Purple Morpho

Today’s my cousin Rhonda’s birthday! Her nonprofit logo is a purple butterfly, so I took the pattern of a Blue Morpho and turned it into a Purple Morpho.blue morpho with opened wings

About the card

cloth, thread, pattern

After working on so many cross stitches that take weeks if not months (and a few a while back pretty sure years…) these last couple of cards have been a wonderful “break”. The base design I used for this butterfly was from Donna Kooler’s Cross Stitch Designs book. I recreated it in WinStitch so I could mark off what I finished, and change the butterfly from blue to purple.

While I was at Joann’s a few weeks ago I found thread that looked to be sparkly thread. Once I cut it and definitely once I started using it, I’m pretty sure it’s filament. Of course that didn’t stop me from using it like thread the way I wanted to and add some sparkle to my butterfly.

close up of stitching

Like the Care Bear I thought I was finished and I got so excited I almost forgot to finish the back stitching on this one! I finished all the wing details and completely spaced the outside. I woke up the next morning and it hit me that I wasn’t actually done.

Once I finished the back stitching for real I began collecting all the pieces to put together the card. While I was working on the cross stitch I decided I wanted to used one of my new birthday embossing folders. I pulled out my paper drawer and thought I was going for one foil embossed paper I have and instead ran across the butterfly paper (still foil embossed).

detail shot of the embossing

Although the colors match nothing in the cross stitch I loved the butterfly theme. I used that as the background and embossed it using the happy birthday folder I have. It’s fairly hard to see and photograph, but you can feel it.

To help the cross stitch stand out more I chose a neutral color to mount using foam tape to the card. The cross stitch is attached with some double sided tape in the middle and E-6000 on the edges. That stuff is powerful and the butterfly won’t be going anywhere.

side view of card

So there you have it! That’s how this card came together in just a few days.

 

Stitching

Started: October 22nd
Finished: October 25th

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Elephant Love

close up of 2 elephants with balloons

If you remember the elephant card I made for an August birthday, this one is quite different. This one I “designed” myself from different patterns I found for elephants and balloons. I did draw the grass myself. The happy birthday is a font from the WinStitch program I drew everything in.

close up of yellow balloon

I started this cross stitch on a Friday, did the majority of it at Side Projects Club on Saturday and finished up the back stitching on Sunday. Compared to the last card this one is much smaller and much easier due to the lack of quarter stitches.

Assembly came with some challenges. I have done enough of these to know that I would really prefer to get them in straight. I think I finally found a good way to accomplish this too!

Taking double sided tape I lined the edges closest to the hole I cut with the Cricut (well I cut the whole thing out of a 12×12 paper and scored it with the Cricut). Then I started to place the fabric down into the opening. I have learned that the fabric does not adhere to the tape right away, so there is opportunity to move it around to try and get it as straight as possible. I try to use the holes as a guide.

front view of the cross stitch in the card

Since it’s not the stickiest thing ever it’s hard to truly “stretch” the fabric across without pulling it off somewhere, I was at least able to get it pretty darn close. Now it’s remembering this technique for the next one I do with a cut out…

To really hold it in place I cut out another piece (with the Cricut) the from the 12×12 page slightly smaller than the 4.25″ x 5.5″ side and used more double sided tape along the outer edges of that piece to adhere it to the inside of the card. From what I can tell this worked well since I had enough clearance on each side and the fabric is completely underneath.

Stitching

Started: October 18th
Finished: October 21st

 

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This post uses affiliate links. This just means that if you go to the site and end up buying something I’ll get a small percent, this doesn’t increase the cost to you at all. 🙂 Thank you for your support!

close up of blue elephant and word happy

Born to Sparkle

This card became a last-minute add on to the 2018 family card project. I didn’t realize my niece’s birthday was at the beginning November and not the end. I wanted to make a card and decided to go for it and create her cross stitch card a year early.

I also felt that I needed to redeem myself from the card I made for her last year. It was my first attempt at doing something custom using different elements after being inspired by an Art Journeling class on CreativeLive. It was around that time that I discovered the Cricut and that has changed my crafting completely.

last year's card

Last year’s card

After the last few mishaps with the back stitching, this one has NONE! Once the stitching is done this is ready to put onto a card.

In my rush to get started I did not take a “before” image to share. I don’t even think the beginnings made it on Snapchat. I put on my CreativeLive lighting class and got down to business.

front view of card

I’m not sure why I thought that if a pattern was up to 80 stitches wide I could fit it on a smallish card. On 14 count that’s almost 6 inches. This project is on a very small piece of 22 count to make it closer to the 3-4 inch mark. Having barely finish a 22 count a few weeks ago I think my eyes were still able to look at itty-bitty holes. I pulled out the size 28 needle again and got started.

close up of stitching

This one was run so close to the edges of my fabric I wasn’t even able tape up the edges. I just had to be very careful not to fray anything, which didn’t work. I found myself pulling on the fabric a lot. Luckily I didn’t fray it to the point of taking out stitches.

top view of card

To keep with the purple sparkle theme I used my purple shimmery paper as a mount. The crazy design cutout was drawn in Illustrator using one of the built in brush patterns. Without a machine I wouldn’t have been able to cut all those curves.

Stitching

Started: October 27th
Finished: November 1st

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side view close up of card

Thing 1 & Thing 1 & Thing 2,3,4

At my day job the team decided to dress up as Things 1-4 from Dr. Suess’s Cat in the Hat. While I chose not to participate in the donning of red leggings and blue wigs, I did come up with a way to celebrate with the team.

Most of the team partakes in coffee on the regular, so I thought cute coffee mugs could work as a fun add on to the theme (and a quick Google search inspired this). I went out and bought some white mugs and black 651 vinyl and got to work.

I did get lazy with trying to draw these all myself and found that people sell these ready to go in vector format on Etsy. This is where I got my version: JLCraftsCreations. (This takes you right to the item in her store)

mug with care instructions

Due to who is in and out and going to parties there are two Thing 1’s and then Things 2-4 for the rest of the team. The first go round I forgot to measure what size to make the circle, but I did remember 2 Thing 1’s. Second go round I make them the size I needed, but completely spaced the second Thing 1. Luckily I hadn’t closed anything yet and was able to whip out another Thing 1 on the Cricut. (Tip: you can select the little eyeball to hide any item in Cricut Design space you don’t want to “make” at the moment.)

care instruction cut out

While this was a fairly simple project, it still took quite a bit of time getting the pieces off the paper and onto the mug. I used Glad Press n’ Seal to lay the vinyl onto the mugs. Usually I think contact paper is recommended, but Press n’ Seal isn’t as sticky, but it does wrinkle easily.

Overall it was a fun little project to help me avoid doing actual work over the weekend.

I apologize for the lack of during photos. I did Snapchat some video, but unfortunately that can’t be uploaded to this blog due to restrictions on the free service.

Follow along on Snapchat!

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line up of mugs 1-4

Birthday Care Bear

the completed project

Today is my best friend’s BIRTHDAY! When she told me she liked the Care Bears I found a cross stitch book on ebay and found this Birthday Bear! I knew I wanted to make it for her. It took a long time, but it’s done and delivered!

I started this cross stitch immediately after finishing the butterfly card. Since I survived using the dark 18 count Aida I assumed I could manage Hardanger (it’s also called 22 count). Boy was I wrong! And I overestimated my eyesight. I know it is small, but didn’t realize just how hard it would be to stitch. I could barely tell if there was a full x or not.

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I ended up at Joann’s for a LED magnifying glass on day 2 of working on this project. Even with using it I couldn’t see very well or my vision is going bad faster than I thought. I found it challenging to keep my eyes focused for very long. Not sure if this is common since I don’t know anyone who regularly works on Hardanger. If you have and have any tips please share!

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8/25/18: Although this milestone is hard to see, it is a milestone. I got the white on white almost complete. There is still some in the ears, but I don’t trust myself to count that far from my current position. I did however complete the belly area of the bear. The count is 1 off somehow, but I’m hopeful I can work around it without making the entire image seem off.

care bear with white belly complete

8/25/18: progress report

After much more work on this I finally finished. The left side is definitely off, but that makes it unique and handmade right?

10/14/18: The stitching is complete!

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10/14/18: progress report, the main stitching is done

Now time for backstitching and well the french knots ended up not happening. I realized this as I started typing this.

I used the Cricut to cut out the frame to finish this. The total size is 8 in x 8 in. As much as I tried to make a card out of it I wasn’t able to. Five attempts at cutting a card from my A3+ paper and it just left my sticky board a mess. The paper shredded no matter what setting I used when trying to pull it off.

I was so desperate to finish this on time and with my other commitments I completely missed actually finishing everything on this project. Maybe it’s time to slow down a bit (which I know can’t happen with many stokes in the fire).

I used to do really well and not miss stitches or anything else. Now my work has mistakes everywhere, too many things happening that are distractions. I have many more deadlines to reach, so no slowing down now.

Stitching

Started: July 21st
Finished: October 16th

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This post uses affiliate links. This just means that if you go to the site and end up buying something I’ll get a small percent, this doesn’t increase the cost to you at all. 🙂

All commissions from affiliate links go to the maintenance of this blog. Thank you for your support!

Flutterby the Butterfly

I started this pattern at Side Projects Club. It is because of this group that I have gotten through so many cross stitches the last couple of years. This year is turbo mode with all the cards I’ve been making.

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I found this pattern in a library book called Stitch Graffiti by Heather Holland-Daly. I enjoyed this book so much I bought it! I can only dream and aspire to create fun and creative patterns like she has, but for now I will continue with the ready-made ones. I have yet to venture off cloth, but I would like to try stitching on screen sometime, it never would have crossed my mind before reading her book.

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Although I’m not to the point of creating awesome designs, I did do my own thing for the colors. I don’t have the correct variegated thread, so I combined two colors that are close to create my own version of variegation. The colors work well together and stand out from the dark cloth.

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This is the first project that I am branching out from the usual white or cream colored Aida cloth and trying the dark blue. To make things even more complicated I thought I had purchased 14 count, turns out it’s 18 count. So this project got extra small very quickly. Luckily at Side Projects Club there’s lots of light and white tables to bounce light back to see the holes in the cloth. Working on this at home is a bit more of challenge.

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To finish this card I used E6000 to glue the corners to the paper. This thing isn’t moving at all! I think it ended up a little crooked, but overall it turned out very nice. I also used a small corner rounder tool per my mom’s suggestion to make this look a little softer.

This is a birthday card for someone I used to talk to a lot, but we recently had a falling out. I hope she gets it and enjoys, but I can’t be too surprised if it comes back to me as I am not certain of her new address and sent it to the only one I have.

Stitching

Started: July 14th
Finished: July 20th

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This post uses affiliate links. This just means that if you go to the site and end up buying something I’ll get a small percent, this doesn’t increase the cost to you at all. 🙂 Thank you for your support!

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Birthday on my mind

I somehow managed to not make any cards in the entire month of August. All year I made a point to make at least one a month. I missed the mark last month.

The card featured here was on my mind since I finished my last set of new cards in July. I knew I wanted it to be a birthday card. I would cut an oval with the Cricut, stamp Happy Birthday with a script font in blue, and mount it to the card using foam tape. I had the wallpaper piece ready to go and everything, but for some reason I put this off for over a month.

 

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I have been working on another cross stitch card for October, it’s just nowhere near done yet. More on that one later.

Back to the new card I made…I was doing my normal mass scrolling through Facebook and saw a new event pop up from a former teacher. (I only knew her through National Honors Society, never actually had her as a class teacher) Anyway, at some point we became friends on Facebook. So this event is to send her snail mail birthday cards. She is turning 40 and wants to celebrate with everyone by getting “a boatload of mail” for her birthday.

I wish I had thought of that last year when I turned 30. I love getting snail mail, but sadly my mailbox is filled with bills and junk.

Even though I don’t know Ms. Connors that well I decided that the reason I wanted to make this card and had the idea for it for so long was to send it to her. One of those odd the universe is trying to make something happen, just listen!

I hope she likes her custom hand made card from a former semi-student.

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This post uses affiliate links. This just means that if you go to the site and end up buying something I’ll get a small percent, this doesn’t increase the cost to you at all. 🙂

All commissions from affiliate links go to the maintenance of this blog. Thank you for your support!