Sled Finish Tutorial

That Judy – she’s so demanding! ROFLOL – Okay you know I’m kidding but I told her I’d post photos of how the Foxwood Crossing Sleds get finished. This entailed having to clean off all my “home office piles” from the table so I had room to work and take photos (but now all those piles are going back to the office to be filed or shredded since I’m done with them so it was a task I had been procrastinating on). And once again that little corner of the living room looks “pre-working remotely” normal without piles of papers and two laptops, etc on the dining table, It will revert to office looking again later this week but I’m enjoying that it’s looking “crafty normal” mess at the moment not work mess. Okay – on to the sled finishing!!!

Here is Sled Central. First, the sleds come in three sizes and I have them lined up – so I think you can figure out which is which. In the shops and the patterns they are referred to as Large (I’m so in love with that large sled – just beautiful), Medium and Mini. The sled storage box has one more Medium in it and the rest are all Minis. I think I had originally ordered 2 Mediums and 4 minis and then I found a place that sold the minis as a “baker’s dozen.” so ordered those since that’s the size I want to use for gifts where I’m gifting several to each of my bosses. They are available at many shops – just search the name (Foxwood Crossing Sleds) and you’ll find options – but they are also out of stock in many places too and due to supply chain issues some sizes (especially the elusive Large ones) aren’t expected to be back in stock till spring/early summer. (I think I might have 3 more large ones coming but am waiting confirmation that they were really in stock.)

Anyway, you have to make sure you are getting the correct size charts for your sleds because the charts are sized (with curved edges, etc) to specifically fit each sled size. They are stitched on 14 Count Perforated Paper and then you follow the directions to trim them to shape. Really easy to do. The photo above contains patterns that have multiple charts for various sized sleds. Morning Star Santa on the left, has separate charts for the large and medium sleds, also a separate chart for the framed design shown, and there’s a bonus chart for basically the same design as on the medium sized sled except it is rectangular and not shaped for a sled. The RFD Sledding contains a large sled chart and the framed piece; River Road Church is for large sled, medium sled and framed piece. In all three patterns the “framed” pieces are designed for 28 ct linen or 14 ct Aida (since perforated paper is 14 ct). The patterns below are made specifically for the Mini Sleds only. So you need to make sure to check the descriptions on the patterns to see what size sled charts they contain. Lots of different ones are available.

So here are my stitched and trimmed pieces. Two minis and one medium sled charts. On the left is the roll of acid-free double-sided tape. You can get many different brands in various places. Mine happens to be Angel Crafts Acid Free – 55 yard roll, 1/2″ wide – got it from Amazon. 55 yards is a lot (if you plan to only do a couple ornaments) but I’ll use it for other framing things. If you have local needlework or scrapbooking/craft stores you may be able to find it there in smaller quantity but it’s a handy tool for many crafts. And since I’m not venturing into any stores, mail order is my friend. On the right in the photo above, I just stuck a piece of tape on a scrap of perforated paper and pulled back the paper covering to show that it’s a clear tape – you can easily rip it off the roll like masking tape.

As you can see I put three pieces on the back (and have already trimmed the excess tape away along the top/bottom edges) of the Medium sized sled piece on the left; two pieces along edges of Mini size on the right that I still need to trim away excess. Don’t use your good scissors to trim the tape – it’s really sticky and you don’t want to gum up your favorite scissors. Press the tape firmly into your stitching and then peel off the paper (which would have been much easier if I had not just trimmed my fingernails). Then carefully center it on your sleds and firmly press in place. And TA DAAAAA!!!!! cute little ornaments – I even sacrificed setting foot in the cold outside (in my robe and slippers early this morning) to put them in the fresh snow that fell overnight for a final photo shoot.

So whenever I feel the urge to work on a smaller project, I can pull out one of these now that I have all the supplies organized into the “Sled Making box.” If I happen to have the color flosses called for I’m using them but otherwise I’m substituting a similar color I have. It would also be a great small project to kit up and stick in my bag to take along and stitch on during my lunch hour in the office since I don’t need a magnifier to see the 14 count to stitch on.

And I have to thank that “demanding Judy” for getting me interested in pulling out the cross stitching again. These were so fun to make and finish and I think will be such fun things to gift.

Ornament #3 stitched

I’ve been alternating between cross stitching and knitting today (and tossing in laundry loads, emptying dishwasher so I could fill it again, and a walk in the very crisp cold air to the garbage and recycling dumpsters). So a bit of crafting, a bit of chores and all while binge watching Dr. Who on BBC America. I’ve always been a fan of the show but our local station didn’t always carry it so I’ve seen some episodes I haven’t seen before. So yes, pretty much a lazy day here. 🙂 I didn’t make any holiday treats so I’m thinking I might just go make some Seven Layer Bars and pop them in the oven since they will be quick and easy to toss together.

Sweater back is progressing nicely – it’s a very easy knit – and I love knitting with Wollmeise yarn.

And here is the third ornament stitched (but not yet attached to the sled). This is the second of four cardinals. I decided to change the background color a bit and made the mistake of picking one that didn’t let the darker holly leaves show up well – so I just restitched over top of some of the holly with a lighter shade of green.

Possible Farmhouse Christmas Fabrics

There was a box outside my door this morning when I looked out – someone was out and about delivering packages early. It contained a picture frame that I fell in love with and had to have for a future cross stitch project. It also contained two of the fabrics I had ordered to possibly use for Farmhouse Christmas. Choosing colors on a computer monitor can be tricky – especially since I have never seen these colors in person having been away from cross stitch for so long.

I have two other color choices coming from a different location so will wait to make my choice when that arrives. Whatever doesn’t get chosen for this project will be used for the Amish Told in A Garden series I had started many moons ago. My plan is to use 16 count Aida cloth for the Farmhouse Christmas SAL. I love the look of all the linen fabrics but I know with my eye issues that I cannot stitch on linen. 16 count Aida is about as small as I personally will go for my circumstances.

I got several emails and also comments left on the Farmhouse Christmas SAL announcement regarding whether you can stitch it on different cloth than called for in the pattern and how to figure out how much fabric you will use. Well of course you can stitch it on whatever you like – your project, your rules. If you go to the link provided in the announcement that shows the whole project, it tells you how many stitches each block design is, how many stitches the design is if you stitch it all as one project including the number of stitches between blocks, and how many stitches the design is if you stitch it all as one design and add the free border available on that same page.

There are many cross stitch calculators available to use on line – this is just one I came across and I like all the information it provides. Since I will be using 16 count Aida, I filled in the form for that and here’s what it tells me based on my own personal preferences and how I will finish (frame) my project when done.

You fill n the top part of the form, click “calculate size” and it gives you all the bottom info. For a design 209 stitches square on 16 count fabric stitched over 1 thread, with two inches of extra fabric outside my stitched design on all sides (I didn’t add extra fabric for finishing because I know I won’t need it but depending on your preferences you may add more there. So it tells me with those parameter my fabric should be at least 17″ x 17″. It also suggested number of threads to use, size needle, etc.

Once I get all the fabrics, I’ll lay them out in natural light and lay the floss colors across them to see what I think will look best. So looking forward to working on this project.