Sunday, May 22, 2016

Geez, it's been a while...

Wow, so it's been a while since I've posted anything.  What can I say, life happens.  Got a job, a really good one and between that and moving it's been non-stop.  And I'm in a tiny apartment now and it's taken a while to get things set up so I can do my crafts (also, I no long have my mother's stash to raid so it's taking a little longer than usual to do some of my paper crafting).

Anyway, I had the time and energy to do a few things today and I wanted to share.

First things first, Graphic 45 re-released their Steampunk Debutante paper line as a Deluxe Collector's edition pack.  This paper line has been out of production for a while, seriously broke my heart when I found out and I have been trolling the internet for several years trying to find someplace that had a full paper pack and some ephemera for sale, so I was SUPER stoked that it got re-released and snatched it up without a second thought (I actually have two packs now).  I have several projects going already with this paper line and a couple more planned.  So stoked!

The first thing I completed is a pop-up picture thing (I'm not sure what to call it...).  It's going to be easier to put pictures first and then an explanation, so, pictures!

So, I fussy cut all the butterfly's on the border, the lady and the "time flies" clock and then used pop dots to give that 3-D effect.  It looks really cool.

It's hard to see in the pictures but I used a Wink of Stella pen to add sparkle to all the dark brown stems and flowers, the top of the butterfly wings, the wings on the lady and the brim of the top hat.  I also used some glossy accents on the rose in the left corner and the butterfly attached to the lady's elbow.

I haven't decided if I'm going to do anything else with this but I'm done for now.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Old cross stitches

 This cross stitch is from a kit and I stitched it up about eight years ago for my Dad for Christmas.  It's hard to see but outlining the Chinese character is gold metallic decorative thread.  And the word "joy" is done out of red metallic decorative thread.  Take my advice and never, ever, ever work with this thread if you aren't more advanced and know what you are doing.  This was my very first large cross stitch project (if you could see the back, it's atrocious), and I was bad, I knotted thread (I KNOW), I didn't finish it off properly and I carried thread from one side of the project to the other...bad, bad, bad.  And then I worked with a metallic decorative thread (I'm not sure what kind of thread it actually is since it was in a kit and they didn't specify), I've never been more frustrated in my entire life, if you pulled too hard the thread broke but you had to have some tension or it sagged, also if you didn't let it unwind periodically and it got tangled you were screwed, and the more you pulled in and out of the Aida cloth the more the ends of it frayed, ugh.  Moral of the story: if you are just starting out on cross stitching don't use specialty threads, just don't do it kids.

 The other thing I did wrong, 'cause I was a newbie, I didn't wash OR press the finished project before I framed it and gave it to my Dad.  So about a month ago I asked my Dad to bring it home so I could fix it.  I finally got it washed and pressed; although you can tell that it's been sitting un-pressed in a frame for a while since I couldn't get all the lines out.  Furthermore I added the backstitching on the flowers and (not pictured) my "signature."  And now it's finally, all the way, complete (and back in my Dad's office).  So pretty!

I started this kit about a month after completing the "joy" picture for my Dad.  I used to take it to school with me and work on it between classes.  And then I moved, and packed everything up and this thing has been in storage for about eight years and turning into a UFO a.k.a. un-finished object in cross stitch lingo.

I finally fished it out about a week ago and realized it was about two hours of work away from being done, so I sat down and finished it.  Again, I started this before I knew what I was doing and coming back to it now that I know what I'm doing was a little rough.  I wanted to fix it but there was really no way to do it without taking it all apart.  So I gritted my teeth and just finished it up.  It's supposed to have the metallic decorative thread outlining the characters and making up the word "success" but I decided I didn't want to do that again without the proper supplies (i.e. some wax to run the thread over).  So I just used black and I think it looks pretty!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Dragon cross stitch WIP

Hooray!  You can finally see one whole wing and the beginning of his very long tail.  I am so excited to see this thing complete!


The beginning of page two!

Dragon cross stitch WIP

Aah!  He is so cute!  You can really start to see him taking shape, there's one wing almost finished and the beginning of his tail.

Here he is from a little farther away.

As you can see I'm almost done with the first page.  So exciting!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Dragon cross stitch WIP

This is another couple of days progress.  You can start to see his legs and the rest of his body.

If you compare it to the other picture of the pattern, you can see that I've completed another row and a half.

This is a little later the same day, I've now completed another 10x10 square of stitching.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Dragon cross stitch WIP

This is after another whole row was done, it took me roughly three or four days.  You can start to see his wing taking shape.  So exciting!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Dragon cross stitch WIP (work-in-progress)

This is an HAED (Heaven and Earth Designs) cross-stitch design, they are a fantastic place to get cross-stitch charts and I have several of them but it took me a while to get the courage up to attempt one.  Not because they are overly complicated, pretty much all of them use whole stitches, no half-stitches, no backstitches, nothing like that; but they do use a lot of floss.

And you have to work them in a grid pattern rather than starting in the middle and concentrating on one symbol.  I've also begun what is for me a new technique called "parking;" this involves halting your stitching and leaving the floss intact in the corner of the next stitch the floss is required for; as you can see below.

This is (I believe) about two months of progress.  It was originally designed to be a bookmark and is supposed to be an inch wide by seven inches long and done on linen.  I tried doing it that way but I didn't like the way it looked so I'm doing it on Aida and it's going to be considerably larger.  I started this little guy sometime last year and then life happened and I haven't been able to get back to him.  But my goal this year is to finish it and eventually the little guy up top here will look like the little guy down below.

 This is only the first page of the pattern.  All of the shaded parts are the parts I've already finished.  Yikes!  Two pages after this.

 And this is all of the threads that are called for in this pattern. Whew, lots of reds, pinks and purples.