- Pattern: by Joan Elliott / Designs Works kit
- Materials: 32 ct white evenweave by Fabric Flair, fibers provided in kit
- Size: 12" x 16"
- Time to stitch: 40 days since January 2016
On the 5th Day of Christmas, I present to you... 12 Days of Christmas!
This is the project for you if you love cross stitching in every permutation. There are confetti areas, borders, full coverage sections, fractionals, repeating patterns, french knots, metallics, french knots, and beading. It is quite large, but each block is like a mini FO, so you can definitely see your progress as you stitch. Please, backstitch as you go along, and add the metallics too. I'm glad I added those elements as I progressed. It could be overwhelming, to save it all until the end. The chart provided in the kit was tiny; I blew it up 150% and some areas were still hard to decipher. The design is also available as a chartpack directly from Joan Elliott and I can vouch for the quality of her charts- they are wonderful.
The blocks are highly detailed and that is what I love most about it the piece, though all the color changes did drive me crazy at times. The decorative font is quite lovely. I already mentioned backstitch, but it bears repeating- the backstitch is extensive and done in 3 different colors. The gold sparkle throughout is also really pretty. The metallic fibers that came with the kit weren't bad; tying them to the needle helped with the bunching and splitting. All the kit fibers were fine, actually.
The border was easy to stitch; it's a simple repeat. The french knots, I did all at the end because I don't like having them rolled up with the scroll, but there are a lot. Just the border has over 150 french knots- clusters of holly berries. The beading was easy, only required an hour or two. The beads that came with the kit were not of the highest quality, some were cut much thinner than others, but I made it work and they look fine in the end.
When I started this piece, I wasn't sure if I could finish it this year, but I'm glad I did. 12 Days is my 18th and final finish of 2016!