cross stitch is easyish

comments: 199

Hi everybody! It's Andy again! Woot woot.

Well I had an adventure trying out the new kit. I will illustrate how I felt during each stage (I identified 3). Let's call the first stage Readiness:


That's right. Ready for anything, bring it on. I opened a kit, got my nice new scissors and hoop. Looked at the floss for a good long while, feeling good. Then I started separating the floss.


I will admit that I did not properly allocate time for this. This seemed daunting. I started looking more closely at the flosses. What makes something tiger's eye compared to dirt road? Or bullfrog vs. hosta. (These are the color names.) At first glance I was like "nothing". But after separating them all I could TOTALLY TELL!!


Then I took Alicia's advice and made a little holder thingy. I used some extra foamboard I had in the basement. Love it! All lined up and ready to be used, like a toolbox. Time for the second stage. Let's call it Working:


Oh, you noticed. These aren't Alicia's pictures. I took them all with my phone and then had to crop them from verticals to horizontals. Sorry bout that.

So with my arsenal of floss, I was ready to sit down and start. I read Alicia's cross stitch tutorial again (it told me to read it in the instructions). Yea yea yea. Tie a knot in the back who cares count out where the next motif starts. I got this. Easy. Make an x. Make an x next to it. Yea. One two three four five six... wait five six... wait FOUR five six... What the. Maybe I just messed up. Start again. Four five six seven... I can't see it this. Go back to the tutorial. Tie a knot in the back if you want, count, yea yea yea. Got it.


Yes, I read the instructions.


No. I didn't get that. I sort of skipped over that. Each stitch of the X goes over TWO threads of fabric, not one. The center of each X goes over an empty hole. Ohhhhhhhh!! That makes it SO MUCH easier to see. And count! So each X is sort of like the 5 on a dice. Ohhhhhh! Oops. Okay. I'm feelin it. It feels good. Look at my slug (and notice my mess-up in the upper right section of the hoop, where I was doing... 28 stitches per inch):


Oh now I'm cookin with gas. Turn up the music! Looking at the grid. Finding that the holes are HUGE. Improvising from lower left to upper right first then going upper right to lower left. Yea that's right, I said it. Honey badger don't care.

Mayday!! Mayday!! What happened? Oh. I just went too far. Back it out. No biggie. Back on track.

And on it goes.


Now we ain't got no slug, we got us a SNAIL. What! Alicia drew it and I made it. Yay. Switch floss.Tiger's eye? C'mon son. Of course I'm psyched to use string called tiger's eye. And pretty soon it's all like:


Hey look, in the background it's Nanny Katie putting together kits. Is she stuffing yours right now? Also, notice the thumb. Yes, I will go trim my nails. Right now... BRB.

Hi. I'm back. Look at that thing! He looks quite proud, going about his business. Don't you think? I know how he feels, cuz I just made my first "cross stitch motif". Which brings us to the final stage. Let's call it Accomplished.


Did it! Feeling competent and good. I totally made that!!

Well it's time to release this little fella back to his natural environ:



Love the Andy posts. This was as good as I had come to expect! Also, that snail looks pretty good. Nicely done :)

Becky Ruland says: March 19, 2012 at 06:47 AM

Way too funny! I'm glad it worked and it really looks good. So what this proves is we can all do it, if Andy did it! Clover looks very pleased too!

Cute. Made me smile! You two should join instagram with all your great photos, and I'd follow you!

Love the adorable snail and you make cross stitch look as easy as Alicia makes it look.

Still, I struggle with my stitches so I must practice, practice and practice some more.

Michele Jensen says: March 19, 2012 at 06:58 AM

Oh my, how much did I love this post? I loved every single thing about it! Even the honey badger! I totally expected that to come up in a cross stitch post!

Oh my... apparently I skip things too... because I didn't see the 'Andy again' part and I was wondering if Alicia hit or head or something? ;>) Nice job!


Andy, your post is just fun to read. Thanks for sharing your experience in such an entertaining way. I have to say, you give me some confidence to make the sampler. I'm excited that it is on the way.

What a great post, Andy! oh and BTW, I love your snail (not to be confused with your nail, though).

Wendy Lister says: March 19, 2012 at 07:07 AM

Hilarious. Released in the wild.

Lovely post! Just what I needed for this Monday morning. I think I saw my kit being stuffed in the background, at least it's there somewhere and I can't wait. So excited. Thanks for making me smile this morning! :)

Ha! Thanks for a funny start to the day! Love the HILARIOUS dog illustrations! And yes, glad you took care of those nails. :)


Fun post - everything that includes talking with dogs makes me smile! :-)

What a cute post - oh, the dog pictures! Man's best friend.

Congratulations, Andy, on a job WELL DONE. :D

I'm thinking of going to nursing school and wondered if Andy has any advice for people contemplating nursing as a second career. Also, this post is adorable.

Mary Claire says: March 19, 2012 at 07:14 AM

I vote we pool our money and clone Andy. Seriously - where are the other men like this?

Awesome job, Andy!!

I needed this. Needed it bad.
Made the mistake of reading the morning news, then raced to my list of favorite blog reads, and thank goodness there was this new post! My spirit is comforted, my funny bone healed, and my heart thumping to a happier beat. Cheers for learning new skills, and for sharing the journey! Thank you, Andy, Clover, and Alicia!

Andy, great post as usual... I especially like the canine illustrations of the work stages. Oh, my, the picture with the dirty tongue!!! how funny! Congratualtions on the snail-- looks great!

PERO ESE PERRO ME ENCANTA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wow! This is more than accomplished~look at all that got done! A happy snail on fabric so cute! A sweet doggie dirty! And fingernails trimmed! You are all so delightful~thanks for sharing your days with us :)


Elizabeth says: March 19, 2012 at 07:30 AM

I think Andy should consider writing his own blog.! Great job:-)

I still think you should make Alicia pretend to hang blood or something similarly complex!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at