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Jingle bells
Yes, really, as England has a summer I am designing and stitching Christmas designs. It all feels so wrong...

Quite apart from trying to get my head around Christmas trees while the sun is beating down and the crickets are chirping away there's another reason why Christmas stitching feels so wrong.

In the days when I stitched other people's designs I never stitched Christmas stuff. I did stitch Lavender and Lace's Celtic Christmas but that is one of a series of five. I did stitch wintery designs and I do remember stitching my grandmothers Easter cards but Christmas stitching. No.

So it's come as a huge surprise to find I'm enjoying the process so much. Have I been missing out for the past 20 years? I don't know. Maybe it's the size of them - they are teeny tiny and can be stitched in a couple of hours, which is good for gaining a sense of progress.

The idea is that they use up any left over metallic threads and beads you have used during the year - or you change the colours to fit in with your colour scheme.

In other news, the next release is still at the framer's, which has shut for a couple of weeks. This assumes her operation has gone ahead as planned. So it should be available in three weeks or so but who knows? Once you adjust to the black evenweave it's a nice, easy stitch - the challenge being adjusting to the black evenweave.

Having decided that Lady Elinor suits hand-dyed fabric I've been trying to source some where the producer is happy to check colours for me. I was quite surprised how difficult this proved to be but in the end the rather marvellous Kate from Sparklies came up trumps and I'm now eagerly waiting for the fabric for the next three Lady Elinors. I'll post a picture as soon as it arrives.

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