Curious Cat

The curious cat. Aren’t they all so curious and frustrating at times? I happen to have 2 of them and know all too well their mischievous ways. Little did I know that a second cousin of mine also has an affinity for these adorable creatures.

It was just finding a pattern that would be fun for a birthday card. I was able to find one in an old pattern book for afghans (blankets, not the people). I’m not sure if this was supposed to be stitched on much larger cloth, but I went with 14 count Aida for this one. This pattern is only 39 stitches high by 42 wide! So small, yet so many stitches in there.

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For the longest time the body of this cat looked like a fish to me. My niece guessed what it was very quickly on Snapchat. The flowers added a nice pop of color to this piece.

I went with all scrap thread for this one since it was so small. I figured I would be safe. I was able to match leftovers from a kit to one of my bobbins of thread I already had. They are close enough I combined them. Can you tell? It’s the one with way more thread than the rest in the picture above.

Once I got to the “framing” of this piece I went for wallpaper. I wanted something brick or at least brick-like and found this goldish heavily textured paper.

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The parts that stand out aren’t wrinkles, they are meant to be there. I wanted to try and align the top line with the rope from the basket, but it wasn’t meant to be. The Cricut isn’t the most reliable thing in the world for matching what you see on the screen to where it might cut your paper. I took a gamble and lost this one, but it still turned out ok. I did like the extra space at the bottom to put a little birthday sign.

I employed the Cricut for some drawing. The letters are drawn with a pen by the Cricut and then it cut out the square. That is mounted with foam tape to be more 3D. I really enjoy foam tape. I was lazy and didn’t find a stamp to try and fit the 3.25″ width I was cutting (to match the frame) so I used the writing feature of the Cricut instead.

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I mounted everything to white cardstock with double sided tape. The wallpaper is struggling to stick though. The backing of this wallpaper is a strange fabric weave type thing.

Stitching

 

Started: January 8th
Finished: January 13th

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Young Chef

When looking for patterns for this project of cross stitch cards for my mom’s family I found most at dailycrossstitch.com. The patterns are pretty simple and small which works perfectly for cards. I don’t even think the patterns have backstitching or odd stitch sizes.

This is going to be a huge help with getting around 40 cards (might be over that?) done this year. January and June are the busiest months for birthdays so in between I need to keep cranking these cards out.

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This card is for a second cousin of mine. His mom already has her card. Her son, while an avid football player, also enjoys cooking and baking. If I recall correctly he now has a Kitchen Aid mixer to aid in his baking endeavors.

So for his hobby of being in the kitchen I chose a chef pattern. I am trying very hard not to have a repeat pattern. Having many avid football fans in the family makes that a little more challenging and requires a little sleuthing to find additional interests.

I have many papers, but it was hard to find one that said “food” or “chef”. I ended up with a brown checkered pattern which mimics a traditional picnic blanket or pizza restaurant table cloth. This is actually wallpaper. I can’t imagine having something so dark on a wall, but I guess that’s why it’s now discontinued. It works well and doesn’t detract too much from the actual cross stitch.

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To cut the paper I used my handy Cricut. It’s not perfect, but it gets the job done and I’m able to place the pattern neatly in the newly created frame. I mounted all of this with double sided tape onto my standard white cardstock.

Stitching

Started: December 31st
Finished: January 6th

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For the Love of Football

I’m not sure where to begin with this one. I put it off for as long as I could. My time is being split more and more between photography and my “day job”, leaving less time for cross stitching. The impending holidays also brought on a new low for me mentally making it hard to want to start up another cross stitch.

beginning

One night I managed to just get this started. I had everything ready, but never started. Eventually mid December I finally managed to get this one going. It’s so basic it really should have been quick, but there are so many stitches!

This card is for a new member of the family. He married in a few years back to a cousin of mine. I don’t know him all that well. I do know he loves football. He’s always full of energy and extremely nice to everyone he meets. Since he loves football I found this pattern from DailyCrossStitch.com to be the perfect fit.

finished card standing

I picked out 3 different colors for this card. My first choice was brown to not detract from the cross stitched piece. I selected two more in case the Cricut didn’t cut the card correctly. I’m still trying to figure out the best way to line things up on the screen to match what happens in real life.

Even though the outside is a “drab” brown the inside is a party! I found a bright balloon paper to finish the back of the cross stitch. I wasn’t able to find anything I liked and I didn’t want to use white, so this is what happened instead. It is a birthday card after all.

backing

Another card down and delivered and a lot more to come.

Stitching

Started: December 13th
Finished: December 30th

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close up of card

Birthday Puzzle

Kicking off the new year with the first of many cross stitch birthday cards.

To start things off is a custom design by me. My niece turned 19 today and is finishing up her first year of college. She also enjoys puzzles. I’ve been working through my collection to get them to her to work on (if they have all the pieces).

pattern, thread, Aida, scissors

Due to life distractions this cross stitch took a little longer than normal. The stitching was pretty basic, only two colors. I used a dark blue for the lettering. I tried variegated purple for the puzzle pieces. It wasn’t the variety in color that I had hoped for, but there is a little.

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Once the stitching was finished it was time to raid the paper drawer. This was harder to figure out what pattern or color to use since I didn’t have any sort of vision for this card beyond the cross stitch design.

In the end I chose polka dots. It just seemed fitting for my niece. I have no idea why. It seemed like a better choice than many of the options I looked at.

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Next up was cutting out the paper and square to frame the cross stitch. I have one ruler that has millimeters on it which was necessary for more precise measurements. I’m probably strange thinking that metrics are easier to use and measure with than inches. Could also be my dislike of fractions. Either way I was able to get the measurements needed to create my polka dot frame. The measurements weren’t perfect, but pretty darn close.

Stitching

Started: November 12th
Finished: November 20th

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Holiday Thank Yous

Despite knowing all year when Christmas is I managed to put off creating my thank you notes. I also flat out didn’t do cards to send to people. I probably should, but if I make them it’s lots of work and my personal life is pretty boring so nothing to write lengthy prose about. Anyway, I digress.

These cards are to send to the 4 people who give me gifts in my old age (post 30). My mom, my mother-in-law, and my godparents. This year I enlisted help for my godparents gifts from my husband. He’s getting into woodworking and made something for each of them. Since it’s his thing, I don’t have pictures of the projects. So this will continue to be about the cards and my side ramblings.

I have stamped onto wallpaper before and decided to go for it again. Although it’s somewhat hard to see I did actually stamp on the pear card. I also took a Sharpie to it for an outline. For the white card I used black ink and stamped right onto the wallpaper. I had to wait awhile before adhering it to the cardstock because it was starting to bleed a bit. I barely touched it and it started to run up the lines in the wallpaper. After letting it sit for a while I went ahead and finished up making it into a card. The pear I didn’t seem to have those issues, but you can barely see the text. It’s a little more visible in person depending on the angle.

For the other two cards I got out the handy Cricut. I was never good at cutting squares or any shape for that matter. Straight lines are hard and getting them the correct size is even worse. I used the Cricut to cut out my squares from pink and grey paper. I then took a red ink to stamp Thank You onto the pink paper and a dark blue ink I onto the grey. Then I used foam tape to adhere the paper to the wallpaper to give a more 3D appearance.

To attach the wallpaper to the cardstock I used double sided tape on all 4 cards. I didn’t have the time to mess with Yes Paste and get it all to stick properly. I hope to spend some time working on more wallpaper cards next year. Until then I have now created some cards for December and can complete my blog on 2018 Cards. I think I’ll do another blog for next year since I know I’ll have a lot of cards to make for my mom’s side of the family.

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flat lay 4 thank you cards

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.

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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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