The Big Red Ship of LIfe: Update 1 of many

After hustling for a few years, designing my own patterns, stitching them, selling them and repeating, I took a step back last year. I started to stitch other people's designs for my OWN pleasure. And I had my own wonderful cross-stitch store to shop from. It's been so freaking wonderful.

2 long months work of work.

For 2 solid months, I've been working on the biggest damn piece of cross-stitch EVER (ok, not really but it feels like it). It consists of over 60,000. The 32 count piece (like 16 count Aida) of linen I'm using is 26 inches across by 30 inches in height. The pattern completely fills 16 dense pages, of which I have completed two and a half. The original design was to be done completely in one color but I changed that up a bit.

This pattern is made by Ink Circles. I am basically obsessed with her. Her designs vary from mandalas and wonderful geometric abstractions to work that looks extremely traditional until you look a little closer. The first piece I made of hers was "Get Kraken." Made to look like a found Dutch sampler from long ago, it tells the story (in Dutch, of course) of a Kraken taking down a ship. And once you pay attention, it's less traditional and more giant octopus pulling sailors beneath the waves! She also has one called the Little Alien Schoolgirl sampler. Based of the designs of traditional American schoolgirl samplers where learning motifs and alphabets are stitched, this one features an alien alphabet and motifs that must be a tradition for alien life.

Motifs and border on the left side.

This piece, unlike those mentioned above, is actually truly based on real history. The motifs and the symbol of the ship come from an amalgamation of Sumatran weavings that have survived. It will, eventually, be a big giant ship! Surprise! The bits of yellow are the masts. In the upper part, there are people and birds and all kinds of different wildlife. Land creatures and plants on the deck of the ship and beneath the ship, there's a wonderful row of strange sea creatures (but that's a long way off for me!).

Some pops of color and the beginning of the ship mast.

Interested in an Ink Circles design? We carry many of her patterns in the shop. And don't worry. You shouldn't be intimidated. She has patterns in ALL sizes and her style of patterns are endlessly adaptable. They can be worked on linen or Aida in any color. You can use DMC or fancy silks. You can (and are encouraged) to change up the colors. Many pieces, like this one, only use whole cross-stitches. No back- stitching, no quarter or half stitches.