I am one of those annoying people who starts lots of different things without getting round to finishing any of them. Rather like a magpie, I get easily distracted by anything remotely cute/shiny/new and need, yes need, to start it right then and there and it will be all consuming, if only for a short while.
Now I know that this is how my brain thinks, so I do try to work against it, but there are some things I find it hard to resist. And this is exactly what happened with embroidery. I've considered it for a while (you may remember that my parents helpfully brought me back an embroidery kit from Australia over Christmas) but my Twitter feed has been full with the buzz of Wild Olive's Spring Stitching Club over the past few days and I thought that it would be rude not to take a sneaky peak to see what all the fuss was about.
So I looked... and there was the cutest little bunny design staring back at me! It looked like a fairly simple pattern, running stitch I think, and I started to hear my brain whisper "Doesn't that look like the perfect starter embroidery pattern?" "How hard could it be, surely it's worth a try?" "It's just a few dollars, what great value it is for 12 patterns." Well, how could I fight my own well argued logic?! So I signed up, but the official patterns don't start until March and I'd really started to get excited about my adventure into embroidery so I thought I'd just perhaps have a little look on Wild Olive's Etsy page to see if there was anything that might take my fancy. And there was:
A cute set of crafting designs including a crochet hook, yarn ball and lots of other things with happy little faces! I downloaded the pattern and then headed off to my local curtain shop to buy some supplies. Yep, curtain shop. I don't really understand either. It's predominantly a curtain shop but luckily for me, also has a small section of yarn and needlecraft supplies which included some embroidery hoops, threads and needles. I spent a while choosing my colours - grey orange and teal green were scooped up without hesitation - and hurried home.
The next hurdle was what to embroider on. The most appropriately thick fabric I could find was some Clark and Clark (gasp) semi expensive stuff I had stashed in my little craft room. Justifying that this really was an emergency, I cut off some of the beautiful fabric turned it over to use the back (gasp) traced on the design and stretched it over the hoop.
I was surprised by the simplicity of embroidery designs. No guidance on stitches, no real guidance on colour or how to move around the design, just a black and white line drawing of my smiley little yarn ball. Still, as someone who has absolutely no drawing skills whatsoever, it was just what I needed. I read over Wild Olive's embroidery basics series and decided to do a bit of running stitch for the face and split stitch for the yarn bits (check me out using the lingo like a pro!)
It turned out much better than I expected for a first attempt. A few too many stitches bottom right so it became a little squared off, but overall, I was pretty pleased. The back is less neat, and I understand that a good embroiderer (embroiderist, embroidologist?) has as pretty a back as front, but I guess that all comes with time.
Have I caught the bug? Absolutely! I think embroidery will be a nice little addition to crocheting without straying too far from the path. There's lots of really cute designs out there and I've flooded my Pinterest with ideas, examples and designs. Hop over and take a look :)