Sunday, 22 July 2018

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #331

Here we are again, ready for another fresh Snippets Challenge - anything goes so long as you use one or more 'snippets/scraps'.

There's been little let-up in the current heatwave - although we did have one heavy downpour a week ago and boy was it welcome. Hosepipe bans come into force shortly for many UK folk - not us just yet but we'll surely follow if this continues. We've always been believers in using rain water as much as possible as we live on chalk for starters - a couple of big water butts collect rain water flow from the house and, so cute, Len's guttering (using cable trunking enclosure plastic lengths) they just open up into halves then attach along each side of the shed roof and feed into buckets with the help and guidance of cable ties. Len has all sorts of Heath Robinson things set up here - sometimes I despair - and then a lot of the time I find it so amazing to be able to look at a potential problem as he does and find a way around it. Let's forget that he once made a food blender using a Black and Decker power drill - cabbage on ceiling - so NOT a good look. Before my time with him I'm happy to report! Meanwhile, let's just make the most of our weather!

My make this time round isn't a card - which is really unusual for me! In fairness, it may end up ON a card, at an angle and with a sentiment perhaps, but for now I'm leaving it as a tag in its own right. There's a lot of words about the making and what I discovered through research and trial and error - feel free to skip it if you wish:
I used:

- snippets of card from the snippets folder in kraft, green and red, no full pieces of card, ribbon or twine were harmed in the making of this tag :) 

- using the MFT 'Cross Stitch Tag' set of dies I cut a tag from kraft card with the holes in first of all. You use two dies for this but it's easy to hold them in place with washi tape or similar. MFT recommend that you use a metal plate underneath the die but my Cuttlebug wasn't playing ball and seemed in danger of flying apart so I just ran the paired dies through a few times with folded paper shims on top of the plates - and then poked out each little hole. There's no real way to avoid this from what I've seen - and it's quite therapeutic once you get into a rhythm. I did use waxed paper between the die and the card which ensured that it just dropped out of the die

- then die cut the other parts I needed - a full tag without holes from kraft card, the green top for the tag and the little ring thing which goes around the tag slit - from red card. Put them to one side for safe keeping in a little plastic lid kept for the purpose, it's one of those deep lids from a large tub of cotton buds and ideal for this!

- the pattern I wanted to use is on the MFT website HERE - along with quite a few others. Some are much more simple with a lot less stitching but I always go for the long route!

 - next I got out my cross stitch threads, almost untouched for many years, and matched up the red and green and also picked out a bobbin of white - all Anchor as it happens, purely coincidence. When I was really into cross stitch I always wound embroidery skeins onto flat cardboard 'bobbins' so they were kept untangled and also fitted into special partitioned boxes where you can see the range of colours at a glance. I must have been keen - I have three large boxes with every colour under the sun!

- and then spent quite a while actually sewing the sleigh - I used all six strands of the thread btw rather than split it, those holes are quite big. My guess, as I'm slow and picky and the image is quite solid, is a couple of hours or more. So not something to do if you're in a real hurry - ideal to do in front of the TV if football is on for example

- once the image was stitched - making sure that all crosses were all formed the same way,  just as you would when doing stitching on Aida fabric or linen - it was time to assemble the tag, and that was super fast and easy!

-  just backed the stitched tag with the additional kraft tag (this hides the back of your work and gives somewhere to write on if you just use it as a gift tag!) using narrow red line tape around the edges - glue would ooze through obviously

- then stuck the green top of the tag in place, using red line tape again and added the red 'ring' around the tag slit using a glue pen

- finally,  found one lonely snippet of white ribbon waiting patiently to be used, threaded it through the tag slit and tied it using a snippet of brown twine saved from a brown old fashioned label. Trimmed the ends of the ribbon and the twine to suit and that was it - done!

Here's some additional stuff I found out along the way. You can just draw the crosses onto the die cut tag - but I (personally) can't see it looking as effective without the tactile element- and there are lots of lovely patterns to be found, not only on the MFT website. Check out Pinterest for example or just small cross stitch patterns in general, on line, for ideas. My tag is an unashamed copy of one that MFT use to promote this die set :)

A hint I read is to pre-colour in the design, by drawing crosses using pens matched to your chosen threads (like the suggestion to not use threads) - and then stitch over it to ensure full coverage. I did start off this way and thought 'This really is a mug's game - I'm doing twice the work here' so I switched straight to using the thread and, because it's six strands thick, it covers perfectly anyhow. Also, I made a couple of (I corrected them - so don't check!) sewing mistakes along the way and of course you can't really unpick a Pro marker marker cross can you!
 
MFT also make a plain cross stitch rectangle die, and perhaps others - but it would be so easy to cut out the punched tag and just slice across the top. I might try that one next - maybe in an aperture - although there are some lovely and very effective patterns specifically for this die set. There's room to stamp a smallish sentiment on the green top part of the tag as well. Crumbs, anyone would think I worked for MFT. Sales pitch over!

Without you needing to guess, here's this week's Snippets Playground prize:
Yup, it's an  MFT 'Cross Stitch Tag' die set for the randomly selected winner - and of course, you can omit the cross stitch part if you really must and just make tags to stamp on by not using the 'holes part' of the die - choices, choices :) I'm so excited to have this 'find' to share with you as a prize - I really love it!

As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 4th August. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day.

It's a maximum of ONE entry and please say in a comment if you wish to play and be a possible winner of the prize. Please also link back to the Playground in your blog post to be eligible for the draw.

Remember, if you link into the Playground and don't say clearly that you're wanting to be in the draw in a comment on here, then you will be bypassed if your name comes out of Mr Linky. I'm sure you all know I ask for a positive 'yes' on the blog post - just in case you're playing only for fun - otherwise I ignore you on my little list.

Mr Linky is below - please let me know if you have any problems linking, it's easy for me to sort out so don't struggle on alone :)

Be sure to call back next week to see the fortnight's picks and the winner of the Art Impressions 'Doggy Kisses' set of stamps.

Hedgies are doing fine btw - eating for the UK it seems! No pitter patter of tiny paws yet - but Len is only reporting one or two hedgies each night. I'm keeping quiet but I think there could be at least one Mum in the undergrowth nearby with a little brood of new prickles waiting to descend on us. - he hasn't thought of that one as yet!

Love from Parsnip (on his prayer mat right now whimpering for rain - silly bear, he thinks we'll ALL be showering together with the birds and even Spike and friends if water restrictions come in!) and of course from me,

54 comments:

  1. What a brilliant tag! I've got a couple of boxes of cross stitch threads somewhere too, all the threads wrapped round those cardboard bobbins. I'm a Yes Please for the draw, I'd love to have a reason to use up some of my embroidery threads.

    I'm still chuckling about vision I have of Len using the power drill as a food blender! LOL! xx

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  2. Oh, Di, that's a fantastic tag and a marvelous die! I love cross stitch so I will definitely have to toss my hat into the playing-for-the-prize ring this time 'round. :-D

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  3. Well whatever next and how clever of you to sniff out this particular die set to introduce us to the possibilities of using up some of our snippets of embroidery threads as well. Had to smile at your rain-catching story - my husband was a Heath Robinson apprentice too!! I will be along later with a card but just playing for fun this time. Seems there is no let up in the heatwave this coming week - sigh!!

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  4. Your talents are endless Di, super needlework and will make a gift rather special with that on it.

    We were promised rain Thursday, it came and went and hadly noticed and not even enough to register in hubbys super teckie rain gauge. Never ever know it this dry for so long and it's undeard of feeding hay to the boys in July.

    B x

    B x

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  5. What a clever die set and I love the tag you made with it.

    Hugs, Sarn xxx

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  6. A fabulous tag and I'd love a chance to win the prize, please. One of the sites we visited whilst on holiday had a small hedgehog that would come out in the early morning - so cute!
    Kath x

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  7. Gorgeous tag, and I too have a huge box of cross stitch threads tucked away and feeling unloved, so I'd love to go into the hat.
    We got a five minute shower that hardly laid the dust, and now everywhere is bone dry again. It's not doing Mark's veg any good!
    It's unusual for me to have planned in advance exactly what I'm going to make for the playground! I mustn't start feeling smug though, I don't suppose my super-organisation will last.

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  8. Your tag is so clever(as well your hubby!) :) Lovely make and beautiful cross stitching pattern!
    Happy Sunday!

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  9. I have seen this die and yes indeedy, I am interested in playing for the win. Fingers crossed!

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  10. Replies
    1. I would like to be entered in draw for the prize :)

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  11. Wow Di you have no end to your talent... this is stunning l just love it x

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  12. This is something a bit different and you have made a lovely Christmas tag with the sweet sleigh Di. Also as it can be double ended you could always use it as a topper and fix it to the card with ribbon or such like at both ends wrapped round, and a tag can always be fixed to a card anyway, so very versatile. I have seen the slightly bigger die used by Jennifer McGuire on some of her cards and it does make a pretty look though she tends to just make patterns with different colours. I have a huge amount of threads which never get used these days, so I am a 'yes please' for this prize. x

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  13. This is so pretty. Lots of close work and my eyes aren't that good anymore. It came out beautiful and what a gorgeous tag to add to a special gift.

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  14. Just playing for fun Di enjoy your weekend x

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  15. What a wonderful and fabulous tag! I've never seen anything quite like it and it's beautiful! Nice job! I have quite a few bundles of cross-stitch thread that could be put to good use with an item like this, so yes please - add my name to the drawing and thanks!

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  16. We got a brief break from the heat and even got some good rain. You wouldn't think we would need it as much rain as we got into June, but we dried up fast. So the soaker we got yesterday and last night was much needed. I am totally in love with this beautiful tag and I think it would look great on a card as well. I love your stitching-that sleigh filled with flowers is so beautiful-Jennifer McGuire does a lot of stitching on cards and they are so beautiful. I thought about getting some dies to stitch with since I have a lot of stitching thread, but I never did. lol This little tag would also look so beautiful on the Christmas tree! Oh I am so loving this! I just might have to find some snippets and see about finding time to play along with this one to be entered to try and win this wonderful die. lol Hugs, Brenda

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  17. This is gorgeous, Di! I love your stitched tag, so cool! I've been seeing a bit of this stitching around but haven't tried it myself yet. I will be back to join in as I seem to be using even more snippets lately - I made a card last week that was completely snippets but I had already linked up my one entry, oh well! There are lots more snippets where those came from haha! Thanks for your challenges and it will be a yes for the prize when I come back to link up. Thank you for your generous prizes too!

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  18. Hello Di, love your tag. That's a fabulous die, especially if you are into cross stitch. And I like the sledge too. I quite agree that to colour the crosses before stitching is a waste of time, especially if you are a confident stitcher. We've had rain here - enough to put an end to any possibility of a hosepipe ban. The temperature has gone down too, though not by too much but it now feels a whole lot cooler - almost sweater weather! No card from me this week - I'm still concentrating on scrap pages ... so many photos, so little time. Hugs to Parsnip and yourself. Elizabeth xx

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  19. This is a lovely tag, Di. I noticed some cross-stitch dies during one of MFT release countdowns, but I wasn't really sure what the possibilities were for using them. You have certainly set me straight.
    As I mentioned in my little guest DT writeup, it was embroidery/cross stitch that got me started on crafting as a child. I haven't embroidered for a while, but I have lots of floss left. For some reason, the live with my husband's fly-tying stuff, which is fine because at least I know where they are.

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  20. A super tag and well done on the cross stitching, looks really great.

    Kath x

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  21. I entered with two cards made with snippets.
    Yes please for the clever stitching tag die set, just adorable! :)

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  22. LOVE your tag, Di! I think I've now done 4 or 5 (not the pattern you did) but only the one has made it onto a tag, so far. I'm so glad I got this die & hope the prize goes to someone who will make great use of it. We're in a heatwave, too--can't wait for Fall!

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  23. Super make and a fab idea but - just playing for fun this week

    Kathyk

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  24. What a fab tag, I used to love doing cross stitch. Yes please for the prize,
    Katrina xx

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  25. That is so cute, Di! I'm sure I will be linking up, so it's an advance yes please from me for the prize xoxo

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  26. Can you believe I just took all my cross stitch threads to a Good Will store! YES, I still want to enter the challenge for that beautiful prize. It's been awhile since I been to the playground and for some reason I was drawn here today! Hope all is well on the other side of the pond.

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  27. What a cool die!!!! You find the best prizes :) Of course I would love to play along to win this :D
    Susan Sudbury

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  28. Love your bright tag... and would love to win this prize! Have always loved the look of cross stitch but always struggled with finishing one. (When we lived in South Dakota I did complete one cross stitch. A beautiful image of Mount Rushmore. Well... mine wasn't as beautiful as the picture on the package. I miscounted stitches a few times. The result? President George Washington looks like me might have gotten a broken nose in a bar fight or something! Makes me giggle every time I see it! This small sized canvas should work perfectly for me!

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    1. Ha, ha Kathy. Made me laugh about the bar fight! xx

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  29. Beautiful tag...And I love stitching so pls do count me in for the prize..

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    1. Please to delete my first link(no.17) by mistake i have entered a wrong link.

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    2. Have done as requested Sindhu! x

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  30. This is really a great tag, Di! And since I also love stitching, I say yes, please to get the opportunity to win the die set!
    And thank you very much for your birthday greeting on face book!
    Hugs, Liv

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  31. Hello Di! Love your cross stitch tag, it's a wonderful idea! I'm playing just for fun this time xx

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  32. Di, your cross-stitched tag is so cute and cozy!! That looks like a lot of work, but a tag like that could be used as a tree decoration and keepsake. I would be sure to instruct whoever received one of these that they must use it every Christmas..and then hand it down to their children! Yes please to this die, as I have loads of embroidery floss just begging to be used.

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  33. Fabulous and love the bright colors on this tag Di! The stitching is superb and reminded me my old days when I also spent great time on cross stitching in school days!
    Great opportunity to win this beautiful tag die, so count me in!

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  34. Beautiful tag Di, I would like to be in the drawing!

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  35. This is stunning l just love it :-)
    Yes please for the prize.
    Hugs, Majda

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  36. Wow, this is really something special. Love your tag.
    Yes for the prize please.
    Valerija xx

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  37. Hello Di... just playing for fun this time around: there's no way in God's green earth I'll ever get the time to sit and cross stitch a tag, even though I think it's gorgeous :-)) Donna xx

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  38. Hi dear Di I'm late to the playground as my little Daisy has been staying. She made a very special card which I have uploaded as Daisy. I also wanted to add my own one but I seem to have 2 of Daisy's cards! I wonder if you could kindly sort this or delete mine and I will try again! So sorry. I love this cross stitch tag die, I have never seen anything like it..yes please to the prize. It's cooled down today and we had some welcome rain at last. Hugs xxx

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    1. Hi Jane. I'm almost sure it's due to Mr Linky not being happy with two identical URL addresses - which of course you have as they're from the same blog post. I need to see if I can fool him - leave it with me for now! A bit cooler here today thankfully. i love th heat and it's so good for my back - but it's also so tiring when you sort of wilt into a puddle!

      Di x

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    2. Managed I think. I had to delete your link and leave Daisy's with her photo of the lovely card she made, Then I added you back in again through the usual route, this time leaving the letter s out of https at the start of your URL. The image I captured is the best they gave me to choose from but at least you're all linked in .... I hope! xx

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    3. Bless you Di, thanks for doing this, you're a star xxx

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  39. This looks like a clever idea and the finish of the tag makes it look very smart. Just playing for fun as, though I used to do a lot of cross stitch, I know I'm not very likely to use this to it's potential. x

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  40. I love tags and yours is fantastic, great traditional colours!
    Yes for the prize please and have a great week.
    hugs xx

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  41. Love your tag, Di. Great idea.
    Im playing just for fun this time.

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  42. Such a fabulous tag! I have never done cross stitch so 'Yes Please' for the chance to win! It would be cool to give it a try and its a fab tag die in its own right! Thank you! Hugs xxx

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  43. What a great idea: cross stitching in a tag! Stitching is my 2nd favorite hobby, so I would love to try this!
    Lia xx

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  44. Hi Di, I'm back!! I realised a while ago that the linky was working well on other blogs so decided it was time to return to the playground. I love your tag, such an unusual idea and one I had not seen before. I would love to be included in draw for the prize. Hoping to be around more regularly now! Pippa x

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  45. in haste here Di, not thanks to prize bu do love your wee taggy thing I just know would not use it! thanks for running this will try and pop over to fw folks but very bad of late. Not enough hours in day.. even now after 7pm and no tea or shower etc ready for bed better get cracking! hugs Shaz.x

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  46. Oooh - I'd love to have a go with this tag!!

    Lovely to meet you the other day Di!

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  47. A great tag you've made. But as I have a 101 x-s kits here that need to be done one day I will just play along for fun this time L x

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