Monday, 30 July 2012

stumpwork beetle

A while ago I decided I'd like to try making a stumpwork beetle cabinet- then I discovered this gorgeous book
This is my first attempt at a beetle from the book - a jewel beetle using stumpwork and goldwork techniques. It's not destined for my beetle specimen box, I'd like to do my own designs for that, but it has helped me get my head around how to embroider a stumpwork beetle. The head is a tiny bit of gold leather- I love how it looks. The wings are stitched seperately and are wired. Although this was just a 'practice' really I think it will go into a small frame (it's tiny, for scale the eyes are those tiny seed beads) and it can hang in my hall where I am collecting bugs, beetles and butterflies!

Saturday, 21 July 2012

felt things! lots and lots!

I did another round of the felt badge swap on craftster
Here is what I made;

I love doing those little beetle boxes! Each of these takes a solid evenings work at least- probably about 4-5 hours at least when you include the designing which is a lot for something so small, they are about 3 inches long. But they are fun to do and a great 'tv' craft! This time I bought a wool mix felt as I found a supplier who sold packs of loads of different colours, the colours were beautiful but it is more difficult to work with than 100% wool felt as the pieces stretched and fell apart a bit if they were really tiny. Also if I stitched too close to the edge it just frayed which was frustrating. Once I've used up this felt (and I have loads of it!) it will be back to the felt I bought before!
Here is what I received from whenindoubtsew
yes we both did mermaids! Hers was so much more detailed than the one I sent her- look at the beading round the edge!
And from Glamis
no idea why this photo has turned itself on it's side- it doesn't look like that when I view it on my computer. I love how she layered the felt scales and used so many colours
I also did a little swap with Leslie a while ago for some badges. I love the gorgeous badges she sent me;
The little fish are covered in embroidery- so much detail! And I have no idea how she cuts out felt as small as those little leaves- she must have a pixie helper!

This is what I sent her- she had recently been made the featured swap organiser on Craftster so I wanted to send an extra to celebrate that!

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

dragon cushion

This little fella was stitched for a swap. Usually I'd say dragons aren't my thing but I'll make an exception here because I think this cushion looks quite nice. I hadn't the foggiest how to draw a dragon, my first attempts looked more like mutant cattle so I ended up googling 'how to draw a dragon' and found a site with lots of tutorials here - is there anything you can't learn from the tinterwebs?

I had problems with the making up - I decided to do a sort of patchworky front - I have never done patchwork before and was winging it so it is wonky and not a the corners meet up properly, of course this contributes to it's handmade charm ;)

Monday, 9 July 2012


A while ago I was asked by Carina and Nicole of &Stitches to take part in a stitch challenge for the &Stitches. I had to learn pekinese stitch and use it in a piece. I ended up designing a koi design that i thought would go well with the issues oriental theme

I was pretty excited when I saw they had used it for the cover!
I recommend you get yourself an issue- you get lots for your hardearned pennies. There are so many patterns inside including a beautiful crosstitch lantern design, a lucky cat, cherry blossom, sashiko and this gorgeous fish banner
and you can of course read about the stitch challenge and read an interview with Jenny Hart. More pictures from the issue here -> &stitches blog

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Faith Hope and Charity Shopping Swap

Yesterday was officially a good day!
I received a box of superwonderfullness from the lovely Christy in the Jubilee swap organised by Lakota at Faith Hope and Charity Shopping
I really was spoiled, our swaps had to contain a handmade item, a thrifted item and a jubilee themed item. My package arrived complete with cupcake decoration!
Inside everything was beautifully wrapped in red white and blue- Oi Rory-get off!!
Once I had wrestled the box back off the youngest kidshape here is what I unwrapped...

A gorgeous crocheted 'S', I have no idea how she made this - its fantastic. I had admired something similar she made here (warning- rude words!) so was thrilled to receive this. It was my favourite part of the package and is on display in my dining room - where there is a bright pink wall it matches perfectly!
A right royal tea tray- so cute! And a gorgeous crocheted brooch that she made - it is beautiful and I just know I will wear it a lot

There was also this box decorated with images by Angelique- Christy must have done some research on me as Angelique is my favourite artist. Thankyou Christy for making something so suited to me- I will be storing treasures in here! The images are all cut out individually and collaged together.
 Inside the box was some chocolate for Rory and Jake :)

And a final jubilee themed gift- which will go in the garden should monsoon season ever end here in Lancashire.

I'd like to say a massive Thank You to Christy for being such a generous partner- I hope she likes my package as much as I like the one she sent me. Thank you too to Lakota for organising- I'll be keeping lookout for future swaps

So as you can see my day was already going well and then ...
That's my embroidery on the cover of the new &Stitches ! I didn't know they were going to put  it on the cover so was very excited to see it there. I will blog about this koi embroidery very soon but in the meantime please take a look at this &Stitches blog post about the content of the new issue. I have seen the issue and it contains some beautiful projects.