There’s nothing I like better than getting prezzies for Christmas that give me something to make during the next few months. This year, I was very fortunate to get a bumper crop of really lovely gifts that will keep me quiet for AGES!!!
The first is this wonderful book, ‘A Passion For Needlework‘, which is a new one from the publishers of Inspirations magazine, featuring lots of gorgeous embroidery ideas from various designers from all over the world.
As with the Inspirations magazine itself, the book has the patterns for the designs printed on large sheets which are bound into the back of the book, for tracing onto your fabric.
I love almost all of the designs, but this one, by Susan O’Connor, is my favourite – an Elizabethan-inspired panel of flowers, stitched mainly in satin stitch and long and short stitch on Duchess satin fabric. When complete, it measures about 10 inches by four.
The original is stitched with Au Ver a Soie silk threads, but I think I’ll do a version in Anchor stranded cotton, as I have a full set of that already, and to buy all the threads needed as listed in the book would set me back about £80!
I also got some miniature kits this year, as I’m starting to make two doll’s house shops (an announcement about a new blog for those will be made soon!).
One of the shops is going to be a toy shop, so I am going to need lots of tiny toys, to fill it. This is a 1:144 scale kit from Severn Models, made from brass sheet, with incredible detail. The sheet shown is about six inches by four. When assembled and painted, the house should look like the image that’s just beneath the brass sheet, on the flyer, and be about 2 1/2 inches long by 1 1/2 inches wide. You can even get furniture to put inside it, but I think that’s taking things a bit too far!!
I also got several kits from Tower House Dolls (who make dolls, obviously, but also many kinds of little toys – both finished and as kits). This is a kit to make a Punch and Judy theatre, with scenery and metal puppets too. It’s about four inches high when finished.
This kit is to make four pull-along toys on wheels.
And this kit is to make a toy theatre with Alice in Wonderland characters, which fit in the little drawer in the base.
These are the characters – and yes, they do all fit in a match box! The tiny silver thing in the top right of the match box is a collection of little magnets, and one will be glued to the base of each character, so that when they are set on the stage, which has a magnetic sheet under it, the characters will stay put. Clever, eh?
This little kit was suggested to me by someone on Facebook, who reads this blog, and knows that I love making Victoria Sampler’s Gingerbread Village buildings. When she came across this kit by Sakoran, she told me, and of course I had to let Santa know that it should be added to my wishlist! It’s to make a tiny gingerbread house, less than two inches long, to hang on the Christmas tree. It’s stitched in cross stitch, with French knots and whipped backstitch for the gingerbread details.
One more present completes my haul for 2016 – a pair of fluffy socks called HotSox, which you heat up in the oven or microwave, and has little beads inside which hold the heat so that your feet don’t get cold. Whenever I sit and stitch in the evenings, my feet get really cold as I’m sitting still for too long, so my husband thought these might help 🙂 They are so cosy…the only problem is you can’t actually walk in them, which takes a bit of remembering! And they look a bit daft, but I’ve got to the age where I don’t really care about that. I just want to be comfy, and these are incredibly comfy!