Cross Stitch for Fathers Day

Hello world!

I must apologize for my terribly long absence. I’m hoping you will forgive me when you hear my reason for being AWOL. I was determined that the next time I touched base with you I should have something to show you. So although it meant considerably more time between posts than I would have liked, I return bearing a finish… my very first finish for 2015!

With Father’s Day just around the corner, I was trying to figure out what I should do to make the day extra special. Now as many of you will agree, shopping for a man is a pain in the you know where. No matter how much I exerted my poor overworked brain I simply could not come up with a WOW! gift. So this year I decided to try and make something instead of a store-bought gift. And what would I make? Why, a cross stitched piece of course!

So I got to work searching for small, quick Fathers Day patterns. And while I readily found some really cute Mothers Day patterns (already bookmarked for next year!), sadly there weren’t too many Fathers Day options out there. The pickings were so slim that I finally decided to just use a simple, elegant font and design my own pattern. Perfect for pulling together a last-minute gift. I must insert here that my father is by no means a cross stitch aficionado. But I love it. So he should love what his precious daughter loves right? Or am I the only one who gifts other people things that I like? Hmmm… just me? Okay then… MUST work on that.

Anyhoo… I pulled out some supplies that I already had in my stash – DMC Ecru floss and some 36 count Cognac linen. And here is what the piece looked like as I stitched it up.

A deceptively simple design
A deceptively simple design

When I first started, I expected it would take me no more than a few hours. Funny how I always seem to over-estimate my powers. I wound up working on it for roughly 6-7 hours – NOT including the time it took me to figure out the pattern and layout. Designing a pattern is not as simple as it looks. I finally did manage to finish it without losing too much hair in the process and while it is not as glorious as it looked in my head, it is passable. Dad will simply have to love it (whether he likes it or not. Get it? Haha).

My initial plan was to add a backstitched border but instead I added a smattering of french knots. I was quite pleased with how they turned out initially. The french knots (which a lot of stitchers seem to hate with a passion) came out perfectly for me. Sadly however that didn’t last long. By the time I finished stitching the linen was horribly creased. No amount of ironing could seem to work out the wrinkles. I was finally forced to dampen the piece (GASP!) and give it a good iron on high heat. I can still see the phantom hoop marks (Or am I just being paranoid?) but what is worse is that the french knots which once looked like pouf-y little snowflakes before now resemble deflated pancakes. Lesson learnt. Next time I will finish any washing/ironing BEFORE adding any french knots. Funny how every piece seems to teach me a new lesson.

Sigh... my smushed french knots :(
Sigh… my smushed french knots 😦

I now need to decide how I am going to finish the piece. I will be on the lookout for a white frame and can just imagine how pretty it would look matted and framed. If I can’t find a suitable frame I will make it into an aperture card. I’ve never done that before so it will be an interesting experiment. This piece is a lot of firsts for me – my first time stitching on 36 count linen and my first time (sort of) designing my own pattern. Maybe I can add making a card to the list too?

The glorious (?!) finished piece
The glorious (?!) finished piece

Are you working on any gifts for Fathers Day?