Tag Archives: cross-stitch

Massive(ly late) Christmas gift post

So this post is late. I mean really late, Like, these are Christmas presents in here, late. I was going to stagger all of this awesome out over several posts, but my habits have been so lax lately, I figured it was best to get them all out in one go. So here it is: the Massive(ly late) Christmas gift post.

First up, my brother’s Christmas present. He is quite a prosaic lad; what he wanted was $20 to buy a Steam game. What he got was $20 and a cross-stitched Portal sign:

cake untruth

This untruthful cake was only part of a whole incredible series of Portal warning signs by the Crafty Bikyclist, and they are all available as free patterns. Highly recommended for the geek in your life.

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For my Dad’s Christmas present, I went with a pattern I had bought some months previously. When I was hunting for patterns to make his birthday platypus, I found Planet June’s Sea Otter – way too adorable to resist!


I remembered (from childhood trips to the zoo) that Dad was fond of the cuteness of otters, so I crocheted this one, complete with clam-shell accessory. He now sits atop the TV, adorning it with his adorability.

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The last gift in the list was somewhat nerve-wracking – I wanted to cross-stitch a Christmas present for my boyfriend’s mum, who I was meeting for the first time. (Spoiler: We traveled over to visit in January, I met her and she is rad. We high-fived over cooking, craft and trashy novels.)

I planned the design concept very carefully – I didn’t want to stitch something offensive, but nor did I want to make something staid and boring. In the end, I decided on an old-school pattern from one of my ex-library books; I picked a black bird because I knew she loved animals, and because I wanted to put a twist in the whole “Nevermore” trope. The resulting cross-stitch was somewhat more upbeat than Poe:

awesome raven

I was very relieved when the pattern fit so neatly into this frame; I checked the size before starting, but didn’t take into account the curlicues of the leaves. Thankfully, it all worked out – the stitched leaves slotting neatly into the spaces left by the brass foliage.

As a gift, it was very successful – it turns out blackbirds are one of her favourites. When we left, it was on display next to her bird cage, perhaps to encourage the budgie to similar heights of ‘Awesome!’.

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Posted by on March 31, 2013 in Craftiness


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A nautical theme

For Mum’s birthday this year, I had something stashed and ready to roll – a little cross-stitched lighthouse. I made it for Mum years and years ago, then put it ‘somewhere safe’ and forgot about it completely. I found it again when I moved house last year, and this time, I actually remembered its existence when planning for gifts. Add a vintage frame and voila!


I also wanted to crochet something cute to go with it – Dad already got the whales, so for Mum, I went looking for seal and sea lion patterns. I eventually found one on Ravelry, from Sandsteel Designs. Some of the results looked…variable, but the pattern had some extremely clever shaping. I had faith that if I got the gauge right, I could pull it off. I fished out a variegated greyish-brown cotton, sat myself in front of the TV and got stitching. Result? Adorability!

baby seal

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Additional! I have an excessive amount of Christmas craft to blog, so stay tuned for an upcoming four-part post full of holiday cheer, gamer craft, mysteries and other such signifiers of the season.

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Posted by on January 10, 2013 in Craftiness, Deviousness


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This is the giant post of boyfriend craft

Over the last year or so, I have been making various pieces of crafty awesome for my boyfriend (also awesome). But I have been exceptionally lax in blogging these creations. So, in an extremely tardy fashion, here are some of the geeky boyfriend crafts I have made over the last year:

Birthday! A quote from his favorite Terry Pratchett character, Sam Vimes, from the book Night Watch – the flowers at the bottom are lilac blossoms, which are seriously plot-relevant in the book.

Also, a cross-stitched triceratops birthday card! The triceratops is from from Makoto’s Cross-Stitch Super Collection, which has fantastic mini-designs.

Christmas! Cthulu cross-stitch from Needlenoodles, and Zombie Vampire from Zombie Felties. We had at the time been playing a lot of Arkham Horror; on reflection, that fed heavily into my crafty psyche. Plus, cutesy Lovecraftian nightmares and steampunk-style zombie vampires are just cool, y’know?

Valentines Day: a heart, of course! I stitched this ages ago, but could not pass it over as a Valentines gift: it just struck the right note between geeky and romantic.

Anniversary! A Weighted Companion Cube from Nerdigurumi (and also, well, Portal). Made after we began cohabiting, and therefore crocheted in secrecy, at odd times and in weird places. Stitched with love and weighted with glass beads, your Weighted Companion Cube will never threaten to stab you.

Aaaaaand birthday again! A hand-embroidered felt d20, of my own devising! Again stitched as a covert operation. The project began as a crocheted d20, but in the end, felt was a much more manageable medium, especially with that much embroidery and sewing-up. While it’s not entirely game-legal, it does roll surprisingly true!

 Also, I made a Jaffa marble cake with dark chocolate ganache. It was delicious!

Needless to say, we are well suited in our geeky tastes.


Posted by on July 28, 2012 in Craftiness


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Spring is definitely unsprung

For the last Phat Quarter swap, the theme was Spring! While appropriate for the nothern-hemispherians, I stitched my piece as autumn turned bitterly into winter. It is cold. So, so cold.

Nonetheless, I mustered up my springiest spirit and stitched this:

Because to me, and just about everybody I know, spring means allergies. Hmm, perhaps this whole ‘winter’ thing isn’t so bad after all…

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Posted by on June 27, 2012 in Craftiness


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Black Books

I stitched this Black Books quote for a friend’s birthday last year; she’s a huge Dylan Moran fan.

The simple black cross-stitch fits the text really well, and was (thankfully) incredibly quick to stitch – always a bonus with a deadline looming!


Posted by on March 18, 2012 in Craftiness


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The theme for the latest Phat Quarter swap was “It’s not the end of the world”. My piece has landed safely in America, so without further ado, I present my take on the theme:

The text is, of course, from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and the border is from an early 20th century DMC pattern book. Going by my limited understanding of German, the space in the centre was originally designed for a memorial – however, I think the timeless words of Douglas Adams are much more important to remember!

I received an awesome piece myself, from jojobooster – a very cool twitter-feed take on the theme:

It was a most impressive parcel to receive in the mail!

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In other news, I am aware that I’ve been neglecting this blog over the past few months; I plead the turmoil of moving house and consecutive illnesses which have knocked me flat. I have a massive backlog of stuff I need to post, which I’ll hopefully be plowing through over the next month or so. Stay tuned for some black (books) humour, crazy awesome yarnbombing, super cute amigurumi, random book art, and even more Christmas craft!

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Posted by on February 28, 2012 in Craftiness, Deviousness


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Exhibitionist! Part three – passive/agressive

I’ve saved my favourite pieces for the last post in this exhibition-series: a trio of antique-patterned passive-aggressive stitcheries.

The base designs come from Moderne Stickerei, a German pattern book circa 1900. Ever since I found these patterns, I’ve wanted to weave some text into their designs. I made a start last year, as part of my Bloody Shakespeare series, but this exhibition seemed like an opportunity to really play with the idea of making these designs speak.

Given that the exhibition guidelines included a PG language rating, the pieces had to have some kind of an attitude without dropping a single swear word (a challenge for me, clearly). I decided to start stitching and see if anything occurred to me; halfway through the first piece, the words ‘did you really think I wouldn’t know?‘ popped into my head. The words fit perfectly into the (slightly redesigned) border region, so I decided to run with it. After that, I knew what tone I was aiming for, and the text for the next two pieces (don’t make me say it / i wish i could) just seemed to make perfect sense.

And so I present: passive/aggressive

did you really think i wouldn't know?

don't make me say it

i wish i could

In Adelaide? Head into Irving Baby! on Twin Street, just off Rundle Mall and check out the mini-gallery during October. If any pieces of stitchery catch your fancy, they are all for sale!

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Posted by on October 27, 2011 in Craftiness


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