Thursday, 31 December 2015

I'm Done With Stitching!

Well, stitching in 2015 that is!

A few days ago I put in the final stitches in to my final finish of the year, Catherine Agnes by Indigo Rose, gifted to me by the lovely Dana (you may know her as Parksfarm here and there) and she was right - I loved (almost!) every stitch!

Catherine Agnes by Indigo Rose Complete
I stitched this using 28ct Quaker and a mixture of Jodyri Antique and Regular silks (with a Caron Wildflowers used just to outline the cutwork) and it was packed full of speciality stitches (closeups of which you can see here if you are interested).  It did include the stitch that a lot of stitchers love to hate (except the crazy ones that love them, not mentioning any names you know who you are!) and I was very proud of myself that I powered through and did them at great cost to a now very bent straw needle - Bullion Knots, 28 to be exact !!!!
Bullion Knots and Eyelets
Not perfect but the best I've managed thus far!
Now that piece is completed I have the final results of my stitching for 2015!  With a clean slate for the start of 2015 I managed to have 50 starts and 50 finishes - more finishes than in the past three years combined!
I didn't start the year intending to have that many finishes, I knew I would have at least 27: 12 freebie projects, 12 hardangers and the 3 medium size projects I'd picked last year. 
The number of finishes would explain how I managed to smash my Operation Threadporn goal total!  At the start of the year I wanted to use 12% - 15% of my hand dyed thread collection in my projects, but was dubious as to whether I would ever manage it!  I can now reveal that in 2015 I managed to use 26.43%, which I am chuffed to bits with as when your collection is in the four figures that's a lot of different threads!  I loved stitching from stash, in the truest sense, as 92% of my finishes were stitched from stash - patterns, fabric and thread, changing threads and fabric to suit what I had already.  Of course it helped that I didn't purchase hardly any threads, especially in the latter half of the year - my sister was right, having a percentage as a goal was a real motivator!  The last few months I have only bought #8 and #12 white perle, white #9 beads and black AVAS - all needed for current projects.  The whole challenge really did cure me of my need to own all the threads - I knew my favourites before, but now I'm really sticking to them, quality over quantity and all that.  Consequently I've halved my stash budget for 2016 so as not to be drawn into temptation again!
The other part of Operation Threadporn was to try and fully finish more of the pieces that I stitched, which worked until about halfway through the year, then all I wanted to do was stitch!  The fact I told myself I "had" to do something was probably the reason for my rebellion!  However on the positive side, the 10 FFOs I did have were 10 more than I would have done last year lol!  I'm never going to be a finisher - neither me or my friends that love my stitching have the room in their houses for it to be displayed properly.  As much as I love my stitching, I don't have the room for all the things I finish - so they go in The Drawer where they take up far less space as I am not giving up stitching!  I'm still trying to figure out where I can display ONE of these (and I have many that I want!!) as wall space is already scarce in my little apartment!
The other thing I was keeping tabs on this year was the number of different stitches I used in all my pieces.  I gave up counting sometime in September, by which time I had already used 60 different stitches, so my total for the year will come in at around 70, probably 80+ different stitches used in 2015.  That pretty much confirms that although I am interested in all types of embroidery, its history and technique - counted threadwork is where my heart lies and where it will settle.

So having already discussed my (lack of any real) plans for 2016 here, I leave you with four little teaser shots for the projects I've kitted for January - not including Mabel's first piece for her SAL as until I see the design I cannot pick the colours :).  One of them is my New Year's New Start for 2016, by a designer that I have not stitched before and the others to be stitched as and when the mood takes me in January and beyond:


January 2016 New Starts
Answers on a postcard.........
Thank you to everyone that has stopped by my blog this past year and to all of you who comment/email/message me and encourage me in my stitching - I hope you are all having fun planning your new starts for 2016!
Happy Stitching!


  1. What a successful year! I had never seen those full text charts... Lovely! I'm anxious to see if you get one!

  2. Wow! 50 starts, 50 finishes, a smashed Operations Threadporn and so much stitched from stash, and more besides! You really are an inspiration to all stitchers.
    I have no idea what the four kitted up projects are but know I will enjoy watching your progress on all of them, especially the silhouette.
    Good luck with your 2016 plans and here's to a happy, healthy and stitchy 2016. :)

  3. Congratulations on your latest finish! Wishing you a Happy New Year.

  4. I am looking forward to seeing your 2016 projects:)
    Wishing you all the best for the New Year Amanda.

  5. oh, you accomplished so much! BRAVISSIMA, Amanda! it's such a pleasure to see you tackle different things, you always come out with gorgeous finishes, no matter where they're kept! :)

  6. You had such a wonderfully productive stitchy year! It was a lot of fun to follow along and watch your various projects come to life. You do such gorgeous work with a skill that I aspire to! I'll be looking forward to seeing what the new year has in store for you :). Happy Holidays!

  7. Congrats that's amazing! I didn't manage a single finish lol but that's okay this year is my year! I can't wait to see your new starts! Happy new year!

  8. Happy New Year Amanda. You have inspired my stitching so much this year. I love the Catherine Agnes sampler and tracked a copy down. Keep stitching and inspiring us all with the quality and diversity of your work.

  9. Well done! Such a successful year. Love your most recent finish

  10. Congrats on finishing another and wow! Those bullion knots are fantastic!

  11. Wow, 50 finishes last year, that is really something! And your last piece is such a beauty. All these specialty stitches make it so special. I don't know if I have ever used so many different stitches in one piece. Although you also find a lot of them in each Drawn Thread project.
    I'm looking forward to seeing your new projects started. And I'm sure you will have a mother great stitching year.

  12. I was very impressed with all you stitched this year. You had so many fabulous finishes. I hope you have a great New Year :)

  13. Beautiful finish! Congrats on smashing all your goals this year. I hope you had a lovely New Year's! :D

  14. Congrats on such an awesome year!


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