Bill Hicks Cross Stitch Pattern “Life is Only a Dream…”

This Bill Hicks cross stitch pattern is now available in my Etsy shop!bill hicks cross stitch life is only a dream and we are the imaginations of ourselves

Bill Hicks was a comedian who died in 1994 of pancreatic cancer. You might not expect such a metaphysical quote from a comedian… only if you’re not familiar with Bill Hicks’ work. He was controversial, biting, and certainly not for those with delicate ears. At the same time, he was often spiritual, philosophical, and personal.

This project is only a part of a longer quotation of Hicks. Although he stopped using drugs in 1988, he still espoused their use, saying ““I’ve had some killer times on drugs.” He railed against the war on drugs and on the media focusing only on negative stories about drugs. Hicks instead hop[ed] for a different perspective:

[As if giving a news cast] “Today, a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration—that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively. There is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we are the imaginations of ourselves. Here’s Tom with the weather.”

anchor 1345 variegated flossOn a more superficial note, I filled the stars in border with seven different variegated flosses. The one I had really been wanting to try is Anchor 1345, called “Blue Hawaii,” and it didn’t disappoint. In fact, it’s gorgeous and you can see it in the star in the upper left corner of the pattern.

I stitched some of the stars filling in a serpentine way and some in a spiral way, and it was interesting to see how differently the colors pooled. For example, all three were the same color, Anchor 1345, but the star in the upper left corner was stitched serpentine in horizontal rows, while the fourth one below it and the first one from top right were stitched in a spiral.

This Bill Hicks cross stitch pattern is perfect for everyone who appreciates counter-culture ideas, alternative spiritual philosophies, variegated embroidery floss, and of course, Bill Hicks.

If you’re interested in seeing some of his work, below is a clip from The Late Show with David Letterman. At the taping in 1993, Letterman and CBS decided that his material was too controversial and his performance was not aired. However, in 2009, Bill’s mother was a guest on Letterman and they aired his set in it’s entirety. [Warning: this is not for the easily offended]

DMC Coloris Variegated Flosses

The new DMC Coloris variegated flosses have just been added to my Etsy shop!

dmc coloris 24 new variegated flosses

These 24 flosses are outstanding additions to DMC’s already excellent line of variegated threads. These are all true multicolor combinations, where most of their predecessors have more subtle color combinations.

These are so new in the States that it’s a little tough to find information about them. DMC USA has not updated their website yet with Coloris information, however the DMC UK site has a little information and five free charts.

I felt like a kid on Christmas morning when opened the boxes containing these flosses – it was so fun! I’m sure my husband got tired of me repeatedly saying “oooh” and “wow” as if I were watching fireworks. But these combinations are just so different and striking that I couldn’t help myself.

Here are a few of my early favorites…

DMC 4501 ColorisDMC 4501, called Fleurs des Champs (Wildflowers), is a springy blend of watermelon pink, green, and light teal. It reminds me most of the inner layers of a watermelon rind.

 

 

 

DMC 4502 ColorisDMC 4502 is called Camellia and is a springy combination of bright pinks, green, and light blue.

 

 

 

DMC 4506 ColorisDMC 4506, Primavera (Spring), is a gorgeous blend of green, blue, and yellow.

 

 

 

 

DMC 4507 ColorisDMC 4507 is called Bougainvillea, and it’s a gorgeous group of teal greens, blue, and dark pink. It reminds me most of peacock feathers.

 

 

 

DMC 4523 ColorisDMC 4523, Vent du Nord (North Wind), is a lovely combination of light purple, light blue, and sandy browns.

 

 

 

DMC 4520 ColorisOne curious note: I think DMC 4520, called “Christmas Story,” is identical to the older DMC 4042 “Very Merry.” I will have to compare them in more detail, but in the meantime I’m wondering why they repeated this combination.

 

 

These DMC Coloris variegated flosses are just lovely and I really look forward to stitching with them. I also think they will look great in any of the multitude of crafts that can be done with variegated floss (check out my six-part series on variegated floss projects!).

NFL Crib Mobile Tutorial

nfl crib mobile tutorialThis NFL crib mobile tutorial is my contribution to this year’s Crafty Football Blog Hop! I’m generally known for my cross stitch and needlepoint projects but lately I’ve been noticing so many fun felt projects I wanted to give it a try. I also really enjoy the colors of the NFL teams – they’re bright and bold, perfect for crafting. Why not have felt and NFL colors join forces in three dimensions?

nfl crib mobile tutorial 2015 crafty football blog hop badgeThis 2015 hop, like the 2013 and 2014 hops, is a combination of participants in the Crafty Fantasy Football League (#CraftyFFL) and fellow crafty and inventive football fans. At the bottom of this post, check out the links to the other participants outstanding projects!

 

 

Things you’ll need:

  • felt
  • embroidery floss
  • an embroidery hoop (I used a 5″ x 9″ oval shaped hoop as it was close in appearance to the outline of a football)
  • paperclips
  • fabric scissors
  • paper scissors
  • pins
  • cotton batting or cotton balls (optional)
  • needles
  • ruler
  • small metal or wooden ring (optional)
  • glue (school glue is fine)

NFL Crib Mobile

You will need 16 colors of felt and 13 colors of embroidery floss. The embroidery floss I already had in my supplies, but I purchased the felt and the hoop from the incredibly helpful Deanna of the Etsy shop BusyLittleBird. She (and Mr. BusyLittleBird) went above and beyond when helping me get the correct colors of felt for this project and I can not thank her enough!

I recommend her listing for 20 sheets of 6″ x 9″ wool blend felt as that size sheet is big enough to accommodate all the cut pieces necessary of any color. I can also recommend her listing for the 5″ x 9″ oval hoop, and in addition, she sells DMC embroidery floss if you need to augment your collection.

nfl crib mobile tutorial legendThe legend at right shows the names of the felt colors (as they are listed at BusyLittleBird), the DMC floss numbers, and the team color combinations necessary for the mobile.

Note: It will take two whole skeins of floss to wrap the 5″ x 9″ hoop. Also, some of the colors in the photo above are different than the colors listed in the legend – a result of post-purchase consultations with BusyLittleBird. I recommend you go with the colors in the legend.

 

 

Cutting:

On the mobile, each of the 32 NFL teams are represented by a double-sided felt square. Each side consists of a big outer 1 1/2″ square and a small inner 3/4″ square.

Let’s use Denver (my fave team – Go Broncos!) as an example. The outer square is Ragtime Blue and the inner square is Sunburst. Therefore, for Denver’s double-sided square, you will need to cut two 1 1/2″ Ragtime Blue squares and two 3/4″ Sunburst squares. Repeat this for all the teams, and refer to the legend for all the color combinations.

I used fabric scissors to cut the squares, although a fabric cutting machine or a rotary fabric cutter probably would have worked much better at getting the edges of the squares at precise right angles.

Next up are the 4 pennants and the 4 footballs, and here is a template of those shapes for you to use.

For the footballs, cut out the eight paper templates and pin them to the Peat Moss felt. You may want to do a rough cut to separate the pieces from each other, and then go back and more carefully cut around the edge of the paper football template.
NFL Crib Mobile

For the pennants, cut four big triangles of Kelly Green felt and another four of Chartreuse felt. You may want to pin the big outer triangle templates to the green felt in the same manner as the footballs before you make your cuts. The eight small triangles can be cut from scraps of the other felt colors.

After all the cutting, you can unpin the templates from the felt and discard the paper. You may need to trim a few pieces to get them a little more correct.

When you have finished cutting, in total you will end up with 64 big squares, 64 little squares, 8 footballs, 8 big triangles and 8 small triangles.
NFL Crib Mobile

 

Sewing:

Use three strands of the six strand embroidery floss to sew the small inner squares to the middle of the big outer squares. Use the floss color that matches the bigger felt square. Refer to the legend once again to get your team color combinations correct. The photos below show Tampa Bay’s silver and red sewn with the silver floss.

Make a knot on the end of the floss, and come up from the back about 1/8″ from the corner of the inner square. Make a simple running stitch all the way around, and then tie off the floss with a knot on the back. Repeat this process for all 64 squares.
NFL Crib Mobile

Put the two halves together back to back, with the knots on the inside. This time use only one strand of that same bigger square floss color. Make a small knot at the end of the floss. Starting at the middle of the top, whip stitch the two pieces together. The photos below show the basics of the whip stitch, but here is another set of directions you might find useful.
NFL Crib Mobile

Stop whip stitching at the fourth corner, leaving half of the top unsewn and open as shown in the photo below. Leave roughly 4 – 5 inches of the single strand of floss so that you can finish whip stitching the top later. Repeat this process for all 32 squares.  NFL Crib Mobile

NFL Crib MobileRepeat the same steps for the pennants. Sew the small triangles onto the big triangles with three strands of floss. Put the two pieces back to back, and whip stitch the pennants, again using one strand of floss. However this time, leave the entire top edge of the pennants open.

 

 

NFL Crib MobileUse three strands of white embroidery floss to sew laces on four of the eight footballs. Whip stitch one “laced” football to a plain football. This time, leave roughly 1 1/2 inch around the top center open and unsewn. At this point, you can stuff the footballs with cotton batting or even cotton balls to give them a little dimension.

 

When all of your pieces have been whip stitched, layout all the pieces into 8 columns of 5 pieces. Put one pennant or football in each string. Try to balance the position of brighter squares and darker squares, and try to avoid duplicate color combinations (I’m looking at you navy blue and red, for one) being adjacent to each other.
NFL Crib Mobile

One note, do not put a pennant at the bottom of a string like I have shown above. I found out that those little puppies won’t hang straight unless there is a square or football below them.

Assembling the Strings:

For this step, you will need another needle that is at least as long as the squares are tall – 1 1/2 inches. I alternated between the two green floss colors, DMC 699 and DMC 704, to make the strings. Cut pieces of floss 30″ – 36″ long and separate them into two three-strand groups. Thread your long needle with one of these three strand groups of floss.

You’re going to start from the bottom piece and work your way up each string of five pieces.

Double or triple tie a paperclip to the end of the floss. Trim the tail end of the floss quite close to the paperclip. Insert the paperclip into the unstiched gap in the square. Orient the paperclip vertically, and center the top of the paperclip and the floss at the top center of the square. Make sure that the tail end of the green floss is tucked inside the square.
NFL Crib Mobile
NFL Crib Mobile

Thread your smaller needle with the tail of the floss you used to whip stitch the two pieces together. Whip stitch the top of the square closed, making sure you stitch on either side of the green floss four or five times to secure the paperclip.
NFL Crib Mobile

As this mobile isn’t meant for much handling, no knot is necessary. Just draw the thread out through an edge of the square between the two pieces of felt and trim it close.
NFL Crib Mobile

NFL Crib MobileIf your next piece is a square or a football, insert the long needle through the bottom center between the two back-to-back pieces. Work the needle toward the top center, making sure you don’t accidentally pierce either of the two sides. Pull the long needle through the top of the piece.

 

NFL Crib MobileIf your next piece is a pennant, run the needle between the pieces roughly in the same location as the base of the small triangle.

 

 

 

Now you will want to look at the spacing between pieces on the string. In my example, I put about two inches between pieces. Tie another paperclip to the green floss where the top of the next piece will be. For example, if the next piece is a square, the knot on the paperclip would be 3 1/2 inches (2 inches spacing plus the 1 1/2 inch of the square) above the top of the piece below it. Using a ruler will definitely help your spacing.
NFL Crib Mobile

After you get your paperclip knotted in place, insert the paperclip into the unstitched gap and finish whip stitching the piece in the same manner as you did with the first piece on the string. Again, make sure you stitch on either side of the green floss four or five times to secure the paperclip inside the piece.
NFL Crib Mobile

Repeat these steps until all five pieces are on a string, and all eight strings are assembled.

Assembling the mobile:

All you will use is the smaller, inner embroidery hoop. Mark 8 equidistant places on the hoop, and then tie the 8 strings to the hoop using secure knots. You can tie the eight strings all at the same height or stagger the heights as I did. You should have plenty of extra string – don’t trim the excess yet!

Take three of the eight excess strings (I chose the strings at roughly the 12:00, 4:00 and 7:00 positions), and tie them together above the mobile so that the hoop will hang level. At this point you could attach a metal or wooden ring. I didn’t have one available, so I just made a second knot about an inch above the first knot.
NFL Crib Mobile

NFL Crib MobileTrim the five other excess strings down to a length of about 1 1/2″ and then use a little glue to stick the floss ends to the inside of the hoop.

 

 

 

Now you’re ready to start wrapping your hoop. It will take two whole skeins of floss, using all six strands, to wrap a 5″ x 9″ hoop. Use a little more glue to stick the beginning of the skein to the hoop. Work your way over that beginning and continue wrapping the floss around the hoop. Take care that you don’t catch up the eight strings below or the three strings that go up to the knot.
NFL Crib Mobile

Tip: Holding the hoop with all the strings attached and bobbing around while you’re trying to wrap the floss is nearly impossible. On my table I used a couple of new rolls of paper towels standing on end to assist me in holding up the hoop. Putting a big rubber band around each roll helped as well.

NFL Crib MobileTo tie off a skein, thread a needle with the floss, pass it under as many wraps as possible on the inside of the hoop, and then closely trim off the extra. After you tie off, you may need to scoot and shift a couple of wraps to cover some small gaps that show the wood hoop.

Congratulations – your mobile is complete! Here is mine, hanging out with some aspen leaves.

 

 

 

Check out what the other Crafty Football Blog Hop participants made this year!


Variegated Floss Comparison Part 2 – DMC and Anchor

This variegated floss comparison Part 2 between DMC and Anchor will help explain the similarities and differences between the two brands. In Part 1, I covered Anchor’s 1200 series where each floss is variations of one color, e.g., fuchsia pink to light pink or from royal blue to light blue. In this Part 2, I’ll go through Anchor’s 1300 series, called their “Multicolors,” most of which really do live up to that name. variegated floss comparison part 2 - anchor 1300 series variegated flosses

I’ll share a brief description and a photo of each Anchor floss with what I determined to be it’s closest DMC counterpart. I’ll also offer a rating between 0 – not different at all to 5 – very different, and also share which Anchor flosses have no DMC counterpart at all.

Anchor 1300 DMC 4145Anchor 1300 and DMC 4145 both include similar shades of brown, but the Anchor is lighter overall and includes a touch of straw yellow in the mix. Difference rating: 3.

[Clicking on the photos will take you to Flickr, where you can take a closer look!]

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1301Anchor 1301 is the second “incomparable” (the first being the lilac purple 1209 from Part 1). This is a lovely mix of pastel pink, yellow, and blue – a bit like looking at mother-of-pearl.

 

 

 

Anchor 1302Anchor 1302 is another “incomparable.” Anchor named this floss “Marble” for good reason – it is a great mix of white, pink, peach and a bit of grey – like a pretty piece of marble stone.

 

 

Anchor 1303 DMC 4073Anchor 1303 has two DMC counterparts, DMC 4075 and 4073. 4075 is much more gold than the creamy yellow tones in the Anchor, and 4073 gets darker than the Anchor as well. Difference rating: 3.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1304 DMC 4070 4080Anchor 1304 also has two DMC counterparts, DMC 4070 and 4080. They’re all gorgeous and they all look like daffodil fields to me, however 4080 is definitely lighter than the other two and it’s shades of green are much more subtle. 4070 has more green where the yellow in the Anchor is more prominent and tends toward orange at it’s extreme. Difference rating: 3.

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1305 DMC 4126Anchor 1305‘s closest counterpart is DMC 4126. The DMC includes some pink where the Anchor does not, and the Anchor has more yellow than the DMC. Difference rating: 2.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1315 DMC 4120Anchor 1315 and DMC 4120 have orange in common, but that’s about it. The DMC is all in shades of orange and orange pink where the Anchor includes true pink and yellow. Difference rating: 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1316 DMC 4200 4205Anchor 1316 has two counterparts, DMC 4200 and 4205, and all are gorgeous fiery reds. Where 4205 is red and purple and 4200 has slightly lighter reds mixed with some pink and orange, the Anchor includes raspberry, red, orange, and gold. Difference rating: 3.

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1318 DMC 4090Anchor 1318‘s closest counterpart is DMC 4090. While they are both peachy, the DMC is definitely more yellow compared to the pink in the Anchor floss. Difference rating: 5

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1320 4260Anchor 1320 and DMC 4260 both include pink and purple. The DMC includes darker purple where the Anchor includes a hint of peach in it’s pinks. Difference rating: 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1325 4215Anchor 1325 and DMC 4215 are both gorgeous combinations of blue, purple, and pink. While the blue is very similar, the pink in the DMC is much more subtle than the bright fuchsia in the Anchor. Difference rating: 3.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1335Anchor 1335 is the fourth of the eight “incomparables.” This variegated floss is a very fun combination of pink, purple, aqua blue, and lemon (almost fluorescent) yellow. I can’t wait to see this floss in a project!

 

 

Anchor 1342 4020Anchor 1342 and DMC 4020 share a similar light blue, but the Anchor is basically shades of that one blue only. The DMC includes other shades of blue and is more water-like than it’s sky-like counterpart. Difference rating: 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1344 DMC 4214Anchor 1344‘s closest counterpart is DMC 4214. The DMC has much more pink and the blue at one extreme is much darker than the Anchor. The blue in the Anchor also is a bit closer to aqua. These are both really pretty flosses, but they definitely are different. Difference rating: 4.

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1345 1347 DMC 4050 4030Anchor 1345 and Anchor 1347 are in in a unique situation with DMC 4050 and DMC 4030. With it’s combination of bright green, aqua, and blue, 1345 looks like a great combination of 4050 and 4030. 1347, with it’s deep blue and light aqua extremes, just seems like the last step in this gorgeous four-floss progression. Difference rating for 1345: 3, for 1347: 4.

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1349 DMC 4240Anchor 1349 is pretty much just a lighter version of DMC 4240. Difference rating: 3.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1352Anchor 1352 is our fifth “incomparable.” With it’s minty to celery green shades, it’s a very pretty combination of green.

 

 

 

Anchor 1353 DMC 4065Anchor 1353‘s closest counterpart is DMC 4065. However, the DMC is green with some grey and peach colors where the Anchor is slightly brighter greens and buttery yellows. Difference rating: 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1355Anchor 1355 is another “incomparable” – this time a lovely mix of dark blue and yellow-greens.

 

 

 

Anchor 1360Anchor 1360 may be my favorite of all these “incomparable” Anchor flosses. It’s really what I would consider to be closest to a rainbow with it’s variegated raspberry, gold, green, blue, and purple.

 

 

Anchor 1375Also very cool is Anchor 1375, the eighth and final “incomparable.” Anchor has named this floss “Harlequin” and it’s easy to see why with it’s variegated pink, gold, green, and blue.

 

 

 

Anchor 1385 DMC 4128Anchor 1385 has it’s closest counterpart in DMC 4128. The DMC is mostly shades of one color where the Anchor includes taupe, rust, peach, and dark gold. Difference rating: 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anchor 1390 DMC 4140The last Multicolor is Anchor 1390, who’s closest counterpart is DMC 4140. These are two very different flosses as the DMC is warmer tones of brown with a hint of pink, whereas the Anchor is in cooler shades of chocolate, gold, taupe, and maybe a touch of purple in the mix. Difference rating: 5.

 

 

 

 

 

All DMC Variegated FlossThat wraps up this variegated floss comparison between Anchor and DMC. One thing to keep in mind is that DMC has 76 variegated flosses compared to Anchor’s 40, so all of the DMC flosses did not appear in this comparison. In fact, DMC has 43 variegated flosses that have no comparable match in the Anchor line.

Don’t forget, this Part 2 post covered just Anchor’s 1300 “Multicolor” series of variegated flosses. Please check out Part 1 that covered Anchor’s 1200 series of flosses as well!Anchor 1200 series

 

A footnote on this post: In order to get the full effect of the differences and similarities of the flosses, you really need to see them for yourself in different types of lighting. I’ve tried my best to capture the subtleties of the color differences, but cameras can’t always do the same job as the human eye. Also, keep in mind that all of the various computer monitors and screens will display colors differently.

New DMC Floss Colors Pattern – Geometric Sampler

This new DMC floss colors pattern is a fun and quick-to-stitch geometric pattern, although it would look great with any of your favorite floss color combinations.new dmc floss colors pattern

At this time, these new flosses can only be purchased in a pack with all 16 colors. I am eagerly awaiting the day when they make them available to purchase separately, but that could be a few years away. The pack is accompanied by a few attractive botanical-themed patterns, but I wanted to make a project where I could see how the colors interact with each other a little more.

I wrote a thorough review of the new colors shortly after the pack was released in 2013. In it, I discuss the colors individually and how the colors fall into the DMC palette.DMC Floss New October 2013

If you read my post, you’ll find that my favorite additions are the purples 3886 and 3887, blues 3890 and 3891, green 3894, and yellow 3889. Within the confines of just this one pattern, my favorites to stitch with were the blues 3890 and 3891, purple 3887, yellow 3889, and, interestingly enough, the beige 3890.

One of the nice things about this project is that it uses about 10% of each skein, leaving plenty of floss to use on other patterns.

This pattern can also be used with any of your favorite color combinations. I have imagined this project with 16 colors of reds, pinks, raspberry, and orange, or exclusively in shades of blue and purple. It would make a stunning little needlepoint project, possibly stitched in petit point and finished into a pincushion. This new DMC floss colors pattern is very fun and could be used in any number of ways!

Have you purchased these new flosses? If so, have you used them in some projects? If so, let me know in the comments – I’d love to see some ways that others have utilized some of these lovely colors…

Blazing Saddles Cross Stitch Read It Pattern

This new and fun Blazing Saddles cross stitch Read it… cross stitch pattern is now available in my Etsy shop!blazing saddles cross stitch read it pattern

The quote for this pattern comes from the “Harumph” scene. When his secretary has an urgent telegram from Rock Ridge, the Governor replies: “Read it, read it… you wild bitch.”

I have always thought that this quote would be a great present to a friend who is a voracious reader with a good sense of humor. I can also see this going to women who appreciate writers such as Dorothy Parker, Anais Nin, Alice Munro… there’s just too many excellent woman writers to list here.

Here’s a clip of the scene. The “Read it…” quote comes at about 1:35 into this video:

I think it’s funny that while this quote is directed to a bubble-headed scantily-clad secretary, I have always thought of this project as for intelligent, independent-thinking literary women.

If you’re a new visitor to my blog and a Blazing Saddles fan, you might also want to see two of my previous projects (below). The first is a cross stitch of the list that Harvey Korman dictates; a list of the worst scum and scoundrels he wants Slim Pickens to round up to attack the town of Rock Ridge.Blazing Saddles

The second project comes from Lili Von Shtupp as played by Madeline Kahn. When someone knocks on her “dwessing woom” door, she replies “Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome, c’mon in!”blazing saddles cross stitch pattern willkommen bienvenue welcome c'mon in

I’m especially fond of the border of books on this project. I used two variegated flosses, DMC 4135 and DMC 4030 (both available in my Etsy shop), for the books in the border.

This Blazing Saddles cross stitch Read it… project stitches up quickly and is suitable for cross stitch beginners and experts alike. It was fun to put together!

Life Sucketh Not Cross Stitch Pattern

This Life Sucketh Not cross stitch pattern is now available in my Etsy shoplife sucketh not cross stitch pattern

This is a phrase I came up with a long time ago, and it’s a fun way I appreciate living the good life. There are those moments when everything is… just fine. There are times when I just stop for a second and am happy and grateful. Things like enjoying dinner with friends at the end of the work week, looking out over a beautiful view, appreciating the blissful quiet in the house, or even finishing up a big project – that’s when I think “Wow, life sucketh not!”

If you also have those little moments of appreciation, then this pattern is for you…

The example I stitched uses DMC variegated floss 4022 for the letters, although it could be stitched in a solid color and still look great. The border pattern is my tiny version of French pillow ticking, with little flowers in blue and red outlined with a golden yellow and rich red backstitched border. This project was a lot of fun to stitch!

DMC Glow in the Dark Floss E940 Now Available

DMC glow in the dark floss (DMC E940) is now available in my Etsy shop!

DMC E940 glow in the dark flossI’m offering this floss at a good price and at a reasonable shipping rate – same as all of the variegated flosses I offer in my shop.

As you can see here, this DMC glow in the dark floss really works! It’s a great way to add some intrigue to a Halloween project, to include a secret message into a needlework project, or to add some fun to a friendship bracelet!

You can use this floss as you would any other six strand floss, and it appears white in daylight conditions. In typical 14 count Aida cloth, using two strands works just fine. It has a very slightly different texture than regular floss, but that doesn’t affect how you treat it while you’re stitching or the quality of the stitches at all.

In the photos below, you can see how I used it this KM 0 pattern and kit, one of my series of street sign projects,

DMC glow in the dark floss E940 - KM0 glow in the dark street sign cross stitch daylight

DMC glow in the dark floss E940 - KM0 glow in the dark street sign cross stitch in the dark

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and here I used it in this Monty Python sampler:monty python cross stitch pattern - Mind you, moose bites can be pretty nasty

Iron ManDMC has an nice little post on some other uses of this floss, and I found a couple of great examples on Flickr including this awesome Ironman project by Lindy.

 

 

 

As DMC says on it’s blog post, “One of the main challenges of crafting with this wonderful thread is photographing your awesome results, which can be tricky…” No doubt! I was unable to get a really good photo of my Monty Python project in the dark. The human eye can pick up the glow quite easily, but a camera lens is more difficult to manage. Don’t let that discourage you!

This floss is a lot of fun to work with, and I enjoy seeing how people use it in new and creative ways.DMC glow in the dark floss E940

Monty Python Cross Stitch Pattern – Moose Bites

This Monty Python cross stitch pattern is now available in my Etsy shop!monty python cross stitch pattern - Mind you, moose bites can be pretty nasty

The quote for this pattern comes from the opening credits of their 1975 movie, Monty Python and the Holy Grail

This is one of the silliest movies in history, starting from the very first moments of the opening credits. Lots of people involved in the credit sequence were “sacked” for, among a great laundry list of funny things, putting these fake Swedish subtitles on screen. “Mynd you, møøse bites Kan be pretti nasti…” is one of my favorites, and that’s only 2:00 minutes into the opening…

I must admit, as much as I like Monty Python and the Holy Grail, it’s not my favorite Python movie. That honor would go to their 1979 effort, Life of Brian. However, Holy Grail has some classic moments that always make me laugh. Even if you haven’t seen the movie yet, upon your first viewing you would recognize some of the references. Many quotes from the movie are thoroughly incorporated into the lexicons on both sides of the Atlantic.

The continuing popularity of the film also inspired the musical stage production Spamalot, which opened on Broadway in 2005, a full 30 years after the movie debut.

I stitched this project on black 14 count aida cloth with DMC’s glow in the dark floss (DMC E940) which makes it fun to see at night. However, it would look equally as good in DMC’s white, B5200 (bright white), or even one of their fluorescent flosses.

This cross stitch pattern is quick to stitch, and is perfect for any Monty Python fan. Especially the ones who are being repressed or need to go and face the peril!

[Update: I now carry DMC’s glow in the dark floss in my Etsy shop!]

[Update to the update: I have a second Monty Python themed project available now – remember how to defend yourself against a piece of fresh fruit?]

Variegated Floss Projects Part 5

Welcome to Variegated Floss Projects Part 5! In this six-part series I’m sharing a bunch of ways to use variegated floss in craft projects ranging from needlework and quilting to furniture, jewelry, and home decor.

Part 1 of the series covered variegated floss projects in the needlework areas of cross stitch, needlepoint, and embroidery. Part 2 had variegated floss in plastic canvas, quilting, felt, sewing, and pom-pom projects. Part 3 explored variegated floss projects in jewelry and scrapbooking. Part 4 looked at variegated projects in knitting, spinning and dyeing, and weaving, and this Part 5 will feature crochet, lace and tatting, and basketweaving!variegated floss projects part 5 - DMC 4120

As I said in in Part 1, variegated flosses and yarns are beautiful and they make every piece that uses them unique. No two people will ever use the exact same length of a floss in the same way, thus every project will have a different result! This makes creating with them an exercise in curiosity and a fun adventure.

Variegated Yarn Projects in Crochet

To start off, variegated yarns can present some interesting challenges. Jennifer at FiberFlux offers some great tips and techniques for working with these beautiful yarns, as well as a number of knit and crochet projects that look outstanding in variegated yarns.

 

 

 

 

There is more good information about what to do (and maybe more importantly what NOT to do) when working with variegated yarns in this post on About.com Crochet by Amy Solovay. This potholder is one of her examples of what NOT to do.

 

 

 

journbig 003There are a million blanket and afghan patterns that look great using variegated yarns. One of the more unique examples I found is this fun and scrappy granny square afghan by Robin Meade at LifeInColor.

 

 

Another unique design is in this octagonal blanket by Monika Rose. In an earlier post, she has more links to the pattern (by Red Heart) and information on the yarns she used.

 

 

 

 

 

 

variegated floss projects part 5 - basketweave crochet pillowMichael Sellick at TheCrochetCrowd has the pattern and video tutorials to make this fun basketweave pillow using two different types of variegated yarn.

 

 

 

variegated floss projects part 5 - crochet hat and scarfJust like afghans, there are a million ways to use variegated yarn in hats and scarves. This free pattern available on About.com looks like a great place to get started with variegated yarn in crochet,

 

 

 

 

 

Precious_cowl__3_small2while this Precious Cowl pattern by Sophie Gelfi Designs on Ravelry, gorgeous in the variegated yarns you see here, is probably better suited for more experienced crafters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

variegated floss projects part 5 - crochet potholder pastelUnlike her craft fail above, Amy Solovay has some successful potholder patterns out on About.com Crochet. This Shades of Spring is nice in pastels,

 

 

 

 

variegated floss projects part 5 - crochet potholder watercolorand this Watercolor potholder pattern uses five different variegated yarns!

 

 

 

 

 

teacher giftsI just love these very fun washcloths that were made as part of a teacher thank you by Julie-K. This post on her Kundhi blog has the link to the free Ravelry pattern.

 

 

 

Who can resist these amazingly adorable crocodile baby booties? The ones seen here are from BumbleBeeDesigns, and links to patterns and tutorials to make your own (for babies, children, and adults!) can be found in this post on Examiner.com.

 

 

Granny Square Necklace - 3I have more examples of using variegated floss in crochet to make jewelry in the third post in this series, but I thought this cute granny square necklace on TheHookandI looked perfect right here.

 

 

variegated floss projects part 5 - crochet hobo bagCrochet bags and purses look terrific in variegated yarns! Examples include this free Hobo Bag pattern by Red Heart Yarn on FaveCrafts,

 

 

 

 

 

 

this granny square purse by Dawn Sparks,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

this Dynamite Market Bag pattern by Jamie on CrochetDynamite,

 

 

 

 

 

and this Starling Handbag pattern by Alice at her FutureGirl blog.

 

 

 

 

Crochet Pattern - Big Crochet BasketWhile this basket pattern on ZoomYummy wasn’t crocheted in variegated yarns, I can only imagine how great it would look with some Noro yarns, perhaps?

 

 

variegated floss projects part 5 - crochet conch shellConnie at MiscFinds4U reviewed this free conch shell pattern from Joann.com. Her experience with the project was that she used a variegated yarn that complimented the shape, but she couldn’t get the stitches quite right (use this link to see the pattern on Joann.com). I think her project turned out great nonetheless!

 

Crocheted Layered flower with button centerThere’s a world of crochet flowers out there. I spied this lovely pattern that uses variegated yarn at CreativeJewishMom,

 

 

 

 

and this outstanding board on Pinterest, curated by Kay Kutchenriter, is full of all kinds of gorgeous crochet flowery goodness!variegated floss projects part 5 - pinterest crochet flower board

I like how Monika Rose used variegated yarns in this mandala project,

 

 

 

 

 

and I’m impressed with the variety of circular and mandala type projects that are available. This Pinterest board by Annoo Crochet is FULL of inspiration and patterns.

variegated floss projects part 5 - pinterest crochet mandalas

One of my most exciting finds for the this whole series is this most excellent “Light Carpet” as seen on dutchDZINE. It combines a flexible LED light string and a rope rug in such an ingenious way. Imagine this with some gorgeous variegated fibers in a rug, wall art, made into a basket – the possibilities are nearly endless!

Variegated Floss Projects in Lace and Tatting

Rainbow SnowflakeVariegated thread and tatting compliment each other so naturally. This snowflake project

 

 

 

 

 

Bookmark Exchangeand these bookmarks by Jeff Hamilton of Bridge City Tatting,

 

 

 

Tatted flower hair clipsas well as these hair clips

 

 

 

 

 

Shamrockand this subtly shaded shamrock pendant by Marilee Rockley of YarnPlayer are some great examples of how tatting and variegated threads can work together. As well as her own blog, YarnPlayer has some good links to tatting websites and dyeing websites, and her Flickr feed has many more gorgeous pieces of her tatting and her stunning hand-dyed threads.

 

Needle Lace Skeleton LeavesOne other really interesting link I found is a detailed tutorial on how to make these really lovely needle lace skeleton leaves by Kris on HowDidYouMakeThis? The tutorial calls for normal DMC six strand floss, and in these solid colors they’re beautiful. I imagine they would also be beautiful crafted from some variegated colors,

DMC Variegated 6 Strand Floss 4070 Autumn Leavespossibly DMC 4070 (Autumn Leaves)

 

 

 

 

DMC Variegated 6 Strand Floss 4122 Fall HarvestDMC 4122 (Fall Harvest)

 

 

 

 

DMC Variegated 6 Strand Floss 4020 Tropical Watersor even a non-earth tone like DMC 4020 (Tropical Waters)? Yummy…

 

 

 

 

Variegated Floss Projects in Basketweaving

Many basket weaving projects use solid color materials in order to achieve certain graphic patterns, but I was able to find a few examples of baskets that use variegated yarns. The first two come from the same source, the resourceful Adrianne at HappyHourProjects. This Woven Yarn basket tutorial has some solid instructions on how to make a coiled basket with simple supplies. In this example, you can see how the yarn colors pooled in interesting patterns.

Her Heart Shaped Yarn Basket is another great tutorial, and is a much quicker project than the one above. Once again, she gives the pattern and instructions to make this fun basket from very basic supplies. In this basket, you can see that the colors didn’t pool at all.

 

 

 

variegated floss projects part 5 - variegated thread coiled basketFinally, I spied this post of coiled baskets made by a talented group of 7th and 8th graders. I’m partial to this one – what a fun combination of colors!

 

 

 

 

That wraps up this Variegated Floss Projects Part 5! Are there any more examples in these crafty categories of crochet, lace and tatting, and basketweaving that you would like to add to the comments?

Make sure you check out Part 1 which featured cross stitch, needlepoint, and embroideryPart 2 which had plastic canvas, quilting, felt, sewing, and pom-poms, Part 3 which had projects in jewelry and scrapbooking, and Part 4 which had projects in knitting, spinning and dyeing, and weaving. Stay tuned for the finale of this series covering furniture, seasonal projects, string art, and home decor!

Update: Here is Part 6