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Thank You – Self Designing Patterns

11 Dec

You may remember a few months ago I posted about a design I’d drawn up for a “Happy Birthday” card using different colours and alphabet designs that said “Happy Birthday” in several languages. Well, I’ve finally gotten around to stitching the design for the “Thankyou” card I designed around the same time.


I’m not thrilled with how the design looks stitched on blue aida, but that’s my only gripe with it. I won’t lie, I’m still pretty chuffed with the fact that I managed to come up with this idea; I have next to no artistic talent so I usually rely on pre-designed cross stitch patterns for my cards and greetings.

According to Google the translations I’ve used are:

Thank You – English

Danke – German

Merci – French

Obrigado – Portugese

Grazie – Italian

Diolch – Welsh

Tack – Swedish

Gracias – Spanish

Again, if the translations are wrong, blame Google and not me 🙂


Love Heart Sachet

13 Nov

With the Frost Fayre coming up on the 8th December, I’ve been thinking of simple yet quirky ideas that I can spend a day mass producing in order to sell. Heart sachets are everywhere at the moment, so making a few to have on the stall is just too good an opportunity to turn down (plus whatever ones are left will make handy little gifts for friends).

Cross Stitch

The cross stitch patch is just a simple four letter word; “Love” is a word stitched on all the quirky gifts about at the moment. The idea of making a patch to just stitch onto the fabric means that the word stands out against the patterned fabric used to make the heart sachet.


I’m a little frustrated with how these turned out: they’re all a little bit squiff and uneven, and the ribbon isn’t dead centre, but I think I’m happy enough to attempt to sell them on the stall.

I am going to attempt to make a few more simple ones to sell, but I need to think of other time effective ideas to make. Hopefully with more practice they’ll get tidier and tidier.

Happy Birthday – Self Designing Patterns

12 May

A lot of the cross stitch patterns I use are from magazines, books and kits. I do, however, want to start designing my own patterns to sew which does prove to be very difficult for someone like me with very little artistic talent. I have had a go at it though, and this was the pattern I came up with for a birthday card (admittedly using one or two alphabet designs dotted about in my stash to help):

I used the internet to find all the different translations for “Happy Birthday” – on a side note it did amaze me how long the phrase “Happy Birthday” is in pretty much every language. Particularly German for some reason hence why I opted not to use that language in the design. It did take a while for me to squeeze several phrases onto my page of squared paper, but I am happy with the outcome.

The languages I’ve used are:

Happy Birthday – English

Penblywydd Hapus – Welsh

Bon Anniversaire – French

Iyi Ki Dogdun – Turkish

Buon Compleanno – Italian

Parabens – Portugese

If for any reason my translations are incorrect I do apologise; the only language I am fluent in is English. If they are wrong please blame Google search, not me o:-)

I have also designed a “Thankyou” card in the same theme as this pattern, but I have yet to get that one stitched for a tester.

I’m also planning on designing a “Merry Christmas” one.

Keep crafting 😉

Penblwydd Hapus

12 Apr

My other half’s brother is very passionate about his Welsh heritage, and so for his birthday I decided to use a pattern I have in my stash for a Welsh dragon to make a card fitting for someone so proud.

Cross Stitch

The cross stitch itself is a very simple one, from a kit to make a key ring. The dragon is stitched mainly in red, with a little bit of white backstitch. This was the same dragon pattern I used to change the flag on the Wedding Sampler I stitched last year.

Card Layout

Of course the card is styled so that it looks like the Welsh flag, with a dragon on the green grass. This was achieved by inserting the stitch into an aperture of a white card, then cutting a strip of green card out and removing the half-aperture from it. Welsh stickers translating to read “Happy Birthday” were then added to fill the blank space on the card.

The uniqueness of the Welsh flag does mean that it makes a very effective card, especially when the dragon is cross stitched. It was so easy to come up with the idea for this card, and it’s a shame not all flags would work as well in cross stitch cards, otherwise I could create a selection of Nationality themed cards.

Keep crafting 🙂

Octopus – Self Designing Patterns

3 Apr

A while back for a friend’s birthday I decided (as she’s a keen marine biologist and was doiing her dissertation on cuttlefish) that for her 21st birthday I’d stitch her a card with an octopus on it; an octupus being the closest thing to a cuttlefish I could think of.

Cross Stitch

At the time, I couldn’t find any octopus patterns I liked, so the cross stitch pattern I used I ended up designing myself. Graph paper is simply fabulous for copying and designing patterns on.

For this one, I used the basic shape of a balloon pattern I had or the octopus head, and added eyes and a backstitched mouth, then the legs drawn randomly extending from the base of the balloon. It took a while for me to get an octopus I was happy with, but I’m very happy with the final result.

Card Layout

I opted to embellish the card simply (I seem to do that a lot don’t I?) by layering the stitch onto a square of patterned paper which was patterned to look like the ocean, then layered again onto a blue card. The two foam fish stickers (from a pack from Accessorize) add to the underwater theme of the card.

I haven’t actually used this pattern again since I stitched it the first time, and I honestly have no reasons as to why not. I’m not very confident at designing my own cross stitch designs; I tend to use a lot from magazines and books. I am quite happy adapting them to suit my own personal needs, but I don’t really have any artistic talent whatsoever, and this does put me off designing patterns.

This is probably the only cross stitch I have ever done using an original design, and I would like to make a lot more cards this way, rather than borrowing other peoples’ ideas.

I just don’t think I’m creative enough to be able to do it 😦

Butterfly Heart Sachet

21 Mar

It was my sister’s birthday last week, and I decided to make her something as well as buying her a gift. As my parents have recently moved house, I thought I’d make her a heart sachet to go with her newly decorated room, and I chose to stitch a butterfly onto some blue material using soluable aida.

Cross Stitch

Cross stitching using soluable aida was relatively easy. I did need to change to a smaller needle as the one I started using was leaving massive holes in the material I was sewing onto. The soluable aida was fastened to the fabric using pins, and then once the design was finished I cut the excess aida away from the pattern so dissolving it would be a little easier.


I followed the instructions that came with the aida for the soaking process; simply filling the sink with soapy water and allowing to dissolve. I did have to repeat the process, as after the first soak once the sewing was dry there was still a sticky residue over the sewing. Once the aida was completely dissolved, I hung the material on the radiator to dry, and once completely dry I sewed the sachet together.

Heart sachet

The finished sachet is a little bit skewiff; probably because I was tired putting it together (I did have several arguements with my machine as well) but overall I am happy with it. The butterfly has been stitched in the colours my sister has decorated her bedroom with, and this time I managed to get the ribbon in the right place first time (yay me!). I threaded two purple/blue beads onto the top of the ribbon as a small embellishment, stuffed the sachet and slip stitched the opening closed.

Aside from it being a bit uneven, I’m happy with how the sachet turned out. I certainly enjoy making these sachets. I think they make lovely little gifts, especially as they seem to be for sale in most of the quirky home stores at the moment. Handmade gifts are definately the way forward.

Happy crafting 😉

A Little Ship

19 Mar

Just a short post about a quick card I made back in January for my dad’s birthday.

My dad is a particular fan of boats; not any special kind of boat, just boats in general. The issue of CrossStitcher Magazine I received around that time had instructions in it for stitching onto paper, or card, so I thought I’d give it a go and this was the result:

ImageThe cross stitch was achieved by copying the ship design onto aida, placing this on top of the card I wanted to stitch on and punching holes in the card with a needle. Pretty simple really, and I must admit this was actually the most time consuming part of making this card. Cross stitching directly onto the card was simple: much like stitching on ordinary aida except the “fabric” was a lot more sturdy.

I chose to mount the cross stitch onto a red square, and then again onto a simple white card to add a nautical theme to the design. Again, simple, but effective.

I really love the resulting card: I think it looks rather modern, and very appropriate for a male card (I find stitching cards for males difficult as so many designs seem to be built for girls, and stitching in general seems to be a girly subject) but I was extremely happy with this design.

With regards to the technique for stitching directly onto card, my main advice would be to keep the design simple, using only one or two colours and keep it fairly small. Too much crowding would probably weaken the card/paper and cause it to tear, and large designs would get complicated very quickly.

Happy stitching 🙂