In a stitchuation

Stitch & bitch

There comes a time in one’s life when only handmade will do. When you’ve bought up half of (and trust that’s by no means an easy feat), exhausted the ‘quirky’ gift section from Urban Outfitters and your inspiration takes you about as far as a hug and a voucher for their favourite shop, it’s any wonder we don’t all have cupboards full to the brim of the same stashes of novelty pug mugs, moustache canvas bags and ‘How to be a hipster’ handbooks. (If you’ve bought me any of the former, please know I love them dearly). Whilst there will inevitably be the last minute shopping dash to Joy, or in my Mother’s case, W H Smiths for an Easy-read – I positively encourage you to discover the Easy-read for yourself if you’ve not yet encountered its satisfaction soaked USP, it hardly screams “I know you, I’ve spent twenty six years spotting missing gaps in your life that will bring you daily joy and happiness (and possibly even make you think of me in a positive light when I’m twenty minutes late to meet you)”. Some things simply won’t do. The best presents I’ve ever given have had some sort of blood/sweat/tears poured into them, they’ve been mixed tapes made of songs so obscure they’ve required a sleeve of long-winded explanations, or taken so long in the making they eventually turn into obligatory Christmas presents.

One current handcrafted infatuation of mine is embroidery, or more specifically cross stitch. In blind naivety I took on a little project of my own that has indeed taken me so long it’s any wonder I haven’t had a tantrum and lobbed it out the window at some unsuspecting bird by now. Here’s a few that have particularly caught my eye of late…


By Bananyastand on Etsy


By notsomodernmillie on Etsy



One of my favourite places to scout out new cross stitch patterns as a beginner is What Delilah Did, she has brilliant how-to guides, patterns based on skill level, and some really inspiring ideas to get you started. The other of course is Etsy filled with patterns so intricate it’s any wonder a mouse didn’t do them. So with Christmas right around the corner, please spare a thought for those poor blighters sat on public transport furiously stitching/knitting/cursing away with fingers like colanders and hearts of good intentions…