The holidays are now upon us. Since it seems I’m always stitching Christmas-y things during wonky times of the year (like spring), I decided for the month of December to focus mostly on Christmas stitching. Something normal people do, but I haven’t done in years. It’s not as if I don’t have joy in stitching my own models because I do, but I wanted to slow things down a bit, and lessen the pressure I seem to put upon myself every December. I’ve decided to scale back in other ways as well this month, which was a necessary step for me, since this has been a year of great loss. I wanted to find the joy of the season in simpler and different ways, and one of the ways I am choosing to do that is to set aside some time for some personal Christmas stitching. I had so much fun the other night, choosing projects I wanted to stitch from magazines and old leaflets. I chose colors and fabrics and took pictures so you could share in my progress. My only goal is to post every Tuesday in December so you can see what I’ve been doing. I have no stitching plan, I will just stitch what calls to me, when I want to stitch it – no rotations or deadlines. Remember, this is no pressure stitching. I may or may not have any finishes to show you come the end of the month, but that’s okay. This is not about finishing – this is about the joy in the journey.
Here are the pieces I decided to work on in December.
“Holly” by Lori Brechlin at Notforgotten Farm … I had started her 2-3 years ago. It’s kind of a given to stitch a piece when you share the same name. Here is my progress so far …
“Evergreen” by Prairie Schooler … again, I had started this about two years ago. I think the animals in this one are so sweet. And that fox with the berries in his mouth? Doesn’t he look mischievous? I may change the berries to white since, to me, it looks like he’s planning to trick a lady fox into a mistletoe kiss.
This next one is kind of embarrassing. It has only been a work in progress for, let’s see … maybe 25 years? It’s from a supplemental leaflet I must have gotten when I subscribed to the magazine For the Love of Cross Stitch. The official title is “Merry Christmas Trio” and it was designed by Polly Carbonari. The edges are yellow because, yes indeed, I did have masking tape around them. That’s what I used to do – isn’t that terrible? The things I did before I knew better … I found this piece in my cross stitch trunk of goodies and since the only thing I have left to do is backstitch the windows, I may get a finish on this one. (I just realized one of the trees is missing a trunk.) I still love it, even though I stitched it years ago. I think the pattern calls for everything to get backstitched, but that’s not going to happen. I don’t even think it’s necessary – the windows need a little definition, so they’ll get it, and then I can call it done. Better late than never.
The next one … another oldie but goodie. From the Snow Folio by Shepherd’s Bush, “Woolly Winter Wallhanging”. This one is from 1995. I bought it in 1996, started it then, and put it away. Twenty-one years later and here we are. I am stitching it on Aida cloth, which is all I used to stitch on in the beginning. (Why were we all afraid of linen?) I have a few stitches in, but this chart is not a large one, so it should go quickly.
The next four are all new starts, and all ornaments. The first two are from Brittercup Designs. I love many patterns from this company. The first one is called “Mine!” and it’s from the 2010 Christmas ornament preview issue of Just Cross Stitch.
The next Brittercup Design is called “Consumed by Gifts” and it came out of the 2010 Christmas ornament issue of Just Cross Stitch.
Not a traditional ornament in any sense, but I absolutely love it – “Cool Christmas” from Fresh Threads Studio. This one was also in the 2010 Christmas ornament preview issue of Just Cross Stitch.
And for my last project, a small little tree, called “Scandinavian Tree” by the company Scandinavian Stitches. This pattern was chosen from the 2013 Just Cross Stitch Christmas ornament issue.
I also decided to include cookie recipes and pictures with my stitching progress pictures. Because eating cookies and stitching go so well together, right? I wasn’t sure if I was going to do as much baking this year as I usually do, but when your brother specially requests certain cookies from you, hugs you and looks at you with that sweet face you can clearly remember from when he was a little boy, well – you have to give in to doing some baking. I’ll share some of my favorite cookie recipes with you. And I can promise finishes on the cookies! But if you want a taste, you’ll have to swing by for a visit.