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Festive Wishes

December. While most of the world revs up into a frenzy of activity, preparing to celebrate I freeze like a deer in the headlights and feel overwhelmed. Presents bought – nope. Decorations up – thinking about it. Cards sent – not going to happen. Stitching done – . . . you get the idea.

I’ve still been stitching every day but only for a short while. My wrists threaten to play up if I stitch for more than an hour. So, progress has been very slow but I’ll show you what I’m working on. I think I mentioned a while back that I manage to lose my scissors fairly often so I felt the need for a scissor fob. I’ve been working on a set of three in the form of birdcages. While I’m not keen on the idea of caging birds I do love fancy cages. They would look silly empty so I’ve compromised. There are birds in the cages but the doors are all open.


I’ll keep plodding along, stitching a little each day, and hopefully these will be released as patterns sometime – I’m going to be very vague here – next year.

Wherever you are and whatever you celebrate around this time of year, I wish you peace joy and laughter and the company of those you love.

The Band’s Tuning Up

BrightSea Village is preparing for a big celebration. There’ll be music, love, laughter and cake.

I’m now working on the last section of this project. I’m finding it so hard to put the needle down at the end of each stitching session as the picture gets more and more exciting. (If don’t I’ll pay for it in wrist pain though.) This is what I love about cross stitch; watching the picture come to life and then adding the back stitch and seeing it pop off the canvas.


Finger Work Out

This simple exercise has done wonders for the elbow and wrist pains I get when I’ve been stitching too long without a break. While I’m stitching I do it between cotton changes or whenever I think of it.

1. Touch your thumb to your forefinger.

P10104662. Touch your thumb to your middle finger.


3. Touch your thumb to your ring finger.


4. Touch your thumb to your pinkie. (This is not intended as a rude hand gesture.)


Repeat often.

If you suffer from stitchers’ aches and pains I hope this helps you.


Oh, and the stitching in the background? That’s my progress to date on the next Minute Matters carpet – Lower Whilborough. I’m almost finished working the border and am looking forward to starting on the juicy bit in the middle.

Happy stitching, all.


Save The LNS’s

P1010417This is Nancy’s Embroidery Shop. It is the closest needlework shop to where I live, which makes it my LNS (Local Needlework Shop). Much closer is a branch of one of those chain stores that sell a lot of what you need for most crafts. You know those places – there’s one in almost every town now. They’re huge and can afford to sell at a cheaper rate plus they send out brochures on sales every other week.

Although the chain store is much closer and less expensive I would still rather buy my needlework supplies at my LNS. Why? Because I’m not just paying for the product; I’m also paying for valuable advice on my specific craft. Because sometimes I require special fabrics or accessories that are too specialized for the big, general craft stores to carry. Because I love the ambiance of the LNS – I feel inspired as soon as I step in the door and see all those cottons, beads, fabrics and – oh – everything. And because I fear that if too many customers turn away from their LNS and spend their crafting cash at the big chain stores I will lose all that. Please support your LNS.




My (Latest) Favourite Mini Carpet

Shanghai on Manners Full TXFrom the moment I begin stitching them every miniature carpet becomes my favourite. If I’m not that enthusiastic about one of my designs I leave it. But it’s going to be hard to top Shanghai on Manners. I love dragons and I’m particularly fond of this colour combination.

I just wish I had the time to put together a better room setting to display it in. I imagine it surrounded by mini bamboo furniture with tall potted palms and floral silk hangings on the walls.