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Crafty beginnings

I’ve always been a bit crafty. I branched out at an early age by doing bum prints while most other children stuck to hand and foot prints. That was about as far as I got in terms of Art.

I’ve never really been happy with my drawing skills. I can never get what’s in my head down on to paper (and I’m not patient enough for practice). I know my mother attempted to teach me to knit once (disaster), I also used a sewing machine during Home Ecc./Textiles lessons at school (my half finished appliqué cushion cover took a year). Freehand embroidery suffers from the same issues as my drawing.

But cross stitch, well that’s a different story. I must have been about 6 when I first learnt how to cross-stitch.

C, a neighbour taught me, I suspect as a way of getting me to slow down a little and to be more sedate like her two little girls. The first cross-stitch I completed was this rather bedraggled looking clown. I can remember doing it and hating doing the back stitch. I actually did the back stitch as running stitch and just went round everything twice. The second project I completed was the flower in a pot. As you can see, it’s much neater than the clown, helped by the fact I didn’t do the back stitch on the design.


I know I’d stopped doing any stitching by the time I was 7 and a half. That was when my Polly-Dog went to a new home (no, she really did, it’s not a euphemism) and M, the elder daughter of C, stitched me this picture of her that I still have.

Polly-Dog cross stitch

M would have been 6 at the time, and the difference between her stitching and mine is amazing. I think by that time I’d got bored of it, I certainly can’t remember doing any other projects than the clown and the flower.

Then when I was 17 and in the local art shop to buy myself a set of flash aquarelle pencils (which I never used), I spotted a “Love is…” cross-stitch and decided to do it for the boy I was crazy about. I remember looking at all the painting equipment that I longed to own but had not the first clue about, and then spotting the cross-stitch kits and thinking “oh, cross-stitch, I know how to do that.”

I’ve had a project (or six) on the go ever since.

One current project


About petronellarose

Book loving, wine drinking, chocolate adoring slightly ditsy blonde. Currently coming to terms with finally being a mother. Hurrah!

4 comments on “Crafty beginnings

  1. Susan
    September 11, 2012

    Great oiece. I’m the same with arty stuff – I can’t draw, I can’t paint, I can’t knit and I can’t sew but cross stitch and tapestries are my thing! I really should have been born in the Tudor times.

  2. Susan
    September 11, 2012

    Piece obviously not oiece!

  3. Erin Le Clerc
    November 8, 2012

    Fabulous! I have a few cross stitch kits laying around… and you’ve inspired me to whip one out this weekend! 🙂

  4. Ruth Bradford
    November 24, 2012

    “C” , a close friend of mine, also taught me to cross stitch (but I was an adult) and it satisfied me for many years. Like yourself I had always felt that I could not draw or paint and had no artistic capabilities. Cross stitch meant I could make something for my wall sucessfully and indeed make lovely gifts for others. I did many large projects. Eventually I realised that this was not enough. There was still a “creative deprivation”. It took many years to move from beginners’ drawing classes through to GCSE Art but at the age of 62, a few years ago, I finally took the exam and gained a high grade. So don’t give up all you cross stitchers. It’s fun doing cross stitch but there is more, much, much more!! 🙂 Ruth

Comments are closed.


This entry was posted on September 11, 2012 by in Bea Creative and tagged , .
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