I lamented in a recent Flosstube video that I have too many cross stitch projects using the same color of Sulky 12 weight cotton petites thread. My favorite color to stitch with has been the Sulky Milk Chocolate Blendables color. With Halloween and winter stitching, I cannot seem to keep track of the spools. A fantastic viewer offered a great solution to my one spool dilemma.
This viewer suggested that I put some of the Sulky Petites on small bobbins. What a great idea! I immediately went and ordered abobbin set with a carrying case. I like the idea of being able to carry a portable sulky thread palette in a project bag or for a purse project.
Using my sewing machine, I quickly loaded a single bobbin with the Sulky thread. I am so happy. Now I can add this small bobbin to one project. I just have to label the color. I heard about the bobbin holders that are super fun and brightly colored. I thought I could use them and attach my thread number to each one.
I am so happy with the results. Sulky is super affordable as a cross stitching floss, and now I can make each spool into small bobbins for multiple projects. Yippee!
It should not come as any surprise that I absolutely love cross stitch. Inspired by the Love and Virtue 1830 Sampler, I created a custom pink cross stitch inspired envelope and needle book fabric panel. Have this panel printed as a fat quarter on linen cotton canvas. One fat quarter will give you two envelope panels and two needle book panels. That way you can make one for yourself and sew up one for a loved one.
If you are interested in this custom fabric, head over to my Spoonflower shop and order a fat quarter of the fabric. I would love to see your creation! Tag me on social media @ardithdesign .
I will be hosting a Facebook Live on December 17, 2019 at 4 pm EST. Come watch on the Just CrossStitch Facebook page as I show you how to make this envelope and matching carnation flower patch. Until next time,
Happy Stitching my friends, Amanda Mae
In my latest Flosstube video I talk about sustainable stitching. In order to help explain it a bit better, I created a free printable PDF. You can find it here. I would love it if you shared it and helped spread the word about sustainable stitching!
I appreciate you and your support. I hope you have a great stitching week! -Amanda Mae
Here are my top ten tips for a new cross stitch designer.
1. Just get Started
I know this sounds cliché, but if you have an idea get it down on paper! You do not need a fancy design software program or a state-of-the-art computer in order to get started designing cross stitch and needlework patterns. Graph paper, pencils, and colored pencils are great tools and jumping off point to start your work. I developed my own graph paper book to help me draft ideas and chart if something inspires me.
These are graph paper books I designed and created to help with charting cross stitch patterns.
2. Be mindful of copyright.
Are you looking to chart a popular cartoon character or phrase? Are you looking to sell your design? If you answered yes to those two questions, then you might run up against a copyright violation if you are not licensed or have permission from the copyright holder. Do your research.
3. Understand what is in the public domain
4. Follow other designers and their journeys.
For instance, I love to watch other Flosstube channels and see what other designers are up to and creating in cross stitch. It has been so fun watching the journey of designers like Stephanie Webb of LindyStitches or Michelle Garrette of Bendy Stitchy Designs.
5. Try to stitch your own models.
Software and computer generated photos are great, but think about the longevity of your work. It can be important to have stitched models for shows like the Nashville Needlework Market, Needlework Galleria, or trunk shows at a local needlework shop (LNS). Down the road if you wish to retire a particular design, you can always sell your model stitch. For instance, Kathy Barrick a well known American designer sells her stunning framed models to eager needlework collectors.
6. Take good pictures of your model. Enough said.
7. Ask for help.
Ask friends or family to proofread your charts, help with folding your paper charts, or just for moral support.
8. Limited edition versus permanent colorways.
I fall into the trap of loving all of the fabrics and floss produced by boutique dyers and small batch artists. While these colors and products are amazing, it's hard to replicate them if they're limited edition. For instance, if I use unnamed limited edition floss by The Gentle Art stitched on a vintage hard-to-find 30 count piece of R & R Reproductions linen, how can other stitchers find these materials to stitch their piece just like mine? In the era of the “Floss Toss” and color conversions, it might seem like no big deal, but many stitchers want to stitch their pieces exactly “as charted.” Many could be disappointed that they cannot find the required materials and just choose to not stitch your piece. Worse yet, these stitchers might not purchase your next pattern for fear of another difficulty in kitting up the project.
9. What's your plan for selling your designs?
Will you only sell paper printed charts? Exclusively sell digital downloads or PDF documents? Ebay? Etsy? Gumroad? I sell on Gumroad and I love it. I know Wild Violet Cross Stitch is also another designer that sells on Gumroad.
10. Do you want to use a distributor?
For example Hoffmann and Yarn Tree are two cross stitch pattern distributors. Do your research and see if this is the right fit for you.
I hope this list helps you. Happy stitching and happy designing! ~Amanda Mae
This is a special on-location filming of Flosstube at the Schifferstadt Architectural Museum in Frederick, Maryland. This house is one of the oldest in Frederick County and is a National Historic Landmark. Centuries ago, the farm at Schifferstadt grew flax for clothing and textiles. Now the Fredericks Landmarks Foundation and its volunteers are helping to bring history to life. I would like to thank Boyce Rengberger for sharing his knowledge with me and allowing me to film in July 2019 and again on October 19, 2019 during Octoberfest at Schifferstadt Museum. I would also like to thank the other volunteers and participants that allowed me to film while we removed the flax berries during a hot July afternoon in Frederick, Maryland. After the flax berries were removed, the flax was placed on the ground in a wooded area of the property for 11 days for the retting process. Next, the flax bundles were stored until Octoberfest to show the community how to turn flax into fiber.
I had the honor and privilege to host a finishing tutorial live on Facebook in conjunction with Just CrossStitch Magazine. What a fun experience! You can watch the video here.
This is a special episode of Flosstube where I show you how I stitch in hand. Follow along with me to see my process. Please be aware that my pugs and kiddos are making some noise in the background. Luna Moon and Loki Apple love to squeak their ball and jump on my lap. You will see all of the pug action as I attempt to stitch my freebie chart I designed in 2018 titled, “143.” Download it now and follow along with my tutorial.
Stitching in hand does not require a lot of stuff or stitching stash to get started.
Here is my supply list that is seen on my video:
This is a complete unboxing video of all of the prizes and goodies I received from Just CrossStitch magazine and their sponsors. I was awarded this prize package for being one of the six winners of the 2019 JCS Ornament Contest. I opened and unboxed this package in front of the camera. I had a few distractions from pugs and kiddos, but I did not re-film or script this Flosstube episode. I would like to thank everyone who encouraged me to enter the contest. Of course, I also thank JCS magazine and the sponsors for all of the wonderful prizes.
Want to see my winning design? You will see it in the December 2019 issue of JCS available October 29, 2019.
I am so excited to see my custom fabric transformed into a project bag. I sent my fabric to StarsHallowStitchery and I am so pleased with the results. Do you want your own Boo Bees bag? You can find her Etsy shop here.
I am also pleased to announce that you can find printed copies of my Boo Bees Apiary charts at Threads Entwined.
I am so excited to announce that I am one of the six winners for the Just CrossStitch 2019 ornament contest. Be sure to grab a copy of the December 2019 issue to see my winning design!