Cross Stitch Corner: Experiments

At the start of this year I made it a goal of mine to make my own cross stitch patterns. I thought that it would be many months before I gained the knowledge, experience and whatnot to be able to do such a thing. But cross stitch is a wonderful thing and it’s so easy to create things. Using an app on my iPad called StitchSketch I can turn my drawings into cross stitch!

the corner of a screen shot of a cross stitch chart
A sliver of my design.

Eventually I want to sell the digital charts, if people are interested, but first I have to figure out how to make a pdf look nice and all that pavlova.
In order to test the app and to make sure that I was doing things right I used a simple pattern and the colours I had on hand. When I use this chart (are they patterns or charts? I get so confused since I’ve done many crafts) again I’ll use a lighter blue for the sky and a white for the cloud.

Progress
Finished!
Felt to cover the back

I had a lot of fun with this one, even stitching that felt on the back was interesting. I need more practise at finishing and I would stitch up the aida a different way next time but for my first original project it’s pretty great!

I’m pleased to say that the app worked and my cross stitch came out better than I imagined. The app is a little tough to use (I’m used to the ease of Procreate) but I’m sure I’ll get to grips with it. I can only use it for short periods as it only has a “dark mode” and the white writing on a black background gives me headaches and makes my eyes all funny! But I will be creating many more charts and projects.

So that’s my practise and I’m excited for many more to come! Have a wonderful day.

My First Cross Stitch – A Review

I have long been searching for a crafting hobby, a hobby that creates a result that appeals to both me and my family. I like to have a reason for spending time on things, which has limited me in the past (and still), so something that has a use is preferable to me. Last year I decided to get stuck in to knitting. I loved the idea of making jumpers and other items of clothing for both me and John as we as family. But it was not to be. After making a few things, including a blanket you will get to see in one of the following pictures, I noticed that my wrist hurt quite badly. So that put a stop to my knitting dreams.

Next I took a stab at needle felting, but the fibres get everywhere, I couldn’t quite get the hang of creating the result I wanted.

So nearing the end of the year I was feeling at a loss, I love to create things and give handmade gifts but I was just struggling to figure out what I wanted. Until, while watching a TV programme I saw something that tickled my fancy, cross stitch. It was on an episode of Kirstie’s Handmade Christmas, a contestant was making an advent calendar made of little hoops of cute cross stitch. And that was that, it triggered something and I knew that it was something that I could get my teeth into. But first I had to test whether my wrist was up to the task and that is where this kit comes in.

John, the wonderful husband that he is, took me to Hobbycraft and let me wobble back and forth for a long time between the many kits until I settled on this little Alpaca.

The kit plus an embroidery hoop

The kit comes with the threads (aka floss), a needle, the fabric flag and the wooden rod with which to hang the finished flag, as well as a little booklet containing the pattern and some instructions. Oh, and six little orange tassels to adorn the finished item.

The beginning of the project was a little difficult. Finding the middle proved to be tricky and the chart was a little unclear for me but once I was started it went well (though, I miss calculated the middle and had to shorten the legs!).

alpaca cross stitch in progress
Working on a cross stitch alpaca

Initially I used a hoop, but found it very annoying to use my needle inside such a small diameter and the design was a pain in the arse to get on. So after a little while I went freehand.

The finished Alpaca

It took me a few days to finish the kit, and it was fun. I got a bit excited an popped on the tassels before ironing it so I couldn’t get the ring out but, to be honest, I quite like the placement of it, I might add a ring of flowers along the line at some point.

And the best bit of all was I had no pain in my wrist! Which means that I can get into cross stitch fully! Although the product of cross stitch is decorative, I love the range which can be accomplished and I have ideas for my own patterns.

Now, to the kit as something that others may want to buy, I think that it is a cute design and the idea is great. However, the quality of the kit is a little lacking, well my particular kit. The flag was glued a little sloppily and fraying at points and there was a black mark I couldn’t get off. The outer packaging was also damaged, but that could be customers rather than the kits fault.

For a first kit, I think it would be good for someone who has watched videos on cross stitch and doesn’t mind fudging the design a little if they get it a little wrong. It’s good practise.

So that is my first cross stitch and my first review. I hope that it was somewhat informative and interesting to read. Let me know if there is anything that you would like to see, or format changes etc.

Coming up in 2020 are more reviews, short stories and my adventures into bullet journaling. I’ll see you soon!