A slight obsession with books

Crafts, cats and books


More bargain frames

Last week I went charity shop trawling again. I went with my friend Jackie, to a different area this time, and we had a splendid time. We looked in loads of charity shops, and had a couple of coffee breaks. Well, you have to pace yourself and shopping can be thirsty work 😉

I was after picture frames again, and although we didn’t find as many as last time, I still came home with three suitable ones. Two of them are the right size for a couple of my cross stitch pieces – I remembered to make a note of the measurements needed this time, although it was lucky that Jackie had a tape measure as I forgot mine.


The third frame looks about the right size for a future project, which may get stitched sooner than planned now that it may have a frame.

Hopefully I’ll get time to use them soon, although I am pretty busy with the garden and other things at the moment.



It looks good enough to eat

I’ve done some more to Pie Menu, while watching Stargate Atlantis. I love that program. I’m getting on quite nicely with my new project. Obviously it was just what I needed to get me stitching again.

I’ve finished the next section and now it looks like this.


That pie looks yummy, don’t you think? I still have a couple of French knots to do in this bit, plus some straight stitch, but I’ll do that once the rest is finished so those stitches don’t get crushed under the frame.

I have all the blocks finished for my quilt and am ready to sew them all together. That’s not as impressive as it sounds. There are only sixteen blocks and they’re HSTs, so not exactly complicated. I think it’s going to look great though so I’m quite excited to get it finished.

C25K – I’m now on week two and still keen. Week one went well. Day one was fine, but my legs ached afterwards. Day two was harder and my legs really ached afterwards. Day three was great. I was raring to go and had almost no aches after.

Day one of week two was a bit tougher and my knees weren’t too happy about it but the rest of my legs were fine. Day two tomorrow. I’m hoping the GPS doesn’t give up half way through tomorrow, which is what it did on day one. I love looking at the stats afterwards and it’s a shame when I can only see my pace and distance for the first part. I find it really encouraging to see how I did.

Fingers crossed for tomorrow, both for the GPS and for enough energy afterwards to do some sewing 😉


Finally, some cross stitch

The last time I picked up any of my cross stitch projects was in October. Once I got back from my holiday I just wasn’t in the mood for stitching. I felt more like sewing and crocheting and although I did think about cross stitch occasionally, I never got beyond thinking and into doing.

I don’t want to stop cross stitching altogether, so I thought it might be an idea to tempt myself with a new start. My WIPs are all larger projects and although I did quite fancy doing a bit more on Around the World in 80 stitches, the size of it was putting me off.

So, I pulled out this one.


It’s been in my stash for a few years. I bought three at the same time and have already stitched Cafe Latte. It’s just a small project so I’m hoping that a finish will get me back in the swing of stitching again.

In hindsight, it may have been a mistake to pick something done with one strand on 32ct, but the silk that’s provided in the kit is gorgeous to work with so I’ve enjoyed my bit of stitching.

This is where I’ve got to so far.


I’m optimistic that I’ll be keen to crack on with Around the World and try to catch up with that, once I’ve finished this. After all the work I’ve done on it, I really don’t want to abandon it.


Song of the Weather – September

I haven’t done any cross stitch or Hardanger since before I went on holiday. I’ve been crocheting and sewing and reading but just haven’t felt like stitching. I’ve just remembered though, that I didn’t get around to uploading a pic of the last SoTW that I did, so as I’ve nothing else to show at the moment, I thought I’d do it now.

I liked this one very much. It was lovely to stitch and worked up nice and quickly. I like how it looks too.

There weren’t many Kloster Blocks which meant I was onto the interesting stitches sooner. I like doing the round Eyelets and can usually get them even now so I’m pleased with those. I love Rhodes stitch and these hearts are particularly nice. Lots of texture. I hadn’t done Pine stitch before, which is the one in the Kloster Block squares, but it was a simple stitch and very quick to do.


I loved the Satin stitch braid. The couching was very relaxing to do once I got started and I think it looks pretty. There was only a small amount of cutting to do – always a bonus – and those double wrapped bars didn’t take long. The new stitch, Gamma stitch, was simple with the brilliant instructions that come with these charts.

I’ve got the rest of the SoTW downloaded and printed now, but I can’t remember if I’ve started October’s or not. I may check later and maybe do some stitching. I’ll see if I’m in the mood or not.


Song of the Weather – August

Just a little late, but I’m gradually catching up. I quite enjoyed doing this one once I’d got those pesky Kloster Blocks out of the way. For some reason I kept miscounting where my start point was on them and had to frog them three or four times, which was the point at which I gave up and put it all away.

When I finally fished it back out and started again, it went perfectly first time. I have no idea what the problem was originally.

The Eyelets were simple enough. I’ve done those several times before. The central Buttonhole Flower was easy and the French Daisies were easy too, once I’d worked out that I needed to have them facing the same way before stitching. A simple matter of turning the piece before doing each quarter.


I was a bit apprehensive about the picots on the woven bars as I’d heard they were tricky, but again, as long as I made sure to stitch from left to right, they gave me no problem. I’m quite pleased with how they turned out.


Flower Sampler book – June update

It didn’t take too long to do the first internal page as I’d made a start on it by doing the Four-sided stitch and the Backstitched alphabet last time. I just needed to add the quote.


The Cross stitch alphabet was a joy to stitch. I’m really liking how the Madeira threads look, and the colours are so vivid.


Once I’d done that, all I had to do was the Hemstitch. This was the first time that I’d done this type of Hemstitch and it was easy enough, once I got used to the idea that with the fabric and thread being the same colour, I couldn’t actually see what I was stitching. I think it came out ok though.


The slightly scary part was then cutting along the edge of the Hemstitch. It would have been terrifying if not for having had some practise at cutting with the Hardanger SAL, and also that I was using my lovely Squissors. Again,  not being able to see the stitched threads was interesting as I was quite keen not to cut them. I managed without any mishaps though and I’m rather pleased with how the first pair of pages came out.


I lost three stitching days to a migraine last week so I’m going to give this a few more days before doing a bit on my week three project. I’m loving stitching my Flower Sampler book so I think it deserves some extra time.

In the latest Itch to Stitch, the publication from the Cross Stitch Guild, is a lovely project. It’s a Strawberry Sampler book and is similar to this one only with strawberries, some different techniques, and it’s PINK. I’m afraid I gave into temptation and have ordered the materials pack for it. All the more reason to get this one done fairly soon so I can start the pretty new one.


Did you ever – finished

Well that didn’t take long. I’ve spent three evenings stitching on this and rather enjoyed it. It’s a very simple design but pretty, and I love the text. It’s so me.


The fabric provided is very stiff so the hoop  has left creases that didn’t iron out. I’m sure they’ll be fine once I’ve framed it though. If I frame it, that is. It’ll go in the ‘finished’ drawer for now.

I’m going to do a bit on Song of the Weather before going back to my week two stitch on Saturday. It’s so nice to be ahead for once.

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Did you ever?

I bought two Lizzie*Kate kits while on holiday a few years ago. I couldn’t resist them. They had the chart, fabric and buttons and I just needed to add the threads. I felt it was definitely time to start one of them this month and after a bit of dithering, I chose this one.


I’m hoping to finish it this week, although it will depend on how much stitching time I get. I’m planning to start a Pixel People in July so I do have some incentive to get cracking.


Around the World in 80 stitches – part 12

I thought I knew which three parts were going to be done next, as it seemed likely that we’d continue round from the right hand side down to the bottom. I was wrong. This part is a new shape and sits in the top right corner. It made a nice change. There were a few new stitches for me to tackle, and all were fairly easy.


The first of the new stitches was Dunstan stitch. There are five steps to it and the instructions were to do each part in a different colour. As I’m using several variegated threads, I decided to do the first three steps in one colour and just the final two steps in different colours. I quite like it.


Next was Dunedin stitch. I like this one, especially with the subtle variegation in the blue thread and the diagonal leaf stitch around it.


The other new one was Bendigo. I love how this turned out in my favourite pink variegated thread. It’s a pretty stitch and would make a nice border, although it would be time-consuming.


The stitch with the longest name was probably the quickest and easiest to do – Enclosing Interlaced stitch. I do like this one. I’ve probably done something similar before but not exactly the same.


Finally there were the Woven Wheels. I’m not sure if I like these or not. They came out ok, but it’s difficult to get them all perfectly even.


Finally, a photo of the whole thing. It’s getting quite large now.


As I finished my week one project last month, and I’m currently up to date with my SALs, I’m going to start a new stitch today. Just a small one that I’ve had in my stash for a few years. Details to follow.


Song of the weather – May update

I’m quite pleased with this. The surface stitches aren’t the most interesting ones that we’ve done but look pretty all the same. The cutting was much easier this time. I think I’m finally getting comfortable with it. I must make sure that I don’t get too complacent and make a mistake next month though.

The uneven bars seemed to take ages, but there are quite a few of them. Mine are nicely uneven, but maybe not in the way that was intended. They were definitely improving as I went along though, so that’s ok. I’m happy with my Fan stitches. They were fun to do and I think they look ok.

05MayNow to see if my printer will co-operate as I try to print off the next installment of the Papillon SAL.