Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Mollie Makes Pretty Rose Cross Stitch -- except it isn't!!

Almost since I started blogging the most popular post on my blog has been this one - here - called Mollie Makes Pretty Rose Cross Stitch.

It was about using a kit that came with a magazine to make up a cross stitch picture.  I actually made it into a pin cushion rather than a picture.  I have no idea why it is so popular, but month after month, year after year, there it is, up there at the top of my most viewed posts list.

When I received another one of these kits, I assume again on Mollie Makes, I still didn't want to make a picture with it and I didn't want to make another pin cushion either.  So it hung around in my boxes of fabric and yarn for a long time.

While sorting through the yarn and fabric early in August I found it again and decided to do something with it.  Putting it together with a plastic embroidery hoop that I had from another - unmade! - kit I turned it into this.

A pretty picture with my initial - because my name really is Amy! - and a little border around the edge.  Ta Dah!

I simply drew the letter on to the canvas with one of those disappearing fabric ink pens and then stitched over it in two colours of the floss that came with the kit.  Then I added little crosses all around the edge to make the border, a little like a ring of flowers.

The back looks horrid, but I have covered it with a piece of felt to at least try and neaten it up a bit.

I have a couple of other kits that I have made up to produce some little pictures which I will also be sharing and then I will hang them all up somewhere in my office or prop them up on shelves around the house.

Do you think this post will make it to the top of my charts.  I wonder!


This is one of the posts that I wrote in August to be published in September but publishing it got delayed by my need to take a blog break.

Monday, 26 September 2016

Swift Cover

Over the years I have been lucky enough to collect various crafting tools and I like to make sure that I look after them and store them as carefully as I can.

One of my treasured tools is my yarn swift.  I love it because it is a wooden one which I think is sturdier and kinder to the yarn than a plastic one - although I have no proof of that!  It is also such a useful tool.  You simply pop the skein of yarn on to it, fix it in place and then you can wind a ball of yarn all on your own with no assistance and with great ease.

Until recently I had stored my swift in a cupboard, but after some rearranging to store other things in a better way there was no space for my swift.  So I decided to make a bag or cover for it.

This is the finished article!  Ta Dah!

You can see that it is the same size as the swift when it is folded up.

In case you don't know, this is what a swift looks like when it is opened up.  The yarn then goes round the outside of the arms and it spins as you make your ball of yarn.

To make the bag I first hand sewed a piece of patchwork.  I cut four inch squares and then pieced them together and then lightly hand quilted them to a backing fabric with some wadding in between.

I then sewed the backing and patchwork into a long cylinder making the bag shape.

Added a drawstring closure at the top.

This is what the lining looks like.

Then I had the finished bag or cover and a safe way to store my swift, it is protected from knocks and dust and it will not open suddenly on its own either as can happen if it is not tied round the middle or secured in some other way.

I really enjoyed the hand sewing, it is such a peaceful thing to do.  Just a needle and thread and an embroidery hoop and I was at peace!

How do you store your crafting tools and your swift?


This is one of the posts that I wrote in August to be published in September but publishing it got delayed by my need to take a blog break.

Linking with Cooking and Crafting with J&J and Mosaic Monday

Sunday, 25 September 2016

Listening to my books - Murder in Mesopotamia

Murder in Mesopotamia by Agatha Christie was a little different to the other books on tape that I have listened to because it was actually more of a radio play than a straightforward reading of the book.  Several characters in the book Murder in Mesopotamia were dramatized, including good old Hercule Poirot, and the story was told from the point of view of one other character, the nurse Amy Leatheran.

I have seen a TV production of Murder in Mesopotamia, but didn't really remember the story, or "whodunit" so this was a great listen.  The story was told well, and I found it much more interesting than I do reading Agatha Christie books.  I listened to it in August during one of the days I spent sorting Man's papers.  It was great company and kept me sane and interested in what I was doing.  I thoroughly recommend it if you come across this tape.  It was well told and produced and the story is good too.

Murder in Mesopotamia tells the story of nurse Amy Leatheran who travels to the east to explore life and is employed to look after the wife of archaeologist Doctor Leidner.  Louise Leidner has been experiencing many strange things since the death of her first husband and now it seems that she is being haunted by the past once again.

Why could this be?  Who is doing it?  What will happen?  Perhaps Louise is imagining or making the whole thing up, or perhaps there actually is something going on.  Once Poirot appears on the scene more strange things happen and the story unfolds and is, of course, eventually resolved.

Agatha Christie actually travelled a lot in the middle east with her husband Max Mallowan who was also an archaeologist and so several of her stories are influenced by the time she spent travelling with him.  I thought that you could really see this influence in this story and it added to the realism and interest of the story.

Overall, a great listen and although this tape is going back to Lady to listen to again, I would certainly listen to it again.  I recommend it!


This is one of the posts that I wrote in August to be published in September but publishing it got delayed by my need to take a blog break.