Just before Christmas, I blogged about the Gingerbread Village series of 3D buildings that Thea Dueck has created for her business, Victoria Sampler (in CANADA – I won’t get it wrong and claim she’s in the USA, this time 🙂 ). Back then, I was just drooling over the series of village buildings, and saying how good they looked, and that one day….
I gave in a few days ago, and ordered the chart booklets and accessory packs for the three buildings that are available so far – the Gingerbread Stitching House, the Gingerbread Church, and Candy Cane Cottage.
Rather than order them direct from Victoria Sampler (and have to wait ages for them to get here because of Airmail, and pay huge shipping fees, and Customs Duty), I ordered them from Sew and So, and they came within two days, by courier, for just £1.99 p&p. That’s the kind of company I like buying from!
I have several of the Victoria Sampler chart booklets, and they’re always very well produced, using glossy paper, with large scale black and white symbol charts, detailed assembly instructions, and lots of photos. The spelling is sometimes a bit sloppy, but I can put up with that. It’s the designs that I love.
These are more than just cross stitch designs. They are part of what Thea calls her ‘Beyond Cross Stitch’ range, meaning that they are suitable for people who have done some cross stitch, and would like to move on a little with their stitching skills, using other counted thread stitches alongside the cross stitch. All the stitches are clearly explained. It just makes these lovely buildings even more interesting to make.
The Stitching House is an etui – the roof lifts off, so that a biscornu can be stored inside, along with scissors on a fob. The underside of the roof has felt pages to store needles, and the chimney is a pincushion. The other two buildings are just models, which don’t ‘do’ anything (except look cute).
The thing that attracts me the most with these projects, though, is the ‘accessory packs’, that are sold alongside the chart booklets. You don’t have to buy them, but they have such yummy things in them, that they are hard to resist. For these three projects, each pack has tiny seed beads (size 11’s as well as weeny little 15’s), cute buttons, gold charms, silk ribbon, and any threads that you need to complete each project – and these are high end threads, too, such as Gloriana and Needlepoint Inc. silk.
Suggested fabrics are listed in the chart booklets, but, annoyingly, in the UK at least, the recommended ‘Antique Almond’ (a kind of medium brown) 28 count linen evenweave fabric has been discontinued by Zweigart. Sew and So say on their website that Zweigart’s ‘Dirty Linen’ shade is a ‘close match’ to use instead, but I’ve already got some of that, and I reckon it’s completely different! Much greyer, and very drab-looking. Not gingerbready at all. So, I’ve chosen to use Zweigart’s 28 count linen shade ‘Cognac’, which is a strong rust brown shade. I’ve ordered a metre of the stuff now (enough for all three buildings), so if it’s the wrong colour when I get it, I’ll have a lot of it to use up in other projects.
I’ve got several things on the go at the moment, so these will have to wait a while, but I don’t think it’ll be long before I’ll start on them.