A slight obsession with books

Crafts, cats and books


July’s Cottage – framed

I think this is one of my favourites. It’s the one that I tweaked quite a lot to make it more British as it was a 4th July theme in the original design.


I’m really happy with how that fabric goes with the design. It’s like little stars to match the fireworks.

That’s seven down, just five to go.



June’s Cottage – framed

June is finished and hanging which makes me half way done. I quite like the fabric I used for this one. I’m loving this range of designs in the Honey Bun. That was definitely one of my better ideas to get that. I’m looking forward to finishing the cottages so I can have a play with what’s left over too.


I’ve done a bit more to get the other six cottages ready. They’re all now backed with interfacing and the batting is cut to size. I’ve also cut all the backing pieces and selected which strips from the Honey Bun will be used with each one. The next half will go much faster than the first, I’m thinking 🙂

This is what the first rail looks like with six hanging on it.


Looks like I’ll be needing to move that map of Vancouver and the menu from Ghirardelli soon.


May’s Cottage – framed

I finished this a few weeks ago but forgot about uploading it. I rather like this one in the lighter fabric but I’m a bit worried about how wonky it looks in the photo. The bottom of this does look much better than that in real life. Honest.

I did have one problem with this one. I don’t know how, but I managed to make the hanging straps too short. I’ve sewed the studs onto the back of the straps, just above the body of it, to try to make them a bit longer but this one is still going to sit a bit higher than the others.

Note to self: check length of straps before sewing them into the top in the future.


I used some of the buttons that I got at the NEC a few months ago. I like how they look on this, but I’ve been thinking about how to finish off some of the other months. I may do something a bit different to buttons. I’m not quite sure what yet, but I have a few ideas rattling about.

June’s Cottage is about finished. I just need to tweak it and then I can upload that one too.


April’s Cottage – framed

April has been sitting on my desk for a few weeks waiting for me to cut the fabric and assemble it. I had got around to choosing which fabric, but that was as far as I got last time I looked at it. It didn’t take long to cut and assemble it once I did sit down to do it, and I’ve cut some extra 9″ squares for the backs while I was at it, ready for the next few.



I’ve used the Kansas Troubles Sandhill Plums fabric again, this time using a dark purple for the front. I’ve pulled a lighter colour for May’s edging to break it up a bit on the rail.

This is how the first four look now.



I’ve got buttons to add to them and I really must get February back down to alter the one stud so that it sits evenly. The fabric is all cut for May so I might do that when I assemble that one.


March’s cottage – framed

I used the dark green fabric to frame March, as none of the other colours really looked good. I’m not sure it’s the best shade of green to match the greens in the cottage, but it looks ok. This one went quicker than the other two. I’m getting into a rhythm, I think.

This is the finished March Cottage.

03Wfabric01I used some of the pretty buttons that I got at the NEC. I’d have put them nearer to the corners but there was a bit on one of the seams that needed covering up. I may have tried to be too economical with the fabric strip used for the front of the frame. Instead of cutting off the end with the tiny holes in, I used it all and it showed slightly. I’ve got more buttons that are intended for February and January but I haven’t attached them yet.

These are the ones that I’ve completed so far hanging on the rail.

03Wfabric02Three down, nine to go.


December’s Cottage

There were two things that I quite wanted to do this year, and I’ve completed both this morning. I’m feeling rather pleased with myself at the moment.

The first thing was to stay on schedule with the stitching of the Cottages by CCN and finish the last one before the end of the year. I did get a bit behind for a few weeks at one point, but I caught up again and this morning I put the French knots into the last one, which finished it off.

Dec301212FI love this one. I think it’s my favourite Cottage if only because of the brickwork. I do love the borders in this design too as it made a change to do something different with the foliage.

The other thing that I’d wanted to do this year was to get to a milestone number on the 1001 list, which I’m reading my way through. I started the year on 320 and although I set a target of 40 books for the year, what I really wanted was to reach that magical figure of 400. This, of course, meant reading 80 books from the list and although I’ve read that many before, I wasn’t sure I could do it again. I won’t read books just for the sake of it. I have to enjoy them. If I start one and I’m not enjoying it, I put it aside. Happily, I seem to pick well as I don’t need to do that too often, but the challenge was to find 80 books that I’d enjoy, not just to read them.

This morning, I read the last 150 pages of Out of Africa, which was the 80th book, so that’s both of my personal challenges completed. I may have cut it a bit fine, but I did it.

I’m setting myself some new challenges with Cross Stitching for next year and am going to try to read some of the chunkier books on my shelves which will cut down the quantity of books that I read. I do want to try to complete The BBC’s Big Read list as I only have twelve books to go on that. It’s good to have challenges. I like to have something to aim at.

For now though, I’m just going to admire my lovely completed Cottages for a while. All twelve of them.

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The last cottage has landed

December’s Cottage is finally here. It’s kitted up and ready to be stitched. I love this one. It could well be one of my favourites. The colours in it are lovely and grungy, with some delicious overdyed threads.

COTM12stashThe Cottage is a very pretty one with some snow on the roof, some brickwork, and some conifers at the side. I like the look of the borders too with the Poinsettias.

COTM12picI’m over half way through the next part of the Papillon SAL so I’m just going to finish that and then I’m going to do my Cottage. With a bit of luck I’ll finish it before the end of the year and will be all ready to start a new SAL with Tree on the 1st of Jan.