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.


Started: October 18th
Finished: October 21st


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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.


Started: October 27th
Finished: November 1st

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side view close up of card

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.


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!


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!

cross stitch_1018_01

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.


Started: July 21st
Finished: October 16th

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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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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!


Baby Girl Princess Cross Stitch

cross stitch_1117_13

UPDATE 11/24/17. Project is finished and framed!

UPDATE 10/21/17. Went to goal day meeting, met previous goal of finishing all stitching. Just the back stitching left now.

UPDATE 10/3/17. My dad passed this morning. Progress on this project has been put on hold for now.

UPDATE 9/23/17. Due to my dad being in hospice since mid-August I am now making loads of progress. I work on this every day while I’m up there. There are days when he sleeps a lot and others when we have time to visit. He has enjoyed seeing the progress made and how “full” it has gotten.

I finished the cross stitch for Brett yesterday and took it in for framing. I was told 2 weeks (sad) because they order frames on Wednesdays only. So me being slow didn’t finish until a Thursday.

Now it’s time to start birth sampler No. 3. As of yet there hasn’t been an announcement for baby 4. But I’m not ruling anything out at this point. Baby No. 3 was born at the end of January this year! So maybe she’ll have hers in a more timely manner.

I started this the evening of 5/11/17. (Yay documentation!) Usually I don’t start posting until I’m months in (and have no idea when I started), but I have vowed to be better about keeping up this blog, and with the Side Projects Club meetup I have motivation to work on these projects and *gasp* finish them. So if you want to follow the progress of this cross stitch from start to finish, just bookmark this blog, or maybe RSS it? I have no idea, but be sure to check back. It will be updated every 4 weeks (Goal Days at SPC).

Let the stitching begin!