Category Archives: Mary Hickmott cross stitch

I’m hooked on stitching bellpulls now……

I spent some time a few days ago making up materials packs for the three Mary Hickmott cross stitch bellpulls that follow on from the fabulous ‘Height of Summer’ one which I made a few years ago. The Autumn, Spring and Winter bellpulls are one step closer to actually being made, now!

However…..

While I was hunting through my stash of charts, I came across another couple of Mary Hickmott’s bellpull designs, and I’ve decided (mad as it may seem) that I just have to kit these up as well, and one day make them too, as I’m hooked on stitching bellpulls now.

This first one is a gorgeous design of sweet peas in pink and purple shades, and is called ‘Sweet Pea Pastels’.

sweet-peas-1

The chart pack suggests stitching it on pure white 28 count evenweave, but I think that might look a bit harsh against the wall where I would hang it, so I am going to stitch it on Zweigart Cashel linen ‘Ivory’ instead, which is a soft cream. The pinks and purple threads still look lovely against this fabric. I’m using Anchor stranded cotton again – look at all these beautiful colours!!

sweet-peas-2

The brass bellpull end is one given to me by my friend Karen Dixon, who sells these on her Millennia Designs website, in case you want one yourself (she has many other designs, too).

This final bellpull design from my chart stash is called ‘Fabulous Fuchsias’, and it’s a smaller design than the others designed by Mary Hickmott – it’s only 32 inches long when finished, as opposed to the 40 inches of the other ones. Its also a bit narrower. So, it wouldn’t take as long to stitch, so I’m tempted to start my marathon bellpull-fest with this one!

fuchsias-1

The fabric recommended on the chart pack for this one is Zweigart 28 count Cashel linen in Vintage blue – it’s a really pretty, softly marbled-looking fabric.  I bought a piece of it from Sew and So, 27 x 39 inches cut size, and it should be plenty.fuchsias-2

The wooden bellpull ends are also from Sew and So, and are manufactured by Framecraft. As this bellpull is a smaller design, I felt that heavy brass bellpull ends would be too overpowering.

Both chart packs are available from Mary Hickmott’s website Stitch Direct – the Sweet pea pastels one from here, and the Fabulous Fuchsias one from here.

So, that little lot should keep me busy for, ooh, several years, I should think  🙂

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Are you interested in doll’s houses and stitching? Then why not visit my website, where you can buy doll’s house needlepoint kits to make all kinds of soft furnishings for one-twelfth scale dollhouses. There are over 280 kits to choose from, plus chart packs, fabric project packs, tutorials, and lots of eye candy to inspire you! Kits are available on 18 and 22 count canvas, 28 and 32 count evenweave, and 32 and 40 count silk gauze, so there’s something for everyone – from beginners to experts.

As a special offer for new customers on my website, use the code FIRST TIME 10 at the checkout to receive 10% off your first order!

Dollhouse needlepoint kits

 

 

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Mary Hickmott bellpulls are to die for…!

I love making cross stitch bellpulls, even though no-one needs to actually use one these days! They are just lovely things to make. The Mary Hickmott bellpulls are to die for, though – they are really special designs!

About 15 years ago, I made this bellpull, called ‘Height of Summer’, designed by Mary Hickmott. Here’s how the design was shown in the  New Stitches magazine:

summer-2

This is my one, now hanging on the upper landing of my house. It is stitched on 28 count Zweigart cream evenweave, using Anchor stranded cotton. From what I remember, it took me about eight months altogether.

summer-1

 

At around that time, the Height of Summer bellpull was so popular (it was originally featured as a project in the New Stitches magazine, and later brought out as a chart pack and possibly a kit as well), that Mary Hickmott also started to design bellpulls to represent the other seasons, too. Of course, as I’d liked the first one so much, I made sure that I collected the other three. This is the one I plan to stitch next:

autumn-1

I’ve kitted it up, with Anchor stranded cotton, Zweigart 28 count Ivory evenweave fabric, and a gorgeous pair of heavy brass bellpull ends. These were given to me by a friend of mine who is also an embroidery designer, called Karen Dixon of Millennia Designs – she sells many styles of bellpull fitting on her website, if you’re interested  🙂

autumn-2

The Height of Spring bellpull uses bright yellows and violets – very indicative of spring flowers. I really like stitching with these colours, so it will be a tough choice as to whether I start with the Autumn or the Spring bellpull.

spring-1

Here’s my materials, ready to start:

spring-2

And finally, there’s the Height of Winter bellpull. Another beautiful design.

winter-1

And the materials ready to stitch this one:

winter-2

They’re all wonderful, aren’t they? These have been available for over 15 years, and in my stash box of charts ‘to be stitched one day’ for almost all of that time. But now that I’ve kitted them up, I’m just that bit closer to actually stitching them.

They are available as chart packs from Mary Hickmott’s website Stitch Direct, and should be findable if you do a search on the site for ‘height of’ – then, all the bellpulls will come up in the search results. At the moment, they cost £9 per chart.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Are you interested in doll’s houses and stitching? Then why not visit my website, where you can buy doll’s house needlepoint kits to make all kinds of soft furnishings for one-twelfth scale dollhouses. There are over 280 kits to choose from, plus chart packs, fabric project packs, tutorials, and lots of eye candy to inspire you! Kits are available on 18 and 22 count canvas, 28 and 32 count evenweave, and 32 and 40 count silk gauze, so there’s something for everyone – from beginners to experts.

As a special offer for new customers on my website, use the code FIRST TIME 10 at the checkout to receive 10% off your first order!

Dollhouse needlepoint kits

How long does it take to frame a piece of cross stitching?

Answer: 21 years.

I’m not kidding, honestly.

When I first met my husband, in the early nineties, I was mainly doing cross stitch pictures from kits. Occasionally, I did surface embroidery from kits (you could still buy some really good ones, then). I remember sitting in our new house, and stitching these two pictures, and really enjoying doing them:

A surface embroidery picture from a kit, made over 20 years ago (can’t remember who it’s by, now!)

A cross stitch nursery sampler from Mary Hickmott, of New Stitches magazine. This design first appeared in the magazine, and then as a separate kit.

But, as anyone who knows me would tell you, patience isn’t my strong point. In fact, recently, I did one of those online ‘personality test’ things, and the area I got the lowest score for was ‘patience’. Once a piece of embroidery is finished (I mean the stitching part), then I have to really force myself to complete the assembly/framing/blocking, or whatever it is….I just want to get on to the next project. Even if I can make myself finish something completely, I have to be very careful not to rush it, and make a mess of what might have taken me dozens of hours to actually stitch – all because I want to save a few minutes right at the end of the process.

So, as you can see from the two images above, these two pictures are now framed. Eventually. And the reason they’ve finally been finished is because a friend of mine mentioned that she’d like to have an example of my stitching, and she said she’d always wanted a sampler-style one. That’s when I remembered the two pieces of fabric rolled up in the drawer under my bed – stitched, but not framed. Not displayed for over 20 years. Bit of  a waste, really, isn’t it? So, having the excuse that they were now wanted by someone, I dug them out, blocked them, ironed them, framed them, and gave them to her a couple of weeks ago. And now they’re up on her wall, being seen. Which was the reason I stitched them in the first place, really. Only it took a while to get round to doing the last bit  🙂

Finished embroidery – it’s clearout time!

I have been having a serious clearout of  ‘stuff’ during the past few weeks, and now I’ve come across these embroidered pictures. Most of them were stitched over ten years ago, but I never got around to framing them. Now I’ve run out of wall space, so, realistically,  they’re never going to be displayed. None of them were designed by me, but where I know the designer, I have listed that in the item description.

I really enjoyed stitching them, but I’m sinking under the weight of all the STUFF, so some of it just has to go.

So, I’ve put them for sale on my website, http://www.janetgranger.co.uk/acatalog/Sale_Bargains.html

Victorian kitchen sampler designed by Mary Hickmott

 

Victorian nursery sampler designed by Mary Hickmott

Cornish cottage cross stitch picture

Cross stitcher's poem

 

Skiiing surface embroidery picture