modern framed cross stitch with 'have courage and be kind' cross stiched in black on fabric with hand printed pink and yellow leopard print design in black frame

Finishing a project is such a joy! But then so is starting a project... and working on a project, no wonder I am always making ;)

This finish is a special one for a few reasons. The cross stitch kit is from Stitchsperation, I love her kits and had already completed one which you can see here. She hand paints the fabric and not only is that really cool but it means you get a unique piece of fabric to stitch on. I chose 28ct evenweave and as a change I stitched this in hand rather than using a hoop. 

work in progress photo of black cross stitch word being stitched on hand printed yellow and pink leopard spot fabric

Now I really like my Q-snap frames and won't be giving them up completely but I also really like stitching in hand and I'll probably just decide on a project by project basis what I feel like doing. 

New to me, I also used the sewing method to stitch this design. Usually I stitch one cross at a time, I don't like the other way of making half stitches and going back on yourself. But the sewing method is a bit of a revelation and is quicker too (not that speed matters). I really enjoyed stitching this way, although on occasion I did do my usual one cross method (for travelling in a certain direction), I know you can turn the work around but I hate that - my brain literally can't cope and my counting goes off.

If you cross stitch and haven't tried the sewing method, give it a go! I watched this YouTube video tutorial on the Fat Quarter Shop FlossTube channel and seeing Priscilla, Chelsea and Kimberly each show how they stitch was so helpful. Kimberly's tip of loosening the frame to stitch this way really works and that's what I'm doing with another project I have on the go!

close up picture of cross stitch words in modern calligraphy font

The Stitchsperation cross stitch kits comes with thread, though as I have a lot already I requested she didn't send any so I can use what I already have. This was stitched with Aurifloss #2692 using 3 strands of floss over two. I love how it turned out!

cross stitch lettering in modern calligraphy font with the words 'have courage and be kind' stitched on white fabric with pink and yellow leopard print

I framed it in an Ikea frame and hung it on the gallery wall we have in our dining room. Eventually I need to frame more of my completed projects and then hang them on the opposite wall. It would be nice to have the wall dedicated to stitchy things so I can look at them as I'm at my sewing machine (or eating dinner! - small house means multiple use dining room!).

modern framed cross stitch with 'have courage and be kind' cross stiched in black on fabric with hand printed pink and yellow leopard print design in black frame

In other news, I've been joining in with CraftyMonkies over on instagram for the #monkiemotivation photo challenge. I can't always do it everyday because, well life gets in the way but there are some really fun prompts to inspire you creatively and they are a great way to play and escape for a bit.

Yesterday they suggested making a colour palette using the website Coolors, it's so easy to use and I really enjoyed playing about with it. I actually have photographs that I've taken while we've been out walking, mostly of things with colours that inspire me and this would be a great way to pull a palette together from those pictures. There are inbuilt pictures too, so you can scroll through those to find colours you love if you're not into taking photographs.

photo of couple and five colour swatches which were taken from the photograph using the Coolors website

I went with this photograph and use the colour picker to select colours that I liked and I think they make a nice palette!

This selfie was taken with my husband yesterday as we celebrated our 14th wedding anniversary! We had a quiet night in and ordered a takeaway (after earlier making pancakes with the kids!). A lockdown anniversary celebration.

Finally I just wanted to let you know that I have some upcoming classes with CraftyMonkies, my next class is Stitches & Thread - explore sewing machine stitches and expand your options using thread! I will show how to best set up your sewing machine for using different stitches, as well as types of thread and tips for preparing your fabric. Learn all about selecting needles, weights and varieties of thread for different uses. Whether purely to decorate small makes or items of clothing or for applique stitching or quilting, this class will inspire you to use and enjoy your machine to the max! Click the image below to book your place.

Excitingly you will now find videos of some of my live classes available in the CraftyMonkies online shop! If you're interested in learning how to do Big Stitch Hand Quilting & Tying a quilt or would like to watch me demonstrate making my Stitchy Pie needle case pattern, head HERE.

And I am thrilled to be taking a live class myself this weekend! I'm doing the Mindful Stitch Journal class with Gary Mills and can't wait to spend an afternoon relaxing, learning and sewing. If you'd like to join the class too visit CraftyMonkies.

Hope you're all having a good week, staying safe and enjoying working on your sewing projects!