Thursday, January 28, 2021

So, here's the buzz!

I've put my knitting bag aside for a while and decided to try
something I've not done in many years, counted cross stitch.
We've been watching far too many TV series these
pandemic winter evenings and a couple were foreign with subtitles. 
No good when you're knitting though. . . . . . . eyes off the screen and
losing the plot becomes easy!

When I saw this cute bee on a honeycomb pin cushion in a magazine 
I wanted to give it a try.  I had plenty of embroidery floss, a small hoop,
needles etc. but did have to purchase some 11 count Aida cross stitch
I enlarged the magazine photo to a size where I could see the 
stitches more clearly.
I admit that my eyesight is not what it was - distance no real problem
but close up work requires reading glasses. . . . . .and for this project,
 the purchase of a magnifier which really helps once one gets used
 to having it hanging around the neck.
Of course I can't work on this either if watching TV so doing a
 bit in the afternoons.

I'm following this photo, copied and enlarged, from a magazine.

Jasmin - October 25, 2020 - 24th Birthday

 Last year when at the fabric store with my granddaughter Jasmin, 
we found these beautiful machine embroidered panels.
She loved both the bee and the dragonfly so I returned next day alone, 
purchased them and arranged to have them made up into pillows for 
Jasmin's sofa. Was she ever surprised when a month later she opened
her birthday gifts!

I realize that this is a simplified version of the bee. . . . . . a starter
 for me, however after looking up 'cross stitched bees' online I've found
 so many beautiful stitchery patterns, and kits, much more advanced
 and detailed - such as the one below - which I may try later.

I've a long way to go yet but hopefully will share the finished bee later.

Do you cross stitch or embroider?
How about knit? 
I know some of you are fabulous with knitting needles and crochet hooks!


  1. I've been making small cross stitch labels for sewing projects recently. Here in the UK, it has had a resurgence - retailers report a 400% increase in sales of kits since last January, attributed to lockdown.Loving the bees my daughter lives in Manchester and it is the symbol of the city representing industry and sweetness

  2. Crochet and cross-stitch for me, and these days, the easier the project the better. I can crochet and not concentrate but cross-stitch definitely requires attention for counting. :) Have fun!

  3. I love stitching - I mean, I love what can be done with stitching, how creative and beautiful a craft it is. I have never really mastered it, and apart from crocheting, have no skills with needles of any shape or length. All the more do I asdmire those who make such beautiful, individual things.

  4. That is going to be lovely. I use to knit, but just the basics, nothing fancy.

  5. In my day I did it all... oh wait a minute... I didn't tat! I love handwork but those days are long gone for me. I love your bee! Go for it, girl. Don't just knit your life away, do it all.

  6. I really miss the cross stitch I did for so many years. Each of my grandchildren has a beautiful Birth sampler, and I have pictures hanging at home. I loved the Amish patterns. My eyesight for close work isnt enough nwo, so sadly I gave away all my threads last year. Your bee will be lovely!

    1. Barbara, every day I look at that amazing framed teeny tiny cross stitched picture you so kindly gifted me with - it's so beautiful and hangs next to a photo of my mother. I have no idea how anyone could stitch something so exquisite. Perhaps a really strong magnifier - or perfect eyesight required!

  7. You will certainly be a very busy bee during the next few weeks, and what a gorgeous design it is too. That is a really lovely photo of your granddaughter Jasmin on her birthday.

  8. I have no patience for cross stitch. My mum does though. She making a cross stitch pattern of an owl, at the moment. I've never been very craftsy. Probably because of my short attention span.

  9. PS your new is turning out very nicely.

  10. Dearest Mary,
    How lovely for arranging to have pillows made for your granddaughter Jasmin, she no doubt was thrilled receiving them!
    Your Bee project looks lovely too and once you get it completed we love to see it.
    Yes, this can only be done with good sunlight in a 'quiet' room! Our veranda is perfect for that, or even inside the gazebo when the weather permits or on the balcony.
    It has been quite a while since I've done some cross stitching but I have started a work a couple of years ago and then quit, due to my eye sight going down. This morning I had my second eye surgery done so hopefully this summer or during a vacation I will be able to continue doing this lovely work!
    You can see some of my former work here:

    1. I read your former post - you looked lovely and your handiwork is amazing. I used to enjoy Jacobean style crewel embroidery using wool - I prefer that over cross stitch which, as Lorrie states below, is a lot of 'stabbing into tiny holes'!!!!!

  11. Your bee cross stitch is going to be lovely! Will you frame it? I used to do cross stitch, but never enjoyed it. Stabbing the needle into those little squares drove me crazy. I do like embroidery, though.

    1. Yep, you're right dear, a lot of 'stabbing' going on here too!

  12. What a lovely bee design, Mary. I love the honeycomb effect around the bee. In the past I have done a lot of cross-stitch and really enjoyed it, but alas failing eyesight became a problem. I am glad I have kept some of the 18 or 16 count large pictures I made. Last year I was diagnosed with 'mini' cataracts, and have been trying various types of lights and magnifiers. I am trying some simple back-stitch pictures this year with a magnifying light but it is slow going. I am glad you are able to stitch, it is so soothing and you feel productive as well :0 Those bee pillows are just gorgeous - lucky Jasmine.

  13. Dear Mary,
    As long as your "simplified" bee looks like a bee you're on the right track. I hope you will show us your creation once it becomes a pillow.
    The girls in my family all learned how to knit, crochet and sew at a very young age. I still enjoy knitting. My sister knits little hats for newborns and delivers them to her local hospital. She has knit hundreds of them.

  14. I cross stitched for years & loved it. One of my last pieces was in intricate bride in her flowing gown that I did for my daughter’s wedding. Eye sight & arthritic hands has caused me to stop. It was my favorite hobby. I also crocheted but never learned to knit.

  15. I haven't done counted cross stitch in so long but I used to make samplers all the time! Your bee is wonderful-great job!!

  16. My fingers don't function well for fine needlework. I tried crochet about a year ago, but just couldn't hold the yarn in place. I haven't cross stitched for years, but your bee is tempting me to want to try. What lovely pillows for Jazmin, a perfect gift surprise.


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