My WIPs & FOs for January in 2023
Monthly

My WIPs & FOs for January in 2023

January is already over! What did I do & work on?

It's been a busy start to the year with Two Little Kits and I'm excited to share all the updates with you! January 2023 was a productive month with the release of new patterns. I'm pleased with the response you guys gave me to my brand new merch release as it was was well-received and I'm grateful for your unwavering support.

The beginning of a new year always fills me with hope and optimism, as I'm a glutton for setting myself resolutions, starting new habits and finding a "clean slate" to work from. And what better time of year to do those sorts of things than the beginning of January?

Let's take a closer look at what I've been up to. πŸ‘‡

A hand holding a bundle of DMC floss skiens. It is an assortment of very bright colours. There are about 20 of them.
A bundle of new skeins of floss for the Farming Magic stitch-along!

Membership Overhaul

Before the very start of the year, I went over my membership setup and knew that I wanted to fix it up so it made more sense. Apparently, my immediate ' brain dump' of information is not entirely legible to everyone 🀣. I figured that having it done for the very beginning of a year was a great time to do it!

You can get more information on the membership tiers by visiting the Membership page of my website, but these are the three options:

A photo of a hand holding a 'bundle' of flosses

A Bundle of Floss

Only $3 p/month
A photo of a hand holding a 'fistful' of flosses

A Fistful of Floss

Only $5 p/month
A photo of a hand holding a 'hoard' of flosses

A Hoard of Floss

Only $7 p/month

Works in Progress

Once again, I feel like I worked on more than what I actually did. I have to remind myself that my finished pieces during the same month were also WIPs..! LOL.

I picked up a new stitch-along in December that started at the beginning of the month. Each part is being released at the start of the month and has eight parts. So I feel like it will be easy enough to stay on top of each release!

I also had a big unpicking session (which as of writing, still isn't done with) but I'm glad I realised what was wrong before I had completed too much of the piece!

Have a look below at my work this month:

Let's see the WIPs:

Finished Pieces

In January, I completed two pieces (bit fewer than the previous month..!) that I would love to share with you!

Let's have a look!

Wedding Portrait

Back at the end of 2022, I received a request for a stitch people wedding portrait to be completed and delivered before February and I -of course- said no problem!

My customer (if I recall correctly) was worried about how it would look with the couples' pets in it and I assured her it would make it just that much more unique and special. And I definitely stand by that, looking at how it turned out. What do you think?

  • A framed hand stitched, stitch people wedding portrait. It has a bride and groom, plus two dogs and one cat. It says 'The Zeisers' with a future date and hand embroidered florals above it all.
    The finished piece. I love how it turned out!
  • Close-up photo of the cross-stitched and hand-embroidered couple from the waist-up. The man has short, salt-and-pepper hair and the bride has long, blonde waves cascading down one shoulder. They are dressed in 'regular' wedding attire.
    The groom and bride, close-up. I tried a new tuxedo stitch style and I think it came out great!
  • Close-up photo of one of the dogs and the cat. They are both done as cross-stitch characters. Both have very mottled colouring in their fur which is done combining 3 different colour flosses.
    The kitty and the older doggo. Check out their fur colouring!
  • Close-up photo of the second dog and the dress of the bride. The dog is a puppy labrador so it's smaller than the other one and has the classic 'puppy-dog eyes'.
    Check out the "puppy-dog eyes" on this sweet dog. Also, who doesn't love a simple wedding dress..?
  • Close-up photo of some of the florals for this piece. It uses a mixture of different 'white' flosses to make three different flower types, with leafage amongst it too.
    Some of the florals. I had a lot of fun with them this time around. My only guidance was 'white florals'.
  • Close-up photo of the wording on the piece. The first line says "the Zeisers" and the second line says "march 11, 2023". Both are done with backstitching.
    Two different fonts of mine were used here: Daphne and Celeste
  • A photo of the piece in a black frame next to a sweet little cotton flower.
    Turned out great!
Upcoming Embroidery Pattern

You guys have seen the evolution of this piece either in these blog posts or via my FlossTube over the past few months but it's finally done (and in time for "National Embroidery Month"!).

I'm planning on releasing this [currently unnamed] pattern later this month, so stay tuned by following my social media accounts!

But for now, let's check out how it looks all finished:

  • The entire hand embroidered floral piece. It is framed in an embroidery hoop and laying on a burgundy background. The floss colours are pinks, purples and greens.
    I'm really pleased with how it looks and I hope you enjoy stitching it, too!
  • Super close-up photo of the hand embroidered flowers.
  • The lighting on this close-up photo to the embroidery shows how intricate, detailed and 3D the piece is.

New Products

I told myself before the start of 2023 that I wanted to continue pushing new patterns and releases to try and hit that "once a fortnight" timeline. Now that I have three ( amazing!) test stitchers, this definitely feels doable!

Now my available hours just need to keep up with my ambition! So let's see what happened in January.

Patterns

Well, I managed to sneak in two new cross-stitch patterns ( plus the merch release!) in the past month, thanks to when Mondays landed. And what's more, they are the first two of a new series I've been working on!

These are part of a three-pattern series I had planned, where the third will be coming on the 13th. I do, however, have plans on continuing this series past just 3 as I (personally) really like the style.

Let me know your thoughts!

Merch

As I mentioned in my last monthly wrap-up post, I released merchandise and apparel to start the new year. This was something I was very nervous about (seen via my very first 2023 FlossTube video..! πŸ™ˆ) but the reception on this -as mentioned earlier- was really good!

I'll be honest: I didn't have high expectations going into listing merch & apparel. So when I received a handful of orders on the very first day, I was elated!

Since the initial release, I also brought on t-shirts in the same design (which I can honestly say, is one of my favourite tops as of writing this. It is so soft and comfortable! I also think I want another colour.) which you can see to the right of this post.

I released this design in sixteen different colour variations, as it was a test to gauge what sorts of colours would be most popular going forward with other designs. Trust me; this will not be the norm, since it was so convoluted to set up..!

Get your own t-shirt!
A selfie of Kate wearing one of her brand new t-shirt designs. She's wearing the teal colour variant. Kate is pointing at the t-shirt in a silly way and has a slight smirk on her face while looking at her phone.
Grab your very own 'Stitch Repeat' t-shirt - 16 colours to choose from!

Warm Fuzzies

I had some lovely things happen during January that I would really like to share with you! They're two very different kinds of "warm fuzzy", but both qualify nonetheless.

My very own Nugget

Early in the month, I was having a really rough time mentally and mentioned as such on my Instagram account. To explain: I like to be as honest as I can when it comes to depression and anxiety to help crush the stigma. I believe that others seeing that things aren't all sunshine and roses for people is OK and normal.

Anywho; shortly after making a story on my IG about how I was feeling, Deborah from Wild Rainbow Co. reached out and asked if she could send me something to cheer me up.

I immediately wanted to brush her off and not give her my shipping address, but then I realised that it's OK to let other people in. Who am I to say it's OK to be vulnerable and honest and then not let someone do something nice for me?

So I sent her my mailing address and less than a week later, I received this adorable little guy.

His name is Bruce. I think he is adorbs. You should get one too ❀️

A green-glazed clay, tall 'blob' which is about the length of your palm, that's been stamped (before fired) with a semi-circle mouth and two tiny little circle eyes, so it looks like it has an enormous smiley face. The green glaze is mottled in appearance.
You can get your own nugget, too!

First branded t-shirt

Since I started my first freelance business, I've always wanted to have a t-shirt with my logo on it. I can't explain why; I guess it makes things feel more "real" to me in a way.

I never had one made up for Pixel Nourish (my web design & development freelancing venture I did before we moved to America) so I assumed I wouldn't ever really get a chance to have this happen. And therefore, the fantasy was forgotten.

Cue 2023:

I realised, based on the company I am currently doing my merch and apparel through, I could make up whatever t-shirt designs I freaking like and get it put onto a shirt. And I could order as many as I want β€” which in this case, was one. Perfect!

So you bet I jumped on that quickly..!

The first time I put it on I felt this silly, giddy feeling of having "made it". Whatever "it" was/is. I highly recommend it.

If you're interested in getting your own Two Little Kits t-shirt made up, let me know as I'm not listing these but can easily make you a custom order.

A photograph of a grey t-shirt on a hanger against a tan wall. On the left breast -area, there is a black and white machine embroidered graphic of the Two Little Kits logo.
It is real! I feel so special.

Stuff that's happened IRL

What happened during January? Aside from stitchy things, I did other stuff! Here are a few things that I got up to.

Dental stuff

I had a crown planned on one of my teeth (number 32 if you're curious β€” yes, my wisdom tooth). This one is a special case, as I actually don't have the premolar on that side (number 30) after breaking it back in my early 20s. Long story. When it came time for me to get my wisdom teeth removed, I ended up keeping that one as it gives the remaining molar (no. 31) some stability.

The catch is, that regular molar (no. 31) already had a crown on it, too, that my current dentist put in place about 9 months ago. But it turns out, it wasn't cemented right.

So… she decided that I should get that one removed and get 2 crowns: one for my wisdom tooth and one as a replacement. Oof.

All of that to say; I spent about 6-7 hours in the dentist's chair in less than a week getting work done.

Did you know; removing an existing, "permanent" dental crown takes about 3-4 times longer than a regular tooth? Me neither. Thankfully I had my stitching on hand and my dentist (and the dental assistants) love chatting with me about my stitching between their work. 😘

Selfie photo of Kate sitting in a dentist chair, looking a little exasperated. You can see at the bottom of the photo she's working on a cross-stitch. She's wearing the dentist's sunglasses on her head and a paper clip-on bib, and the dentist office can be seen behind her.
Getting my stitch on between mouth-gaping 🀣

Back at martial arts!

The last time I was at martial arts was the Friday before my very first foot surgery, back in the first half of September. So needless to say, I've been very nervous about going back to classes. Eager! But nervous.

After finding myself feeling less pain when I walk and for longer distances, I have been sort of "testing" what my foot (and toe itself) can handle without any shoes or socks on. So once the end of the Nov-Jan cycle at martial arts was coming to a close, I felt like I could handle returning.

But oh my gosh, was it hard. I've been incredibly still since September 12th, so I've lost the fitness I had built up.

It's really great to be back, even if I am finding myself clock-watching during classes and gleefully exiting the dojo after class. I know that the hurdles I'm vaulting over are going to do me so much good mentally and physically.

A selfie photograph of Kate in a white martial arts uniform. Her hair is roughly pinned back and she's smirking while looking away.
Nervous, but ready to be back!

Donated blood - again!

I did it! Again! Yes β€” I am afraid of needles. But has that stopped me? No! I'm so proud of myself!

As stated, this isn't the first time I have donated blood. I didn't mention it in my October/November blog post from last year, but at the end of Nov, I balled up the courage and followed through with the spur-of-the-moment donation signup I completed earlier that month. And I donated blood for the very first time!

So this second donation was a big deal, mentally, for me. It proved to me that I can do scary things. I can follow through on what I sign up for regardless of the situation. Plus, having the knowledge that I could be helping someone (or some people) is awesome. Especially knowing I am a universal donor: O-, baby!

A weirdly angled photo of Kate's arm that is actively donating blood. You can't see the injection site but it's obvious what's happening.
Look at me go!

Social Media

I've definitely inadvertently taken a bit of a step back from posting on social media, and it's not for the reason I would've assumed I'd do it.

It's because I've actually been using my time more effectively..! You might even be able to tell as such based solely on this post itself, and how much I've packed into the previous month.

Even despite that, my growth over the past month has continued to steadily increase, which is excellent news! At the rate I've been climbing, I am expecting to see the 5,700s of followers. I've been "stuck" in the 55/56-hundreds for quite some time now. Which isn't a bad thing. It's just nice to see that my intention to focus more on content that serves my already existing audience is acting according to my expectations.

That doesn't mean I'm not still making Reels that introduce my work to the masses. Those ones are fun to make!

Screenshot of Two Little Kits Instagram account on February 1st
Feb 1st stats for Instagram (5,692 followers).

And that's it!

Whoa. That was a lot. I often do wonder how many people actually read these, to be honest. I don't get many comments on my website in the first place so it's hard to gauge how many of my page views convert to full readers. So if you've gotten this far, give me a wave in the comments below!

Anyway; here's to February β€” the month that my mum is coming to visit!

πŸ‘‹ Kate

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My WIPs & FOs for December in 2022
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My WIPs & FOs for February in 2023

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Kate πŸ‘‹

About the author

In a previous life (AKA: pre-kids), I was a web des/dev & photographer who loved to dabble in numerous arts and crafts. Now, I'm a cross-stitch & embroidery pattern designer and full-time mum to Charlie & Alex, with adult-diagnosed ADHD. Closet nerd, self-proclaimed hermit and professional procrastinator. I have a secret crush on modern architecture, brush calligraphy, sweets, pretty nails and pastel colours.

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