One of our trainees at work was leaving to go back to University for her final year. We always pitch in together to buy a little something between us all as a little leaving gift, but what to get?
We were stumped. Then she asked me who taught me to cross stitch, as with the summer holidays ahead of her, she fancied giving it a go. I said that no one really taught me, you just do it, maybes to buy a magazine or book and have a play…. Then……………… it hit me. (At 10AM on the morning before she was due to leave the next day!)
Suddenly I had a grand plan. What could be better than a nice little fairly simple Bacteriology themed cross stitch to get her started!
Unsurprisingly (to most people I imagine), there are very few bacteria themed cross stitch kits/ patterns available, particularly at last minute on the day before she leaves….. So I thought I would have a go at doing my own!
First I had a little play on paper, then I transferred it into Stoik Stitch Creator 4 in order to have a nice copy for her to use.
I drew a sketch of the what I wanted, loosely based on this little lovely from GiantMicrobes.com, and a Congratulations cake I made for my friend Jemma a few years ago (not sure if I have a picture of that anywhere), then started to fill in the shape.
Then a cape….
Then every good superhero (or should that be supervillain?) needs a nice symbol so that everyone knows!
I wanted to keep it simple, so used only 5 colours, and kept it to full stitches only.
Next I used the software to make it nice and readable!
The blank screen.
Then once I put in all the stitches and backstitches, you can view the image in stitches, colour blocks, symbols, or both blocks and symbols. Here he is in glorious technicolour!
So then I created the pattern ready for use, this software uses numbers for each symbol, and also made a key detailing which colour is which (very useful).
So then I used the full image to create a front sheet for a little package:
I used some little plastic bags (the type you use to create homemade cards), and filled them with some 14 count Aida….
Then a little card with the threads, and a needle in a little scrap of material.
I then forgot to take a picture of the finished kit.
It was quite late by this point, well past bedtime!
But she loved it! Although she did call me a sneaky thing, and was amazed that I got it all done, and I think quite touched that I had gone to the effort of making her her own special kit! We also got her a simple book on how to stitch, an embroidery hoop, and some little thread snippers. She’s good to go!
As for Stoik Stitch Creator 4, it as fairly easy to use, but it lies when it say you can use it properly on free trial! It is good in that: you can easily visualise the finished product by switching between the different views; it includes all the different Anchor and DMC thread colours; and also you can use it to convert a picture to cross stitch. However, it is fairly expensive, I may investigate some others before buying!
Update: I got a little picture later while we were at the pub!