For the past month, I have been “sewing like the wind” (I believe that’s a quote from Three Amigos). I was trying to make a Washington Husky ornament but I did not finish. I had three whole weeks to do it, but it felt more like a one-day Project Runway challenge with no immunity. Very stressful. I wish I’d had Tim Gunn telling me to “Make it work.”
I was really proud of the dawg I sketched on the fabric, and the sharp dog-hair corners I made. But I slowed myself down by choosing a tight, 28-count fabric (that’s 28 holes per inch). I didn’t do the math before I started the project. The white part is 784 stitches per square inch. The purple part, done in little “X”s, is 3,136 stitches per square inch.
I tend to go whole hog with handmade gifts, but that’s because I take pride in my amateur craftsmanship, and I’m not going to make a piece of crap, no matter how amateur I may be. The thing about a handmade cross-stitch is, it’s hard to truly appreciate it unless you’ve done cross-stitch before, and you know how back-breaking, finger-poking, and blinding the work can be. Even then, it’s hard.
Anyway, it would look more impressive as a finished product. I’m always one for finishing, but I underestimated the project and ran out of time.
You know, I have never made a gift that was easy. I once put together a personalized book out of a $75 crocodile leather album. It had 50 pages of color photo printouts and funny captions. Another time I made a birthday card that was actually a large magazine page layout about the person who was having the birthday. I gave my graphic designer friend the images and copy, and she designed a really cool mock-magazine charticle thing. My friend was soon after tapped by Vogue to do design there. So I mean, that was some serious talent that made that gift.
Have you ever made a gift? Were you happy with your craftsmanship? Did you finish??