Wednesday, 31 December 2008

A christmas best forgotten!

It has been an eventful Christmas for me this year. On Saturday I had a car accident on the motorway. I was checked over at the hospital and luckily the baby is fine somehow my stomach is the one part of me that escaped injury. I have never been so scared as I was waiting for a scan at the hospital but baby was happily bouncing around on the screen seemingly unaware of their lucky escape! I am covered in magnificent bruises, very sore and my car is a wreck- thankfully no one else was hurt and I escaped without any serious damage.
It hasn't all been drama though- here I am pre-accident on Christmas day- check out that bump! I'm definitely showing now and wearing very fetching maternity trousers. And baby is making their presence known by wriggling and kicking in the evenings. Better get started on some baby crafts soon- I'll be finding out the sex next week so might pick up some babygros (onesies) to stitch on after that.

Also the time off work whilst I'm recovering from the accident is giving me chance to get stuck into my stitching- it's helping take my mind off things and is one of the few things I can do to keep busy that doesn't hurt! I finished up a bag I've been working on for my mum:
The design is from a transfer, I enjoyed doing something traditional and it was pretty satisfying to tackle this design because it proved to me how much my stitching has improved (the back of my work is still bloody awful though- but who cares what the back looks like right?)

And I'm now getting started on some pieces for the Craftster 'Invite your partner' swap where I am swapping with two people whose work I admire greatly Lilyvanilli (Lily blogs) and Amyracinrose (Swell stitches). I'd better do a really fantastic job as they are both supertalented. I have plenty of ideas for the smaller pieces I'm going to send but am going to have to get plotting on what to do as the main projects.

As for NYE, I be having a quiet one, I've had quite enough adventure for now.
Happy new year xxx

Saturday, 6 December 2008

where's sophie at?

Well you may have noticed I've been missing. The reason is that I've got a WIP that has left me absolutely exhausted:

It might not look like much to you yet but I'm sure that when it's finished it will be the most perfect thing I've ever made! Yep I'm 15 weeks pregnant and until recently had been feeling pretty rotten which is why I've not been about much lately. Luckily my energy levels are starting to pick up (I no longer have to be in bed by 8 o'clock) and I've started to craft again. So between eating lots of ice cream and having strange emotional outbursts whilst slobbing in front of the telly here is what I've made:

The bag is a subversive cross stitch pattern although I've changed the colours- I used the waste canvas method. The penguin is going to be an Xmas card and the pattern was a freebie from Andrea Zuill's blog
It's great to be stitching again- I've missed it so much (although I have to admit there were a few days when I was feeling so sick and had to finish stuff for the tea towel tour where I was cursing the day I'd decided to take up embroidery a hobby!). I'm now working on two other totes before I try and finish some of my long list of works in progress. I'm also sketching some ideas for a magpie embroidery which will be the first thing I've done for a while based on my own design. Oh and maybe some cutesy baby crafts will start making an appearance... well hopefully not too cutesy, I promise not to go all pastel coloured on you ;)

Sunday, 9 November 2008


I have finished up on the Craftster tea towel tour my last piece of stitching was for Nannetta her towel had a sun, moon stars and astrology theme. So I did this:

Underneath the star is the constellation for Virgo (Nannetta's sign). It's a fairly simple design but I think it fits in with has already been stitched on the towel. I hope she likes it.
And I have recieved my finished towel- it is so fantastic.

Thanks to (left to right below) Sewsew-a-gogo, IamSusie, Timpani~Jax, UrsulaDiamond and Nannetta

I love everything on my towel- the designs are all very 'me' and the quality of the stitching is amazing. I was lucky to get a great group who have been fun to swap with- I really hope to swap with each of them again some time in the future. I feel sad that this swap is drawing to an end but it is great to see all the finished towels springing up on the Craftster gallery (it's a big gallery but you can click on 'show images only' to just view the pics)

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Read about me on Brook's blog!

I was very flattered when Brook contacted me via Craftster and asked if she could interview me for her blog. Naturally I jumped at the chance to be featured on one of my favourite blogs (and also felt totally stressed that I would give uber-dull answers). Well, Brook sent me a great list of questions and answering then was fun (and not at all stressful) you can read the interview here
Oh and while you are there be sure to check out Brooks other blog entries, she's got a great sense of humour and has also posted some seriously awesome work. Brook really knows her way around a pin-up girl (I'm referring to embroidery here!)
Big thankyou to Brook for asking me to do the interview- I promise to return the favour some day

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Cupcake flash embroidery

This is for SewSew-a-gogo on the tea towel tour. The embroidery is actually on an apron which is for her daughter. Sewsew gave the group a list of her daughters likes and among them were rub-on tattoos and baking. So I customised some old school flash of a heart with a dagger through it and a snake and came up with this. It was mega fun to do, I went loco for the effects floss and used metallic, rayon and glow in the dark on this piece. And for anyone debating trying the glow in the dark floss I say go for it, it's really not too bad to work with and it really glows bright- I was most impressed!

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Assisi work

I recently recieved UrsulaDiamonds towel in the TeaTowel Tour. It is the rebel towel on this tour as instead of following an embroidery theme it is evolving into a sampler of different types of needlework. When I received it it had been stitched on by IamSusie with a cross stitch design and by Timpani-Jax with a blackwork design. I was totally confused, what should I add? So I looked through some embroidery magazines for inspiration and finally a light bulb moment; cross stitch + blackwork = Assisi! Basically Assis work is a type of cross stitch where the main motifs are voided and outlined with either holbein or backstitch (I used both) I used patterns from

It took forever to do and to be honest I'm not sure about the out come but that's possibly as I've been staring at it for so long whilst stitching it! Also because of the symmetrical design I rotated the piece whilst working on it and this led me to make a few mistakes, the crosses don't all sit the same way. I just hope Ursula likes it. I used waste canvas which I tacked onto the towel. It was my first time using waste canvas and the result wasn't as regular as using aida but I think it would probably work better with a less 'filled in' design (or one with fewer straight lines!). It's been fun trying something new but I'm looking forward to getting back on more familiar ground with my next project, I'm sure I'll try Assisi again in the future but with a more modern twist (maybe pixel art, pacman, skulls or logos?)

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Great personal swaps with Katie and Nicole!

I have recently done two personal swaps with people I know through Craftster and it's been such a good experience. They both managed to tap into my personal taste and make very cool things for me. KatieKutthroat was the first person I did a personal swap with- we like similar themes and are both avid stitchers. I was blown away with what I recieved from her- this bag has been in constant use since I got it. Her stitching is really beautiful and I loved how she had used a different thickness of thread to give texture on the hair (I'm stealing that idea x)

She also sent me a sassy pinup in tattoo flash style- those little swallows are metallic, very cool indeed. I think the patterns are all by Sublime stitching- Katie picked out great choices for me as I love anchors...
... speaking of anchors look what I recieved in my personal swap with Nicole! I have no idea how she did this; the glass is frosted with an anchor design. I guess you must be able to get some spray on glass frosting stuff but I've never seen it before. I think this will be my Rum glass for when I'm being a pirate. I love it so much. She also sent me this great personalised card she made-coincidentally we both picked a nautical theme (the bag in my last post was for Nicole).
Ladies if you are reading- I hope we swap again as I love my new goodies. Getting stuff in the post that other people have made for you is so much fun and I had a great time making things for you both x

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Hello Sailor!

Ahoy there me hearties! I made this for a friend on Craftster. It's on a tote bag - I hand appliqued the patch on which was a bit silly as I own a perfectly good sewing machine but it does look quite nice!
She recieved it today and has been in touch to say she likes it so I'm very pleased. The design is taken from Sailor Jerry flash- the handwriting is my own (and could be better!). I really enjoyed adding the tiny details like the ickle anchor tat and gold bracelets.
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum x

Monday, 15 September 2008

Tea Towel Tour 4

Seriously this has to be seen:
How great is that?! Nannetta picked the most perfect design for me. I am a sucker for all things nautical. I can't wait to see how the other talented stitchers add to this towel, who would have thought a tea towel could make my heart race?
And here is my humble contribution to IamSusies towel:It's pretty different to my usual more filled in style because I wanted it to fit in with the rest of the embroidery on the towel, and I wouldn't usually go for something so cute but I designed it myself and am pleased with how it turned outThe rest of the embroidery on the the towel (bird by IamSusie and squirrel byTimpani~Jax) is so beautiful. One of the best things about the swap is getting to see everyone else in your groups work in the flesh - although it's quite intimidating when you get a towel where the stitches are all so pristine and you think 'Oh shit, I can't stitch anywhere near that neatly- I'm gonna mess up this beautiful towel' But I'm sure all the other swappers get that feeling too.... right?!

Saturday, 13 September 2008

It's Mitch, bitch

I am so pleased with this, it's based on an image from the Mitch O'Connell tattoo book. He's kind of creepy isn't he? When I was sewing it I kept telling Stu I was going to make it into a pillow case so he'd wake up in the night and see this scary clown grinning back at him, ha ha!
I'm actually going to frame it and hang it somewhere in my house- but it will have to be in the bedroom or guest room as one of my best mates has a clown phobia and this would totally freak her out if I hung it in the lounge.
I would really recommend the Mitch O'Connell tattoo book as a pattern book for stitchers- there are so many cool images in it and they'd all look great as embroideries.

Oh and just cause she is finally finished, here is my Angelique Houtcamp sailor girl hanging in my dining room. It took me ages to get around to filling in the rope and when I sat down to do it, it took less than an hour. There is hope for that long (and ever-growing) list of unfinished projects. Oh and if you've never heard of Angelique she is amazing, check her out here:

Friday, 12 September 2008

Louise Brooks

I had to stitch something flapper/20's themed for the tea towel tour. I had absolutely no idea what to do so started browsing photos online. I ended up deciding to do a pic of Louise Brooks and then ordered a DVD with her in from Amazon. So I sat stitching this whilst watching her on screen.
It's not the best likeness, but, the necklace - its FRENCH KNOTS- hell yeah!

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

tea towel tour 4 (and more)

I love embroidering on tea towels- it's such an old fashioned thing to do and feels like 'proper job' craft.
I am taking part in the Craftster tea towel tour; there are 6 people to a group and 6 towels doing the rounds so everyone stitches on each others towels- At the end you get your towel back and everyone will have made their mark on it. Here's how Ive started my towel:the lettering is rubbish but I'm pleased with the anchor and birds (which are flying all the way to Germany right now). If you want to see more goodies- and there is some seriously good stuff going on in this swap- look here

and here is a little extra which is not my usual style but is for a gift, technically it's still a work in progress as the design is repeated on the towel.
Shrooms and strawberries- random huh? It's from a vintage transfer, I scored a huge envelope off EBay for a few quid. I'll try and scan some in at some point.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Swap item for Katie- tattooed lady

I'm doing a personal swap with KatieKutthroat via Craftster. She has made me a beautiful tote and a pinup picture - this is what I've made her. The image is based on an Angelique Houtcamp illustration (again!). It's in a simple hoop frame at the moment but I'm toying with patching it onto a tote instead. I'm not even sure it's Katie's style- if you're reading this please let me know whether you like it- I'll happily make you something else if it's not really your thing (oh, and let me know if you would prefer her to be on a bag- I have some nice thin cotton totes that would be perfect)
Her hair took an age to do- it's loads of little satin stitch lines with the odd bit of sparkle thrown in- you can sort of see it in the close up (the little white bit's are tiny gaps between the stitches that lit up with the flash- you can't see 'em in real life). My photography skills could use a little polish ;)
I really loved stitching this and am happy with how she came out. I like the colours and they work well with the light brown fabric. I've also made a teeny extra piece that I'll keep a suprise for now. This is my first personal swap and it's been a lot of fun. I'm hoping it will be the first of many.

Sunday, 24 August 2008

lots of balls in the air

I really need to get projects finished- I have far too many on the go. Here is my current list of works in progress:
A knitted scarf
An embroidery of the cover of Goo by Sonic Youth
A tapestry chihuahua cushion (a really ugly chihuahua cushion from a kit, horrendous)
A Sailor girl embroidery
sailor girl embroidery
a cross stitch of Leigh Bowery (my hero <3)
Sewing my MoC Hillbilly angel onto a cushion
A Tea towel with vintage mushroom transfers
My tea towel for the Craftster tea towel tour (eeek deadline for this one)
A cross stitch needlebook
A teeny tiny skull embroidery
A 1950's eyeglasses embroidery (to make into a sunglasses case- I started this a year ago)
I also have a pile of finished embroideries that I don't know what to do with just sat in the bottom of my craft box

I start so much more than I finish- it's a problem I have. I am gonna try and tie up some of the loose ends. I really wanna finish Leigh but there is so much black to fill in and I am sewing on tiny count Aida so it makes me go cross eyed.
I've just bought series 1 of Californication so may have to have a dvd and stitching marathon (if I can tear my eyes away from David Duchovny to glance down at my work every now and then that is).

Ok, off to dive into my ever-growing pile of unfinished projects, wish me luck- it's dangerous in there
Soph x

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Miss Mistake and WIP

Here is what was meant to be a Sailor Jerry flash cutie. I did her a couple of weeks ago. She looked so lovely on the flash sheet but when I stitched her she came out all wrong. I am not at all happy with how she came out- my stitches look so messy argghh. And those lips- so wrong. I think I just attempted to do her too small (4'' tall)- I may try her again at some point but a little bigger. For now she is christened Miss Mistake - poor lass.
I had intended her as an item for part of a trade I'm doing but she ain't going nowhere! Luckily I have had time to start something else which I'm pleased to say is looking grand so far.

On a more successful note here is a WIP- another sailor girl <3. I had thought she was finished but have decided to fill in the rope. She will be framed and hung in the hall at Stu's request (I think he's fallen for her). She is based on an Angelique illustration- I think I may have an Angelique addiction right now.
thank you and goodnight
soph x

Monday, 11 August 2008

I thought I'd give this blogging lark a go. I've been inspired to do so by KatieKutthroat who I met via Craftster and who has a supercool craft blog.
So yes Katie I am shamelessly copying you- I saw your blog and thought I want want too! ... but they say imitation is the greatest form of flattery right?
So to start me off here are a couple of recent pieces my entry into the Craftster needlework challenge and a piece based on a Angelique Houtkamp illustration of a sailor girl. Both have already been posted on craftster.
The sailor girl is one of my favourite things ever- I have a big weakness for nautical themes. She is now living on a big blue and white striped tote bag and seems pretty happy there.