Sunday, February 12, 2023

Stitch-a-Long Switcheroo

Hi everyone! Apologies for the slightly late post, but in my defense it's still just after 9am in my time zone. 

Last time I had made good progress on a Valentine's Day cross stitch pattern:

I was headed out on vacation and didn't think I'd get much stitching done, but I forgot about the 8 hours of forced sitting -- the flights from Florida back to Seattle! So I actually finished stitching the piece in time for Valentine's Day!

It makes me smile to see it -- even though I still wonder just what made me want to stitch it, as it is so dissimilar to "things I think I like". 

Since I had the stitching done, I figured I should go ahead and make it into a pillow cover. I had an old wool cardigan that I had inadvertently felted in the washing machine (oops!) but figured, well, it already had a zipper sewn in, so why not? I cut up the sweater into pieces, added some rickrack from some old pieces inherited from my mom's sewing room, and made the simplest of covers. 

So satisfying to recycle a much-loved cardigan and to actually finish a project in one go. 

But finishing Valentine's Day meant starting another project -- another "this doesn't look like things I think I like" piece. 

In the late summer of 2021 my husband and I went on our first little getaway since the pandemic started. We had rented a small cottage by a small lake on the other side of the state. On the way there we drove through a tiny town called Harrington, where we took a break to stretch our legs and discovered a tiny shop/cafe/mailbox. We picked up some amazing homemade treats, and I poked around the shop. That's where I discovered this kit, Delphian Cornflower by Avlea Folk Embroidery:

I walked away from it a few times, but kept getting pulled back. The price was excellent and something about it compelled me, so I bought it. Of course then it just got pulled into the black hole of "projects to work on someday". 

I unearthed it a little while back and had that same pull. So I decided that, since it felt "springlike" I would work on it after I finished the Valentine's Day piece. I opened it up and have been so impressed by the materials inside: 

(Okay, the roller-skating unicorn floss holder is mine...)

But the absolutely gorgeous "traditional ground cloth" comes serged around the edges so it doesn't fray, the thread amounts are generous, and the charts are crisp and clear. I have just started a few stitches and it's been a pleasure to stitch -- even my bad eyes don't struggle with the counted thread. She specializes in Mediterranean folk embroidery and I find her patterns amazing. Check them out for yourself on her site, Avlea Folk Embroidery.  

I also looked into the designer, Krista West, a tiny bit -- turns out she also makes custom embroidered vestments that are stunningly beautiful. You can see them on her site Krista West Vestments. (Note: I don't know Ms. West or have any affiliation with her -- just full-on admiration!)

I'm looking forward to stitching this piece... though my time for tons of stitching is coming to an end. I accepted a new job offer on Friday and start my new role on the 20th. I'm excited, relieved, happy, and wishing I had let myself enjoy the time between jobs a little more. But I'm mainly really, really excited!

Don't forget to check out the amazing projects my fellow stitchers are working on -- they're always fascinating and inspiring. Avis, Claire, Gun, Constanze, Christina, KathyMargaret, Heidi, JackieMegan, Deborah, Sharon, Daisy, AJCathie, LindaHelenConnieCindy, and Mary Margaret.


  1. New reader and fellow Washingtonian here...I live in north central WA and wanted to thank you for mentioning the shop cafe in Harrington. We drove out that direction periodically, and knowing good places to stop for treats and stitching possibilities is always nice! Your Valentine's piece is beautiful! Love it! I'll have to go look at your previous post to see if you gave info on what it is/where to get it. Was the small cabin on a small lake that you stayed at on VRBO or AirBnB? Sounds like something dh and I would enjoy staying at some time. Thanks for the update and I look forward to reading more about your stitching and running.

  2. That Valentines piece is beautiful! I can’t wait to see how the next kit comes along:)

  3. What a great idea to make good use of the felted sweater to set off your lovely stitching! I love the thread colours in your new project. Good luck with your new job :-)

  4. Congratulations on new job. I love the Valentine's piece. It may be out of your usual stitching, but it spoke to you and makes you happy. That is all that matters. I think it is great you repurposed that sweater. I really like you next project. Thanks for the links.

  5. So clever to use your felted sweater to turn the piece into a pillow! It's so pretty! Your new piece looks like it's going to be fun to stitch.

  6. yay!!! beautiful finish with your Valentine's project and a great way to recycle a ruined sweater! Love the new project you're about to begin.

  7. happy dance on the Valentine finish - I love what you did with it :) I can see why you had to buy this kit. Here's to a great start on the new job and welcome safely back from your vacation :) PS I finally was able to subscribe to your blog this go around. For some reason I haven't been able to when I have tried. fingers crossed it worked :)

  8. Congrats on the finish! The recycling part was a great move too. Love your new project!

  9. Your needlework is lovely. I'm glad you could make use of those long and often tedious hours of airtime to create this gem.