I really didn’t need a new cross stitch project since I already have two on the go, but the Frosted Pumpkin A Very Merry Christmas Town mystery stitch-a-long is simply too adorable to resist. I ordered the aida kit and it arrived in the mail late last week.
The kit came with 1/8 yard of 14-count hand dyed aida (there’s a 28-count linen version available as well), ten colours of DMC floss, two colours of The Gentle Art floss, metallic gold Kreinik braid, and a six-pack of size 26 tapestry needles.
I’m super excited to try the floss from A Gentle Art as it isn’t a brand I’ve used before. The BOHIN needles are new to me as well. Most of mine are John James or DMC since that’s what seems to be available at the stores I shop in. I am, however, already giving the metallic braid the evil eye. I can’t stand working with the DMC metallics, so we’ll see how the Kreinik compares.
The hand dyed crystal aida from Picture this Plus in Arctic is some of the prettiest fabric I’ve seen. The muted shades of blue and the opalescent thread woven through the fabric really do evoke thoughts of a beautiful winter day.
I jumped right into stitching but don’t have much to show yet. The second instalment of the pattern arrives on Aug. 26, so I better stop typing and start stitching!
Next up in my Sprite Stitch stitch-a-long is Yoshi’s Island. This one is yet another blackberrybear creation. She and I clearly have the same taste in games since I’ll be stitching a few more of her creations before my stitch-a-long project is over!
The original pattern (which you can find over on Sprite Stitch) used pastel colours, but I changed them to match the image on the front of the Yoshi’s Island DS game, since it’s the only one I’ve played. To be honest, I only played a bit of this game. I didn’t dislike it, I just get easily distracted by new games so games often don’t hold my attention for very long unless they are truly exceptional. I simply thought that baby Mario was too cute not to stitch and the character shot makes for a nice contrast to the many squares that use a more traditional, multiple-motif, sampler style.
Next up is a seriously fantastic Minesweeper square, so be on the lookout.
July’s instalment of the Frosted Pumpkin story time stitch-a-long is from the ballad The Lady of Shalott by Alfred, Lord Tennyson. I’ll sheepishly admit that I’d never read it. I’m a huge fan of the painting by John William Waterhouse, on which this cross stitch is clearly based, and even got to see the painting at the Tate Britain in London many years ago. But poetry just isn’t my thing. That being said, since it’s the first story in this stitch-a-long that I hadn’t read, I sat down and read it. Three times. Poetry still isn’t my thing.
But cross stitch sure is! Isn’t she adorable?
Every year the great group over at Sprite Stitch cross stitch scenes from their favourite video games to create a one of a kind quilt to raise money for Child’s Play.
This is the first year that I’ve been able to contribute. Here is my finished square – a scene from Adventures of Lolo 3.
So many great folks contribute to the quilt each year that there are typically enough squares to create more than one quilt. One of the quilts always goes to the Penny Arcade Child’s Play Dinner and Auction, while the second quilt is typically sold in a way that allows more people the opportunity to win it. The second quilt created last year is being raffled right now. See pictures of the quilt and buy your tickets at RaffleRiver.com. Tickets are $3 each or 5 for $10 and the draw will occur on August 8.
The time to contribute squares for this year’s quilt is almost up, but if you’re a cross stitcher, keep a look out for work on next year’s quilt to start. The squares are a lot of fun to stitch and help support a great cause.
Square number 7 in my Sprite Stitch stitch-a-long project is another blackberrybear creation, and likely requires no introduction. At least if it does, you definitely weren’t a child of the 80s.
I sucked at Duck Hunt. I mean absolutely sucked. I saw a lot of the laughing dog. Stupid dog. The only way I could even attempt to play the game was to exploit the trick where you hold the gun with the tip only an inch or so from your TV screen to mess with the light sensor. But it makes for an adorable cross stitch square!
Next up in my Sprite Stitch stitch-a-long project is a square from Harvest Moon. This one was designed by blackberrybear.
My first introduction to the Harvest Moon series was Harvest Moon DS for (obviously) the Nintendo DS. It’s probably a good thing that my DS didn’t track my playtime, as I’m guessing my total hours clocked into this game rivals what I put into Skyrim. I simply couldn’t put the silly thing down. Seriously, I even kept my DS by my bed so I could tend to my farm when I woke up in the middle of the night. Who knew a farming sim could have that kind of draw? Even my Mom (whose previous gaming experience was basically limited to Tetris) loved the heck out of Harvest Moon. I’ve played other Harvest Moon games since then (as well as a couple of the Rune Factory games) but none of them have had quite the same charm as Harvest Moon DS.
While the artwork for this particular square is from the original Harvest Moon for the SNES (which I never played), it’s still Harvest Moon. So how could I not stitch it?
I’ve been so busy with other projects that I almost didn’t get June’s instalment of the Frosted Pumpkin Stitch-a-Long finished in time. But I just managed to sneak it in before the end of the month.
Here’s Peter Pan:
Wow, it’s been awhile since I’ve had an update on any cross stitch. I’ve been so distracted lately by crocheted cuteness.
The Sprite Stitch stitch-a-long is sadly over, but I’m still (slowly) working on stitching a bunch more of the designs for display in a multi-frame. Here’s the latest one from Super Mario Kart designed by blackberrybear.
I’ve been a fan of the loop start method in cross stitch since I learned it about a year ago. That is until recently, when I learned the even more awesome loop start in the front method. I’m a total convert so I thought I would share it.
Here’s a basic cross stitch square. We’re going to start a new thread by making the first half of a stitch from A to B:
Step 1: Cut a piece of floss double the length that you would normally work with. Separate out a single strand of floss. Fold the floss in half and thread the open end through the needle.
Step 2: Pass the needle from the front of the fabric to the back of the fabric through hole A, leaving a loop at the front of the work.
Step 3: Bring the needle back up through hole B.
Step 4: Pass the tip of the needle through the thread loop.
Step 5: Pull the thread tight.
Step 6: Pass the needle back down through hole B.
Step 7: Pull the stitch tight. This will force the knot to the back of the work.
Voila! The new thread is secured and you didn’t have to access the back of the work. How cool is that?
For the final week of the Sprite Stitch stitch-a-long we were able to choose our favourite from the submitted designs to stitch. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is hands down one of my all time favourite video games. It is second only to World of Warcraft for the number of hours it has sucked from my life – and it was worth every one of them. So I knew my final square would have to be one of the two great Skyrim designs that were submitted to the stitch-a-long.
Here are the Skyrim patterns I had to choose from:
The first was created by Pyper and provides room to experiment with some blackwork. The second was created by BooChocoBoom and is hard to resist if you have a soft spot for the Thieves’ Guild.
I loved the idea of trying my hand at some blackwork and originally started into that pattern. However, it became apparent that within the context of my entire project the blackwork just didn’t fit in and made this pattern stand out heavily from the rest. So I pulled out the stitches and opted to commemorate the Theives’ Guild instead.
Here’s the final square:
I’m not very happy with how the yellow for Devlin’s goatee blends in with the rest of his face. I literally tried eight different shades of yellow and didn’t like any of them. I may still pull it out and make it brown instead. It wouldn’t be true to the game, but at least it would be noticeable that way. Does anyone have any suggestions?
Here’s my official finished sampler:
Although the official stitch-a-long is over, I am still planning to stitch another twelve squares for display in a multi-frame, so be sure to watch for more updates. You can also check out the rest of the stitch-a-long group’s progress over on Sprite Stitch.