Saturday, June 03, 2023

Stitching Saturday - Indigo Lane

Happy Stitching Saturday, Friends! I have a project to share that I finished a few weeks ago. It took me awhile to get it framed, as I did not have the correct items to frame it, plus I was NOT interested in paying a ton of money to have it professionally framed! 

I confess it has been decades since I framed a stitched piece, so this is by no means perfect, but it is good enough for my liking.

I had been admiring this pattern, Indigo Lane by With Thy Needle and Thread. When my birthday rolled around in February, my lovely friend Becky surprised me with the pattern! There are several patterns in the booklet, but I just stitched the main one for now. 
Becky also gifted me an amazing pair of scissors and a needle minder! She is such a lovely friend! 

I do not follow the correct fabric or floss listed in a pattern. I used to be very careful about that when I stitched years ago...but now...I just do what I want! I think being in the paper craft arena for so long has taught me to "go with my gut" on most things! 

I used Icelandic Gray 14 count Aida by Wichelt. It is a beautiful, pale gray fabric. The pattern called for a huge list of hand-dyed floss, but I just am not going to spend $2.50 for each color, and then it is for 5 yards of floss! I also do not care for the variegation you can get with the hand-dyed floss. I just used DMC floss, which I can buy for 60 to 65 cents for almost 9 yards! I confess that while I love stitching, I do not love how expensive it has become!

I did my best to convert the floss over to DMC, but in some cases there was not a very good conversion, so I just chose colors I liked. I want to do this pattern again with other colors, and maybe just do the motifs and the house, and not do the tree and birds. We will see if I ever get back to it!

I am very happy with the end result. I decided to frame it with a plain frame I got for way too many dollars on Amazon! Frames are so expensive! This one was not really the correct size, but a custom frame would have cost even more! This frame is 7 1/4" x 13 1/4" with a 6" x 12" opening. 

I placed some batting between the stitching and a piece of foam core, then pinned the fabric to the foam core. I did my best to get it stretched and pinned straight. It is not 100%, but close enough! Plus, the foam core was too big, and I ended up having to take it apart to redo it! {sad face}

I wanted to hang the piece on the wall in our front room, but it looked so sad and lost on the wall, that I decided I am going to use it on the buffet instead. I have a full display with the colors of my décor, and this fits right in! I plan to make some companion pieces in the same color family, and then I can create a triptych or something on the wall. 

Note: I have not been able to stitch for about a week as I have injured my right thumb! I am trying to get some patriotic and summer themed things finished, but...I have had to take a break!

Here is the very silly story....My husband received a Switch for Christmas, and along with the system he received Mario Kart 8. And, because we are empty nesters with time on our hands, and it gets dark early in winter, and it is way too cold to swim in the pool....we started to play the Mario Kart almost every evening. 

Well, the combination of me mashing the "speed button" during our Mario Kart races, and stitching for hours on end while holding my embroidery hoop has injured my hand! More specifically my right thumb. It is unclear if it is tendonitis or just an arthritis flare up, but it is painful and most crafting has been halted for about a week! Thankfully, I am left handed so I can still do most things, I am just being very careful with my right hand. Even typing this post is uncomfortable! Stupid Mario!

Thanks for joining me today! Happy stitching! 

Indigo Lane by With Thy Needle and Thread
Floss: DMC (372, 613, 3032, 712, 950, 844, 420, 3750, 834, 318, 414, 169, 3011, 167)
Fabric: Icelandic Gray 14 Count Aida by Wichelt
Frame: Amazon 
Foam core: Amazon
Tools: pins, clips, double-sided adhesive, ruler

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Joyful Moments Planner Page - Elizabeth Craft Designs

Hello, paper craft lovers! I want to share another Elizabeth Craft Designs project with you, as we say good-bye to May! I am sharing a project created with the Everyday Elements - Everything's Blooming Collection and the Planner Essentials Collection.

This is my very first ECD planner page! I have done a little work with planners in the past, but I have not worked with the ECD Planner Essentials Collection before. Being part of the Everyday Elements team means I also can use everything in the ECD store! How awesome is that?!

The planner I am using is the A5 Slim Planner in Vintage Black. This style of planner is 9" x 6 1/4" and the pages are approximately 8 1/4" x 4 3/4". This is fairly close to the size of some of the mini books I make, which makes the style and sizing very comfortable to work with.
I started by using the page die from the Planner Essentials 56 - Tickets and Tabs die set to cut a page from black cardstock and a second page out of printed paper. (As soon as I found out I could use the full ECD line of products, this die set was the first thing I purchased with my team discount!)

I glued the die cut printed paper to the black cardstock page and sponged the edges with Frayed Burlap Distress Ink. I am not too worried about making the planner too "thick" as I will probably convert it into a bound mini album when I finish it. Right now, it lives in the planner to keep the pages safe while I spend all of 2023 working on it! 

I cut some hole reinforces from black cardstock using the Reinforcement Variety Pack. There are several hole reinforcement collections, but this one has the style that speaks to me the most.  
I used the Lace Borders die set to cut a border for the edge of the page. I cut two borders from off white cardstock and pieced them together to fit the edge of the page. I sponged the die cut pieces with distress ink. 

Next, I used the Postage Stamps die set to cut out several layers to create a photo mat. The paper I am using is two retired collections from Heartfelt Creations, Celebrate the Journey and Once Upon a Time.
To add some fun layers to my base page, I cut two of the shapes from the Planner Essentials 21 - Note Pieces die set from the printed paper. I love this die set! It is right up my shabby, steampunk-y, vintage alley! Paired with the postage stamp dies...perfection! I have not been this happy about scrapbooking type things in a while! 

Note: I sponged all my paper edges with Frayed Burlap Distress ink.
I cut one of the large perforated ticket shapes from the Planner Essentials 56 - Tickets and Tabs die set out of black cardstock and turned it into a pocket. I covered the pocket with printed paper. Then, I used the small tag from the Planner Essentials 2 die set to cut three tags from the printed paper.
I used the Happy Stamp set to stamp several page titles onto natural cardstock. I then used the circle dies from the Small Doilies die set to die cut a clock image from the printed paper and a circle mat from black cardstock. I used the Stemmed Flowers die set to cut several sprigs from printed paper to use as page accents. 

I confess, I had several ideas for this page, and die cut a lot of things that I ended up not using before I found the perfect arrangement for my page. 
I placed the two sprigs on the page and then added my pocket. I felt like this arrangement kept the photo in the focal spot.
I decided to add more of the hole reinforces to the tags. I think it gives them a fun look!
I placed the tags into the pocket. I can use the tags to write some journaling and to add more small photos. 

I assembled the clock embellishment and glued it to the edge of the pocket. I used a trimmer to cut the sentiments into strips and added them to the pocket as well. 
Now my page is finished! I just need to add my photos and journaling. I plan to use this color scheme and style for the entire planner, just the way I would do it if I were making a mini album. 
The photo mat is large enough for a 3 3/8" x 2 3/8" or smaller photo. I need to pick some photos from the first half of the year and get them printed. I really stink at that part of scrapbooking! I like making things, but don't care much for fiddling around with photos! {I know, I know!}
I am still not 100% sure if I will decorate the cover of the planner and keep the pages in the planner, or if I will be eventually using another style of binding method when I finish all my pages. I will play that part by ear!
The page is fairly low profile, but I can see that the planner may get "chunky" pretty quickly if I stick to my normal style! But...I need to do me, so we shall see how it goes! 
Thanks for joining me today! I hope you enjoyed seeing my FIRST EVER planner page! All the links to the products are below. (I still don't have any affiliate links set up, so shop how you wish.)  

ECD Supplies Used:
Everyday Elements Collection
Lace Borders die
Postage Stamps die
Happy stamp set
Small Doilies die set 
Stemmed Flowers die set 

Planner Essentials Collection
A5 Slim Planner - Vintage Black
Planner Essentials 56 - Tickets and Tabs die set
Reinforcement Variety Pack die set
Planner Essentials 21 - Note Pieces die set
Planner Essentials 2 die set

Clear Double Sided Adhesive (1/4")

Other Supplies Used:
Cardstock: ColorMates Smooth Black, Natural
Printed paper: Heartfelt Creations Celebrate the Journey, Once Upon a Time (both retired)
Ink: Ranger Distress Frayed Burlap, Memento Tuxedo Black
Adhesive: ATG, Art Glitter Glue
Tools: Sizzix Big Shot Plus, MISTI, trimmer, craft knife, ruler

Saturday, May 27, 2023

Stitching Saturday - Seasonal Cottage SAL

Happy Saturday, Friends! Can you believe it is the last Saturday in May!??! We are fast approaching our two year anniversary living here in Riverside County, CA. The time is just racing away from us!

I wanted to get this one last springtime project posted before I get into the summer and fall projects! 

I am part of a cross stitching group on Facebook and a few of us started a STITCH ALONG (SAL) with this cute FREE pattern from Crocette a gogo. There are five total charts, one each for spring, summer, autumn, Christmas, and winter. The group is going to be stitching them all as a fun thing to do together.
The patterns are simple and fun, and they do stitch up pretty easily. You are given the pattern and a list of some DMC threads to use. However, I chose my own threads based on what was in my thread boxes. So, my project may look a little different from some of the other folks' projects. 
I stitched on a scrap piece of 16 count off white aida, making the finished stitching about 4 1/4" x 4 3/4". I had purchased this white frame in a 3-pack from Amazon because it has a 5" x 5" opening. However, my stitching was just not quite the prefect size and did not look nice inside the frame. {insert sad face}
I ended up finishing the stitching by wrapping it onto chipboard, then attaching it to a piece of chipboard covered with paper (Graphic 45 Botanical Tea). The finished piece is 6" x 6" Since the spacing at the top of the project was wider than at the sides or bottom, I had space to add a ribbon bow!
I still wanted to use the frame! I ended up attaching a magnet to the glass and a washer to the back of the stitching panel! Now I can use the frame over and over again without having to take the project in and out. Since this is just a fun little piece, I don't care if it is exposed to the elements...meaning my cats!

The ribbons are from Really Reasonable Ribbon. See the links below for the exact ribbons used. The button was just in my button stash. 
The frame is approximately 7 1/4" square and has a stand in the back so that it sits nicely on a table or shelf. I will hopefully be able to use the same frame for all the pieces in this series, rotating them out seasonally.
One of the color changes I made was to the little birds. We have some sweet birds here that are similar in color to how I stitched the birds on my project. They are songbirds of some variety and live in the many trees behind our house. It is a lot of fun to watch and listen to the many birds we have here. We did not have much bird life on the coast compared to here in the inland valley. 
Here is a sneak peek of the Summer color palette. I changed up most of the colors again, to match what I had in my floss box. At the time of this writing I am nearly finished stitching! I hope to have it fully finished for next month! 
I am well and truly hooked again on stitching! I have purchased many charts, found some fun free charts, and have purchased floss and fabric! The lot you see above was to finish the rest of the monthly samplers that I have been sharing. I needed some fabric and floss to be able to kit those patterns. 

A few Christmas patterns fell into my cart, Oppsie! {giggle}
And because I thought I needed even more fabric, I made another order for just fabric. I am moistly purchasing from They have a great selection, good prices, often have sales, plus fast and low cost shipping. They are located in Texas, so I usually get my package in a few days! 
I am not a monogamous stitcher, meaning I have more than one project going at a time (I know, I know). I just kittled up this free pattern that I found on the Herrschners website. It is called Garden Sampler. 

I chose a piece of hand-dyed fabric with tones of tea dye, green, and pink. The pattern called for a floss that I had not heard of, and when I went to look for it, I found it to be from Australia and quite expensive. I ended up just picking DMC colors from my floss boxes to create the look I wanted. I hope that I can get this stitched up by the end of summer! 

My plans for the next few months are: finish the Summer Cottage SAL, finish a patriotic project that I started over the weekend, work on the November sampler of the month, and work on the garden sampler. Plus I need to fully finish for display two other items that are already stitched! 

I am going to be traveling the first two weeks of September on a cruise, and I already have planned which stitching project to take with me....wait and see...

Thanks for joining me today! Happy stitching! 

Pattern: Spring 2020 Freebie by Crocette a gogo
Floss: DMC (white, 975, 310, 801, 335, 471, 605, 3761, 326, 776, 742)
Fabric: 16 count off white Aida by Cosmo
Paper: Graphic 45 Botanical Tea
Ribbon: Really Reasonable Ribbon 3/16" Celery Green Gingham, 5/8" Rose Mini Check Plaid
Button: my stash
Frame: Amazon 
Magnet: my stash
Chipboard: Grafix
Tools: Bow-It-All
Adhesive: hot glue, Scor-tape, Art Glitter Glue

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Christmas on the 25th - May

Here we are, Christmas on the 25th again! The main reason that I decided to do a "Christmas on the 25th" series all year is that I have so many Christmas projects that I want to do, and when I wait until December...I never get a chance to do them! 

Johanna's Christmas by Johanna Basford

Case in point...I have a stack of Christmas themed coloring books, coloring pages, digital stamps, and traditional stamps. I never have time to color them during the holidays! And, let's face it, I am addicted to buying MORE! 

It took me over two Christmas seasons to finish the above piece. And it is not even complicated! I finally finished it by coloring "out of season."

Sweet and Sugary Snowglobe by Power Poppy Stamps

I ended up finishing this coloring page last July! And I was happy to be coloring it during the HOT season! That is when I started thinking about creating Christmas themed items all year round!
So, I dragged out several coloring WIPs and a few pages I really wanted to start and had a Christmas coloring party for May. 
I have quite a few of the Teresa Goodridge books, not only Christmas themed books, but lots of others. I buy a few every year and have yet to color even one picture in any of the books! Shameful. I pulled this book out last year during the Christmas season, intending to color at least one page in it. Well...
This is as far as I got. Thankfully I did write down the pencils I was using! It is easy now for me to pull them out and work on this again. I absolutely love everything about this scene. Books, Christmas décor, greenery, perhaps some cookies and hot chocolate waiting inside! Sign me up! 
I was using Faber-Castell Polychromos pencils, which were working pretty well on this less than exceptional paper. I have noticed a decrease in the paper quality for coloring books. Creative Haven is a Dover publication and they usually have fairly good paper. But the last few books I purchased had paper that was just really a higher quality printer paper. The book pages are perforated, so I can take the page out and copy it onto better paper if I wish. I prefer to keep the books intact so....I just make it work.  
I picked this book up a few years ago. It is by a German artist. This particular book has pictures from all the seasons, dealing with land creatures, including birds. 
I started this picture right away, and worked on it pretty consistently, then...for some unknown reason I abandoned it! Again, I was wise enough to write down the pencils I was using! I can just pick up again and finish. I am fairly confident that the birds scared me a little. But I think I am ready now to give them a go! 
This is a page from the Johanna's  Christmas book. I keep meaning to start it, and I have  even picked out the pencils, but then never get around to doing it.

I have many, many coloring WIPs that I cannot seem to finish. I am like a kid in a candy store...or a magpie...oh shiny! I keep starting projects and then I get bored or something new comes along and I just start a new project. I really would like to finish some things! 

Thanks for hanging out with me for a bit! I hope I have inspired  you to work on Christmas projects all year long. I also hope I have inspired you to get out some unfinished projects and have a go at finishing one! 

As soon as I make some progress...I will post it here, or on Facebook or Instagram so you can see.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Masculine Get Well Card

Hello, everyone! I am up on the Really Reasonable Ribbon Blog again today. I have been trying to create more masculine style cards, and since I have two brothers who are dealing with health issues, plus my husband has a number of guys in his men's Bible study also dealing with illness, I though why not try to crate a masculine get well card?!

I am using up some images cut from Saturday Evening Post/Norman Rockwell greeting cards that I found in my stash. They are so wonderful, and I am giving them new life!

I matted the image onto black cardstock. This image is so cool and I found the perfect sentiment to go with it! I love when that happens! And look at those refs all in their suits, unflappable even when there is a rain delay! Love it!

I stamped the greeting onto a scrap of cardstock and tucked it under the bottom edge of the image. I ended up having too much white space at the bottom of the sentiment AFTER I glued it down, so I added the strip of plaid paper to make it look intentional. {smile}

I used a length of 5/8" Black Taffeta ribbon to cover the seam between the two printed papers. I then wound some Antique Gold Burlap String around the panel a few times. Then, using both the black taffeta and the antique gold string, I tied a knot on the right side of the image. 

I really did a deep dive into my masculine paper bin! The stripe-y looking print is from Heartfelt Creations All Geared Up and the newspaper text is from Graphic 45 Good Ol' Sport. Both long ago retired! 

Thank you so much for joining me today! 

Really Reasonable Ribbon Supplies Used:
Other Supplies Used: 
Cardstock: ColorMates Smooth Black, Natural
Printed paper: Heartfelt Creations All Geared Up, Graphic 45 Good Ol' Sport
Image: pack of greeting cards
Dies: My Favorite Things A2 Rectangle Stax 1
Ink: Gina K Designs Amalgam Obsidian
Stamps: My Favorite Things Blue Skies Ahead
Adhesive: Art Glitter Glue, Foam squares, Glue Dots