Knitting isn’t the only thing I’ve been excited to work on, now that I’m back home. My cross stitch has been getting a lot of love too! One of the first things I unpacked was my new floss, about a dozen new variegated colors my Mom dyed for me! Once I started winding them, I knew I had to work on a something that would incorporate a lot of the colors.
I’ve also been itching to take a deeper dive into blackwork, which is having a bit of a moment right now. I’ve done some casual blackwork, almost never in black and never enough to fully scratch the itch. For my first piece, I wanted to use as many colors as possible. I started off thinking of a color wheel, but it turned into just the blue/purple/red parts of the spectrum. After sorting my colors and charting out a bit of a pattern, off I went.
Once I started, it was hard to put down. I really enjoyed the process. It could be called fiddly and annoying but it’s the sort of attention to detail I love. It’s complex and intricate but also repetitive, which I find very soothing. I really wanted to keep going but what would I do with hoops full of blackwork doodles? While I do like the process, it is not fast. There is far too much of my time invested for this to become an item in my Etsy shop.
My first idea to make this an Etsy appropriate endeavor was just do half as much stitching. I was feeling particularly inspired by all the shades of pink I was seeing, as so this Mean Girls piece was born. (On Wednesdays we wear pink seemed a little too on the nose.)
I still wanted to do more though. I have so many colors besides pink! Of course, I have a whole notebook full of snarky movie quotes and my favorite song lyrics. I could fill many walls with such inspiration. It was then, I thought about all the people who’ve said to me over the last few years ‘you should put THAT on a cross stitch’. It’s amazing where you’ll find inspiration, if you’re looking for it. There are just as many places to look for inspiration as there are people. Everyone likes their own obscure song lyrics…for me it’s bluegrass, for you it might be an Italian opera or Scandinavian death metal. Maybe it’s quotes from famous athletes or something funny your toddler says, whatever the case…everyone has something that should be on a cross stitch.
I’ve always enjoyed custom orders, but it’s a lot of back and forth with customers to design the perfect cross stitch. That’s too much for people. It’s not the easiest process and it’s definitely not the fastest. Enter my new product line, coming to Etsy tomorrow…
Pre-stitch blackwork designs, just waiting for your own personalization! Ready to be stitched with any sort of custom message…a birth announcement, an anniversary or wedding date or my favorites, the pop culture quote. Turn around time is short because the heavy lifting is done. The perceived barrier of custom orders being cumbersome is gone…just pick your design and add your text! And I got to play around with different patterns until my fingers hurt! (I should look into a thimble for extended stitching sessions…)
Of course, I couldn’t help adding a few easter eggs…there’s a nod to my fellow knitters, would be perfect for ‘where my stitches at?’ or a reminder than swatching is important and an homage to The Shining because, duh! Really though, the possibilities are endless! I have so many more ideas & colors to play with!
I’m looking forward to my next batch already. I’m calling it the Filigree of Fillmore! (and once you name a project, especially with alliteration, it’s on!!) Inspired by all the wrought iron in my neighborhood. I love all the different details I can find in just a few blocks, looking at gates and windows.
I really love the variety within the small space and limited materials. It reminds me a lot of cross stitch, seemingly limited in scope and materials but in reality, limited only imagination. Or something like that. It’s gonna be good, whatever happens.
So stay tuned for that and more. And, check out my Etsy tomorrow…these new items are hitting the shop at 9 am, PT.