Cross Stitching – Approach With Caution

Today I was hit with the Spring Clean vibe really hard and decided to gut my bedroom. Don’t ask me why it had to happen on the sunniest day of the week or why I didn’t think to postpone until the weather turned for the worse. It was nice letting the natural light in through the patio door right enough, and I did open windows to air the flat out a bit (which felt like a very grown up thing to do).

The Spring Clean of 2017 is still a work in progress, but my desk is now a workable area which is really exciting (if you’re excited by things like giving objects a specific home on/under a desk, which I am) and I have set up my laptop so I feel more in the zone for writing and generally more productive with less clutter in my space.

As part of the clear out, I have created my own little craft corner which houses everything from photography books to knitting needles, my sewing box, colouring books and my calligraphy set:

Ain’t it cute?! And super tidy, considering it’s my stuff we’re talking about, and the ridiculous volume of things there were to find a home for. I have all my sheet music hidden at the back too. It’s a very handy wee hidey hole!

Although my love for crafts and arty ways to pass time span a whole variety of activities, my newest hobby is cross stitching. And I must admit, it is bloody marvelous.

My sister got me hooked with this wonderful kit she gave me for Christmas:

(kit available from the Geeky Stitching Co)

Cute, right!?

Cross stitch is a great way for me to spend my time for several reasons – it’s a creative outlet, it’s plannable (I now have a square paper jotter to sketch potential designs in *squee*) and it keeps both my hands and mind busy. It’s also great when partnered with a bingeable series on Netflix.

(available here)

So, cross stitching is my latest craft love. I won’t lie, I went a little crazy at Hobbycraft this week, buying hoops, cloth and this:

ISN’T THAT THE PRETTIEST DAMN THREAD MOUNTAIN YOU’VE EVER SEEN???

And just because it’s so darn beautiful, here is my collection in rainbow fashion.

#embroideryporn

This particular set of 100 threads was £16 and worth every penny. So, yes, I have well and truly caught the cross stitch bug.

However, it is not a hobby without peril. Please, folks, tackle the stitching with caution.

You see, a lot of my cross stitching is done while I’m lying in bed. This is a prime location for many reasons; not least comfort and space to spread out all materials while exerting as little energy as possible for retrieval (I can now reach my sewing box without having to physically leave my bed – result!)

It is a pretty safe bet that if I am working from my bed, I will be in pjs or some other form of loungewear. I detest lying in bed in jeans after 7pm and the bra comes off as soon as humanly possible – if I was wearing one at all to begin with.

It is at this precise moment that cross stitching transforms into something of a safety hazard for me.

What you have to understand is that I am not the most elegant of people. Nor the most coordinated. I approach most things with gusto and grace just waltzes on out the door before I get a look in. This doesn’t really affect me in everyday life. Just don’t ask me to slice a bagel or sidle up to the barre.

When my klutzy tendencies do affect me, though, is the moment my bra comes off and the embroidery hoop is picked up.

Let me clarify – needles are sharp, my boobs are unprotected; injuries ensue.

I won’t lie, blood has been drawn a handful of times and my boobs are not the only victim. My fingers, thighs and elbow (I don’t even know) have endured the stabby stabby from my cross stitching attempts. My boyfriend’s eye has had a few close calls too – he knows to swerve when my arm starts extending to pull through a long thread. (Personally I blame him – it’s not my fault that I’m left handed and he sits on my left…)

I suppose the moral of the story here is to:

1. wear protective clothing when handling sharp objects, especially embroidery needles, and

2. work out seating arrangements before readying said sharp object for stitches to avoid other casualties.

As much as I detest wearing padded bras, it would seem they are part of the uniform necessary to keep my poor wee tatas safe from the evil pointy stabber.

I’m sure there’s some poetic irony to be pulled from a needle creating beauty despite its cold, painful composition, but it’s too late in the day to deduce it.

Currently, I’m working on a piece inspired by a stall I’ve fallen in love with in the Royal Mile Market at the Tron Kirk. I bought a wonderful little ring from the stall and ever since I’ve been more determined to spend time refining my witchy side.

This hoop is going to be magical and I’m attempting to channel my best moonchild vibes to give it the mystical edge I’m desperate to create.

Updates to follow!

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Author: Amy

The Squealing Piglet - a nickname that started at birth and has reappeared throughout the course of my life (not least because of my "unique" laugh...*gigglesnort*) PhD candidate, intersectional feminist and occasional blogger.

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