First, here is the grid I made of the placement of the ladies:

Here’s the original pattern by CloudsFactory The solid triangles on the top left of some names are ones I designed myself.

I am using 14 count aida fabric from Garabaldi’s Needlework in the Pineapple Upside-down Cake colorway.

Eleanor Roosevelt (October 11, 1884 – November 7, 1962) wasn’t just the First Lady to the 32nd president FDR. She was a civil rights activist, mother of 6, politician, diplomat, and someone who spoke her mind. She even publicly disagreed with FDR at times during his presidency, which was a no-no at the time. You know, women were supposed to stay home and bake cookies or whatever and just agree and smile all the time. She was a very public person who advocated for a lot of people, especially children. She was even buddies with Amelia Earhart! There is a lot to say about her, so check out more here!

Maya Angelou is next…

Hey! I’m back. After my last post, in July, my sciatica got worse and worse and I finally took it seriously in early October and got some medical advice. Long story short- it’s severe, I have meds, I’m in PT, and I’m dealing with it. I don’t like it but I don’t let anything tell me what to do or be so screw you sciatica!

Anyway, that’s why I had a 3 month hiatus.

SO! This has been a real dumpster fire year, hasn’t it? I’m I was super anxious about the election. I saw a cool story on CBS Sunday Morning about Eleanor Roosevelt and I got all inspired. She’s one of my heroes! I started Fabulous Women in History cross stitch, and I’ll show you my progress plus a description of the bad-ass ladies I stitch. I did a lot of customization on this one! I’m proud of it already!

Here’s the progress on my Finish A Thing 2020:

And finished items!

Scooby Shawl-Engla pattern

Rings Cardigan

I had a hard time getting a picture of this for some reason. The bottom is a sample of a interconnected rings blanket. I decided not to make the blanket and finally made Moogly’s Cosmic Cardigan instead! I used the rings section as the base of the back. It was easy to add the ribbing later. I had enough yarn to make stripes. I made cute little varstiy-esque lines on the sleeves.

I highly recommend this pattern! It was fun and easy even with all my changes.

Poochie! I made this up. Inspired by the Nintendo game Yoshi’s Crafted World.

I’m pretty close to finishing Snooze:

…but let’s be honest, it’s slow going! There’s a lot of confetti (random small areas of lots of different colors). I love it and I even know where to hang it once framed. I need a break from it.

Stay tuned for the more WIP pics, finished pics, and the first Fantastic-Fabulous Woman post! Yeehaw!


My good friend Beth started a fun challenge back in 2015 called, wait for it, Finish A Thing 2015. It was a fun group on ravelry. I ended up surprisingly surpassing my goal! Now, “finishing” can mean finishing any WIP but it can also mean leaving some behind or quitting a project. If it’s stressing me out and I’d rather be working on something else, why torture myself? I was able to frog a lot of projects that just didn’t spark anymore. I was also able to let go of most of my stash so now I only have yarn I have plans for, like I see in the organizing videos out there.

I made a list in my planner for my recent WIPs that I do want to finish.

I like having a nice list to visually represent what I’m thinking about. (my thoughts fly around a lot so lists are awesome!)

I thought I’d share the idea because everyone needs something fun and colorful nowadays. FAT2020 doesn’t have to be for crafts, either. Like finally going through old clothes or cleaning out the garage or train your dogs not to bark at the doorbell.

I. Am. Pumped! Are you up for the challenge?

Finished! I’ll show you how I stiffen, block, and frame the piece.

You’ll need white glue, water, an old bowl, stirring device, pins, blocking surface (more on that later), and a small towel.


Mix up some glue in the water. I used about a tablespoon? There should be much more water than glue. It’s not an exact science, go with your gut.

Here’s my finished elephant! It’s pretty wavy/wrinkly. Make sure your piece will fit on your towel.

Fold gently and give it a bath! Be gentle, this is lace after all. Let is soak for a few minutes and smoosh it a bit with your spoon/device/tiny-whisk-you-got-at-a-wedding.

Looks better already!

Remove it from the water (you’re done with that now) and carefully lay it flat on the towel. It helps a lot to kind of tug it into the shape you want.

(fish towel optional)

Carefully fold the towel over the piece, be sure to keep the piece flat so it doesn’t fold over on itself. The roll up the towel and squeeeeeze it! I sit on it or kneel on it. You’re trying to get excess water out of it.

mmmm burritos

This next part takes a while and patience so get comfy!

Lay your piece where you want it. Grab your pins tin and have a seat. Place your piece where you want it and start sliding pins under the lace. I went in at an angle, usually in a picot. Use a flat, rigid whatever to push them in all the way. I used a multi-tool. It will save your fingers from getting sore/hurt.

a screwdriver or butter knife would work great too

Once it’s in place (use all! the! pins! there is no shortage of pins!) assemble your shadow box and display it proudly!

OK, yes, I said I’d add a howdah/saddle but I had too much trouble with it! I forgot to attach picots in a couple places and then the dang thread broke. Nope! No howdah!

The little elephant is from my uncle. He got it in Tibet. It’s hard to see from here but it is carve in one piece, with a tiny elephant inside the mesh.

Whelp. Cross one off the WIP list! More to come! I have a plan to get more finished up this year…

When I started tatting, I found pictures of this elephant online. I couldn’t (still can’t) get over it! I looked and looked over the last couple years and finally got a copy of it. I decided to treat myself this week, and bought the rest of the thread I need to make it. My LYS now carries tatting stuff! Be still, my heart! I even bought extra bobbins for my Aerlit shuttle. I’ll put the colors on those first, so it’s easier to switch back and forth.

(Edit: found this post in the depths of my Drafts. This was over a year ago, maybe 2)

I’m making so much progress on the elephant! Here are some old pics of it.

TBH this part was the hardest. Once I got done with this it went faster.
Elephant butt!
Legs 25%
Legs 50%

I didn’t get many pictures of the head in progress but these are from last night:

The gold part of the headpiece was so fussy.

I had to switch shuttles because the Aerlit wouldn’t hold a bobbin anymore. I can gently “squish” a metal shuttle to make it tighter but not the plastic one. The Moonlit is my favorite shuttle anyway! Winding the colors on bobbins ahead of time worked out very well. I’ll do that again with my Boye shuttle sometime.

I hope to finish the trunk today, then the front and legs! All that’s left after that is the howdah (saddle)!

I’m going to get a shadow box to hold it when I finish. I’ll block it in the shadow box. I may need some shorter pins if I can find them.

More soon!