After a week away, I’m back home and though I haven’t done much creating this week I thought I’d share what I have been working on over the last little while and show you how things have progressed. As you know I love to do things with my hands. Outside of sewing for Absynthetika, I love to knit and… cross stitch. That’s right. I may be a grandmother trapped in this fabulous young body. However, the stitching I like to do happens to be of the nerd variety.
If you’ve looked in stores, most of the corss stitch kits are things like flowers, unicorns, fairies and teddy bears. I don’t have anything against these kits but fluffy kittens and cutesy animals aren’t really my thing. So I turned to online resources. I started on Etsy where I came across Sunshinyday and her lovely Etsy shop, though as always there’s plenty to choose from.
This particular vendor has very intricate and very beautiful geeky counted cross stitch patterns for sale. From video games to Disney to Dr. Who, she covers a wide variety of nerdom. If you search through her inventory you can also find a sale if you’re thinking of buying more than one pattern. She even sent me a photo of the finished product of one of the patterns I ordered so I could see how it would turn out.
The basic travelling box
There’s a couple of things you need to know before you start on any of her beautiful, flossy endeavours though. You need to make sure you have the right size and count for your embroidery fabric and a way to organize your materials (see above), especially organizing your thread by number, since many of the patterns use 30 colours and up. You also need a way to track what you stitch so you can properlly follow your pattern, which you will need to tape together into a gigantic map. You will also need a place to print your pattern (at home or at a small print shop), as they can be a good 9 pages of grid an over. All of these organizational tools you can find at your local craft shop.
So my biggest recommendation is to start in the middle of both the pattern and fabirc. This way you stay centred and it’s easy to find. Keep a pencil and sharpie (permanent marker) handy so you can fill in the symbols as you stitch them. You’ll be using the sharpie to fill over the seams that you’ve taped shut. You will also want to tape everything together in a strategic way so that if you need to fold the pattern for transport you can do it along a taped seam and also so you won’t lose that part of the pattern to rubbing off the ink.
Not quite half way done….
Another thing to be aware of is timing. One of these beauties is so big and intricate that it’s going to take a while. I have been working on this for about 7 or 8 months fairly dilligently…. to give you an idea of what kind of time investment you’re looking at. It really is an investment.
Ignore the little unfinished corner… and enjoy the rest of the effect!
Though it takes time and patience, it can really pay off in how spectacular these look when you’re done, especially if you’re using a finer weave cloth. You can make them into pillows or go have an adventure in framing.Which is what I will document as I do it to mine.
Maybe taking a peek at this will inspire you to try something or to do something a little different.