't find any locally before finishing, so while I was visiting Mum last week I scrounged some she had which I thought would be a better match. Of course I didn't let on what it was!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

It's been ages since I last blogged...

Partly because our computer decided to suddenly shut down one day and wouldn't restart. Turned out it was just the power supply within the computer that had failed so an easy fix really and not too expensive, although it still took the best part of two weeks to get it back from the repairers! We were already planning on replacing it in the next few weeks so we wouldn't have been too disappointed if it had been a major problem and not worth repairing! I can't bear being without my computer, so in desperation I dragged out the old laptop that our eldest had used for university. It's getting on a bit now and hadn't been powered up for almost two years. I eventually got it up and running after formatting the hard drive and re-installing the operating system. Took a bit of fiddling to get the broadband connection going but I got there in the end. Not quite the same as having my old computer but at least I could check my emails and still do a little stash!

I also woke up one morning almost totally deaf. It was the weirdest thing, I couldn't even hear my own footsteps! I thought at first that it was due to the bit of a cold I had because it had come on so suddenly but after well over a week and just my right ear clearing a bit it's still no better. On Monday I went to the doctors and as suspected my ears need syringing. I can't wait until next week for my appointment, this is driving me nuts, my head just feels like it wants to explode at times!

You would think that having limited computer use with the old laptop I would have got plenty of stitching done, but no! My stupid ears have made me feel a little out of sorts and I've been getting quite a few headaches too which is probably due to my ears, so although I've been wanting to stitch I haven't really felt up to doing much recently. I do have a couple of smalls stitched though that just need finishing, so I'm hoping to be able to post pictures soon!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

New Stash

This past week I've received some lovely new additions to my stash. My favourite though has got to be A Mon Ami Pierre's 'Victoria's Quaker'. I haven't got the Victoria Clayton silks I need for it yet but once I do I can't see it being too long before I'll want to make a start on it. The pinkeep is just gorgeous so I think I shall have to start this first! Little House Needleworks' 'Summer Silk Sampler' isn't in the picture because it's still in the post but it shouldn't be too long before I'll be adding this to my stash too!

Yes, that is another Whitman's tin you can! I really have Katrina to thank that I have this one! I haven't recently been checking Hanging By A Thread's 'What's New' page and could have missed this one if Katrina hadn't let me know they were there. Thank you so much Katrina! :o) I now only have the Sampler and Bronze Griffin tins to find to complete my collection for the sewing set charts by Fancy Work. I think these two are going take a little longer to find, especially the Griffin which I've never even seen yet!

Before I forget I must let Nicole know (hope you get to see this Nicole) that the fabric I used for 'A Place We Call Home' was the listed 28ct Country French Latte.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

A Place We Call Home

I started on this a couple of months ago and finished it last night. I've only been doing a little on it every now and then, but have still thoroughly enjoyed working on it. This is my first Country Cottage Needleworks design. I just loved the verse and thought it would be the perfect piece for our new home we moved into last February as our new home is also our first self-build!

I don’t think I shall be having quite as much stitching and computer time this week as usual, which doesn’t bother me at all. It will be because my eldest Jason came home yesterday to stay for the week, so I’m very excited…I just love having him home with us! Although we chat on the phone and email regularly I’ve not seen him since Christmas and I probably won’t again until next Christmas, so I shall be making the most of our time together!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Two new finishes...

...just for me!!! :o)

I love anything from the designer Mary Garry, so as my old faithful scissor fob that I stitched some time ago was beginning to look a bit worn, this little design 'Sit & Sew' was the perfect replacement. It's been a while since I've finished a fob and I'm so excited about this one - I love it!

I'm so pleased with how my first mattress pincushion turned out too. I couldn't believe my luck in finding two designs by Mary Garry's Sewing Cabin in an older Just Cross Stitch magazine. It was only a couple of days after spotting it listed on a website I hadn't visited for a long time that it came up on Ebay for 'Buy It Now'. The seller kindly agreed to mail to the UK and it arrived just a week later. I didn't have a clue what the designs were like either, just that they were called Spring Duo. Can you imagine how excited I was when I saw 'Raining Pins & Needles' (the smaller of the two). I couldn't wait to stitch it!

Both were stitched on 32ct Belfast Flax using the listed DMC and Gentle Art Sampler Threads for 'Raining Pins & Needles', but changing the DMC 926 listed for the fob to the Blueberry GAST so that they would be the same.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Another first for me!

Guess who this one is for? Well she did drop a big enough hint when I did my post on pins and as it's her birthday today I thought I'd do my first practice pinkeep for my little sis...LOL!

The design is by Diane Williams (LHN) from the Leisure Arts book Tokens of Affection. I've stitched this 1 over 1 on 25ct so that it would make a nice little size for a pinkeep. Would you believe I didn't even get to use any of those boxed pins I got off Ebay recently as I felt the pinks and greens on the rosette I already had suited better! I'm so thrilled with how it's turned out and can't wait to do another!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

In reply to...

...the requests I've received over the weekend asking me where in the UK I bought the gorgeous fabrics in my previous post.

The green, rose and plum/eggplant sampler prints were from Antique Angel. The multi coloured sampler print was from Cross Patch along with the plain coloured fabrics. You can't actually order online from Cross Patch but their contact no. is on the homepage.

HTH! :o)

Friday, June 01, 2007

Got a little carried away again!

I just had to have a piece of this sampler print fabric after seeing how Anne (Tempus Fugit) had used it to finish her pinkeep. As you can see though, while searching for the multi coloured print I also found another sampler print in other colours by the same designer, which of course I just had to have too. You know what it's like...I just couldn't decide on which other colour to have so thought it would be best to play safe and have all three...LOL! Won't they be perfect for lining some of those little tins with their sewing accessories! I had to order from a couple of different sites but they were in the UK with next day delivery which was great because I just couldn't wait to get my grubby little hands on them!

The plain fabrics are also from the same collection, described as an evenweave fabric equivalent to 28ct and apparently lovely to stitch on. The four FQs were bundled together and with discount came to £ could I resist!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Pins, pins and more pins!

Look what arrived in the post today!

I think I may have got just a little carried away recently after visiting another stitchers blog I like to read. Not only did she post a picture of all her pins but she also mentioned the Ebay seller's ID and shop. I have a few pins already but you don't get that many of each colour on the rosettes you can get here in the UK.

I think I had better now make a start at some of those pinkeeps that I keep promising myself I'll have a go at...just hope I'm going to enjoy making them now that I have all these pins...LOL!

Oh btw, the seller's Ebay ID is Work4Pnuts and her Ebay shop is The Crafty Elephant. :o)

Monday, May 21, 2007

My first bourse!

This is my first stitchy finish since starting my blog and I'm so excited because I've at last made a bourse which I've been wanting to try for ages. I stitched this little gift for my Mum for her birthday today.

The design is 'Heartstrings' from The Cat's Whiskers. Stitched using the listed 32ct Antique White Belfast Linen and DMC threads. I also chose to use the four little Mill Hill pink heart treasures (instructions are given to back stitch the little heart shapes if you prefer). Full instructions for finishing are also included. Below is a picture of the bourse opened out flat. You can just make out the little heart treasures - there's one down each side.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

It's here at last!

My 'Milkpaint Sampler' by Mary Garry's Sewing Cabin. It's taken 6 weeks to the day for it to arrive from Kreinik. I was afraid it had gone astray in the post so had to e-mail Kreinik with my concerns, who informed me that their estimated delivery time to the UK was 4 to 6 weeks...can you believe that! I'm so relieved it's here safely now! I just love the way it's packaged in it's little box!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Another tin came this morning!

This is the last one I'm's another Whitman's Cloisonné tin. I actually found this one on Ebay for 'Buy It Now' before I was fortunate enough to find my other one here in the UK (see previous post). I did wonder if in my desperation to have one of these tins and not knowing what to expect, whether I may have been a little bit hasty buying it. Now it's here though it really is quite pretty and I'm more then happy with it. It's a little bit different to the other...the tin is identical but has also been embellished with coloured crystals.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Happy Dancing!

A few weeks ago I received my Whitman's tins with the sewing set charts from Fancy Work. There were a couple of tins I couldn't get which I believe are now unavailable...the Cloisonné and the Sampler Heart! I've been searching the internet, checking out EBay and e-mailing my favourite overseas ONS to ask for help, but was sadly not getting anywhere. During my search though I ended up on a UK website I hadn't visited for a while. Some of the charts and tins were still listed but suggested e-mailing to check stock. Well after all that hunting overseas can you believe it...she still had the Cloisonné tin I needed...YIPPEE!!! The Cloisonné tin arrived safely yesterday and today I'm happy dancing because the Heart tin I found at last just over a week ago arrived safely this morning too!

Look at all my lovely tins...think I'm going to be a little bit busy stitching up sewing sets don't you...LOLOL!!

Friday, May 11, 2007

Well here I am...

...a Blogger!

Never thought I would be and don't know how successful I'll be at it, but hopefully I'll manage to post at least once a week and not make too many mistakes while I'm learning! It's looking a little boring here now but I hope to pretty it up soon! :o)

Just a little about myself. I'm Carol from Plymouth in the UK, married to Colin. We will be celebrating our 25th Wedding Anniversary this September...gosh doesn't time fly when you're having fun!! I do have two other men in my life, our sons Jason and Matthew. It's Jason's 24th birthday in two weeks. Since finishing his Degree and Post Grad at Cardiff University he now lives and works as a review editor on a music magazine in London. Matthew is 19 and is still at home which I think he will be for a little while longer yet, although he has recently decided that he would like to go on to University after all, so watch this space!

I love to Cross Stitch so this is what you will mostly find me sharing and chatting about on my blog! I also have a little website...well it's gallery for my stitching really. Hope you will find time to pop by!
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