Friday, October 9, 2015

Secret Garden Coloring, and back to cross stitch!

Oh, boy, have I become obsessed with Johanna Basford's Secret Garden coloring book!  I am new to using colored pencils, at least in a way where the stuff looks realistic, i.e., shading, et cetera.  People have truly turned this into an art form!  I have spent many hours watching YouTube videos (yes, people post videos of them coloring these pages!) and reading blog posts and doing research.  She has two other books, Enchanted Forest and Lost Ocean that I have put on my Amazon Christmas List.

The Hubs worked some overtime in the past two weeks and approved buying a set of Prismacolor colored pencils.  Let me tell you, I purchased three at Michaels the other day, as they have them loose, and, wow, it is like night and day using them and just any old cheap colored pencil.  You don't have to press hard at all to get color on the page, which is what was happening to me since I was using my stepdaughter's cheapo colored pencil set, and my hand and arm were killing me.  

My book will get here today and the colored pencils tomorrow.  Stay tuned for pics of my work!  You can even color the cover of this book!  From reviews I read the pages are good quality too.  I will be using the colored pencils and Micron Pigma pens, as I have a set of 16 of those.  They do not bleed through pages like typical markers or gel pens.  And since in Johanna Basford's books the images are printed on both sides, you don't want any bleed through at all.

So, in my perusing I noticed people were getting these amazing backgrounds on some of the pages where it was soft and blended or looked like a night sky and I thought how in the world did they do that?  Well.....I put a post on the Fans of Johanna Basford Facebook page and someone responded that you can use soft pastels to get that effect.  Hmmm, okay.  I have never used soft pastels, but off I went to Google to do a search, and I found a great video that showed how someone did it using cotton balls and Q-tips!!!!   So, of course, I ordered a set of the pastels.  I MUST try this!!!

On the stitching front I have not been stitching much recently, but when I do my arm and hand begins to ache.  And last night it just was killing me.  Ughhhhh.  I am not sure why I keep going back to needlepoint when it winds up doing the same thing to me every.single.time!  So, for now I am giving it a break and going to start a cross stitch piece, at least when everything gets here.  I had sold all of my cross stitch stuff on eBay a while back, so have nothing at the moment.  And I wanted to do an autumn/Halloween piece.  So, what to do, what to do?

I decided on Nora Corbett's Electra.  I saw that someone stitched it without the wings or the moon, and I like that, so that is how I am going to do mine.  Unfortunately I had to order the pattern and beads from one place, fabric from another (Sunny Dyes Harvest Lugana), and the DMC from a third place (yes, I am lazy like that in that instead of going to Michaels I would rather just order my DMC from 1-2-3 Stitch and let them pick out the colors).  Yeahhhhh.  So, who knows when I will be starting it!!  The pattern and beads are shipping today, but I don't know about anything else.

I would also like to stitch Gwen as a companion.  I love the greens in her dress!

Until next time...


  1. What a beautiful effect the soft pastels make. Can't wait to see how yours turns out!! And I can't believe you sold ALL!! your cross stitch stuff. But I am happy you have some more on the way :) Your stitching is gorgeous and I am looking forward to following your progress on Electra.

  2. I can't wait to see your coloring :). I use soft pastels to color my hair for the night. But they look great on paper as well ;). You chose some great charts it's weird embroidery hurts maybe your body just has to get used to it. Like when you go to the gym.

  3. It's become so popular to colour, my daughter has taken up the craze too.

  4. Your hand and arm hurt doing the needlepoint because it takes much more effort to pull the thicker threads through the canvas.

    I saw the Elektra you mention with no wings or moon and I loved it too. That pumpkin is something else!!