Off Topic Thursday: Cross-Stitching

28 May

One of the things I’ve found a lot more time for with the lockdown has been cross-stitching. It’s something I’ve found relaxing for a long time and I wanted to share it with you all. Mostly it’s because it makes pretty pictures which I think we’ll all enjoy.

I don’t have pictures of my first cross-stitches but they’re coasters with hummingbirds on them. My mom had gotten four as a set and asked if I’d be interested in making one or two. My husband and I still have these on our bedside tables. I remember learning about backstitching (outlining) and messing up by using two strands to outline instead of one. It’s a much thicker line and not as good looking in the end, but you probably wouldn’t have noticed if I didn’t say anything. I made a few small samplers after this that made for good ornaments but I gave those all away.

I’m not sure when I started it, but this is the oldest cross-stitch I could find and I think it’s the first full-sized one I did. I believe I did this in the summer between my Freshman and Sophomore years of college. I loved all of the purples in this pattern and I remember working with mixed colors, half stitches and the dreaded french knots. I think I almost gave up on it when it came to decorative knots even though I was almost done. This fit simply in a frame from the craft store. I had it displayed in my first apartment but I packed it so well when we moved that I didn’t find it until years later. It’s displayed in our office now.

These two are hanging on the wall in my living room. I believe the top one of the butterflies was the next one I did. It’s a nice, small size and I was able to do it pretty quickly. I stopped for a while in the middle and came back to it much later but I think it turned out okay. I learned that cross-stitch patterns are odd shapes and it can be hard to find a frame that will fit them well! I believed I ordered this one on Amazon from China. The one below it was a pattern my brother picked out. I think it’s supposed to be a Christmas angle but I hang it up year-round. This one was the most involved technically. There are beads and sequins that decorate this one and make it shine. She’s holding up a charm on a chain which meant I had to learn a few new techniques. I had to make the chain that involved my husband holding one end of a string and lots of twisting. I then had to do some couching which means having the long string lay on top of the fabric and then tacking it into place. I’m not happy with how this one is framed. It’s not pulled very tight and you can see the wrinkles in the fabric.  Part of that I could fix. The other part of it is because I left the hoop that I used to keep the fabric taught on it when I wasn’t using it and it left lasting kinks in the fabric. That was a hard lesson.

This was a gift from my Italian Mother in Law (very appropriate) that I have hung in my kitchen (even more appropriate). Nothing too special about this one but it was really fun to do. I like all of the lettering and how it used different fonts, colors, and thicknesses of floss to create such different effects. I was able to finish this one rather quickly.

I don’t have a lot of pictures of the next few I want to talk about. I have two nieces and a nephew, all through my husband’s sister. We weren’t dating when their first daughter was born. But for the second daughter and their son, I made birth announcements. The first one was pretty small and the second was a bit larger. The picture I have is from when it’s unfinished. During quarantine, I wanted to get a head start on a forthcoming niece or nephew so I’m working on another one which I’ll leave blank and add a name, date, and weight when I know one. That’s nice and quick to do! I might start another one soon.

View this post on Instagram

Making progress!! #100happydays #day83

A post shared by Sam Ann Elizabeth (@samannelizabeth) on

What I’m most excited about is a project I’ve been working on for years. I ordered these Harry Potter Hogwarts House Crests patterns off Etsy. I’ve finished the Slytherin one (my husband’s house) and I haven’t started the Hufflepuff one (my house). That’s probably my next project. I plan to hang these above our beds and I’ll make a small one that says Sam & Jay to hang between them. It’s a really fun project but I’m not a fan of the patterns that I bought, I wish I’d looked into them more.

It’s a nice thing to do to pass the time. I tend to watch TV or movies while I work on this. It’s hours of work but I love the feeling of making good progress with it.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

10 Responses to “Off Topic Thursday: Cross-Stitching”

  1. Sharon Taylor May 28, 2020 at 1:18 PM #

    Lovely projects. I used to be a big fan of cross stitch, but have been away from it for many years. Your posting inspired me to dig out my floss, canvas, hoops and get back to it!

    Like

    • Sam May 28, 2020 at 9:25 PM #

      How awesome! Any major project you’ve got going?

      Like

  2. Books and Me!! May 28, 2020 at 3:36 PM #

    ooh what lovely projects! I’m a big fan of cross stitching and have been doing it for years – and keep running out of space on my walls for my finished projects!

    Like

    • Sam May 28, 2020 at 9:26 PM #

      Haha. I started doing the birth announcements so I can give them away. Happy stitching!

      Like

  3. Jothany May 29, 2020 at 9:09 AM #

    A fellow stitcher!! I tend to do big projects so I have nothing finished lol but I’m enjoying the process 😊

    Like

    • Sam May 29, 2020 at 2:01 PM #

      That’s what matters most! I’m almost done with my big COVID project. I might have to start another, haha. Happy stitching!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Katie May 30, 2020 at 3:28 AM #

    My housemate made me the Gryffindor crest for my birthday! I used to do a bit of cross stitch but haven’t done any for years! I did learn how to knit at the beginning of the year and have gotten quite good at it through lockdown!

    Like

    • Sam May 30, 2020 at 7:12 AM #

      I do adore knitting. I’m working on a baby blanket for a friend now but it’s slowed down a lot. Maybe this weekend I can pick back up with it. Happy reading!

      Like

  5. nanacathy2 June 1, 2020 at 3:28 AM #

    Gorgeous cross stitch projects- I think a lot of us have returned to cross stitch in these difficult days.

    Like

    • Sam June 1, 2020 at 6:01 AM #

      It’s nice to see your progress on the canvas when everything feels like it’s stopped. Happy stitching!

      Like

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