Sunday, 18 February 2018

IHSW February Check-in

Hello dear friends,

It's time to show what I stitched for International Hermit Stitch weekend . If you don't know what  IHSW is, its a SAL which was started by Joysze at Random Ramblings .Here is how she describes it "International Hermit and Stitch Weekend takes place every 3rd full weekend of each month, from Friday till Sunday. In our very busy and hectic lives, IHSW is a chance for us to squirrel some time away for ourselves and "Hermit and Stitch." It is a time set aside to take care of us and our love for stitching."
Weekend in my part of the world is on Friday & Saturday, so I will be stitching from Thursday to Saturday and post on Sundays whenever I participate in IHSW.

Very happy to be showing you a new WIP for this post, I'm sure everyone was bored to see the same project -my nemesis project for 2 years now.

I picked up my new year new start for 2017 on Tuesday after stitching some smalls . This was also my project for Work That WIP 2018 - February SAL on Stitch Maynia. Here is how the project looked like on Wednesday 

Progress over the weekend

After working on 25 count evenweave for last few months, it feels different to work on Aida, the squares on fabric look so big , working with two threads is clumsy as the threads keep twisting and have to railroad for the stitches to lie flat. But then there is progress which is visible.I'm trying to do one color at a time, which I find very satisfying.

If you are wondering why the progress is less for a full weekend of stitching , its because Murphy's law came into play. You see I rarely go out on weekends or have any social life apart from my bi monthly craft gatherings. But I have observed that for IHSW , I will have social visits or will have to go out.This Friday we had a distant family member come over for dinner , on Saturday I met a bunch of expat ladies for breakfast whom I met thru Instagram.
Here a few pictures of the arabic food we had at Ayyame, all delicious.
Cheese & herbed Tabliya

Falafel with arabic bread

Gerse Ogaily
Though I must confess I'm not complaining about lack of stitching time , I love cooking , meeting new people and trying new food ☺.

I would like to thank you all for the comments on my last post, it felt like we all were celebrating my finish together. 

Thursday, 15 February 2018

I DID IT !!!! - Gifted Gorgeousnes SAL February Update

Hello Friends,

Hope you had a good Valentine's day if you celebrate. Mine was good, we had cake and didn't have to cook as we had leftovers for dinner and lunch is arranged in office today 😁.

It's that time of the month when we show what gifts we have been working on or/and what crafty gifts we have received. If you don't know what I'm talking about , check Jo's blog for more info. This is a easy SAL where you have choice to stitch any designer, color or pattern, just that it should be a gift for someone or gift from someone.

I have been eagerly waiting to show you this , I finished my nemesis project .. can you believe it? I finished all the cross stitches on 19th Jan , still it took me 2+ weeks to finish the back stitching and lettering. Back stitching is not my fav thing about cross stitch projects. I always try to avoid it or do the bare minimum but this time I followed the whole pattern. Though back stitching on this piece is not very heavy, I'm happy I finished it.

Without further ado, I present to you "Most Beautiful Things " by Candamar designs(excuse the wrinkles).


Most Beautiful Things

Started on : 4-Mar-2016
Finished on: 6-Feb-2018
Actual number of days:134
Stitched on: 25 count vintage lugana
Floss used :Kit floss
Designer:
Pattern source: Candamar designs

Number of colors: 17
Design Stitch count:137 H*110W

Actual stitch count = 4* Design count
Type of stitches: Full cross stitch, back stitch
Number of strands used :1 for Full cross stitches,1 for back stitch

This project has lots of first :

1. First kit bought and completed which turned out to be stamped because I didn't read the description properly.
2. First project bought online/on facebook.
3. First time switching fabric in the kit.
4. First time using evenweave
5. First time making changes to stitch count- I was a novice when I bought this kit and decided to switch fabric. The fabric change meant 1 cross stitch on pattern= 4 cross stitch in actual.
6. There are few counting mistakes in this project and instead of frogging them I improvised around them.

It won't be exaggeration if I say this project was like going on crafting journey, learning so many things including patience. There were times I thought of giving it up, sometimes I hated it because of the mistakes but in the end the result is worth it, don't you think? I have grown up with this project learning to improvise and make changes.

I really hope my best friend appreciates the labour behind this gift, I will make sure she does 😉.

I also made two small gifts this month but will save it for the Smalls SAL post.

P.S. I have achieved 1 of the only two crafting goals made for 2018.

Thursday, 8 February 2018

4 Years Today

Four years ago today , I started my journey to a land unknown...Kuwait. I landed here at the airport at night, the drive to the temporary accommodation seemed long. I was so excited for the new adventure.Would you believe that I only asked two questions before moving to Kuwait:will I be able to work in my field of education? Will I have to wear a burqa?(no offense to anyone here).
I see expats ready to move here and they have 100s of questions, using every forum available to ask . Sometimes I think may be I should have inquired more about moving a country about which me,my family and friends knew nothing.But then I think that as I came here without presumptions ,the journey has been more about learning new culture, news ways of living and mostly about rediscovering myself rather than being full of fear about middle east.
Thank you to all those people who I have met in these 4 years for making the journey a memorable one.
P.S. Kuwait towers is the first image I get in my mind whenever I want to post a picture about Kuwait.

This is what I posted on my Instagram account today(with slight changes made) and thought of sharing this post/milestone with my blogging friends who have been important part of life in these years.

Sharing some of the interesting pictures of my life in Kuwait, these are the recent ones I had in my phone.

 Picture of one the panels of exhibited in Weaving stories - a contemporary interactive exhibition and outreach initiative honoring the textile arts of Kuwait , Dated Nov 10,2016

First visit to  Al Shaheed park,Dated Nov 10,2016

Picture of Souq Mubarakiya decorated for Hala feb celebrations,Dated Feb 17,2017


  
Picture taken during our visit to Bayan Botanical garden when my brother was visiting us, Dated Feb 23,2017




Pictures of Kuwait towers decorated for Hala feb celebrations, when my brother was visiting us, Dated Feb 23,2017

  
                             Me, my brother and my husband having some fun on the beach


A picture of Secret Garden, a community project where everything right from the wooden gate to desk to plants have been donated by public.Dated March 4,2017

A replica of Dhow as exhibited at Failaka Island,Dated March 10,2017


Antiquities of Failaka Island,Dated March 10,2017

 Food is an important part of our life here, Kuwait offers cuisines of dozens of countries due to a large expat population. Dated March 14,2017

  This is the picture of the second bloom of Mums since I bought it.Dated March 31,2017

Grand Mosque,Dated April 15,2017


               That's me helping the kids in a cross stitch workshop, Dated Dec 16,2017


                   An abandoned hanger in the Shumaymah Desert,Dated Dec 31,2017

                           Abandoned building projects at Shumaymah Desert,Dated Dec 31,2017

If you notice, most of the pictures here are from Dec-March . This is because these months have temperatures pleasant enough for us to roam around , other months life is limited to house and office.

If you are interested in details of any picture or my life in kuwait in general, leave a comment and I will try to post about my experience of living in Kuwait.

Friday, 26 January 2018

Smalls SAL January Check-in

Hello Friends,

Its last friday of the month , time to show what smalls we stitched during the month. I'm participating first time in Small SALs hosted by Heather. I decided to join this SAL as I usually stitch birthday cards or exchange pieces throughout the year and this gives me an additional chance to blog.



I stitched a thank you card for my Knitting Adviser or should I say Knitting guru. We "met" on Instagram when she found my account thru a hashtag. She has been very helping about my beginner questions about knitting techniques , where to find supplies etc.
Feather 
      Design by Maria Diaz
               From CrossStitcher Magazine , Issue 320

The stitched piece was pasted on the handmade paper using double sided tape which I specially bought from trip to USA. The tape didn't work well and I had to use glue .

The card was appreciated by my guru , so shall we say job well done?

Sunday, 21 January 2018

I smell a FINISH!!!

Hello friends,

This year again I'm participating in IHSW , as the SAL has been revived on blogland and facebook by Joysze at Random Ramblings and Jo respectively.

For those of who don't know what  IHSW is, its a SAL which was started by Joysze at Random Ramblings .Here is how she describes it "International Hermit and Stitch Weekend takes place every 3rd full weekend of each month, from Friday till Sunday. In our very busy and hectic lives, IHSW is a chance for us to squirrel some time away for ourselves and "Hermit and Stitch." It is a time set aside to take care of us and our love for stitching."

Weekend in my part of the world is on Friday & Saturday, so I will be stitching from Thur-Sat and post on Sundays whenever I participate in IHSW.


Is it a coincidence or what that my first IHSW post in 2016 and 2018 have the same project? Or rather it is shameful that I'm still working on the same project since 2 years 😡.Well this shame is soon to end, I'm so close to finishing this project that I can feel butterflies in my stomach.

I added a total of 1168 stitches during the weekend . I could have done better if I didn't had to visit an ailing relative.

Some comparison pics:



A lot of white stitches were added in the bottom flowers which can't be seen in the picture which was taken this morning when it was still dark.

Thank you all for cheering me up for finishing this WIP thru your comments on my last post. All that is left is to add the greyish blue in bottom right flower, the wording in centre and backstitch.

Shall we say this can be wrapped during the week?

We shall see...

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Gifted Gorgeousnes SAL January Update

Hello Friends,

It's that time of the month when we show what gifts we have been working on or/and what crafty gifts we have received. If you don't know what I'm talking about , check Jo's blog for more info. This is a easy SAL where you have choice to stitch any designer, color or pattern, just that it should be a gift for someone or gift from someone.



I'm still working hard(ly) to finish my Candamar design project as now I have a deadline. I may be able to meet my bestie in February after 4 years and give her the gift .Every time I start stitching this project, it looks close to a finish and after few minutes I see new colors which need to be stitched. No wonder I call it my nemesis project.

I have added 1248 stitches since I last showed you but most of them are white so hard to see any progress.
Before
Right hand corner

Left hand corner
I made another small gift for a fellow crafter but I will save that for the Smalls SAL post. 

This weekend is IHSW and I will be stitching the nemesis project. Depending on how much progress I make, I will write a separate blog post for it or just post on facebook group.

December or January are months we usually travel to India , my home country, for our annual vacation. This time I wasn't able to go as I was short of leaves but hubby was in India for over a week and brought me lots of gifts.Amongst those is this custom desk calendar made from photos of the Flower of the month project I stitched in 2016. I love it.

That's it my friends, not much to show as I'm trying to finish the above project and until its finished I'm not going to stitch anything else.

I will be visiting your blog to see what gifts you are working on.

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

2017 Crafty wrap up and 2018 plans

Happy New Year friends

I hope you had good time welcoming the new year, in whatever way you did. I had a day off and we had a relaxing time at home and I tried a new recipe which was a success.

I have been reading everyone's wrap up of crafty finishes in 2017 and plans for 2018. I love reading statistics...numbers and pictures speak to me rather than just plain text.

Let's see how I did with my 2017 goals.

Goals for 2017

1. Dedicate more time for crafting specially on holidays/vacation    Non crafting reduced from 42% in 2016 to 34% in 2017
2. Try blackwork        Made a blackwork ATC for swap
3. Learn 2 new ways of finishing cross stitch  Only one new way, biscornu
4. Pick fabric painting again 
5. Keep trying to crochet        Made a crochet hat

Plans for 2017

1. Participate in following monthly SALs
a) New Year New Start with Stitch Maynia (FB group)- I will start Dimension kit "Indian peacock" on 1st Jan 2017. 
b) Tour de Designers 2017 - SODA stitch with Stitch Maynia (FB group) - I will start "The Love Rain" on 1st April. 
c) Tour de Designers 2017 - Lizzie Kate with Stitch Maynia (FB group)- I will start "I Cannot Count"  on 1st July. 

2. Blog SALs/Activities 
a. I will continue to participate in Gifted Gorgeousness SAL .  Yes managed to post all months.
b. I joined Kaye's Friday Frolicking somewhere near April 2016 but shamefully posted only once in 2016. Will try to post more often.  Posted only once
c. Catch up posts for The Alphabet Club. Haven't posted about this since April 2016.  Posted only four times

Apart from above I joined the blog- A New Stitchy Start 2017 and posted only once. I also joined Theme-tas-stitch 2017 hosted by Kerry in February and posted 5 times for the SAL.

Wrap up for 2017 

2017 was clearly a year of exchanges, I participated in 4 cross stitch exchanges and had fun making things for my partners. I enjoy the process of getting to know my partners, making something they will like .I had a total of 6 cross stitch finishes this year. 


I added 9844 stitches to the only WIP from 2016

Progress as on 14th December 2016

Progress as on 31st December 2017

My new year start will be the second WIP I will carry into 2018.
Indian Peacock by Dimensions.Design by Suzanne Nicoll

Knitting caught my interest this year and I learnt some new stitches .I had 9 knitting finishes, achievement being finishing my first baby blanket. Shown here are 5 which have already been gifted.

I'm very proud to say that I hosted a national level knitting event -WWKIP day here in Kuwait. The event was a huge success with considerable media coverage.

I also helped my friend Tammy with a cross stitch workshop for kids in December.

I'm more confident with crochet now and made one hat for hubby.

A little about how much I spent this year on needlework:

Cross stitching supplies                                                 $51.8
Knitting supplies including badges for WWKIP              $122.4
Needlework exchanges                                                  $36.9

Apart from needlework, I took a dig at a new hobby: Postcrossing. It involves sending postcards to random people in the world and bringing a smile to their face.

I finished reading 7 books this year.

Just noticed that my last post was 100th post on my blog. I would like to thank my readers who visit and leave a comment on the posts. Your comments encourage me to blog.

Goals for 2018

I have set simple goals this year to craft every day and finish the WIP from 2016

Plans /SALs:

My choice of designs prevents me from joining any designer specific SALs. As the idea of a SAL is to stitch along with other crafters, I enjoy stitching and posting for a SAL, when the host is involved. By now I know which are the SALs host who make special efforts to leave comments.

I will be joining following SALs this year:
1. Gifted Gorgeousness
2. IHSW
3. I may join an Instagram SAL called #gardengatesal later in the year.

I'm thinking of joining Smalls SAL as usually I stitch birthday cards all thru the year. Need to check what the perquisites are for this SAL.

I will also like to blog more often and leave comments regularly on blogs I follow.


So that's it my friends for 2017 and I hope you have lots of crafting time in 2018.

IHSW February Check-in

Hello dear friends, It's time to show what I stitched for International Hermit Stitch weekend . If you don't know what  IHSW is, ...