stitch enigma – round two

May 3rd is the date :D – the blog celebrates its second anniversary with another stitch enigma! 🎉🎉 all the info about rules, prizes and EXTRA PRIZES can be found in this post!

don’t forget to check these previous posts to learn more about the challenge. ciao! 🐾

P.S. playing again with the WordPress features, this time it’s the “sticky post” ;)

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter

Jacquie Lawson’s artwork

wishing you all a Very Happy Easter

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and may Jesus forgive us for what we’ll do in our bathrooms after pigging put all weekend :D

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BaBa 4/14

dreaming of bunnies

have a good time,

chiara and BaBa

the long lost drafts – “Chapter fifty-six – The Bunny’s map”

I have found some long lost drafts in my Dashboard, things I wrote at the end of last year – all edited and ready-to-post but somehow forgot to click that Publish/Schedule button. classic. so I thought I should dig those drafts out of their grave and give them new life – even an outdated life is better than the trash bin!  :D

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November, 12th 2013

back in July I received the sweet Travelling Bunny many of you have seen stitched or hopping around the blogosphere.

here are my previous posts about him, for those who need catching up ;)

the travelling pattern, the Little Bunny’s travels, engulfed by the mysteries, the resoluteness, the guy needs a passport, maybe two, we have a winner.

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in the attempt to trace back his journey, I contacted all his previous hosts, wrote a recap (take a look at this post) and then decided to print a map, pin all the locations and include it to the Travelling Bunny Kit I would send to his next host.

Travelling Bunny's map '13

the A4 world map I printed and pinned to trace the Bunny’s journey around the world.

Travelling Bunny's map '13

his hops in the United States..

Travelling Bunny's map '13

..Europe..

Travelling Bunny's map '13

..and even further!

Travelling Bunny's map '13

in order to spot the right place, I used a monocular to read this incredibly detailed map :D

Travelling Bunny's map '13

then I used a thread to trace his comings and goings. he surely travelled a lot!

Travelling Bunny's map '13

the order you should follow when tracing his journey is:

1. Tricia at The Stamper’s Stitches 26 May 2011 – Wisconsin, USA (black pin)

2. Sally at Stitchyangel’s Treasures 19 April 2012 – East Yorkshire, England (light blue pin)

3. Vickie at A Stitcher’s Story 19 June 2012 – Wisconsin, USA (yellow pin)

4. Annette at California Stitcher 4 July 2012 – California, USA (lilac pin)

5. BeaJ (sorry, I couldn’t find a blog for her) – Saskatchewan, Canada (red pin)

6. Lee at Notes from under the Mountain 19 September 2012 – New Zealand (white pin)

7. Gracie at Needles Pins and Dragonflies 27 October 2012 – Arizona, USA (orange pin)

8. Annie at Annie Bebop’s Coloring Book 6 November 2012 – Maryland, USA (green pin)

9. Lelia at Stitches of Life 16 December 2012 – Northwest Indiana, USA (white pin)

10. Cucki at Cucki Stitching Cove 19 January 2013 – Krugersdorp West, South Africa (orange pin)

11. Kaye at Kitten Stitching 5 February 2013 – Victoria, Australia (yellow pin)

12. me, chiara at the grey tail 22 July 2013 – Venezia, Italia (lilac pin)

13. Jane G at Loopy’s Place – South Yorkshire, England (red pin)

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I also wrote a Travelling Journal (similar to the one I kept when Madam Muriel was here, which my computer very wisely erased twice. AH! :( ) which is now available in PDF for you to download and browse, just click on the following link. I spent a lot of time editing it, adding hyperlinks, pictures, info and everything, it’s pretty cool stuff! :D

Travelling Bunny’s Journal

it’s also a bit heavy – 6 pages loaded with high quality pictures, text and links – so give him the time to load, I promise you it’ll be worth it! :)

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if you know anything about this sweet, fluffy guy let me know. I would love to see where he’s been since he left the neighbourhood! ;)

Happy Easter!

chiara

the long lost drafts – “Chapter fifty-five – Crespelle”

I have found some long lost drafts in my Dashboard, things I wrote at the end of last year – all edited and ready-to-post but somehow forgot to click that Publish/Schedule button. classic. so I thought I should dig those drafts out of their grave and give them new life – even an outdated life is better than the trash bin! :D

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November, 3rd 2013

previously on the grey tailhumidity raised, we got mushrooms in our garden. ah!

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during one of those still cold Sundays, right before working on the Sunday Mystery Sampler, I decided to make home-made crespelle. it took all morning, but the result was pretty impressive and they lasted until the following day. win win! :)

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crespelle alla caprese

time: 2 hours

difficulty: ** medium

ingredients for 4 (I prepared twice as much so that I’d get plenty of leftovers):

for the crespelle:

  • 70g “O” flour
  • 1 egg
  • 125 g cow or soya milk
  • 15 g EVO oil
  • a pinch of salt

for the stuffing:

  • 150g mozzarella
  • 200 g cherry tomatoes
  • enough fresh basil and salt

for the Béchamel sauce (besciamella):

  • 500 cl cow or soya milk
  • 100 g “O” flour
  • 100 g sunflower seed oil
  • 50 g parmigiano cheese

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1. preparing the crespelle: in a medium bowl add the eggs, milk, oil and salt.

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mix well and add the previously sifted flour. warm up a pancakes pan, add a bit of EVO oil and pour a spoonful of crespelle mixture.

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rotate the pan to make a medium sized crespella, wait until it gets cooked, turn and let it get slightly golden on the other side too.

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let all the crespelle rest, fill them with the stuffing and fold in three like a letter.

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2. preparing the Béchamel sauce (besciamella):

bring the milk to boil, stir well during the entire process and never let it burn. leave to rest.

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in a pot, mix well the oil with the flour.

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simmer gently for about 5 minutes. let it go below boiling point and add to the milk. mix vigorously with a whip, then season with salt and grated parmigiano cheese.

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3. preparing the stuffing:

finely dice the mozzarelle and cherry tomatoes, torn the Basil leaves into bits and add them to the mix. season with a pinch of salt.

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4. preparing the casserole:

oil the bottom and layer half of the crespelle into the casserole. pour some of the besciamella and alternate it with another layer of crespelle.

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add the remaining sauce to the top and spread evenly. cover with a thick layer of grated parmigiano cheese.

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place into the preheated oven at 180°C for about 10 minutes. the top has to turn slightly gold.

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get all the help you need, it’s a pretty long process.. :)

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..but the final result is really worth your time!  YUM! 😋

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I still have a few more drafts lingering, I’ll set them free in the following days.

wishing you a nice weekend and Happy Easter,

chiara

fabric cuts, linen cuts and a birthday

hi! dropping by to let you know I received the prizes for the stitch enigma today! YAY! :D they really look fantastic (especially those German linens, and I’ll show you why in a bit), I’m so happy I have everything ready ahead of time – now I only have to get back on track with the enigma piece, I took a slight detour this week and now I’m late! gosh!

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the detour I mentioned was probably the most interesting snap I posted on Instagram (that didn’t feature BaBa‘s charming looks ;) ), cause it skyrocketed in the WP Stats page for clicks – well done, readers! :)

since it disappears as soon as I post something else, I thought I should load the picture here as well and tell you a bit more about it. it’s my own version of Aurora Borealis by Papillon Creations, a bonus design featured in their wonderful piece Around the World in 80 Stitches.

in order to practice the Hardanger techniques (such as doing the cutwork, wrapping the dividing bands and creating the Dove’s Eyes) featured in the main project, they included this lovely design at the end of its 2nd installment. I haven’t started the main design yet, but I was eager to stitch something different – and I told myself, why not give this quick piece a try? “it’s only palm-size!”

well, it is palm-size alright, but it’s jam packed with vines, beads, tiny flowers and Satin stitches. I also managed to misplace a few things and had to frog/restitch an entire corner. long story short: the day I thought I would take off  from the enigma piece turned into a 3-days-long detour and now I really have to get back to plan A.

WIP - Aurora Borealis

my start on Aurora Borealis, with the infamous right corner – one stitch off to the right. GRRR!!

it was partially because of Easter getting closer, plus the fact that we celebrated mom’s 53rd birthday this week (🎉YAAYY!🎉) and I baked her a huge plum cake, plus my choice of trying Hardanger cutwork on 40ct. linen 😁 (I know, I know, but you see – this way the little piece could make a matching scissor fob to my latest PC finish, A Welcoming Spot pin pillow! – my mind does its thing, there’s no point in reasoning with it).

happy birthday mom 4/14

mom has good sense of humour, cause this year we wrote her “Happy Birthday Oldie” in our regional dialect :D

happy birthday mom 4/14

plum cake 4/14

I followed the recipe for “English Plum Cake” and boy is this guy a fatso! 400gr. of butter!! I dropped the raisins cause mom doesn’t like them and added sugar-free yoghurt instead, super soft and yummy!

the cake had a few hiccups along the way but all in all I’ll definitely do it again (cutting the butter dose to a half, at least!). if it still works I’ll be happy to share the recipe with you in the cooking page. :)

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onto the stitched piece, here are a few WIP pictures.

WIP - Aurora Borealis

40ct. Victorian Rose Garden linen hand dyed by Nina with my own choice of Nina’s Threads. see that size 28 needle? get how tiny this piece is? – that’s what I do for fun! :D ..I should be in a ward somewhere.

WIP - Aurora Borealis

done with the beading, working on the Kloster blocks.

and finally, the most clicked picture of the week, my first attempt at Hardanger cutting. doing so late at night, with not such good lightning, on 40ct. linen, wasn’t really the best idea. who knew?! ;)

WIP - Aurora Borealis

see those linen threads coming out of the Satin stitches? that’s where I chickened out.

I managed to fix most of the unfortunate cuts, went on to wrapping all the Dividing Bars but had to stop at the Dove’s Eyes. it’s taking me way too much time to work on this tricky tiny piece and I cannot risk getting behind schedule with the enigma.

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talking about enigmas, I mentioned before that I received the prizes for this years’ challenge. wanna take a look? :D

blogaversary prizes 5/14

prize pack n.1 for the 2nd blogaversary/stitch enigma. Vaupel & Heilenbeck sachet band (28ct. lilac linen), Red Rooster cotton fat quarter (cream/brown), Vaupel & Heilenbeck ribbon (white with yellow leaves) + EXTRA PRIZE (only in case the winner had shared the banner) The Sweetheart Tree chart-pack for Spring Fantasy.

blogaversary prizes 5/14

prize pack n.2 for the 2nd blogaversary/stitch enigma. Vaupel & Heilenbeck sachet band (28ct. purple linen), Red Rooster cotton fat quarter (green), Vaupel & Heilenbeck ribbon (white with yellow leaves) + EXTRA PRIZE (only in case the winner had shared the banner) The Sweetheart Tree chart-pack for Evening Primrose.

now what is so cool about those German linen cuts? well, they’re already made into tubular bands! you only have to cut them sachet-size; stitch your initials, flowers, etc. (being these in 28ct., over 1 and over 2 are both possible); sew together the bottom and finish the top! voilà! :)

blogaversary prizes 5/14

perhaps this snap explains better the way these V&H linen bands work. I stuffed them with the fat quarters in order to keep them open while I took the picture! :D

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now that I have the goods, I updated the previous post with info, rules, etc. – I really hope you like the items this year, I personally wish I could pick my favorite silks and start my own sachet right now – but “no, sir! only enigma stitching for me!” :D

blogaversary prizes 5/14

one last motivational snap ;)

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if you haven’t done yet, read how it works here and come back on May 3rd for the enigma starts that day!

wishing you a happy weekend and a Happy Easter!

chiara and BaBa

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Easter Bunny, come a little closer. I need to tell you something.. ;)

stitch enigma, here we go!

hear hear! the time has finally come for me to lay down all the info about the upcoming stitch enigma! :)

the haunt for the mysterious piece begins on my second blogaversary, May 3rd, and if I did my homework well (i.e. the project I picked and the clues I prepared are good enough) we’ll enjoy a month-long enigma, with a total of 10 written clues and 5 pictures. I will post a new piece of information or snap twice a week. a month of fun and guessing! aren’t you excited?! I know I am!! :D

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there will be two winners:

  1. one prize pack will go to the participant who correctly guesses the name of the design AND the designer of this mysterious piece I’m already working on.
  2. one prize pack will go a person picked randomly among all the participants. the draw for this second winner will be held at the end of the game, which means after we have the correct answers to the stitch enigma.

if one of the two winners has previously posted or shared the banner for this blogaversary in his/her blog/Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/whatever page, they will win an additional EXTRA PRIZE, a lovely chart-pack with embellishments from The Sweetheart Tree*.

this is the banner you can save to your device and share:

blogaversary II - square picture

all prizes are new supplies I purchased especially for this occasion, all spring themed! :) I had so much fun picking them, and by the way I have already received them so everything will ship on time - ✓ check on my goal for no delays this year! ;)

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a regular prize pack will include:

- a cut of Vaupel & Heilenbeck 28ct. tubular linen band measuring 25 x 10 cm, ideal for sachets or small bags finishes (there are three, very thin stripes on the front of the band; one linen cut is lilac, the other purple);

- a cut of striped Red Rooster cotton fabric, fat quarter size (bright green or cream/brown);

- a cut of Vaupel & Heilenbeck ribbon, 5mm wide and 1 meter long (white with yellow leaves).

blogaversary prizes 5/14

prize pack n.1 for the 2nd blogaversary/stitch enigma. Vaupel & Heilenbeck sachet band (28ct. lilac linen), Red Rooster cotton fat quarter (cream/brown), Vaupel & Heilenbeck ribbon (white with yellow leaves) + EXTRA PRIZE* (in case the winner had shared the banner) The Sweetheart Tree chart-pack for Spring Fantasy.

blogaversary prizes 5/14

prize pack n.2 for the 2nd blogaversary/stitch enigma. Vaupel & Heilenbeck sachet band (28ct. purple linen), Red Rooster cotton fat quarter (green), Vaupel & Heilenbeck ribbon (white with yellow leaves) + EXTRA PRIZE* (in case the winner had shared the banner), The Sweetheart Tree chart-pack for Evening Primrose.

blogaversary prizes 5/14

these German linens are already made into tubular bands. cool, uh?! you only have to cut them sachet-size; stitch your initials, flowers, etc. (being these in 28ct., over 1 and over 2 are both possible); sew together the bottom and finish the top! voilà! :) each cut measures 10 cm wide and 25 cm high, so you can easily make a pair of coordinated sachets.

blogaversary prizes 5/14

prize packs with optional EXTRA PRIZES*

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* the EXTRA PRIZE will be a chart-pack (with embellishments) for Spring Fantasy or Evening Primrose by The Sweetheart Tree.

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how to participate:

enter your guess by adding a comment, easy peasy :) comment moderation is always on so don’t worry if you don’t see yours appearing straight away – it won’t take long anyways (unless I’m asleep! :D )

of course you can comment and take guesses whenever and wherever you want, but remember that in order to participate in the final draw for the second winner, you have to be among the commenters to the FIRST POST.

if you’re the first who guesses correctly, you win – it doesn’t matter where you posted the comment; but in order to prepare entries for the bowl of destiny, it would be way easier for me to have all the participants’ names listed in one post – so please comment once in the FIRST POST (it doesn’t have to be a guess, you can say whatever you want :) ) and then guess or comment wherever you feel like later on. only the commenters to the FIRST POST will participate in the final drawing for the second winner.

I’ll add a link to said post after every clue so that those that weren’t here from day one will be able to reach it directly.

you can comment and guess as many times as you want, I will count one entry per person (provided it appeared once in the first post) for the final draw.

don’t forget to enter a valid email address when posting your comment so that I’ll have a way of contacting you in case you win.

if you had previously shared info about this stitch enigma, just email me so with a link to said page/post and you’ll win the EXTRA PRIZE as well.

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if you have questions of suggestions, just ask me here and I’ll add FAQ replies ;)

  • I live in a godforsaken place, can I still enter the fun? of course! as a matter of fact, I live in a godforsaken place too! ;) the game is open to participants from all over the world. in case of win, please consider that I’ll be shipping from Italy so it might take a while before you receive your package.
  • I don’t have a blog/Twitter/Facebook/Instagram or any other social media, can I still take part in your stitch enigma? yes, of course you can! if you guess correctly the name of the design and the designer, or if you are randomly picked among all participants, you will win the prize pack (which is already pretty cool).
  • I didn’t know about this stitch enigma the day it started, can I still take a guess? the entries for this years’ winners close as soon as someone guesses correctly the name of the design and its designer – at that point I will announce that the enigma has been solved, who guessed correctly, and (after a while) who got picked in the final draw.
  • when can I start sharing the banner for the EXTRA PRIZE? anytime between now and the moment someone solves the enigma – this leaves you a couple of weeks time if you want to share the news before we actually start, the due date is May 3rd! :)

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BaBa – supervising the mystery :D

I hope you like and agree with all the rules, it sounds quite clear to me but I’ve been planning this for such a long time, I’m not the best judge anymore. if you have anything you want to ask, just do so in a comment here and I’ll update the page so that everyone will benefit from your contribution. :)

this is a list of previous posts dedicated to this stitch enigma and the one we had last year, for new readers that need catching up. ;)

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wishing you all good luck, I better go back to the mystery piece – it won’t get finished all by itself!  :D

have a nice day and thank you for passing by!

chiara

monthly goals and another finish

here were my monthly goals for March:

✓ finish part two of Lizzie Kate’s Very Scary Mystery ’12
✓ finish part three of Lizzie Kate’s Very Scary Mystery ’12
• finish the three bonus charts for Very Scary
• finish Santa Bunny by Alma Lynne Designs (1st blogaversary “stitch enigma” piece)
✓ finish at least a block of the Beatrix Potter fghan

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considering I haven’t put a single stitch for two entire weeks this month, I managed to do pretty well.

now I’ll focus on the three L*K Halloween smalls and Santa Bunny before I can start the mysterious piece you’ll have to guess for this year’s blogaversary stitch enigma.

what I also accomplished this month was to resume working on a very old project, the Beatrix Potter afghan I got back in 2011.

Beatrix Potter afghan - square 1

it’s a kit I got from Anchor and it features Peter and several other bunnies designed by Beatrix Potter, as well as radishes scattered around the blanket.

this one is the bottom right corner, and depicted is either Flopsy, Mopsy or Cottontail – can’t really tell. :) it’s worked with Anchor threads in two plies (these squares are huge, at least 16 cm wide) and the backstitching is very drawing-like and insanely present, but it really helps bringing the design to life, so it’s always worth the time it takes.

I don’t think I can squeeze in another square this month, so I’ll probably pick it up in May, when it won’t be too hot for holding it, hopefully!

BaBa 3/14

I like that bunny blanket! :)

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thank you for your lovely comments and emails,

have a nice week!

chiara