Saturday, February 23, 2013

Baby Baby!

There has been lots of babies being born lately...and I love it! I love making things for babies. First there was my best friend Monica. She had a baby girl, and she is the cutest little thing ever. I had a hard time deciding on what to stitch. I couldn't find anything that I really liked. So I decided to design something myself. I found this great book at the library, and it helped me make up a pattern.If you are into designing you our patterns I highly recommend this book. There are a lot of little patterns I would never use, but there are some great pages that are extremely cute and helpful. It also has a lot of great pages with alphabets that have come in handy on multiple projects.

Then my sister-in-law had her baby, and I just adore Jonny. I found a pattern that I liked, and I swore I bought it. After like a month I never got anything in the mail, and after some investigating I realized I didn't buy it. By this time, time was running out, I needed to start this project pronto! The baby was already born and I needed to get it done. I decided since Fiona's turned out so well, I should design Jonny's. Side note, I had actually already designed something months before, but I just couldn't get myself to stitch it, it didn't seem right. I designed something similar to the one I was going to buy but not as big and little more simple so that I could get it stitched up quickly. I think it turned out really cute.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Happy Chinese New Year!!

This is the first year I have done any Chinese New Year decorations. I have always wanted to, but never knew what to do. So, I decided to to start with just the wreath and go from there. I had a lot of fun stitching up all the little Chinese Zodiac designs that I found in an issue of CrossStitcher Magazine. It was an issue from a couple of years ago so I had to go searching for it, luckily it didn't take me too long to find.

Rabbit, Ox and Tiger

Dog, Rooster and Pig

Horse, Ram, and Rat (I'm a rat)

Tiger, Snake and Monkey
I usually love the way my wreaths turn out, but I have to be honest, this is not my favorite one. I think there were just so many things to put on it I didn't have much options. And then I was going to add some other things to it, but I've been stressed and tired and I never got around to it. And then all of a sudden it was the first day of the New Year, so I hurried and put the wreath out. So next year It will probably look different.

However, since the wedding season is pretty slow right now, and I have been having some Saturdays off, I decided to make some lanterns!  I got two really awesome lanterns from Justin's brother that lives in China. I was so excited to put those up. So I wanted to make some more to go with it. They are really cute an simple. A little time consuming though. I spent most of the day putting these together.

luckily I had a bunch of oriental card stock on hand. They were big 12X12 sheets so I cut them in half, and then cut those halves into 1/2 inch strips
Each lantern has 14 strips of paper.
After they are all cut, you then punch a hole at the end of each one. I made a template and used that to help punch the holes in the exact same spot for each one. This was the most daunting part because you I could only punch three strips of paper at a time.

Once all that is done, you can then start turning them into lanterns. You start with the back piece of paper and carefully just flip and turn them. I did learn not to make the brads really tight. It made it easier to turn and slide the pieces where they needed to go.
I then strung them all together with a piece of ribbon, and with the help of my husband I got them all hung up. I used those awesome removable wall hooks.

 I love the way it all turned out in the end. It goes well with my Chinese scrolls, tapestry and drum, and all my other Chinese stuff. (yes I love oriental decorations) So I'm trying to decide how long I can get away with keeping these up after the Chinese New Year is actually over.