For I-don't-know-how-many-years, now, I have been making a small ornament to insert in my holiday Christmas cards for family and friends.
Years ago, when this 'thing' first started, I usually had an idea right around Halloween, and started making. I do about 30 cards per year. At that time, I also made cards with glitter, glue, and colored papers.
The challenge was to find an idea that could be quickly and easily mass-produced. Miniature wool mittens, one year, for example. As things got more complex on the ornament design, I got more crazy to get them done in time!
Last year the ornament idea came right after Christmas. And not unlike the on-going pin cushion completion project (mentioned below), it became a goal to make one ornament per week, all year long. I was so much more relaxed and it was a lot more fun to spread the stitching out over the entire year.
I got busy with the 2020 idea in January (that seems like SUCH a long time ago, now!). Here is a quick recap of what I made.
I started with 14-count plastic canvas and the idea to make gift packages. After a couple of prototypes, I cut the canvas into strips that were 22 stitches wide.
The strips allowed me to work in smaller batches. Because they were just the right width, they were much easier to handle, too.
I experimented with a few patterns, but ended up with a repeating herringbone pattern in cross stitch. (Not to be confused with the herringbone stitch).
I played with a variety of two-color combinations. Some more traditional than others.
I counted out the herringbone pattern with the first color. Then filled in the spaces in between with cross stitch with the second color.
With 16 rows complete, time to add a ribbon and bow!
With the cross stitch all filled in. I added a back-stitched ribbon right up the center.
Then I flipped the strip, and added a 'bow' at the top.
Turns out the 16-row pattern is exactly the same when it's flipped upside-down. This sorta just happened, it wasn't planned.
There you have it!
A little trimming around the box and bow. Then I fused on a rectangle of wool, sized exactly the size of the box.
I used fusible web to adhere the felt to the back of the canvas. I was a bit concerned that the heat would melt the plastic canvas, but if fared well!
I added a hang-tie to each ornament. I also added a crystal bead to a few of the ornaments to be used on packages instead of inserted in flat envelopes.
(By the way, if you're inclined to notice this kinda thing, this one doesn't flip like the others. It has 17 rows instead of 16, messing up the symmetry!)
What's Dave's contribution to the household card capers, you might ask? He expertly signed, stuffed, addressed, and sealed each card and envelope with care.
And off they went, earlier this week!
AND I already have an idea brewing for next year's cards.
Puffy Pin Cushion #38
Yet another pinwheel block. Enough pin cushion parts for one more pinwheel and one more four-patch puffy.
2 (TWO!!) puffies to go!
Oh. Em. Gee!
Make your own four-patch pin cushions. For the step-by-step tutorial, jump over to the blog and scroll down to the first Puffy Fours post from March 5. That's when I started, about the same time the world was shutting down. And that'll bring you to the beginning of the four-part tutorial.