The joy of starting a new project

startThere’s something wonderful about the first few stitches of a new project.

You’ve opened your kit and laid everything out, or assembled the fabric and threads you need for your chart.

You load your fabric on to your hoop or frame, and you’re off. Whether you’re a corner or a centre starter, you thread up that first colour, pick a point on the fabric to set off from, and start stitching.

You’ve got a blank canvas in front of you on which you know a wonderful image will develop over the next few days, weeks or months. You’re not yet bogged down in counting (it’s hard to go wrong at this point) nor frustrated by a confetti-heavy area slowing you down.

Savour the moment. Unless you stitch a lot of small pieces like cards, it’ll be a while until the next one!

Is this love?

For the first time in my stitchy life, I love one of my current projects. Really love it. I get true joy out of every part of the design as it comes together. Every stitch is fun.

I’ve been thinking about this lately as – also for the first time – I’m not enjoying another WIP, and it’s brought the importance of doing projects you love into sharp relief.

When I started stitching I had no idea how long projects take. In today’s world of instant gratification, completing something that takes weeks – if not months – is starting to feel quite alien. I plan to write a post about guesstimating project completion times as (1) I think new stitchers would find it useful and (2) I’ve already learned that the fun and relaxation soon die when you’re under pressure to complete a gift!

From now on, I’m going to be far more discerning about the projects I choose to do. No more impulse buys after a few seconds thought. I’ll look at a chart or kit and ask myself, “Is this love?”

The beauty of evenweave

I’m enjoying my first project stitched on evenweave so much that I’m not sure I’ll ever go back to aida! I love the look of the weave and it’s perfect for a sampler-style design which will have lots of non-stitched areas on show.

I’m currently working on Zweigart Murano 32ct (stitching over two) in Sky Blue. The colour is slightly brighter than it looks in the photo.

Stitching over two makes neat fractional stitches much easier to achieve as you have a hole in the middle of the block to use, rather than having to pierce a hole as you do with aida. There are some 3/4 stitches in the G in the picture and I’m really happy with how tidy it looks.