Archive | Mar, 2014

Mother’s day cross-stitch (take II)

30 Mar

So… if you saw my previous post, you will know that it was Not Going Well. Well, it didn’t get much better. It was from’s magazine, and had seven shades of brown all with rather ridiculous names and arrived in a bundle so were hard to sort. Even looking up the DMC charts online didn’t help.

So, Friday night I gave up, decided to buy new floss and aida for that one and try it for mum’s birthday later in the year.

And I tried a new one. Ed Hedghog from CrossStich magazine, probably would have been a two-day job if I had the time but instead it was more of a ‘very late night’ job, which I am sure won’t be my last for this blog..!

Here he is all ready to be mounted :)

Here he is all ready to be mounted :)

It was the first time that I have done ‘blended’ stitching, and I found myself lining up all the threads in the same order so that I couldn’t get lost at all. Each time I pinned one of them to the aida to continue with another colour, I jotted down an arrow and its symbol so I couldn’t get lost. I refused to make the same mistake that wasted three evenings of stitching last week!

My big tip: if you are prone to getting lost while doing a cross stitch, there is a cheap way to keep track without ruining your pattern. Use a plastic wallet (one of the A4 ones used in ring binders) and a whiteboard/drywipe pen. I just coloured over each square as I did it (well often in groups of 5-10) and I didn’t lose track :)

Now, it came with a little mount however no frame/card, so again I tried to be resourceful – I used the pink card from one of those separators used in ring binders. I never throw them away as they come in handy so often without having to buy whole packs of card separately! Anyway, here it is mounted:

Backed and ready to give :)

Backed and ready to give :)

I was rather happy with it, and my mum was very pleased too! Along with the bunch of flowers freshly gathered at the florists.

I hope you all managed to get your mothers’ gifts right first time! 

And to finish off – here’s a photo of the back. I heard it should look like the front and I don’t think it is too bad :)

Recognisable from behind!

Recognisable from behind!



Mothers’ day creating

27 Mar

So my Mother’s day cross-stitch is going far more slowly – given that it is this coming Sunday 30th (in the UK anyway)!

I’ve had to unpick so much as I thought it would be a good idea to try it on an aeroplane – without good lighting it is very easy to mis-read the pattern though… eek.

It will be worth the late nights if I manage to finish it on time though :)

I won’t post a sneak peek in case she sees this… I’ll obviously post it on Sunday/Monday :)

How are all your Mother’s Day projects going?

His and hers: passport covers

9 Mar
Dad's and Mum's wrapped

All wrapped up and ready to be gifted!

For the last two years, I have been wanting to send my parents on a holiday. And I decided: what better way to give them the news than with some personalised, hand-made passport covers?

Dad's and Mum's

The finished products :)

I used a different approach for each, and started with the floral one: It was easy to pick the fabric for this, as I fell in love with it on eBay (it also comes in gorgeous red and blue, for only £2.59+P&P for a FQ from ‘thefabricfrieze‘ – click here), and I had some leftover pale yellow cotton with white polka dots which matches nicely for the lining.

Mum's closed

The finished product :)

I started using a pattern which is for an American passport. Although the internet assured me that this is the same size as a UK passport, I realised it was too big when I pinned it together. The pattern is from Unify Handmade and was really easy to follow but do adjust the height and width a bit. Including allowances, you need:

  • 15 x 22 cm of both your main and lining fabrics
  • 15 x 22 cm of fusible interfacing, two pieces
  • 15 x 6 cm of the main fabric, two pieces
  • 15 x 6 cm of fusible interfacing, two pieces

Then follow the pattern as it is – I used a size 90 needle to assist the machine through the tough bits. I am pretty happy with the finished product.

Mum's open - redacted

With a UK passport inside

Now for the male version – my dad is awful to buy presents for so you can only imagine how hard it was to choose a fabric! Luckily, ‘thefabricfrieze‘ also had some lovely shirt fabrics available as FQs, so I snapped up this one for just £2.95+P&P.

Looking manly

Looking manly

You can imagine how much of a nightmare it would have been to match up those stripes with the above 3-section design! So I went for a simpler design, measuring the necessary fabric size myself and checking this tutorial by 1hungryhippie to make sure I wasn’t going to make any big mistakes along the way. Again, size 90 needle! I enjoyed making this one but matching the lines up was difficult! I must consider getting a rotary cutter to make cutting more accurate, to make it easier in the later stages :)

The dimensions which I used (UK passport, remember) are:

  • 15 x 26 cm of both your main and lining fabric
  • 15 x 26 cm of fusible interfacing, two pieces
Not perfectly lined up - but I tried!

Not perfectly lined up – but I tried!

Have you made passport covers before? I’d be really keen to see some more designs, I might make one for myself :)

Also I am keen for recommendations on rotary cutters in the UK! Is it necessary to use one of those boards? I imagine it is?