Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Here's One I Made Earlier

In a few months the boy will (all things being well) become Dr Boy, PhD; he's spent three and a half years doing clever things with waveforms and Matlab (and occasionally explosions). Over that time he's spent a lot of time in his lab with many late night Sainsbury's meal deals, to the point where he and his colleagues have joked about having "Home Sweet Home" on the wall.
Well, I thought, I can do cross-stitch and Valentines' Day is coming up, why not?

Much tinkering in Paint and many hours of stitching later I had this:

Sorry for the photo quality, I nabbed this from Facebook.
My strip of aida came from Sew & Sew in St Nicholas Markets in Bristol (lovely place, go!). I didn't know what shape I wanted initially but this was available by the metre so I went for it. It took quite a lot of fiddling to get the design how I wanted. You can see its evolution in my MS Paint prototypes.
First I nabbed the aida square template from Subversive Cross Stitch (although it's basically a grid), and had a look at some images of samplers to see how letters are formed. Then I laid out the letters I wanted and experimented with different borders.

Non-destructive iterative design process. Geeky.
Crosses and large hearts got rejected in favour of smaller hearts and dots. Then I had the bright idea of adding a green wave to make it more Electrical Engineering-y. I made it up as I went along, and I think I did a decent job considering how hard it is to depict a curve in cross stitch!
I made sure the top and bottom of the wave were the same, this made it simpler to sew as I could just mirror the pattern of stitches rather than having to refer to my diagram constantly.

Once I'd got the wave how I wanted it I moved onto the hearts. All the way along looked like overkill but having them only in the middle looked odd - so I added resistors!
I used Google images and a bit of brain power to work out how to make those. They're missing the gold stripe but that was a bit complicated to add, plus I had no gold thread and it looked better without. I'm told it doesn't really matter anyway.

Now I just had to arrange the resistor colours (they're all genuine resistor ratings) and stitch it up. Cross stitch is addictive, I managed to make the whole thing in two days flat, stitching compulsively in between coursework and (during) lectures!
The finished thing was well received, and has found a home above the boy's desk, up above the grand plan and the thesis cat.
Here it is in place, in said lab:

I'm quite proud of it.
I haven't done any cross stitch since as it really is quite an intensive activity, crochet takes far better to being picked up and put down. My friends might end up with amusing samplers for Christmas though...


  1. That's so cool! I haven't done any cross stitch in ages, must get back on it!

    1. Thankyou :) I hadn't done anything but counted cross-stitch kits before but this was suprisingly easy.

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