Seems like everything old is new again. I've seen so many people doing what they call 'stitchery' lately. It's what I used to just call embroidery. I learned to do it in the third grade when my teacher, the marvelous Mrs. M., gave a tea towel to each student with a stamped design of fruit or flowers. Each one was different. She taught us all to embroider the design, and I don't ever remember a word that would imply this was only an activity for girls. In fact the best work was done by some of the boys in the class. My towel was stamped with cherries. This turned out to be one of the more difficult ones because the round cherries required very tiny stitches, and I never really understood that at the time. So my work was not all that great, but my Mom used that dish towel for years until it was too worn to be of any further use.
Today I see many cute whimsical designs that are just so appealing, often incorporated in patchwork quilts. In anticipation of trying this again, I bought a piece of muslin and a washable transfer embroidery pen. I was kind of nervous about my ability to transfer a design properly, but it worked out great. The muslin is almost see-through in the right light so tracing is pretty easy. And the pen markings come out easily with water if there are any mistakes. I found this snowman design here on Elin's blog. It's the perfect size for a trial and great for Valentine's Day or even the December holidays. I chose to use a stem stitch over the outline stitch or back stitch, but I'm not really sure why. The results aren't perfect (just like the tea towel!), but I think this little door hanger is pretty cute. I sent it to a stitcher who I think is in need of a bit of cheering up.
The last time I was at the craft store I saw this really pretty-colored yarn that reminded me of DMC 115, the old variegated red. It was Caron's Simply Soft Paints yarn, and I bought a skein to see how I would like knitting with acrylic these days since I hadn't done that for a long time. I made this hat after seeing it done in such pretty yarn on Karen's blog. It's the free pattern on Ravelry called "Magenta Cabled Hat". I had never knitted a hat in the round, but with my new found ability to use DPNS, I thought I'd give it a try. I changed the teeny 2 stitch cable to a mock cable (knit the second stitch and leave on the needle, knit the first and drop both stitches). And I added the extra knit rows that Karen did as well. I'm actually quite happy with the result. Don't know how it will hold up over time, but it feels soft and warm when I wear it. The first photo is not great, but does show the color well. Its in darker reds, not like the subsequent pictures.