Tuesday, 31 December 2013

The obligatory end of 2013 soon be 2014 post

Okay, so here it is, the breakdown of my 2013 targets!

2013 Targets

Start a Joan Elliott start - DONE
Top row of black on Heather - DONE
2 Pages of Dragon Rider - FAIL - I'm horrified to discover I only did half a page!
2 pages of Lancelot and Guinevere - FAIL -  again, only half a page
Colour top row of Clara - FAIL - at best I've done half a page, but she's very pretty!
2.5 pages of Chakra Fae - FAIL (kinda) I got rid of it, decided I didn't like it!
Finish Passione Ricamo SAL - FAIL (kinda - again) Also got rid of it!
3 Girls of the World - Fail - I nearly did one
Winter's Majesty - FAIL - absolutely none
2 pages of Pride and Prejudice - So Close, one and a half pages
2 pages of Dwarven Leader - FAIL - again, about half a page
Finish something - DONE - woohoo, thank goodness for a friend getting married!
Here's a review of my stitching progress in 2013, and mostly this proves that I haven't really achieved much this year!
Apocalypse Princesses was started this year so this is my full progress here!
Clara at the end of 2012
 Clara with a bit of colour, not much colour I know, but a bit!

Dragon Rider at the end of 2012
 Dragon Rider as it is now, half a page progress!

Dwarven Leader was also a new start this year, so I don't have a before picture

Heather was a SAL start for 2013 so this was started on the 1st of Jan, and I loved working on her. Looking back to getting back to her again!

The lovely window of Lancelot and Guinevere as it was at the end of 2012
 The lovely beginning of Lancelot's head, only half a page again, so embarrassed!

How Elizabeth and Mr Darcy started 2013
 How they ended 2013

The beginning of my first Joan Elliott project,  and she is lovely, and I adore the fabric!

Winter's Majesty, sadly this is by before and after picture, I haven't worked on this at all, I'm so ashamed.

China was all on her own at the end of 2012
 She nearly has a friend by the end of 2013

Which leads me on to my 2014 targets. I've tried to be a bit more realistic, but they're still probably a bit optimistic

  • 1 page of Joan Elliott
  • 1 page of Dwarven Leader
  • 2 and 2 half pages of Dragon Rider
  • 1 and a half pages of Lancelot and Guinevere
  • 1 page of Winter's Majesty
  • 1 colour page of Clara
  • 2nd row of black on Heather (seeing as it was one of the few challenges I managed this year I thought I'd be equally ambitious again)
  • 1 page of Tale of the Red Swans (new start for 2014)
  • 1 page of Rendezvous (new start for 2014)
  • 2 and a half Girls of the World
  • 1 and a half pages of Pride and Prejudice
  • Start Japanese Chatelaine (new stat for 2014)
  • 1 page of Apocalypse Princesses
  • Finish something (unlikely, but hey)!
  • Start a birth or wedding sampler (people keep getting married or having children, I figure I try and get ahead).

This list looks longer but it is less ambitious that last year, it's just that it contains more projects... hence why a finish is so unlikely
And I have a few non stitching targets as well:

  • Learn to make crotchet Granny Squares, I have a ridiculously ambitious project in mind!
  • Write 10,000 words a month - it's less that 350 a day, so not as horrendous as it sounds, and I figure being very ambitious means that I might actually achieve something
  • Start looking into the logistics of  a stitcher's retreat. It was a plan that really didn't materialise in 2013, so I thought I'd start slowly progressing with it this year!
  • Get better at gingerbread houses (you should see the monster we created this year)
  • Ditto, start to improve on cake decorating as well!
  • Become a better blogger, I've been most remiss since starting my new job as I didn't seem to have much free time, but as I've got a bit better at my job and gained a bit more free time as a consequence I will try to blog regularly and keep commenting on others blogs as well!
So that's my ridiculous targets, what are yours?

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Final update of the year!

Here it is, my final update of the year, Apocalypse Princess', which I'm still loving, and it's suddenly looking much more logical after I looked at this picture than it has done the last few days looking at my stitching!
I'm hoping to get this page finished by the end of the year (mainly because I have another SAL starting in the New Year), and yesterday was the first time that I thought I might actually achieve it!

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Coming to the end of the year

Greetings all, firstly an apology for my appalling photography this week... the trouble is I leave for work in the dark, come home in the dark (I'm sure I'm not the only one) so I never have any natural light to take pictures in!
Anyway, here is my latest update of Apocalypse Princesses... I know it doesn't look like much, much I'm working on some of this little white spots! My intention is get this page finished by the end of the year so that I can start a new project in the New Year for the Aimee Stewart SAL (can't wait, I accidently got two lined up)! 
And here's an update on a project that hasn't seen the light of day in quite some time. Dwarven Leader, artwork by Jankolas, charted by Paine Free charts (art work now retired)! The lovely Kim has been encouraging us all to work on our Tolkien themed works by putting a day aside each month for us to work.
Hopefully some time in the next week or so I'll be able to put up my New Year targets and sort out how badly I've done with all of this years targets.
And finally, Merry Christmas!

Saturday, 14 December 2013

A little bit of colour

A little update on Apocalypse Princesses by Paine Free Crafts/Tess Fowler, and I'm absolutely loving working on this, I just wish that I had more time to, because it's such fun! You can almost, almost, see her hand taking shape! Hopefully I'll get some time this week and will be able to get another progress pic in before the Christmas madness kicks in.
And the fact that I'm mentioning Christmas madness also means that it's approaching that time again. The time of year where I start evaluating last years targets (mostly I completely failed) and considering next years.
Happy stitching all!

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Another start

Because that's what I need, yet another start... but I signed up to the Paine Free SAL on facebook, and I do absolutely love this chart. It's Apocalypse Princesses by Tess Fowler, and it's just fantastic. I don't have much to show, but at least with starting with the black you can already see the very beginning of it coming together. Sadly, as we're in the run up to Christmas, and busy at work, I'm not going to get as much done as I would like to on this, but I'm hoping to finish the first page before the next SAL starts (another start, and technically I've agreed to do another as well). I am enjoying it so far!
Secondly, a little bit of progress of World Collection, but I got distracted by the SAL, I meant to get my next girl finished, but the distraction meant that I didn't!

Friday, 22 November 2013

A rare update

Firstly the obligatory scarf update. One finished, which will be for my grandfather for my Grandad for Christmas, and secondly, I've finally started on the scarf that's intended for me. The wool on mine hasn't come out quite as pretty on the photo as it does in real life, and unfortunately I can't photograph just how soft and cosy if feel!
Secondly, and update of Dragon Rider, it doesn't look like much progress at the moment... I'm at that funny middle phase where progress just seems really slow. At the beginning it looks like you've done loads because you're just working on a big empty page, then at the end it looks like it goes quickly because all the white bits are eroding, but in the middle you get the slog (least ways I do), where you almost have to explain what you've been working on this week. It's that blue bit at the bottom by the way. But progress is progress, and it has been hindered a little by the next project. 
I can't remember when I last worked on this, but it's got to be at least six months, probably a fare bit longer. I took this to craft group with me on Thursday because I wanted something a bit littler to take with me, and found that I was rather enjoying it, so I' thought I'd keep it out until I finish the next person, who is progressing rather nicely!

Monday, 11 November 2013

Bits and Bats

Latest update of Dragon Rider, I haven't got much to show, what with National Novel Writing month (which I'm insanely behind in) and all the scarves that I have to work on, my poor stitching is getting very neglected. And that's made all the worse by the fact that I was stitching on it last night to realise that one of the colours on the previous page was wrong, so I spent half of yesterday evening unpicking that colour and starting to re-stitch it. For some reason I'd stitched part of the blue sky in grey, I'm sure it seemed like a good idea at the time!
And secondly, the continuation of the scarves... the one on the right is nearly finished, it's just what's left of that ball of wool. That was intended to for granddad, but I've fallen out with it a bit and don't like it as much any more so, once again, that will be donated and the little grey smudge on the left will instead be my Granddad's Christmas present. Plus I now need to make one for Ben as well, after he made me promise I would, so he has to choose his will for that at some point. You never know, I might actually get to knit something for myself one day, but I'm not counting on it!

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Little update

First off here is Dragon Rider, finished the green that I was doing and there's now some brown in there, and the exciting thing is, that little smush of brown that you can see... that's the beginning of the dragon... I'm so excited that while on my sixth page I'm finally getting to see some real dragon (I'm not counting that tiny bit on the first page, because you'd never have known what it was if you didn't know. But any way, as this is now my focus piece (honest guv), hopefully I'll see this coming on in leaps and bounds in the next year... although stitching plans to be detailed later will probably put paid to that.
Secondly I have the beginning of my second scarf... this one is intended for my Grandad for Christmas... this is intended for him for two reason.
1. My gran tried to teach me to knit many years ago, but I was terrible and it always resulted in confusion and shouting, so as my gran is no longer with us I'd like to be able to prove to him that, better late than never, I've finally mastered knitting.
2. He's my granddad, therefore no matter how awful the thing I give him, he has to lie and tell me that it's lovely, which I'm kinda clinging to at the moment!
My stitching is probably going to take a bit of a hit this month... I've signed up to National Novel Writing Month and set myself a target of 1000 words a day, so by the time I've done that, then worked on Grandad's scarf, I can't see my getting much stitching done, but hopefully I will still have something to show this week, either stitching or knitting!
And finally, I seem to have, rather foolishly, signed up to another two SALs, like I need more projects than I already have. One is an Aimee Stewart SAL in the New Year, and I'm doing Tale of the Red Swans after Aimee said that she'd really like to see it stitched... which meant that even Ben said I had to kit it up and stitch it, so I've had to thank Aimee because for once I don't have to smuggle the supplies into the flat. Secondly I've joined in a Paine Free SAL as well, which is starting on the 1st of December, not quite sure which one I'm stitching for that... it depends on whether I chart that I'm waiting for is released or not. I'm hoping for Kidnapped Batgirl to be released, otherwise it'll be Apocalypse Princesses which I've had for ages.
Happy stitching all, and if anyone is joining in NaNoWriMo, good luck with that.

Friday, 25 October 2013

I've started knitting

Starting with my update of Dragon Rider. I've decided to make this my focus piece (due to it currently being the only project with an intended home). So the intention is to work on a page of this then a page of something else, and so on. This page will actually have some dragon on it. I've very excited!
And here we have Ben modelling my first ever knitted thing! I've made a scarf and I'm quite proud of myself, especially as it's only taken me 4 days, although the wool is ridiculously thick, meaning that it knitted up really easily. I had also started a second scarf, but I got that out today to see a mistake on it, so I'm going to have to start that again!

Monday, 14 October 2013

Pride and Prejudice reappears

Finally, an update, I've been very bad with my updates recently!
I took Pride and Prejudice on holiday with me so I actually managed to do some work on it! The rest of this page is cream, so it's easy stitching to finish this page now!
In other news it was my birthday yesterday (the big 30, sigh) and one of my friends got married on Saturday, so it's been a busy weekend. One of my presents from Ben was a pair of bamboo needles, so impressed bless him! Also a gorgeous bag, a framed print, latest Studio Ghibli (he knows me so well - I'm slowly collecting them all, this gets me up to 4) and Folio Society of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights, it's like he's lived with me for 5 years or something! Then I went shopping and bought the shoes that went with the bag - Irregular choice, so dangerous. And a cloth bound edition of the Once and Future King... all in all a fantastic weekend and I'm now skint!

Friday, 27 September 2013


Look, there's colour, actual colour! Not much I know, but I'm so excited to see that Clara has finally got some colour. There's some blue in the feather (but you can't see that very well on the picture), and there's pink on her hat.

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Oh look, some more grey!

I don't really have to show much this week, just a little bit of progress on the grey, don't seem to have had much time really this week... so instead I shall refrain from making any comments about 50 shades of grey and just hope that by next week I'll have finished all the shades of grey on this page and I can start playing with different colours.

Sunday, 15 September 2013

It's finished!

I finished it, which means that not only have I finished my project but I've also managed to achieve one of my targets in my New Year targets which was to finish anything, I wasn't picky about what as long as I actually managed to finish something. So, I've got to get it all framed up as it's a gift, which I should be able to do in the next couple of weeks.
Also, today I've been learning to knit, I'm very proud, I've managed to knit, purl, increase and decrease! So I'm going to play round with stitches for a bit longer then start trying to make a scarf!

Friday, 6 September 2013

The return of Clara (briefly)

Clara has been calling to me, so I decided to spend a week on her before I went back to the final push on Dictionary on Love. She's been screaming for attention for so long and I was looking forward to the bright colours on her, so what did I do? Work on the grey on the back ground... I'm an idiot. Having said that, it's quite nice blocks of colour, so it has stitched quite well, so maybe there was an odd sort of logic in doing the grey first... that and the fact that I usually try to stitch the 'boring' bits first, so that I don't loose interest as I'm getting to the end (as is happening slightly with Dictionary at the moment). Anyway, back to Dictionary I go, lets see if I can get it finished within the next week... here's hoping, because I'm missing my other projects!

Friday, 30 August 2013


I am childishly excited to introduce the top of Lancelot's head. I know he doesn't look like much at the moment (and believe me he looks like a whole lot less up close, that's part of the reason I take pictures and blog, it gives me a little more perspective on what I've been stitching), but that is Lancelot's parting, and it's quite sad how excited I am to see it. It mean's that I'm no longer just stitching wall, there's some person in my stitching! And aptly I was watching Merlin while stitching his parting. Hope everyone is having a good stitching week!

Thursday, 22 August 2013

So near...

Good afternoon my dears, my apologies for being so absent recently, I don't seem to have much time recently, either for stitching or for then blogging about what I stitch... which is why I've also been so useless with International Hermit and Stitch just recently... having said that I've had a surprisingly productive couple of days... Love sick has been done in the last 24 hours, which is definitely a record for me... I've only got the title left to do... the end is in sight and my deadline is no longer scaring me. My target was to be at this point within another week and a half, there's a possibility that I could have this finished by then, but, as has been my habit recently, I might take another break before picking this up again... (and breath, that was a ridiculously long sentence).  I'm trying to convince myself that I won't be starting something else once I've finished this one, I've got a few others that aren't on frames so I ought to just swop onto one of those instead, having said that there are a couple of smaller (by my standards) kits knocking about the flat which are trying to catch my attention now that they know this is nearly done. Temporarily I'm going to try and work on some other projects, but I may end up being weak and caving on a new start.
Oh, and it's the Great Northern Needlecraft and Quilt Show next week, that can only be a bad thing... wish my luck!

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Another week off

Another progress picture of something other than Dictionary of Love, albeit all I've done is add to the wall, but it's a very pretty wall... and on the next row I get to see the beginning of their heads, which I'm very excited about, it'll make a change from wall... but I don't think that that'll be until I've finished Dictionary now... I suddenly realised that time is ticking away.
Happy stitching all!

Saturday, 3 August 2013

Another section finished

I'm starting to realise that for the first time ever I might actually hit my target date. I've only got two squares and the heading left, miracles happen!

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Late again

My blogging has become most sporadic recently, I do apologise. Thank you for your patience my few remaining followers. Here's my latest update on Dictionary of Love, the end is almost in sight and I can almost believe that I might actually finish it in time, something that rarely happens, I don't like stitching to a deadline. But that's six done now, and I'm working on the seventh. Nearly three and the title to do. And I do still like it, which is rare when I'm on a deadline. It's all good!

Saturday, 13 July 2013

I decided to take a little break...

...from Dictionary of Love and work on something else for a week so that I didn't get bored and fall out of love with it. So I've managed another row on Lancelot and Guinevere (if I end up doing a row a week then it's going to take me a while to finish this project, although I've not had much time this week, so that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it). I do always enjoy this project, and having picked it up again I don't want to put it down again, but I'll be good and go back to Dictionary... got that time limit to think about.

Friday, 5 July 2013

All coming up Clover

Clover is what the latest square is, although I'm aware that, without the pack stitch, you can't really tell that yet. Hoping to get this finished within the next couple of days. I'm getting the urge to work on other projects which isn't good when I'm working to a deadline on this. I'm currently trying to decide whether I'm better to give myself a couple of weeks off to work on other things or whether I should just push through. I've got about 3 months left!

Friday, 28 June 2013

Heather returns (briefly)

As promised last week, I managed to work on Heather this week, and I'm pretty proud of my progress on her, especially as I didn't really think I'd had much free time! The top row (of black) is now complete, so this is 5 full pages and 1 partial page (it was only about 12 stitches wide). I love her, such a gorgeous chart, although I did seem to have a slight melt down with my ability to count to ten at one point, I think I've solved it now. I think this is a sign that I'm starting to get a little more settled with my hours at work that I'm actually managing to get stitching time again! So happy all round really!
Happy stitching everyone. Oh, and I apologise for being such a bad blog follower recently, I'll try to get some time to tour every one elses blogs and leave some comments.
Oh, in other news, does anyone else really want to see Despicable Me? I'm currently trying to convince my other half that he wants to go with me, I think I might have to bribe him with pick and mix!

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Fourth square

I finished another square (woohoo), although this one seems to have taken me absolutely ages, compared to the others anyway. I have technically started the fifth (there's a small red splodge at the bottom) but I've decided to take a little break before I get fed up with it. So I started a little work on Heather yesterday, hopefully I'll have some progress to show on her next week. Happy stitching all!

Friday, 14 June 2013


I seem to have a good week then an off week at the moment, as far as my progress goes. My little boat is developing, but I was hoping to have it finished this week, which obviously hasn't happened. But you can see the shape, and that's good enough for me at the moment.

Friday, 7 June 2013

Actual progress

I've done better than I expected to this week. The Love-a-bulls are finished, and I've now managed to move onto the next square, so, at the moment at least, I'm still pretty comfortable with my deadline for getting this finished in time. Lets give it a few months though and see what happens.

Sunday, 2 June 2013

A wee bit of progress

I don't have much progress to show at the moment, just a little bit of the third picture, you definitely tell what this one is going to be yet. Hopefully I'll get a bit more stitching time this week.... stranger things have happened

Friday, 24 May 2013

Such a bad blogger

I am such a bad blogger at the moment. I'm still trying to get used to my shift patterns in my new job. It means that I don't always seem to have much time for stitching or blogging at the moment. I'm hoping that as I get used to the shifts I'll manage a bit more free time, and that as I get used to the work I'll end up doing a bit less over time, which I'm currently doing to make sure my work is actually finished at the end of the day. But anyway, here are my updates. First, Dictionary of Love, I've said in the past that I love working on Dictionary of projects because it gives me a fabulous sense of achievement, because you get lots of little finishes and actually get to see progress happening. This is planned as a wedding present and I've got a little under five months to get it finished and framed, which, I think I will manage, they do stitch up beautifully quickly, and always look great when they're done. The backstitch is very simple but always looks so effective.
Secondly is a tiny bit of progress on Snowdrop Fairy. All of my other projects are a little bit secondary at the moment because Dictionary of Love has to be the priority, as I've got the time limit, but I have managed to get a bit more done, I hope to do a little bit more before I go back to Dictionary, but I think time limits and guilt will pull me away from Snowdrop and back to Dictionary pretty soon.
Happy stitching all, I apologise for being such a terrible blogger, I will try to update more regularly, and more importantly, I'm missing everyone else's progress so I'll try and spend some time whistle stopping around all your blogs as well!

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Yet another week without much progress

Life definitely seems to be getting in the way of
my stitching time at the moment, I don't know where the weeks keep going. You can technically see the difference, but barely. I'm settling to do some stitching now, so fingers crossed that it'll look like something next week.