Friday 24 February 2017

Alphabet Club Catch Up - L

And another week of desperately trying to catch up with the Alphabet Club SAL! First to the stitching part - the letter is L, and here is a little lamb, or German 'Lamm'.

The 'L' word I chose is another one that is...well, not exactly in-translatable, but I guess it's more picturesque than the English equivalent - 'Luftschloss', literally 'air castle'. Building air castles ('Luftschlösser bauen') means the act of daydreaming, and dreaming big - like, for example, dreaming about being a princess and living in a castle, which is where I'm guessing the word comes from. And people say Germans are to practical!

Monday 20 February 2017

February Gifted Gorgeousness

A few days late (okay, almost a week) but that has become kind of the norm for me, so let's ignore the excuses (they are all lame anyway - I just got sidetracked by other stuff) and jump right into the gorgeousness!

The biggest event in the past month was Jo's Secret Sweetheart Valentine's blog hop. Since I used everything suitable I stitched in the last years already, I needed something new, and after a lot of going back and forth trough my patterns, I finally found this cuty in Cross Stitch Collection #232 that I bought used for another pattern altogether. I quickly (and secretly) stitched it up and made it into a simple card for Felix. The magazine has three more of these patterns (Elefants, Cats and Owls, all designed by Angela Poole) and I want to stitch all of them eventually now - maybe more cards for the next three years?

Of course I also worked some more on my fans, or on the one fan I already worked on anyway. I started working on the blues, and filled in some more of the gold, and I'm still loving it very much, but I think I need to put it aside for a bit or I won't get any of my other deadlined projects done! Let's see how long I can keep it up...or rather, down, I guess.

Not deadlined, but still a gift, I did work some on Felix' socks, and got the first one down to just a bit under the heel - smooth going to the toes now when I can just find the time!

And I also very excited and have to share with you that I also got a gift! The lovely Jo herself send me a price because I somehow managed to not forget to post for GG a single month in 2016 (I know bragging stinks, but I'm really kinda proud here!), and she picked up this wonderful chart from Shepherd's Bush (I've always wanted to stitch something from them!) and sent it to me together with this lovely duck card. Thank you very much, Jo!

And lastly, not GG related, but just my regular update on Puppeteer: I got another 520 stiches in and getting ever closer to the end of the page! (I'm going to have to double check that stitch count eventually, I don't really trust myself to count!)

Wednesday 15 February 2017

Alphabet Club Catch Up - K

Another week, another try to catch up with this SAL! Let's start with some stitching - here are some kitties, or 'Kätzchen' in German.

'K' is a somewhat easier letter for me since I consider it a very 'German' letter - in the sense that many words that start with a 'C' in other European languages, like English, French or Spanish, will start with a 'K' in German (unless they start with a 'Ch', we do keep that!). Examples for this are 'Katze' (cat), 'Kaffee' (coffee), 'Kerze' (candle) and 'Kakao' (cocoa). The word I'm choosing for today's post, however, doesn't fall into this 'Kategorie' (you can guess that one!) and is instead another one from my list of 'instranslatable' words, and it is 'Kummerspeck' - literally, 'Sadness Bacon'. 'Kummer' in German means 'sadness, sorrow, or grief', for example, when you are lovesick, you have 'Liebeskummer'. 'Speck' means 'bacon', but is also used (affectionately, in most cases) if someone put on a little weight. So if you are sad or heartbroken and grieving, and find comfort in food and it starts showing, you got 'Kummerspeck'. If only it went away as quickly as it came when the Kummer is over!

Tuesday 14 February 2017

Secret Stitching Sweethearts Blog Hop

It's Valentine's Day and Jo is hosting her famous Secret Stitching Sweethearts blog hop again! Every participant was supposed to send a picture of something Valentine's related they made, then we were each randomly assigned one of those pictures to post. Here's the one I've got:

I don't know who my secret sweetheart is, so we'll have to wait for her or him to post here to find more about this! In case you want to look at more of the secret sweetheart fun, here's the full list of all participants on Jo's blog: click

Wednesday 8 February 2017

Some progress - just like that

It's been a while since I updated without having a SAL to answer to, but here I am, having progress to show and now check-in in sight - am I missing something? I think it's because WIPocalypse has moved to the end of the month instead of lingering around somewhere in the middle! In any case, let's get to that progress now.

With just being one day late, I finished page 7 of the Fire and Ember SAL on February 1st. This also marks the end of the first row of pages, and I'm still amazed by how awesome this looks when taking a step back - Jody is amazing with her charts! I also think my fixing is reasonably well hidden, so I continue working on this. Yay me!

 I have since started my 8th page (which is actually page 14, I'm working down the fixing-section on the far left) and made some progress, this should be done way before the end of the month this time.

Of course, I also worked on my 'mystery' start, and as of today, it won't be a mystery anymore! Jo got it right again, it's a fan, or rather, it will be three fans - Joan Elliotts 'Fans of the Far East', and I'm working on the middle fan right now. Here is where I am today:

I've also had a small new start...I got this awesome book with little beaded boxes for Christmas, and was just about to dive in and buy a lot of new beads, when I remembered that I actually bought a small kit using a similar technique a while back, so I might as well try that one out first. This is a little beaded pin kit from mill hill, also working with cylindric beads and peyote stitch, and I'm having a ton of fun with it! I got this on sale at sewandso for really cheap, but sadly, those kits seem to be out of production, so I can't easily get the other ones now...but that's okay, I can always start my boxes when I'm finished! I'm trying to pace myself and only work on this a little at a time, but I'm having so much fun it's difficult to put down.

Lastly, here's my current progress on The Puppeteer. 356 more stitches of black!

Tuesday 7 February 2017

Alphabet Club Catch Up - J

I'm so far behind on this SAL it hurts, but I still believe I can catch up! ... hopefully. So, first step in the right direction, the letter is 'J' and my stitching is Magicals January Ornament from two years ago (I could have picked June or July which are also really pretty, but January was the first one and the one that made me fall in love with those, and still one of my favourites)

Sadly, I didn't find any good intranslatable words for 'J', so instead, I picked something that is, in my eyes, very, very German (also Austrian and Swiss, but I can't really speak for them) - 'Jodeln' (Yodeling). Now according to wikipedia, Jodeln is 'singing without words, using syllabels and rapid switches between high and low registers' and, also according to wikipedia, similar techniques have been used in mountain areas all over the worls to allow for communication between herders, gatheres, foresters and other people working in soltitude (the yodeling carries really far between mountains and makes it easy to send signals from one peak to another). Under the name 'Jodeln', however, this technique was first named in what is today's Bavaria and Austria, and it is still used in some forms of folklore music (if you are interested in that stuff, you should also look up the 'Alphorn') and it sounds something like this:

Or like this:

And this:

'J' is also for 'jolly', so let me use this post to thank the lovely Mii Stitch for this wonderful pattern she sent me after drawing my name in the giveaway:

I've admired Ursula Michael's charts from afar for a while now, but actually having one in my hands it's even better than I imagined and I can't wait to get to stitch this!

Wednesday 1 February 2017

January WIPocalypse

I think I'm actually two days late for this - my mind kept telling me 'last day of the month' when in reality, I think it's the last sunday, but that just means you get two more days worth of stitching to look at! Not that I have too much time to stitch to begin with (because of good stuff, mostly, but still stuff cutting into my me-time), but progress is progress!

Let's start with this month's conversation topic: What Stitch-a-Longs (SALs) are you participating in this year? On the blogging side, I'm a bit boring, following just the same ones as last year - this here WIPocalypse, Jo's Gifted Gorgeousness, and IHSW when I remember it. I'm also trying to catch up on the Alphabet Club, since I am several months behind. On the actual stitching side, I'm still mostly on track with the one-page-a-month Fire and Ember SAL, and I bought the two SALs from Lakeside Needlecraft, the Fantasy and the Under the Sea one and also the Under the Sea by Ship's Manor, but I haven't started any of those yet and will probably stitch them at my own pace later.

Now for my actual progress:

I've been working on my 'mystery' new years start and completed the flowery part by adding those little white flowers. From now on, the actual shape is going to become more and more obvious! I'm actually a bit further than this, but I wanted to show you just the flower because I think it will look strange-ish for a bit now. This is where I am at:

Can you guess the shape yet?

I've also been working on the Fire and Ember SAL - stitching along that edge is still going slowly, but I think it's turning out a-okay. I'm not quite finished with the page, so I am technically late on this for the first time, but it shouldn't take more than a few days to catch up.

I've been working on Felix' sock, and I'm almost ready to turn the heal - I think I want the leg to be a tiny bit longer, but I'm not sure yet. I will decide soon, though.

And last but not least, here is my start on the Puppeteer. Those are nine days of stitching, so one and a half of the 240 meteres of black - 460 stitches. I'm avaraging around 50 stitches a day, taking anywhere between 13 and 20 minutes. I like the progress so far, but as this page is mostly black, it will still be about a month before it's finished, I guess.