A Stitcher’s Dictionary: Table of Contents

Stitcher's Dictionary Image

Each week on Little Thread Crafts I do a Term of the Week article, where I pick a common word or phrase among cross-stitchers and explain its meaning.

Below you will find an alphabetized list of every term I’ve done so far. Think of it like a cross-stitcher’s dictionary, and this is the table of contents.

Click the word to read the article. Happy Stitching!

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Friday Finishes #29: Christmas Teddy Bear

And just as quickly as it begun, it ends. That’s what I get for not stitching very many Christmas presents! Today’s Friday Finishes is the Christmas teddy bear I stitched for my nephew.

Name of Piece: Teddy Bear Plush Pet GNTBWM

Designed by: There is no designer listed.

Distributed as a kit by Charles Craft through their Plush Pet series.

Kit Contains: Plush Pet with 18 ct. Aida cloth bib, Free Designs, Color Key, and Washing Instructions

Finished Size: 2.5 in by 2 in

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Friday Finishes #28: Beary Kissmas

Ah, more than a year later we are finally caught up to the point that we’re to Christmas 2013 presents and finishes! The first of our two Christmas finishes is a mini kit of two Christmas teddy bears.

Name of Piece: 30642 Beary Kissmas

Designed by: Carole Rodgers for The New Berlin Co.

Distributed as a kit by The New Berlin Co. under their Christmas Ornament Kit series.

Kit Contains: Ornament frame, self-adhesive mounting board, DMC embroidery floss, 14 ct. evenweave fabric, 1/8″ satin ribbon, needle, and easy to follow instructions.

Finished Size: I’d say roughly 2.5 in by 3 in, as it’s an oval shape.

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Friday Finishes #26: Welcome Home

As we are all very well aware, I am a big fan of mini kits. My favorite mini kits are the ones that have a lot of detail in a few small amount of space. Today’s Friday Finishes is one of those detailed mini kits!

Name of Piece: WM45690 Home

Designed by: There is no designer listed.

Distributed as a kit by Plaid Bucilla.

Kit Contains: Frame, 14 ct. Aida cloth (100% cotton), floss, needle, instructions, and chart.

Finished Size: 2.5 in x 2.5 in. 

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Progress Report: Little Princess, Part 1

So imagine my surprise as I went to write the article on my progress on Little Princess today, that there was no article that came before it! I have no clue why it wasn’t in my Drafts folder like all my other Progress Reports have been. So instead of the article I had planned to finish out Day 18, here is all the progress on this piece from before!

So you can watch me start this project and discuss all its particular on the Five Minute Stitch:

The Five-Minute Stitch! EP27

Oh man, when you’ve been looking at 14 ct. and 16 ct. aida for awhile, looking at the 18 ct. fabric on this kit for the first time in a long time was a shock! It’s such a massive size difference for only a few more holes.

Anyway, here is a very quick round up on the progress on Little Princess! Watch the above video I linked if you want more details on it.

The start of the project!

The start of the project! Once again, more fractionals.

A bunch more progress made from before.

A bunch more progress made from before.

IMG_0208

Almost all but the main yellow finished here.

Last of the other colors, beyond the metallics. Time to start back on the main yellow.

Last of the other colors, beyond the metallics. Time to start back on the main yellow.

All I have left to do is the main yellow color that makes up the crown, the metallic backstitch, the regular backstitch, and then the french knots. There’s really not a lot left to go on this project!

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Progress Report is an update on all my stitching habits, from the kits to the stitching to the finishing process and more! Right now I am featuring one of my cat-themed projects and several of the mini kits I’m currently working on, along with other pieces I like to pull out and work on at random.

By the way – to keep up on Little Thread Crafts stitching news and get pictures, updates, and more that don’t appear on the blog until much later, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! I would greatly appreciate it!

NaBloPoMo November 2014

Reading Instead of Stitching

So there’s not going to be a real article today about stitching related stuff because my queue ran out two days ago and I have yet to build up another one. And instead of doing any stitching or writing I spent all of today reading, which I haven’t done in a very long time.

When I was a kid I used to be an avid reader, I read novels probably every day. And sometimes I finished those novels on the same day. (I’m a very fast reader.) I used to challenge myself to see how many chapter books I could finish in a week.

Now, even though I write constantly (usually between 1,000 and 7,000 words a day between the blog and other pursuits) the last time I read a new novel, one I haven’t read before, was April, I think? I’ve re-read several of my favorites and the last novel I re-read was early August or so. I don’t read actual novels so much anymore. I read blog posts, news articles, Facebook updates, etc., but I don’t read books.

Very late last night I was bored lying in bed, and so I started in on Sense and Sensibility. I’ve read Pride and Prejudice a year or so back and was surprised to like it. I don’t know why I was surprised. I prefer a lot of the classics – Jules Verne is one of my utmost favorite writers, Agatha Christie and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle following closely behind. But anyway, I bought a collection of her novels on my Kindle after finishing Pride and Prejudice, which I may read again since it’s in this collection, and so last night I thought, “why not read some Jane Austen?” Sense and Sensibility was the first book in the collection.

It was decent enough, and a very fast read, as I read for about two hours last night and finished it in about four hours today. I think I like Pride and Prejudice more, but it was fun to see who ended up with who, as I knew a lot more about P&P before I read it than I did about Sense and Sensibility. And then, when I finished, I saw I had Wuthering Heights on my Kindle also, so I thought, “why not? I’m in a reading mood today.”

I will say, other than knowing the title and that it’s a classic, I knew absolutely nothing about Wuthering Heights before starting. I knew some guy named Heathcliff was in it. I’m more than halfway through the book as of this writing. It’s definitely not anything like I thought it was going to be. It’s also not incredibly compelling, like I can’t put it down. It’s one of those stories where the outcome of the plot is revealed in the first chapter, and the rest is an explanation of what led to that point, and I’ve seen both novels and movies done in spectacular fashion with this story type.

Wuthering Heights, in my opinion, is not one of those spectacularly done stories. Not that it’s boring, it’s just… I’m more reading to get to the end and see what the conclusion is because obviously I already know what happens in terms of the back story.

So there is the explanation behind no article today! I’m reading. I should be back with all my stitching related stuff tomorrow. See you then!

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By the way – to keep up on Little Thread Crafts stitching news and get pictures, updates, and more that don’t appear on the blog until much later, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! I would greatly appreciate it!

NaBloPoMo November 2014

Progress Report: Families Photo Album

Today’s article is late because I spent today stitching and wanted that to be today’s upload!

This is the project I talked about in yesterday’s article, How Many Days Until Christmas?!

I bought this photo album several months ago with the intent to give it to my grandfather for Christmas. My grandmother, who passed away two years ago from cancer, used to be an avid photographer. She always loved photos. I worked with him over the summer to catalog some of her older photos, as their photo albums were falling apart. So I decided to buy him a new album as a Christmas present.

The photo album had a spot in the front for a photo:

The window for a photo.

The window for a photo.

But instead of putting a photo, I decided I was going to stitch something and stick it in there instead! I had to do some hunting for a chart that would fit, as I measured the window as being 4.5 inches by 4.5 inches.

I ended up purchasing the Families Are Forever chart from Daily Cross Stitch. There’s no cover photo and I can’t show you the chart, but here is the link to purchase if you’d like to stitch it yourself! The chart’s only $1.

Families Are Forever: Daily Cross Stitch chart

I calculated the stitch size using a chart from Yarn Tree that converts stitch size to inches depending on the aida count, which you can find here: Stitches to Inches. Figuring  by the stitch size and knowing that the window was 4.5 inches by 4.5 inches, I needed a 16 ct. aida, which I ordered from ebay and got a few weeks ago. Then I measured and cut out my piece!

The aida had been rolled up and tied with a bow, so I had to break out the iron and some water to flatten it out before I started stitching:

This is my first time using the iron at the apartment!

This is my first time using the iron at the apartment!

And I wanted to change the colors provided on the chart to colors I already had in my stash. I changed the main words from light blue to black, and then I picked out some greens and reds from my stash as I only had one of the colors it suggested. I think the two reds may be too close together but it’s too late to change it now.

Here I am ready to start!

Here I am ready to start!

It was at this point, after an hour of work setting up the stitching, picking the colors, measuring and cutting the aida, ironing the fabric, that I realized I had made a mistake. I re-measured the window and realized the actual visual size is 3.5 inches, not 4.5 inches. So if I wanted to make sure the chart fit, I would need more like 20 ct. aida and not 16 ct. But it was too late now to change it. I decided I would fiddle with the chart by eliminating all the extra spaces and see how it looked.

So I quickly started stitching to see if I could make everything fit lengthwise if I got rid of the extra spacing between the stitches, as I knew width-wise some things would be cut off regardless, but that was all right.

So here is all the stitching I did to get to the top and bottom of the chart:

The center letter done.

The center letter done.

And here is the top and bottom!

And here is the top and bottom!

There is barely enough space between the top and bottom, but I stuck it in the album just to be sure and it BARELY fits. It’s so close the top stitch and bottom stitch are directly against the matte, but that doesn’t matter. It fits!

So I stitched a little bit more just to doubly make sure it fit:

Ooh, look how little space there is.

Ooh, look how little space there is.

This piece is gonna be very tight. That’s what I get for making an error. But I can make it work!

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Progress Report is an update on all my stitching habits, from the kits to the stitching to the finishing process and more! Right now I am featuring one of my cat-themed projects and several of the mini kits I’m currently working on, along with other pieces I like to pull out and work on at random.

By the way – to keep up on Little Thread Crafts stitching news and get pictures, updates, and more that don’t appear on the blog until much later, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! I would greatly appreciate it!

NaBloPoMo November 2014

How Many Days Until Christmas?!

Oh my gosh, it’s the middle of November already. Where in the world did all the time go? Can I have have time back, please? I’m not ready for Christmas!

I mean, I am ready for Christmas. I’m from a family where we start decorating as soon as Halloween’s over. I’ve already got Christmas music on the radio. I’ve done a lot of my shopping already. (A lot – but not all. I’ve still got a lot of gifts left.) The boyfriend and I are getting our first tree for the apartment. It’s the kitten’s first Christmas. I’m excited!

What I’m less excited about is that I wanted to do stitched gifts again for Christmas this year, and yet again I haven’t started on any of them. We all know how well last year’s Christmas gifts turned out. It seems like I’m always too busy to start on projects for Christmas this time of year… I’ve moved three times in the last three years and each time it’s been towards the end of the year. But I don’t want to start working on projects in January or February!

I think part of the reason why I’m so behind on gifts this year, more so than even last year, is because I’m not sure how much of my family actually appreciates the stitching, and I’m nervous to give them anything. Stitching something takes a LONG time, especially if you’re slow like me. I’ve been seeing more and more stitching horror stories lately about people making pieces for their friends or family and having the gift go totally unappreciated, and in some cases, thrown away or given away in donations. With the amount of time I spend rescuing pieces from being thrown away and from thrift stores and the like, I’m terrified my stitching will end up in the same place.

It’s like… I see projects all the time and I think, “that will be wonderful for so-and-so!” But do I really want to put in hours and days and weeks of work into something if the other person is going to think it’s cheap or not valuable? Look, So-And-So, I spent a MONTH working on this, for YOU, when I could’ve been doing a hundred other things!, is what I would like to say to this imaginary person.

I guess the easiest solution would be to ask the intended receivers of the stitched gifts if they would like to actually receive them. My mind rebels against that. I don’t want to ask. Don’t ask me why. Maybe I’m afraid that I ask and it turns out no one wants my stitching that I put so much time and effort into. Thousands of stitches a month, hundreds of words on the blog, devoted to this one subject, and yet no one in my family will take a stitched gift.

I know that isn’t true, though. I know several relatives who would love a stitched gift, and I don’t have to worry about them ending up in the trash or some thrift store donation box. So I suppose I should stop worrying about imaginary people and focus on the people I know WILL want the gifts. Make things for them. And if there’s someone I’m on the fence about, I can either ask or let them approach me about stitching something for them. I’m not so poor I can’t buy those people regular gifts, and take the time to make things for people who will appreciate them!

… Of course I have this epiphany now and once again I’m reminded there’s a month and a half until Christmas. And I’m a slow stitcher now on crunch time who does not do well under high pressure, as we learned last year. So… I should probably put my grand plans to bed until next year.

My Sweet Baby finish is definitely being given away for the baby’s first Christmas, and I have another project I’ve yet to start but is a very fast stitch as an insert for a photo album. There’s two. Same number as last year. I can reach this one manageable goal, right?

Right. I can do this. Christmas 2014, here I come!

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“Random Corner” is a place for all articles related to all manners of cross-stitchery and the cross-stitch community that don’t fall into the topics covered in the regular segments. There is no set schedule for Random Corner articles, they’re just random!

By the way – to keep up on Little Thread Crafts stitching news and get pictures, updates, and more that don’t appear on the blog until much later, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! I would greatly appreciate it!

NaBloPoMo November 2014

Progress Report: Owl Pillow Cases

Okay! A whole year later we are finally up to the very last Christmas 2013 present!

This was the Christmas project that got started last, so it had the least amount done. And the way it’s looking this year it probably won’t be finished this Christmas either! What’s funny is I actually have this as a mini kit as well, so if it starts coming down to another time crunch I can just stitch the mini kit as a gift instead.

My little sister loves owls, so when I saw these pillow cases I had to stitch them for her. (I am currently on a pillow case kick. I hated stamped projects but I love making the pillow cases, it’s quite the juxtaposition.) But with the problems of the Christmas Gift Fiasco I didn’t get very far into the project, and I have yet to work on it at all this year. I know, it’s bad.

So here’s the picture of the progress from December 2013:

The pillow case!

The pillow case!

I pulled the pillow case out of the ziplock baggie I keep my projects in and for some reason this one had a bunch of hair on it? Hmm. Strange. It’s probably cat hair, to be honest. I’ll have to pay more attention when putting stuff away, I guess. A little cat hair never hurt anything!

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Progress Report is an update on all my stitching habits, from the kits to the stitching to the finishing process and more! Right now I am featuring one of my cat-themed projects and several of the mini kits I’m currently working on, along with other pieces I like to pull out and work on at random.

By the way – to keep up on Little Thread Crafts stitching news and get pictures, updates, and more that don’t appear on the blog until much later, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! I would greatly appreciate it!

NaBloPoMo November 2014

Progress Report: Dragonfly Needlepoint

Here it is. The dreaded first-ever needlepoint project which was the reason behind the Christmas Gift Fiasco of 2013. It was also my first, rather fail attempt at a needlepoint project.

Now all the mistakes made were entirely my fault. I shouldn’t have picked such a detailed needlepoint for my very first project. I didn’t realize how hard needlepoint would be for a beginner. I thought, “Needlepoint is just a bunch of half-crosses! I can do half-crosses!” I was very wrong.

In any case, I’ve learned my lesson. While I might finish this needlepoint at some point – hopefully when I’ve got more experience with needlepoint – I definitely will not be giving it as a gift. No way. Too many mistakes, the fact that I’ve messed up the threads… I would much rather start and finish something else than give away a needlepoint riddled with mistakes. Besides, you’re supposed to keep the first kind of something you make. As a memento, and as a record of progress.

So here is all the progress I made on my first needlepoint, nearly a year later!

All the progress I made during Week 1!

All the progress I made during Week 1!

So the project I picked was a pair of dragonflies from Dimensions – my mother loves dragonflies and the color blue, and they were blue dragonflies. The perfect project, I thought.

The dragonfly itself was not that difficult.

Week 2 Progress

Week 2 Progress

The Dimensions kit came with pre-sorted and pre-labeled thread, but it wasn’t labeled by “Light Green”, it was labeled by “#12345″ (totally random number). The two colors I switched were one number apart. I should have paid more attention considering one had 3 skeins and the other had 6 skeins but again, this was my first needlepoint, I didn’t catch the mistake until it was too late.

Week 3 Progress!

Week 3 Progress!

Here is where I stopped:

Here is Week 4, and where the mistake happened.

Here is Week 4, and where the mistake happened.

The problem is because all of that green on the right hand side and the little bit on the left – those two greens were supposed to be switched. There is a lot of light green thread and not a lot of dark green thread. If I were to switch now there would be a noticeable difference, to me, but I may be able to salvage it. I don’t know yet.

Ah going through all the pictures again is depressing me. How could I be so stupid to switch the colors? I should have paid closer attention. Especially for a gift! I shouldn’t have put myself under such a time crunch.

Okay. I’m gonna go and stitch on something so this doesn’t make me so sad. Ugh.

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Progress Report is an update on all my stitching habits, from the kits to the stitching to the finishing process and more! Right now I am featuring one of my cat-themed projects and several of the mini kits I’m currently working on, along with other pieces I like to pull out and work on at random.

By the way – to keep up on Little Thread Crafts stitching news and get pictures, updates, and more that don’t appear on the blog until much later, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! I would greatly appreciate it!

NaBloPoMo November 2014

Progress Report: Christmas Teddy Bear, Start to Finish

Remember my Christmas Gift Fiasco last year? Remember the pieces I talked about on the Beary Kissmas Progress Report? Now look at the calendar and realize with some growing panic that Christmas 2014 is a month and a half away.

Oh wait, no, I should be the one doing that.

All joking aside, here I am almost a year later with a Progress Report on one of the only two Christmas presents I finished in time to give as gifts last year. One was the Beary Kissmas, mentioned above – that was a gift to my boyfriend (and technically myself) to hang on our baby Christmas tree – and the other is the subject of this article!

For my nephew’s first Christmas I bought a little lion plushie with a bib and stitched his first and last initial on it – which happens to both be ‘M’. You can read all about it and see the pictures on the Friday Finishes I wrote on it last year:

Friday Finishes #18: Stuffed Lion

So, for Christmas 2013, I had the genius idea of doing it again! He was a little older now and he loved the lion I gave him. I found a bear version of the plushie somewhere (Joann’s, Hobby Lobby, Michael’s, and my local Wal-Mart all carry different ones and at this point I couldn’t tell you which ones I got from where, as I have several of the plushies now) and set about stitching on it.

This time, I wanted to go for something different. I had three plushies at that point and they all come with a handful of charts you can stitch onto the bib: an ice cream cone, a boat, those kinds of things. I went through and picked one out I thought he would like: it was an airplane on a cloud. There was enough room in the cloud for some back stitch, so I pulled out a pen and very roughly sketched out his nickname. It fit! I was excited and got straight to work.

The stitching went extremely fast – probably faster than the last one – so I didn’t take many pictures. It took me maybe two hours to finish, at most!

Here it is halfway done:

A picture of the full bear. I took a close-up of the stitching but it came out all blurry so this is a better view of it.

A picture of the full bear. I took a close-up of the stitching but it came out all blurry so this is a better view of it.

And then here it is all finished: cloud, backstitch, and added nickname and all!

I was very pleased with myself for how well it turned out!

I was very pleased with myself for how well it turned out!

I know I’m pretty much a year late, but there should be a Friday Finishes on this coming out this month, where you’ll get all the technical details on it.

As for whether or not I’m going to do this a third year in a row? Not planning on it! He loves playing with them but I think two is enough. I think I’ll just go to the store for something this year!

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Progress Report is an update on all my stitching habits, from the kits to the stitching to the finishing process and more! Right now I am featuring one of my cat-themed projects and several of the mini kits I’m currently working on, along with other pieces I like to pull out and work on at random.

By the way – to keep up on Little Thread Crafts stitching news and get pictures, updates, and more that don’t appear on the blog until much later, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! I would greatly appreciate it!

NaBloPoMo November 2014