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Big Give Away coming the end of June!

Friday, July 5, 2019

Post one/Christmas in July
Grab Bag/Annual Give-a-way
Stitcher's choice/June

Welcome to Stitching Friends!   It is time for our annual big give - a - way. We are calling it "Christmas in July".  It is packed full with lots of great stitching items that we think you will love.  So make sure you sign up.  Details for entry are below.  We also have added a Stitcher's Choice at the bottom of this post that we made for last month but did not get posted in time.


Annual Give-a-way

Blogging gives us the opportunity to meet so many kind and helpful stitchers and we wanted to show our appreciation to all of you.   We are starting the month of July with two annual give a ways for our followers.  One is a collection of stitching and finishing items SANTA happily found for our US followers.  The other give away will be for our followers outside the US who will win a PDF pattern of their choice from any PDF designer on Etsy.  We would love to send the box outside the US but shipping costs prevent us from doing so.

All that is required to enter our yearly give-a-way is to be a side-bar follower and to leave a comment letting us know if you wish to be entered and if you are within or outside the U.S.  

If you have a blog and  tell your readers about our give-a-way, we will enter your name twice in the drawing.  Winners will be announced on our first post in August.
The drawing includes everything you see except the basket that they sit in.  You will find seasonal charts, scissors, needles, pom pom trim, lace on a wooden spool, sled for a stitch, a bag of charms and buttons, needleminder and beautiful fabric for each season.
We have included seasonal charms and buttons for you to use as embellishments on your future stitches.  Most of these charms can be found at Bohemian Findings on Etsy.                   

We think you will love this cute little needleminder from the talented Michelle Palmer.  Her drawings are the sweetest and will look great holding your needle.

We fell in love with this pretty French linen and hope you will like it too.   The give a way also includes elegant lace on a wooden spool and fun pom poms to add to your stitches.                                 
Three of our fabrics are from Moda and the other from another favorite line that were all found at a quilt show.   There is a pretty quarter round for every season.  You will enjoy them, a cute pair of scissors and two Pat Carson needles in an adorable magnetized sewing tin.                 

And lastly, we have included a pattern for each season.   You will enjoy having Hello Spring by Hands on Design, Season-Summer by Lila's Studio, Autumn Acres Farm-a-collaboration with Priscilla and Hands on Design and Twilight Santa by Foxwood Crossings for Winter.  Twilight Santa includes an adorable wooden sled to showcase your stitch.

For our outside the US followers, we have some examples of Sub Rosa's beautiful charts that you can find on Etsy here    You choose a chart and we will purchase it for you.  Or, you can pick from any other Etsy seller who sells PDF charts.   So have fun and find one you love.   Here are just a few to tempt you:  
This one is adorable for all stitchers.  We are ordering this one for sure.

How about a strawberry pattern for the summer months?

We know we have bee lovers...isn't this one sweet?

Or how about a new holiday chart?


Stitcher's Choice
We were unable to get our June Stitcher's Choice Post done in time so we thought we would add it to this post.   We followed our "Christmas in July" theme and made some Christmas stitches for our projects. 

RJ's Stitcher's Choice

I have finally started to finish my French Christmas Village ornaments.  What took so long you ask?  Well, I just could not make up my  mind on how to finish them.  Should I use the same fabric on all 15 of them or mix the fabrics up?   Should I do them all in the same finish or mix them up?   I played and played around with ideas and finally decided on using the same finish for all but doing a different fabric on each one.  The fabrics all come from one group from French General called "Petites Maisons de Noel".   Here is the collection I will be choosing from: 

Well things weren't working out too well as I finished my first ornament.   My small jingle bells did not arrive in the mail and I didn't like the ribbon. I wanted to run out to the store but we were having a huge storm and were advised to stay home.  

It is kind of done but I will change some things later.   I will add a ribbon tie and bow with tiny jingle bells at the top.  And, instead of a button on the yo yo I would like to try a jingle bell there too.   So far, I put the herringbone stitch on the ornament and a  yo yo with button .   More to come later with added changes.
Herringbone stitch and yo yo added

Hometown Holiday series
by Little House Needleworks
40 ct. country mocha linen
called for floss


Mary's Stitcher's Choice

My Stitcher's Choice is "Santa's List" by Country Cottage Needleworks.  To assemble this fun stitch, I cut a piece of matboard to the size of the opening, covered it with fleece, and then placed the stitch on the matboard.   I left about a half inch of extra fabric that was wrapped under the matboard.  Then, I glued it to the frame.

I did not care for how the edges looked so I hand sewed cording to the stitch while it was in the frame.  That little frame spins around so it made for quite the sewing challenge.  A little checked bow adorns the stitch.

Cute swivel frame I found in Michaels

Santa's List
by Country Cottage Needleworks
40 ct. country mocha linen
called for floss
frame from Michaels


We hope you liked our give a way and will be signing up.  As always, we thank you so very much for coming by to visit with us today.   Your visits and comments mean so much to us.  We will be by to see all of you and what you have been up to.  This was our "Christmas in July" themed post but next post will be dedicated to our patriotic stitches.   Have a lovely week and keep stitching!

                                                            Stitching Friends


Saturday, June 22, 2019

June Post One
Styling with Stitches
Sal Update with Meg

Happy Summer everyone!   We hope you are all enjoying good health, good weather and good times as the summer season begins.

It's been awhile since the stitching girls have been on.   Here is the lowdown. Both of us went on vacation during the month of May and early June. We thought we could post on the road but coordinating two people's posts away from our computers did not work well. But, we are back now refreshed and ready to go. Mary was able to have a relaxing and fun trip at the beach in Florida.  She got to visit with cousins, took a trip on a ferry to a beach island and did lots of shopping. I drove out to Texas with my husband to see our son Mike. We enjoyed golf, shopping, more Tex Mex food then we should have and a great visit. On the way home, we visited with good Air Force friends in Alabama for a nice stay and rehashing old memories.

Styling with Stitches

Our Styling with Stitches project this month is bulletin/message boards. Remember our seasonal wreaths that we made in April using the "Basketful" series and the "Hello" series for Spring.  Well, this new project is using the Summer patterns and we switched charts.   So Mary will be doing all of her message boards with the "Basketful" series and her wreaths with the "Hello" series.   And I will be doing the opposite.   I will use the "Hello" series for my message boards and the "Basketful" series for my wreaths.   This way we each will have a wreath and message board for each season but they will be different. 


RJ's Styling with Stitches

I've always wanted a large message board for my craft area up in our bonus room.   I think it will come in handy to leave messages on what flosses I need, to tack up fabric pieces for small projects, and ideas for future projects etc.    I found a nice sized frame while out in Texas.   In Kohl's, I came across a large 16 by 20 frame marked $50 on clearance for just $9.99 and when I got to the register the lady gave me another 20% off on my whole bill.   So this pretty cream frame was only $8 Kohl's frames are always nice and deep and perfect to add a stitch to.   I was off to a good start.

I added blue ticking to each side of the "Hello Summer" stitch and then added lace underneath.   I stitched this to a big piece of blue paisley fabric and then hand stitched the cutest, vintage buttons on the lace.   After that I attached it to foam board and put it in the frame.

For the tacks, I used wood letter tiles glued to thumb tacks.  This was an easy way to have custom tacks and inexpensive too.

Stitching "Hello Summer" was really a joy. It is such a pretty pattern. My husband retired as a full colonel and his rank that he wore was an eagle so I loved that this stitch included that regal bird.  And, the flag is very special me.  I love patriotic patterns of any kind but this is a real favorite of mine.
Love the eagle and flag on this stitch

Closeup of vintage buttons and tacks

Messages added 

Hello Summer
by Plum Street Sampler
40 ct. vintage mocha linen
Called for floss
Frame from Kohl's
Fabric from Joann's
Letters from Michael's


Mary's Styling with Stitches

Basketfull of Summer by Brenda Gervais was a delight to stitch and I am looking forward to stitching the rest in this series.

My town has a "free day," donations of anything in good working order are accepted and volunteers organize it all by category on day one.  The following day it is opened up to the public and you can take anything you want for free!!!  I found this metal sign and thought it would be perfect for a bulletin/message board. A quick coat of DecoArt's Dazzling Metallics  in rich expresso was all it needed for an update.

This is my second "Priscillified" finish using magnets and washers.  I was fortunate to have fabric in my stash that worked so well with my stitch.

I updated magnets to coordinate with the stitch
Who doesn't love a dog carrying a flag!

Basketful of Summer
by With Thy Needle and Thread
40 ct. Summer Khaki New Castle linen
Called for floss
one over two


SAL Update

We are all enjoying stitching the Summer School house series by With Thy Needle and Thread.   We love the soft colors and the pattern images.  They are all being stitched on 28 ct. mushroom lugana over one and we are using the called for floss. It's been awhile since we updated our SAL's so we have a lot to show.   Having Meg from "I live to stitch" join us has been such a joy. If you have not seen her lovely blog yet, you can visit her here You are in for a treat. 

Mary's SAL's

Mary has part one and three done and is on her way to catching up in our SAL challenge.   She just needs SAL two and she is already stitching it.
SAL one completed
SAL three completed too!

Meg's SAL'S
Meg has been quite industrious and has completed one, two and three plus has started four.   Way to go Meg!!!
SAL two completed
SAL three competed too!

And even SAL four started ... looking good!

RJ's SAL's

I completed SAL two and three since our last update to join number one.  I'll be starting number four tonight and can't wait.   I did make a mistake on number two.   I didn't notice I was stitching the girl's dress in the wrong color until it was done.   It was supposed to be Lexington Green instead of the Mountain Mist I used.   It is so hard to rip out on 28 ct. over one and the two colors are so close in shade that I just left it.
SAL two completed with slightly darker dress

Sal three all done to join the others

Here are the first three parts to our Sal (it was hard to get them all in one photo)


Thanks everyone for stopping by for a visit. We really appreciate all of you. Can't wait to catch up with all of your blogs and see what you have been up to while we have been gone. It's hard to believe it is summer already. Hope you all have special outings planned and are enjoying your newest stitching project. 

                                                  Stitching Friends

Saturday, May 4, 2019

April Post Three
Stitchers Choice
SAL Update

Happy Spring everyone!   It may be May to the rest of the world, but "stitching friends" thinks it is still April.   So, today we are doing the April Stitcher's Choice post.  We try hard to do three posts a month (styling with stitches, grab bag and stitcher's choice.)   But, with a power shortage and a 30 day month, we are late.  Better late than never right?


RJ's Stitcher's Choice

I'm planning a Spring tree for the near future so I thought I would make some ornaments for it. I have three to share with you today and they will be added to five I've shown before.  Hopefully by next year I'll have a good dozen or so.  

Three new stitches sitting in the garden house

The ornament on the left is a pretty garden stitch that I found on Etsy.  Because of the plaid linen I didn't use any fabric with it.  I just added a navy print bow and a tiny watering can charm.  I added the French word jardin to the bottom.   

Watering Little Sampler
by Primitive Acorns
found on Etsy
overdyed floss from stash
plaid 28 ct. linen

The middle ornament is one of the sweetest patterns that Mary gifted me.  I love the lavender colors and the cute little lamb.  On this one, I added three coordinating fabrics patchwork style and then put a row of X stitches between the fabric and the cross stitch. A lavender polka dot bow sits on top and a dragonfly charm is above the lamb's head.  This pattern comes free if you buy the called for floss.

Welcome Spring
by Little House Needleworks
40 ct. flax linen
floss comes with free stitch

And, the ornament to the right was also an Etsy pattern.  I stitched this one awhile ago and it was my first attempt at the herringbone stitch.   After I took the photo, I noticed that one of the stitches is loose so I'll fix that.  I used navy dot and print fabrics and some lace.  At the top I replaced the planned stitched section with a bow and garden tools. 

The Rabbit and the Elderberry
by Primitive Acorns
found on Etsy
40 ct. flax linen
over dyed floss from my stash


Mary's Stitcher's Choice

I purchased this standing chalkboard frame at Michael's with the intent of finding a stitch that would fit.  I lucked out and found an entire series!!!

This was my first finish using Priscilla's method of using magnets and washers to attach a stitch to the frame.  This works out ideally for a series that will be changed out seasonally or even monthly.

I used matboard for the base layer and sticky board for the stitch. Both had a layer of felt cut to size under the fabrics. I glued 2 magnets on the chalkboard. Now, how to match up the washers???  So, I put a little craft  paint on the magnets and placed the backside of the stitch down on the magnets which marked where I should put my washers.

After the stitch was on, I felt it needed a little something extra so I glued on cording in coordinating colors.  

If you happen to be unfamiliar with Priscilla, she has a facebook page Stitching with the Housewives, youtube videos Priscilla and Chelsea-The Real Housewives of Cross Stitch and her blog

Welcomes 'A Plenty
V Series Summertime Home
32 ct. Zweigart Belfast linen
Parisian Taupe

called for floss


SAL Update

We are all loving our newest SAL called Summer Schoolhouse by With Thy Needle and Thread.   It consists of five projects and will cover the whole alphabet.   They are stitched on 28 ct. mushroom lugana fabric one over one. The stitches are very petite but so pretty. All of the colors are soft and working well.  

Meg's progress
Here is Megs' after 39 hours.   You can visit Meg here and see more of her SAL and her lovely blog    

Mary's progress   25 hours in. 

RJ's progress
My first stitch is done!   It took 39 hours and 15 minutes.  Now on to the second project in the series.   


Isn't she lovely and perfect for Spring?   You can find the free pattern here


As May begins, we are preparing for lots of neat things for the month. Our theme is usually garden related but we changed it this year to sewing projects. The next post will be a double one with styling with stitches sewing projects and then our grab bag will include tutorials.  So we would love for you to come back to see us. Hope you are all doing well and getting a lot of stitching in. We will be by to see what you have been up to. As always, thank you so very much for stopping by. We really appreciate your visits and comments.

                                                           Stitching Friends   


Tuesday, April 23, 2019

April Post Two
RJ's Grab bag/Jutta's bunnies
SAL update/Schoolhouse series
Update on the French village

We hope you had a joyful Easter with family and friends.   Good Friday brought a big storm to Gainesville and we lost power for two days.   But, it came back just in time to put the ham in the oven and prepare our Easter dinner.  Mary celebrated the day with her family and lots of good food too.

This month's theme is bunnies and I have a special bunny project to share.  Last year, Jutta was giving away adorable pieced bunnies on her blog. Have you ever seen something that you immediately fall in love with?  That happened to me.   I didn't think I would win so I was thinking could I teach myself to make something like that. But, I actually won!!!

I can remember the day my package arrived.  My husband walked in carrying a package and said "RJ, you got a package from Germany".  I was so excited that I couldn't open the package quick enough.  It was even prettier in real life. Jutta's work is so beautiful and perfectly done.

Jutta's lovely pieced bunnies

My first instinct was to make a wall hanging but I have such limited wall space in my house.  And, I wanted it somewhere that everyone would see it.   I was sitting in a chair in my family room one day staring at the sofa and there it was a whopping big brown check pillow on the sofa.   I thought why not a "Stitching Friends" pinafore.   So off I went to the store to pick up some fabrics.   I found a nice brown fabric with circles, a pretty paisley and some really nice quilters cotton batting.
Paisley and circle fabrics

I added the brown printed fabric to the top and bottom and then added large pieces of paisley to each side.   Next came some quilters batting.  Then the back was made out of the brown circle fabric and finally linedRibbon ties were added with buttons to the sides. I could not find the brown ribbon I bought so I used some white ribbon for the time being but will change it.
Bunny pinafore

But the fun part was adding the whiskers, the yo yo pin to the girl and the bow tie to the boy.  Putting the buttons on broke two needles because of the thickness of the fabrics but finally it worked!
Closeup of the boy bunny and his bow tie

Closeup of the girl bunny and the yo yo pin

Closeup of the sweet couple "Hanna and Francis"

Pieced bunnies from Jutta
Fabrics from Joanne's

A lot of patterns name their bunnies so I thought I would do that too.   I named them Hanna and Francis after my German grandparents.   I smile every time  I look at them and think of my sweet Oma and Opa and my sweet friend Jutta in Germany.


SAL Update

We are all merrily moving along on our Sal "Summer Schoolhouse".  The floss colors are so pretty and they have been a lot of fun to stitch.  You can find our good friend Meg's blog here where she has more info.

Meg's SAL after 31 hours:

Mary's SAL after 18 hours:

RJ's SAL after 31 hours:


RJ's French Holiday Village update

Here are my last two French Christmas Village stitches.   Next month, I will start to finish them.  After making the Poinsettia Hotel, I thought my village needs a B&B too.  So I pulled out another old pattern called "Holiday House" by LHN.  The only changes were to add a sign called LaCour  which means the Courtyard.  I also added a hanging sign that says B&B.  And, I changed the topiaries to one ball so there was room for the hanging sign.  I had to make a few adjustments to the windows but all and all this one was easy.

One day I received an email from our good friend Robin asking if I could use the Gazebo by CCN for my holiday village.   The Gazebo is a summer stitch but I thought I could winterize it and said I would love it.   I changed the grass to snow, the sun and sky to snowflakes, and the potted summer flowers to urns of topiaries with little red lights Then I added a sign that reads Noel for Christmas and a cute little wreath.   The pretty bluebird was replaced with a red cardinal.  
The original pattern
The gazebo after holiday changes


We want to thank you all for stopping by and visiting with us.  Your comments are much appreciated.  Special thanks to Jutta for the pretty bunnies I used for my grab bag today. We will be back in about ten days with our third April post.  It is our Stitchers Choice post which should be fun.  Looking forward to seeing what you all have been stitching and sewing.  Hope you are enjoying beautiful Spring days. 

                          “Spring is Nature’s way of saying ‘Let’s Party.”
                                                    Robin Williams