There’s a sale on my website this week!

Would you like to save money on chart packs to make doll’s house scale carpets?

All the carpet chart packs on my doll’s house needlepoint website can be bought for 10% less than usual till midnight on Sunday 29th May 2016 when you use the discount code CHART10 at the checkout. So if you love to adapt the designs, colourways or fabric counts from the carpet kits that are also available, in order to make your carpets unique, now’s your chance to save money in the process!

This is what you get in a chart pack:

  • LARGE SCALE BLACK AND WHITE SYMBOL CHART – computer-generated and easy-to-follow
  • Detailed instructions, including how to work the design using tent stitch, how to hem the edges of your embroidery, how to add the fringe to the carpets, and how to finish irregularly-shaped carpets.
  • Suggested thread colours – the same ones as used in the full kits (Appleton’s crewel wool for the carpets), along with thread equivalents for DMC, Madeira and Paterna
  • Stitch diagrams explaining how to do tent and basketweave stitch (similar to half cross stitch), as well as fringing stitch (which is similar to a cross stitch worked over the edge of the canvas, leaving a series of loops which are later cut to an even length). Of course, if you choose to work the designs in cross stitch, then with a chart pack, that is an option which is entirely up to you!

Each of these charts is specifically designed for use in one twelfth scale doll’s houses.

To see the selection of miniature needlepoint designs which are available as chart packs, see the carpetstaircarpet, and wallhanging pages in the Online Shop (NB: Wallhanging charts aren’t in the sale, though).

This is an example of a carpet chart pack (this one is a William Morris-inspired carpet called ‘May (blue)’ :

chartpack

To take advantage of the sale, simply use the discount code CHART10 as you go through the checkout, and 10% of the price of any carpet chart packs (including staircarpet charts) will be deducted from your order.

Here’s an example of what can be achieved by using a chart pack. One of my customers, called Deborah, used a Carole carpet chart, adapted the colourway and the size, and made this amazing carpet for her drawing room:

 

Carole adaptation Deborah N 540

Deborah used this design as inspiration for her adaptation:

carole_pastel500

Did you know that I sell ‘project-sized’ pieces of 18 and 22 count canvas, as well as various counts of silk gauze? So, if you are using the chart packs to make your unique piece of miniature needlepoint, you can get the fabric you need here.

Also, if you would like to use Appletons crewel wool to stitch your carpets (which is what I use in the full kits), you may like to know that Viking Loom, a wonderful needlecraft shop just outside York, have just added the whole range of Appletons crewel wool to their website, so although I don’t sell the wool skeins myself, you can now buy what you need easily online from them.

Visit my website to see the whole range of kits and charts for doll’s house needlepoint, or go straight to the chart pack section now.

Carolyn Pearce Home Sweet Home workbox 45: making the inner tray and attaching the roof

I’m on the home run now – completing the inner tray of the Home Sweet Home workbox from Carolyn Pearce’s book.

This is the inner tray, just after I’ve Ladder stitched the base of the outer layer in place. The panels were made in the same way as the lining of the box itself – fabric laced over mount board, and then Ladder stitched together.

Make 25

This shows the inner tray the right way up.

Make 26

I then measured the lengths I needed to cut for the lining of the inner tray (Carolyn gives exact measurements in her book, but makes it very clear that you need to measure YOUR box for exact sizes. My box seems to be almost an eighth of an inch smaller all round than hers, so every panel needs to be cut a bit smaller). This is before I Ladder stitched the inner box to the outer one – but first I needed to insert the dividers:

Make 27

The dividers are quite a fiddly bit to do. For the first (smallest) divider, the lining fabric needs to have a piece of iron-on interlining attached to one half, with the seam allowances pressed down to make creases along the straight sides, and also at 45 degree angles across the corners.

Make 28

Then the fabric is laced across the half where the mount board goes (same size piece of board as the interfacing), and the two corners mitred and stitched down.

Make 29

Then, with the seam allowances turned in, the top half is folded over the bottom half, and the rectangle is Ladder stitched all the way round.

Make 30

Then, quilting thread is put through the divider in three places with a long needle, with the lengths left about a foot long at each side, for tying off later.

Make 31

The second divider is made in the same way (but without stitching the two halves into one just yet). Three holes are made in the mount board – I used a hat pin.

Make 32

Then, three of the quilting thread ties from the smallest divider are threaded through the three holes on the second divider. I put the leftover quilting threads in a ‘thread stopper’ used for beading, to prevent the divider from just sliding off the threads!

Make 33

This is what it looks like from the other side, at this point.

Make 34

The third divider is made and attached in the same way, then the dividers, as one piece now, are inserted in the inner tray shape, and the remaining quilting threads are put through holes made in the inner tray lining walls. You need to be an octopus at this point to keep it all under control – even with my husband helping me to hold it all together we got in a muddle!

Make 35

But once all the threads are tied off tightly, it looks like this – nice and sturdy.

Make 36

But the inner tray still needs a base – and it isn’t just one base piece. The instructions call for four different pieces of base, padded and made up separately, so that each compartment has a snugly fitting base piece.

Make 37

The stripes have to match up across the whole base, which was tricky to do, but finally each piece was Ladder stitched in place.

Make 38

The roof lining pieces first had the remaining ends of the cord ties attached to them midway along each of the short sides.

Make 42

It wasn’t in the instructions, but at this point I decided to glue the knots of the cords to the seam allowances of the roof linings, to be on the safe side. I used GS Hypo Fabric Cement, which is a really strong fabric glue. You can get multi-purpose glue in a red tube from the same company, but the purple one is best for fabrics. I bought mine from Ebay.

Make 46

The roof linings were then each Ladder stitched to the respective roof pieces (making sure that the slightly smaller back roof piece went at the back!) all the way round, with Ladder stitch.

Make 44

Finally, the lower edge of each roof piece was Ladder stitched to the top of the walls on each long side.

Make 43

Finished! Final pictures of the finished project next time!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Carolyn Pearce Home Sweet Home workbox 44: making the roof lining

The Home Sweet Home workbox by Carolyn Pearce is getting very near to completion, now, which is very exciting!

Here are the pieces of narrow cording that I made, as ties to attach the roof to the gable ends of the house itself. They are each about three inches long, made from two full lengths (six strands x 2) of Anchor stranded cotton twisted then allowed to fold back on themselves.

Make 17

Making sure the ends of each piece had a large knot in (to make it easier to stitch through and attach securely), I attached the ties to the outside of the box lining seam allowances with quilting thread, halfway along each gable end side.

Make 18

Then I fitted the box lining inside the box, and Ladder stitched all around the top edge (again with quilting thread), joining the box to the lining, and holding the end of the ties in position at the same time.

Make 19

Now for the roof – the little chimneys were made from a tubular green bead with a small round wooden bead on top (bought on Ebay), attached with strong brown quilting thread to the embroidered back roof panel’s seam allowance.

Make 20

On the front roof panel, I stitched two Buttonhole stitch loops, lined up with  the corresponding chimneys on the back panel, to hold the box closed when it’s all assembled.

Make 21

Carolyn recommends Up and Down Buttonhole Stitch in her book, which is probably better, as the finished buttonhole stitches don’t then twist round, but I forgot, and did ‘normal’ Buttonhole stitch instead.

Make 22

The roof lining was FIDDLY!!!! Here are the necessary pieces, set out before I started – fabric, mount board pieces, and some quarter inch wide white elastic.

Make 23

The narrow strip of lining fabric is for covering the narrow elastic. Carolyn explains a very detailed and neat way to cover the elastic in her book, which meant getting the sewing machine out. I couldn’t be bothered to do that, so I wrapped the fabric around the elastic, turned under a small hem, and oversewed it in place by hand, making sure I didn’t catch the elastic in the stitching. Worked fine for me…..

Make 24

The next part of the process is the only part of the book’s instructions that I wasn’t happy with. I tried Carolyn’s method, and it was a nightmare. This is what she suggests – then I’ll show you what I did instead!

Carolyn suggests pulling up the elastic pieces so that the fabric covering is ruched, then pinning it in place centrally on the lining fabric BEFORE you’ve attached the lining to the mount board. Then place the tool that you want to be held on the underside of the roof in place on the lining fabric, and pin through the elastic where you want the elastic to be held down, to securely keep the tool in position. Then attach little buttons at the ends of the elastic (but within the dimensions of the panel’s front), then take the tool out and stitch across where you’ve put all the pins in, on a sewing machine. Then attach the fabric lining to the mount board (even though it’ll be pulled out of shape by all the elastic and machine stitching).

You can probably tell from my description that I didn’t think much of this!

I did TRY to do it. Here’s a picture of how far I got….  DON’T DO IT LIKE THIS!!!!

Make 39

But after trying to attach the fabric to the mount board, I realised that with the elastic already stitched down, I couldn’t get the tension on the lacing tight enough, so I threw it away and started again…..

So, the second time, I laced the fabric over the mount board FIRST. Then I stretched the elastic across the board, tying one end to the other end across the back of the mount board with strong Perle 12 thread. I also stitched through the casing covering the elastic a few times at the very top and bottom on the reverse side, to stop the elastic slipping out of position.

Make 40

The completed panel looks like this – simpler, without the ‘holding down’ bits of stitching on the front, or the buttons, but it still holds the scissors in place just fine.

Make 41

For the second panel, where I want to have two tools – a stitch ripper, and a laying tool – I made just two tiny stitches in the centre of the elastic strip through to the lining fabric with cream cotton thread that wouldn’t show, before lacing the lining fabric to the mount board. That made it as easy to attach as the  first one. Then I tied the two ends together across the back of the panel as before.

Lovely.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Competition time!

Would you like the chance to win £200 to spend on miniature needlepoint kits and charts?

That’s the prize in a competition that I have just launched!
Who has the most beautiful doll’s house full of mini stitching? Could it be you?

As I’ve been in business 20 years this year, I have decided to celebrate that by offering one prize of £200 in vouchers and two runner-up prizes of £20 in vouchers in this competition.

All you need to do is take photos of one of your existing doll’s house rooms full of stitching, or start stitching now to complete a room, to be in with a chance of winning!

Have a look at the Customers’ Stitching page of my website now, for lots of inspirational ideas. Dining rooms, drawing rooms, summer houses…..all kinds of rooms in miniature can have mini needlepoint added to them.

room_judith-540

Simply follow these rules, to have a chance at winning £200 of miniature needlepoint kits and charts:

Take a photo of miniature needlepoint that you have made from any Janet Granger Designs kits or chart packs, displayed in a room setting or doll’s house room of any kind, and email it to mail@janetgranger.co.uk .  The needlepoint must be in a room of some kind, not a ‘flat shot’ of just the finished stitching. If it is from a chart pack, it can be your own colourway and choice of threads.  Make sure the lighting in your image is good, and the focus is sharp. The image file should be in jpg format, and as large as possible (at least 600 pixels on the longest side). If possible, do not show a date stamp in the image, or if you can’t turn date stamping off, then make sure no stitching is covered by the date stamp mark.

Each image must feature only needlepoint which has been designed by me (not needlepoint from other designers’ kits or charts, or designs from books, or that you have designed yourself from scratch).

Each image must clearly show at least four *different* stitched pieces from the Janet Granger Designs’ range (that is, not four of the same design – for instance four dining chair seats all featuring the same design only counts as one). To qualify, the room can have more than four needlepoint items in, but cannot have less than four. The designs that count as part of the four must be available in the current Janet Granger Designs’ range as shown on the website http://www.janetgranger.co.uk (discontinued designs can be in the image, but do not count as part of the four).

You can enter as many images as you like – either of the same room from different angles, or several different rooms, as long as each room has four different needlepoint pieces in it.

People who have previously had images added to the Customers’ Stitching page of my website are very welcome to enter this competition – but please send any image you would like to be considered for the competition in accordance with these rules, to avoid confusion.

If you would like your competition entry’s images added to the Customers’ Stitching page of my website for the first time, please mention that in your email when you submit your images – whether you ask for this or not does not influence the decision regarding who wins at all.

You must supply your full name, address and email address with your entries, which are to be emailed to mail@janetgranger.co.uk by 14th November 2016 at the latest.

There is no fee to enter the competition.

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This gives you an idea of what £200 of kits looks like (of course, the exact choice would be up to you – in this selection, there are 13 kits):

competition prize £200

The winning image and two runner-up images will be decided solely at my discretion, and the result announced on Friday 18th November 2016 on my website, in my email newsletter and on social media. Winners will be notified personally by email. There is no time limit on when the vouchers have to be used by.

By entering the competition, you agree that any images submitted, whether they win or not, can be used in publicity both online and/or in printed magazines at my discretion (the stitcher’s first name or initials may be used in publicity, but not the full name or address).

Prudence room setting 540

So, get those cameras out and have a go! It could be you who wins the £200 of kits and charts – but only if you enter the competition! (You’ve got to be in it to win it, as they say!)

Visit the website now to see the whole range that you can choose from to make your dream doll’s house room.