Sonntag, 15. Juli 2018

Gifted Gorgeousness SAL - July

And here we are in the middle of July and it's time for another GG SAL update and this month am not only on time for the SAL, but I also have progress to show on two of my projects AND one of them is Santa! It's currently really hot here in Germany, we are having a wonderful summer (maybe not enough rain, the grass outside looks like hay...), so it was not easy for me to pick up Santa, but I wanted to get the second window section done (there really wasn't much to do...), so I gave myself a kick.
So I went from here:
To here:
As you can see, I even bothered to stitch Santas eyes, lol. He looks a bit less creepy now, but still a bit weird. I guess that the backstitching will help a lot, but since I am stitching this on a Qsnap and I am still moving around the frame, I am doing the backstitching at the end. You can also see that I added a few more stitches to the window cross. I am not sure about which section I will start next - the one with Santas body or the one with the Christmas tree, but I think I am going to start with doing more work on the window cross for orientation ;-)

The second project I worked on is- as every month - my map of Middle Earth. I added my 1000 stitches for this month, we are not moving along that fast with Middle Earth, but the stitches add up. My total stitch count on Middle Earth for this year is 8 000 and that's definitely something =)
I went from here:
To here:

The progess on this is still really slow, there is a lot of confetti in the mountains and that dark blob in the lower right corner is full of confetti (at least it's done for this row).I am now at 51 000 stitches, if I stick to my plan, I should do another 6 000 stitches this year, which brings us to a total of 57 000 stitches. The first row has 75 000 stitches, so getting that done by the end of 2019 would be awesome. I think I will try to squeeze in a an additional 1 000 or  2 000 stitches this year, so I can meet my goal for next year =)

Well, this is all I have for this month, not to much progress, but every stitch counts =) I have a few days off soon and I think I will pick up my Wolf Kiss then, so I can add at least a few stitches to them for my August update =)
I nearly forgot to include the link-up for this month, but here it is =)

Happy stitching =)

Montag, 25. Juni 2018

WIPocalypse - June

Ah I have been sort of surprised by this WIPocalypse, in my head there were 31 days in June and I thought it the WIPocalypse posting would be due for the upcoming Sunday. Well, here we go.... As always, I am including this months link-up here and since I am late, a few people have already liked up there =)

This months question is about our ideal stitching retreat. I must confess, that I didn't think about the issue to much since I am currently not feeling like going on a retreat - I'm sure they are fun, but right now my weeks are really packed with things and during the weekend I am just glad to be home and without other people, lol. During the week there are so many people around, everything is hectic and during the weekend I enjoy the silence :D But going on a retreat, I would love a nice location, maybe a chance to sit outside as well, some nice people, good food and in the evening, a glass of wine ;-)

The topic for next month is a half year recap, so far I am not doing that well for my goals, so I hope to get some more done for next month. I will have a few weeks off during in July, so there is still hope. There is not too much hope, since I am still glued to my books and not getting any stitching done... So this months progress is not to impressive... But here we go:

First up is my last Maynia start - I did my fourth start on 31st May and it my first Maia/Anchor kit called "Geishas" and this is where I got:
And here is the design:
You can see, I started with the sitting Geishas face and I absolutely love it so far =) 

I also have a small finish to show. On 1st May I started one of the two designs from Liebevolle Kreuzstichentwürfe, here is where I left off last month:
And here is the finished piece:
The backstitching really adds a lot to it, the duck and the seagull are so cute! But the grass was horrible to stitch, it took ages to do all those longstitches... But I really love the result =) And I am definitely going to stitch the second design this year =)

Next I decided to pick up my Gecko Rouge design called "Sloth". I don't know what it is with this one, but it just takes ages to stitch- my usual progress on this one is about 200 stitches per night... Maybe it's because I am doing 2 over 1 and using my laying tool.... Well, I only got one column done, so 890 stitches on top... I went from here:
To here:
Since I really want to stitch the first quarter of this in 2018, I plan on stitching another column in July =)

Another project that didn't get to much love (but is currently on my frame and getting more love) is my Kreimhilds Revenge. I added one column since you last saw her and went from here:
To here:
Stitching all that black is a bit dull, but you can now see the tip of her spear =) It's just 770 stitches so far, but I was planning on doing my post next Sunday and thought I would have more time to work on her :D She will definitely get more love this month, I plan on working on her at least until the end of June and will do my best to get a page finish =)

Last but not least, since finishing my Hadrangeas in April, I was looking for another smaller project I could focus on. First I wanted to finish the lighthouse from my Maynia start, which I did, and now I have chose "Cliffside Beacon" by Dimensions Gold. I am already more than halfway done and it's a beautiful summer design. I am adding a few stitches then and again (getting along nicely while stitching all the black on Kreimhild). Here is where you last saw it:
And here is where I am now, just a hand full of stitches added, but every stitch counts, right?
Well, this is truly all I have for this month... And I am off to bed now, along with a nice book and one or two hours of reading ;D

Happy stitching =)

Donnerstag, 21. Juni 2018

Gifted Gorgeousness SAL - June

And it's time for another GGSAL update and as usual - I am late! I don't know, I don't feel like stitching and I don't feel like blogging (and it's not really worth it since I don't really stitch). My nose is still lost inside my bookshelf, I am currently reading two books per week and in the evening I spent maybe one hour of stitching (before going to bed and reading). Anyway, here is my belated GG SAL post (giving myself a kick since the WIPocalypse post is due on Sunday...).

I only stitched on one project this month - my Map of Middle Earth. I added my monthly 1000 stitches on it, this brings us to the magical 50 000 stitches mark! I went from here:
To here:
This is really everything I have for this month. I hope to improve by next month. I recommend to take a look at this months link-up, there is a lot more to see than here ;-)

Happy Stitching =)

Samstag, 9. Juni 2018

Mayyyyyyniaaaa =)

In my previous posts I mentioned that I did some sort of Maynia this year - don't ask me why I decided to join this year, it was a very spontaneous idea because I felt like making a few new starts. You know that I usually go for bigger projects and so there was now way for me to start 15 projects in 15 days, especially since I prefer to work on a project for more than one day. So I decided to do 4 new starts during the month. In Germany (at least in the part where I live) we had 4 holidays in May, so 4 additional free days, yay! And since a free day means a lot of stitching time, I decided to do my starts on those days.
Since the dates where sat, I faced the next task: Choice of projects! 
Two of those were easy - I really wanted to stitch one of the small designs from Liebevolle Kreuzstichentwürfe and I wanted to restart my In the Moonlight by Tilton Crafts, which makes a really small design and a medium sized project (I think 112.500 stitches in total?). I thought about starting another Haed - you know I love them and I have a ton of gorgeous designs I want/need to start. But then I also have a ton of kits in my stash, kits I really love but most of the time I start a Haed instead of a kit . So I decided that the remaining two new starts should also be non-Haeds. But without further ado, here are my new starts!

The first new start was on 1st May and I went for a design from "Liebevolle Kreuzstitchentwürfe" called "Strandidylle 3". I bought it at the Creativa this year and it's design on the right:
This was my first time stitching one of their designs, it's stitched on Linen (I think it's 32ct), 2 over 2, there is no information on the used threads, but it's cotton and I guess it's DMC or Anchor. I already showed you an update for WIPocalypse, but I made some more progress since then, I even finished it!
Isn't it cute? It looks even better then I expected, the picture doesn't do it justice! I absolutely plan on stitching the second design this year and getting some patterns next year.  =) Stitching this was fun, but I hated stitching all the gras, but it looks so pretty now =) And I really love the duck and the seagull =)

This brings us to my second new start, that was on 10th May. On that day I decided to do my restart for In the Moonlight by Cindy Grundsten (Tilton). You remember, last year I had the fabric orientation wrong, but this time I checked it thrice!
Here is the design:
For me it's a smaller design, just 300 by 375 stitches, lol. And here is where I got, some background:
The beginning is a bit dull, mainly 5 shades of grey and oh yes - I stitched this before... This one is again stitched on 28ct grey Lugana, 1 over 1.

My next new start was on 21st and I went for a smaller design - a kit from Alisa, which is a Russian company, and simply called "Robin".
The design uses half and full crosses and between 1 and 3 threads, which gives a nice 3d effect. I started in the upper left corner and stitched one of the flowers and some sky:
I am stitching this one in hand, the Aida (I think 14ct) is quite stiff, so it works well. 

And then there is my 4th new start, I made it on 31st May and haven't shown it before. I decided to go for the Geishas by Maia. I bought this one in March, but since it is soooo pretty, I am happy to show it again here:
It is worked on 18ct Aida and I am amazed by the quality, this is the softest Aida I ever used! This is also my first time using Anchor threads and so far I am happy with them. I decided to start in the middle with the sitting Geishas face:
Isn't she pretty? and just imagine how beautiful she will looks with the backstitching! She is a real joy to stitch and I am happy that I started this project =) 
This project is bigger than I expected, I think the stitch count is over 60 000, but this means that I will enjoy this for a long time, which is also something nice =)

Well, those are all my new starts! I guess I have enough new start for some time now :D

Sonntag, 27. Mai 2018

WIPocalypse May

Well, it's the last Sunday of the month again, so it's time fro another WIPocalypse update. I am starting this post now (in time!) but I am not sure if I will finish it today, since I need to leave for my monthly bookclub meeting in a few minutes. But I will do my best to finish this entry tonight.

Edit: Did it! And the link-up is also available now =) 

The monthly topic for May is "Where do you love to shop for stash?"
Ah, finally a good topic for me, I love to buy stash! :D

The fist shop is obvious - Heaven and Earth Designs! I love their patterns and if I didn't miscount, I have like 132 Haed patterns (oh my gosh, I didn't know that!) but these also include a bunch of freebies and patterns I got in the Christmas Raffle or from the challenges (so it's not that bad, lol). And Michele keeps releasing such wonderful patterns! Did you guys know that Thomas Kinkade signed up with them? I really love his artwork but before it was only available as cross stitch kits from I think Candamar? on 14ct and I was not happy with the amount of detail, so it was super super excited when Haed announced it!

The second company I love to buy charts from is Golden Kite. They have a lot of classical artwork and they are doing a great job charting them - unfortunately they are very expensive if you buy their charts on full price. But they have patterns on sale all the time (I think it changes every few weeks), so most of the patterns were about 50% off when I got them. In addition, if you buy 3 patterns or more, you get an additional 30% off your entire order, so if you buy 3 patterns on sale, the price is really ok ;-) I just recently got into their patterns, so I only have 9 so far :D But I only started to buy from them last year, so I am working on that.

Another shop I really like is sewandso, I buy kits and my DMC and needles from them, their shipping rates to Germany are fine and it's really fast. Their prices are reasonable (compared to German prices)  and they have a lot of items in stock, so apart from a few things (like the Eva Rosenstand kits) I order everything there ;-)

And as you may have noticed, I joined the Gecko Gold Club last year and started buying a lot of Gecko Rouge kits. They have a big amount of stunning designs, I love that they feature a lot of modern art designs. I own a bunch of their kits by now, I only started two, but I'm sure the number will increase :D

Ok, that's where I order most of my things, so let's go to this months progress! I have a lot to show =)

First up is my monthly update on Kreimhilds Revenge. I made a start on row 5 and went from here:
To here:
It's a lot of black, but also the upper part of her shield and even the tip of her spear =) I am now at 142 260 - so I am heading for the 150 000 stitches mark =)

The second project I picked up is Paris Market, I put in a few stitches and it was really fun =) I went from here:

To here:
I did some work on that giant tree and added a few stitches to the flowers =)

Next up are two new starts - but don't worry, they are smaller designs ;-) I did some sort of maynia this year, since we have four holidays here in Germany, I decided to do a new start for each of these holidays. I'm going to do a full update after the last holiday on 31st May. My new start from 10th May is featured in my GGSAL post for May, so I will not show it here.

On 1st I started a small design I bought at the Creativa this year, it from a small German company called "Liebevolle Kreuzstitchentwürfe".
I started the design to the right - Strandidylle 3:
Here is where I got:
It's a lot of fun and I think I will finish this one next month =) I am looking forward to stitching the little duck =)

On the 21st I started a kit from Alisa called "Robin". I also bought this at the Creativa, but I think it was last year. Here is what it should look like:
And here is where I am:
The colors are a bit off, I will try and get a better picture next time. Stitching this is really fun, it uses different amounts of strand and switches between half and full crosses, so it looks really pretty =) It's stitched on 16ct Aida and I am stitching this in hand, which is a nice change and I stitched this parallel to Kreimhilds Revenge, where I stitched mostly black, so in between, I stitched on something more colorful ;-)

I am going to do another start on 31st May, but I haven't decided on the design yet. A part of me wants to do another Haed (maybe Birds and Blooms Garden or Bilbo Baggins?) and a part of my wants to start another kit since I have tons of lovely kits in my stash, so many pretty Dimensions kits, so many pretty Eva Rosenstands and then there are those super pretty Geishas from Maia! Or another Gecko Rouge design! And I already have so many Haeds on the go... Ah, it's a hard decision!

So, I think that's everything for May. I will be back next month after I did some work on my new start on 31st May.

Happy stitching =)

Sonntag, 20. Mai 2018

Gifted Gorgeousness SAL - May

I know, I am super late for the GGSAL, but this time it's now my fault ;-) We had some trouble with our internet connection, at first everything just went really really slow, so I could not upload any pictures and by Thursday our connection died completely. But it's all settled now, so I can finally share my progress for GG SAL. This also means that if you take a look at the link-up, there is already a lot to see ;-)

So, without further ado, here is what I did since last month.

My first update is - as every month - my Map of Middle Earth by Haed. I managed to catch up with my goal for last month and added my 1 000 stitches for May. So I went from here:
To here:

I didn't really mention it, but I am doing some weird sort of Maynia this year. In Germany, we have 4 holidays in May this year (1st, 10th, 21st, 31st)  and I am starting something new for each of those holidays and work on it for a few days. May new start for the 10th was actually a restart. your remember In the Moonlight from Tilton Crafts? Last year I started this one, but I screwed up the fabric orientation, so it would not fit. I didn't have a hear to restart it last year, so this was one of my plans for this year and that happende on 10th May. I didn't stitch to much on it (still spending a real big amount of time reading), but I got 1 600 stitches in. This time, I checked the fabric orientation thrice! Here is what I have so far:
And just in case you don't remember the design, here it is:
You see, I'm going to stitch the grey background for quite a while. But as long as it makes my fiance happy, I'll do it ;-)

That's all I have for this month.
Happy stitching =)

Sonntag, 29. April 2018

WIPocalypse April - including some finishes ;-)

Yes, the title is correct, this post actually features some finishes and those who know me also know, that this a very rare! But don't worry, I didn't finish any BAPs ;-)

This wonderful SAL is hosted by Measi and as every month, there is a link-up for this month, you can find it here. Also, as every month, there is a question:

"Tell us about your longest running WIP or UFO"

This actually brings two projects to my mind, one is featured in this post anyway and I would consider it a WIP, the other is tending to be an UFO because I constantly forget to work on it.

Well, fist my UFO, which is also my oldest project. It's a Dimensions Gold kit called "Paris Market" and I think it's a pretty design.
I am not completely sure about when I started this, I think it was in 2010? This would make sense because in early 2011 I found Haed and my progress on this one was slowed down :D I honestly don't know why I don't work on this more often, it is pretty and colorful. Usually, working on the tree puts me a bit down because nothing seems to happen, but last year I stitched my way down to the flowers which a a lot more fun to stitch.
You know, my very fist stitching project was a little duck, a kit I found in one of my parents cupboard. It was one of the kits you give to children to teach them to stitch, so it was really basic. But this caught my interested and after looking at a lot of designs, I decided that a Dimensions Gold would be a good start (go big or go home). I originally wanted to go for Aurora Cabin, but I remember that it was summer and very hot, so I wanted to start with a summer design instead of a winter design, so I got Paris Market. I did get Aurora Cabin a few months later and started working in that one and in February 2011 I got my first Haed pattern and worked and I went down the serial starter lane ;-)
I also had a lot of drama with this one. I was a newbie when I started this, I made a lot of mistakes and that put me off working on it for a while. But I finally sat down and froged all the wrong stitches and started working on this one for the YOTA SAL (back in the days). Since Yota is no more, I am in need of a big kick to pick this up more often.
I just noticed that there was only one update on Paris Market in 2017 (it was in May), I always forget that this one exists. It is somewhere between a UFO and a WIP, but I definitely want to finish is. Therefore I am going to pick this up for a few days and try to get a few stitches in!

The second project that comes to my mind is my oldest Haed Kreimhilds Revenge, the one that took my attention away from Paris Market. I got the pattern in February 2011 and ordered the materials around that time, but I think it was already late March or April when I started her, My first update on her was on 8th April and at that time I was about 75% done with page 1.
I would consider her my oldest WIP because it is my oldest project on which I am updating on a regular basis. So I am doing a better job on her than on my Paris Market ;-) Those who follow my blog know, that I am working on her every month and so there is also a new update on her, I went from here:
To here:
A row finish, yay! Now I also crossed the halfway point pagewise ;-) Picking her up every month and stitching about half a page definitely adds up over time :) I think the next row will feature her shield and her spear and - the best part - not so much sky!
The sky on this was really putting me off for some time, especially since I am stitching on ivory colored Lugana, so the bright colors are hard to see.
She surely has a lot of mistakes, misplaced stitches, some knots, grid lines, page lines... everything that could possibly go wrong, went wrong, but I sort of taught myself about stitching while I worked on her, there were times when I thought about restarting her due to all those mistakes, but I decided to keep and love her as she is ;-)
And one glorious day, she will look like this:
I don't know why I picked her, I just fell in love with her the instant I saw her ;-) I am know at 139.950 stitches and my next goal is to hit the 150.000 stitches mark (which I will surely achieve this year), I super motivated to work on her again =)

This also brings us to my progress for this month. Apart from Kreimhild, I have three more projects to show, including 2 finishes.

But first up is my work on my Golden Kite project "Crossing the Stream". It's one of my largest projects, so I try to get some work into it. Luckily the Golden Kite pages are smaller than the Haed pages, so it's easy to stitch a whole page and that's what I did. I went from here:
To here - page 3 is done:
I have now 10.117 stitches done, so it's still a (very) long way to go. But stitching Haeds for so many years taught me one thing: Just focus on the current progress and don't calculate how much there is still to go ;-)  As long as it is fun to stitch, everything is fine and I am definitely enjoying this one =) Though I would love to stitch something else than trees, maybe I will start working down ;-)

Now for my finishes. The first one is a small design I started around Easter - one of the Mill Hill Easter eggs that are entirely done in beads. This is Daffodil Egg:
I screwed up the colors in the top part of the egg and it took me aged to notice it. But I liked it, so it stays like this... Who cares about the stripes, as long as the flower is not pink instead of yellow, I don't care :D

The second finish I have is another Mill Hill -my Buttons and Beads kit called "Hydrangeas". I got a rush and finished all the remaining cross stitching and then started beading and is all went quite fast after all. I could have done this months ago, but well... better late then never.
Last time:
And now - done and dusted:
It's super pretty in real life, but you know, beads are always hard to catch on camera. Since I really love Hydrangeas, I want to frame this. I also have a companion piece called Geranium (I got it for my birthday) and I want to stitch and frame that one, too. I don't think I own a matching frame, so I will need to look for one. You can see that the design is not centered, but I plan to hide that when I frame it ;-)

I guess this is all I have for this month. My plans for next month are to start on the fifth row of pages on Kreimhild, get some stitches into Paris Market and choose a new small project that I want to try and finish next (maybe Cliffside Beacon or that DMC bird I found when I tidied up my cupboard).

Happy stitching =)