Friday, 9 May 2014

Zero Calories Candy!

Hello there!
I hope you have all been enjoying some warmer, sunnier days now that we are into May? I can't quite believe we've started another month already, where is this year going to?? I'm actually pretty glad to be shot of April, I spent big chunks of it not feeling very well &, as a consequence, didn't achieve what I had hoped for in this month. I haven't picked up any cross stitch in two months now, the last stitching I did was this Christmas ornament which I finished back in March...


It is a free chart called First Snow which is available here. I chose to stitch it on 14 count blue aida which I had in my stash rather than the 36 count linen listed, the only subsequent change I made to the chart was to stitch the snowflakes as regular crosses rather than smyrna crosses (which would have been trickier on aida). I have had this design on my to stitch list for a couple of years now so was very glad to finally work it up!
So if I haven't been stitching then what have I been doing this month? Well... a lot more knitting and crochet than usual! I have been working on my basic sweater (almost finished now!) but I also started a new knitting project. One of the things that tempted me back into knitting last year was the possibility that one day I might be able to make some of the knitted teddies I fell in love with at Mary Jane's Tearoom. Last summer I was lucky enough to be gifted some of these oh-so-cute patterns & last month I finally decided I felt brave enough to give one a try. I learnt very quickly that making knitted toys like this is very different to crocheting amigurumis! For a start the pieces are all knitted flat on straight needles so the bits look very odd when you're used to working up rounded 3D ami parts, this also means there is a lot of seaming to do! I found this whole process a huge learning curve (dear pal Google to the rescue many times!) There are a lot of techniques involved which seasoned knitters probably don't give a second thought to but which I was unsure on (I am still firmly convinced crochet is much easier than knitting ;-)) Bit by bit I got there though, a face...
... a body...
.... a nearly naked bear!
Finally here she is - one fully clothed Candy Bear! (Yes, this is where the zero calories from the post title comes in ;-))...

I think it will be a little while before I attempt another MJT pattern, I need a lot more practice first!
In between times I have also been adding stripes to my mixed stitch stripey blanket...



I am enjoying this immensely :-) I have worked out a rough "pattern" amidst the randomness & reckon I am just under two thirds of the way along on it now. In case you're wondering about all those ends I have a cunning plan this time around to avoid sewing in a single one! I came across this clever idea on pinterest & funnily enough the link leads back to here - Jules' post about her mixed stitch stripey blanket! If you scroll down almost to the bottom of the post you will see she finished it off with a casing edge - brilliant huh?! I am looking forward to trying this out on my blanket...
Well although I didn't make anything towards my Christmas decorations goal last month, finish either of the two quilts that are still hanging around here, or make any progress on my stitching WIP's, I'm thankful for the yarny projects which I was able to work on. I'm hoping to be able to spend more time in my sewing room over the coming month as I am due to lose it at the end of May when my son returns from university for the summer. (Right now I'm wondering how on earth he will fit back in with all his belongings now I've spread fabric & yarn into every nook & cranny!) Thank you for visiting here today, I hope this weekend brings you the chance to work on something that makes you happy! 



8 comments:

  1. The First Snow chart is really lovely, I downloaded it immediately! Thank you for posting the link!
    And the teddy bear is soooo cute, but she needs a little brother now!
    Now just waiting to see the blanked completed!
    Good job!
    I wish you a happy week-end!
    R

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    1. Thank you for your sweet comments Rose! I hope you enjoy stitching it :-) Yes, I expect Candy will get a brother or sister at some point in the not too distant future, for now she is hanging out with a unicorn & a dinosaur lol! Have a lovely weekend,
      Helen

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  2. I love the first snow design....I'm trying to decide if I should add it to my to-do list! :) Yup, decision made....it's now on the list!!!
    Your stripey blanket is gorgeous. The colours work really well together. Can't wait to see more of it!

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    1. Thanks Rhona! I look forward to seeing how you finish your first snow, it's a lovely design isn't it? I'm really enjoying the blanket, so relaxing! Have a lovely weekend,
      Helen

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  3. Your winter cross stitch finish is beautiful but I really love your little bear!!! She is perfect & adorable, wow!! Congratulations :)

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    1. Thank you for your sweet comments Mii! She was a bit of a slog but now she's done I can say she was worth it :-) At some point I know I will be tempted back to do some of the other patterns from that site, they are just too darn cute! Have a lovely weekend,
      Helen

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  4. I think your bear is absolutely perfect! And that blanket! I want to snaffle! ^_^ XOX

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    1. Awww thanks Steph ;-) I don't know quite why I am so addicted to blankets? Colors, texture, general cuddliness? This one seems to tick all those boxes ^_^ XOX

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