Saturday, September 17, 2016

Autumn update...

Hellooooo!!! It has been a while since I posted so I decided an update was in order. I was browsing through my blog this morning looking back at old posts and it gave me a mixture of pleasure and sadness. Good times and bad times have been recorded in my little blog and I feel sort of bad that I haven't posted updates as regularly as I used to. I remember when I first started blogging, there was a real community of stitchers and crafters out there all supporting one another. I don't know if it is just that life has become really busy or if it's just the onset of all different types of social media (I'm thinking Instagram, Facebook etc) but blogging seems to almost be out of fashion. However, upon re-reading my old posts I decided I just want to update this blog for me to look back on. There have been so many things I needed to and should have mentioned but haven't so feel free to scroll through as this will be a long post and quite picture heavy.

Stitching catch up

So  I thought I'd start with some stitching updates. I have been stitching!!! I fell in love with this Lizzie Kate design "At Our House" in the summer and I started it when we went to the log cabin in York for our summer break. It didn't take long to do and I really enjoyed stitching it. There are few colours but it is still quite effective. This is going in the "to get framed" pile.

Another little finish is this LHN design. It was a quick stitch to do and I used Victorian Motto thread to do it. I decided on a deep, rich navy instead of red for a change. Another one that is in my "to get framed" pile!

This is my latest new start "Unseen Things" by Lizzie Kate. I have however made a mistake on the colouring of the letters and so some of this needs to be unpicked. This started off as an SAL with my good friend Sue from Peakside Needleworks but she has finished hers since I had to stop due to a commission coming through. Really enjoying stitching this though.

 Here are some finishes that I think I forgot to post about. This LHN chart was gifted to me for my birthday by Lesley and so I thought it would be quite apt to begin it when I went for a visit to her house earlier this year. It was a pleasure to work and worked up really quickly. Thank you for a lovely gift and the warm welcome dearie.

Thought I would share this current update of Moira Blackburn's Three Things sampler. Love this and hope to get it finished soon.

And this is another wip I am currently working on, Beach Huts by Bothy Threads. An easy, blocky stitch. 

This is another finish - again LHN "School of Needlework". I wasn't sure if the fabric would be too dark and so I changed the thread to a slightly darker shade in the "School of Needlework" lettering to make sure it stood out. I am pleased with the result. I think I had a stash trawl in the earlier part of the year and found loads of fabric that I decided to kit up with the charts I had. I reckon I saved a pile of money! This was one of the fabrics. 

And this is Robin's Song LHN again!!! I forget how many of these designs I own! This is it framed.

And this was my biggest finish this year - Bygone Stitches "A Quaker Christmas". I loved stitching this and although it had been off the needles for quite some time, it was easy to get back into it. I would really like to do the second one perhaps in a rich purple colour to match.

This was a Dimension kit I bought my Dad and he stitched it up pretty quick. The detail is incredible. I am so proud of him. I think he is a better stitcher than me.

This is my daughter's stitching update. She started this ages ago then put it down but was inspired by my friend's daughter to get hers out again. I think she is doing really well on it. 

I thin she might have a further update actually. I will need to get a snap of it. 

Below are three ornies I stitched for last year's xmas ornie exchange I have at my house for my bestest stitching buddies, Tina, Tracy and Lesley and now Sue has joined in the fun. See how late I am in my postings and how much I have missed out. I don't even think I photographed the ones I received - how shameful is that? Anyway this one I made for Tracy I think. Correct me if I am wrong Tracy!

This one was for cat loving Lesley!

This was one for Tina! I added little jingles to the corners of all the ornies except this one which I popped on the centre of the star.

Now the reason I have shown these is because it is nearing the next xmas ornie exchange meet up which happens early in December and so I need to get myself organised as we have four ornies to stitch up now that Sue has joined in the fun. Basically, we have started a bit of a tradition where we stitch each other an ornament and then buy a chart from each others' wishlists and add some chocolate in the mix. It's great fun. We usually meet up on the Friday night for food then everyone piles round at mine on the Saturday for food and stitching and exchanging. I absolutely love it. It is so good to meet up with stitchy pals especially when we all live quite far away and I think we have all grown quite close. 

That brings me to the reason why I need to sort myself out for this exchange sooner rather than later. I am not sure if I mentioned but I have started to do a little commission stitching for some of the Cross Stitch magazines here in the UK. My first one was in this month's edition of Cross Stitch Collection and so now I am free to show you what I did!

There's my stitching! I have done about 5 commissions so far but they take time before they are published. Anyway, this was a proud moment for me. They do take up quite a bit of my time and everything I am working on has to stop until the commission is finished so I don't miss the deadline. I enjoy it though and it's always a nice surprise to get a commission through the post and not know what you will be getting. So this is why I really need to start thinking about those ornaments now and not leave it until the last minute in case a commission comes through unexpectedly.

Well, summer came and went so quickly this year. I didn't do very much. We had a quick trip to the log cabin and I also went to visit Tracy ad it was a gorgeous day so we headed straight for the beach. It was nice to get away for a couple of days and stitch my heart out without distractions of cooking, cleaning and washing!

So the new term came around and my little girl is now in year 9 and my boy in year 4! I always like to take a snap of them both together on their first day of school so here they are for the record.

Crochet News

One of my colleagues at work is expecting her second baby and so I decided to make a V-stitch baby blanket for her. I think this was inspired by Helen Phillips and her crochet work. I chose lots of pretty colours and used white to go in between. It is not yet finished and I will need to do a nice border around the edge but hope to get that finished soon. I really love the effect and the V stitch is so easy to do. 

In other crochet news, I have done a little more on the autumn inspired blanket that I started last year but I really need to get going on this again as it is just taking too long and just want it finished. This is where I am up to with it. I am hoping to do a couple more rows on it this month. 


I wanted to set myself some goals, like I used to do, in order to help me be a bit more focused on getting some wips finished. With the commission stitching, it has made it a bit harder to keep to any set goals so instead of doing monthly goals I think I will set some goals that are achievable before the end of the year or by December at least which, actually, is only a couple of months away. So here are my goals:

1. Finish Beach Huts kit by Bothy Threads
2. Stitch up and finish 4 xmas ornies for the exchange.
3. Correct and finish LK Things Unseen
4. Finish Baby blanket
5. Complete 2 more rows of hexies on my Autumn blanket
6. Add another row onto Snowflake blanket which was started ages ago. 

Bible Journaling

A new thing for me is the creative Bible journaling that I have been inspired to do by various blogs and Instagram pics. I got this Bible called Inspire Bible in the summer and its main aim is to help peole explore their creative side when reading and meditating on the word of God. 

Is has a beautiful cover and inside it has a wide margin which you can write or draw in. There are lots of scriptures and doodles that have been drawn for you to colour in and use as a way to start creating for yourself. 

I bought some Crayola Twistables and some gel pens and then I expanded by getting some Koi Watercolours and Faber Castell Indian ink felt tips as they don't leak through as much. I was very tentative at first and wasn't sure how I felt about using so much colour over the Bible but then I realised that it is for creative use and I use other Bibles for other studies so I am learning to be okay with this, I thought I'd share a few pics of inside my Inspire Bible. I am no artist and some of it is trial and error but I am learning to take a few risks and be more creative. I have been posting all of these on my Instagram account so apologies if you have seen them there first.

I hope to do many more pages.You can see how I have taken the initial doodle and then continued in my own way.  As you can see, I have been quite taken by the watercolours. I think this is my favourite medium for creating journaling It doesn't bleed through. It leaves your page a little crinkly but I actually like this. It gives it a kind of used feel to it.I have found it a very relaxing way to approach and meditate on God's word and it has been a great encouragement to me. 

As you can see I have been kept fairly busy and now I have started back at work, even busier. I am hoping to do another post soon but thank you if you have managed to stay with me to the end of this post. I will probably remember a ton of stuff I should have posted but forgot once I press publish but that's life! Thanks for taking the time to read and give me lovely, supportive comments. I appreciate each and every one. 


Margaret said...

I enjoyed your post! Lovely stitching, great framing, beautiful crochet! Love your colorings in your bible too! OK, what's your instagram name???? I'm on there too!

LindaLee said...

Oh Hazel! This is such a wonderful blog. So full of beautiful needlework and your lovely artwork! You're so talented! It looks like your dad is as well and your children are beautiful. You have really inspired me and I would love to make a blanket using the pattern that you're using for you autumn blanket. Could you send me the site address where I could find it! I love the colors you're using as well. Keep up the beautiful work and your posts as well. Loved it. Thank you so much. My email is

Vickie said...

I am so glad you still post once in a while. I do not do FB or IG. Love getting caught up with you and your many beautiful projects. Your children have grown and are just gorgeous! Take care!♥

Jackie's Stitches said...

Such a wonderful post! The kids are looking like they've grown a lot.

Lovely stitching. I can see a finish for Three Things. Such a lovely piece! Did you substitute any colors or are they all as charted. This has long been a favorite of mine.

How awesome it must be to stitch and get paid for it! Who knew?!

Maggie said...

Wow such a lot of stitching you've got done!
Everything looks lovely and i'm impressed with your daughter's stitching too :-)

Von said...

What a long, newsy update! I do think other social media outlets have taken precedence over blogging, but my preference remains the simple blog. :) Looks like Flosstubers have built up quite a community.

I can't believe how big your children are now! And I do love seeing your illustrated Bible pages, esp. on IG. Glad you're still stitching away and now getting a little bit of money for stitching - yippee!

Carol said...

Always nice to catch up with old blogging friends, Hazel--you have such beautiful projects and finishes to share today--wow!! And the Bible journaling--so cool--have never seen that before!

I am still limping along with my blog and try to post at least once or twice a month, but, you're right, blogging has changed. I recently joined IG and am enjoying it, but I don't see the same personal relationships being formed as I make through blogging!

Brigitte said...

Such a great update on your stitching projects. Yes, LHN pieces area always a lot of fun to stitch and that's why so many of us have several in our stash. Like me, too. Great progress on your Three Things sampler. It won't take long and it's done. It took me years to finish mine, lol. Great stitching by your Dad and your daughter.
That crochet in autumn colours is quite simply beautiful.

Yes, blogging has changed in some way, and to many it seems to be out of date today. But I still love it and like Carol I also love the personal relationship that comes with blogging. I can't say anything about IG or FB because I haven't joined yet.

Justine said...

Please don't give up on blogging - you have some really fabulous crafting to show off! I love the Lizzie Kate one and your Quaker especially, and your crochet is just gorgeous.

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

What a wonderful post! I have over 400 posts to read in my Feedly right now which is why I'm so far behind in commenting. I think I can safely say "blogging is not dead, there's just a new batch of kids on the blog"!

I love your ornie exchange pieces and the Quaker sampler. I love Quakers. But the bible journal is just an amazing piece of artwork. You are very talented, the drawings and colours just bring the texts to life. Very inspirational.

deb said...

Beautiful stitching and crocheting! So many lovely bits in this post...

Sally said...

I know this is an old post Hazel but just had to comment on all your gorgeous stitching. So many beautiful pieces. I don't know how I missed this post before.

Your bible journal is stunning. You are so clever being to draw like that and your lettering is so pretty.

I do hope you'll blog again soon. I don't blog as often as I used to or comment as often as I should but I still prefer it to anything else. I've made so many wonderful friends through it.

Trudy said...

I was just directed to your blog by a friend. I really like what I have seen so far.
I still prefer just reading a blog. I have banned myself from Facebook, it is a time stealer. I don't go to Instagram. That seems to be for phone photos. A blog seems the perfect place for most everything.
I hope you do post again. I see it has been almost a year since your last post. I truly hope you haven't given it up.

Trudy said...

I am posting a second time. I re-read your post and have what I hope is a good suggestion. Could you maybe do a post or however many on your stitching. I want to do cross stitch, but am rather intimidated by it. Could your post maybe have helpful tips on how to get started, different threads, etc. Things to take the mystery away of cross stitch.

Hazel said...

That's a good idea Trudy. Have you never stitched? Really? You should go on Flosstube on Youtube and you will get lots of ideas on there.