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Limited time! *FREE* Beginner Christmas Embroidery Pattern – Quick and Fun Gift!

It’s power DIY time, folks! The holidays can be such a fun time to add personalized, handmade touches to gifts, traditions, or even décor. But, if you’re like me, your pinterest board is full of PLENTY of gorgeous inspiration but not enough motivation. I want to have homemade ornaments, and streamers, and molded pie crusts . . . and my sink is also full of dishes, there are four piles of laundry that need to be washed, but I can’t wash them until I fold and put away the three loads of laundry that I already washed . . .

Even if you’ve never embroidered before, this pattern is easy and forgiving!

This post may contain affiliate links. (Spoiler alert: it does.) For the legal jargon (and my personal stance on recommendations) click here. 

  1. Simply start with the two outside trees, beginning with your green 5-strand floss.
  2. Stitch over your green threads with your white 5-strand floss, leaving the bottom portion of the pine needles exposed.
  3. Stitch the center tree with your second green floss using all 5 strands, repeating the process with the snow.
  4. Stitch French knots wherever you want to create falling snow.
  5. (Optional) Trace the interior of your hoop onto your felt and cut out the circle.
  6. Carefully fold and tuck in the edges of your work.
  7. With a hot glue gun, gently run glue around the outside an inch at a time, slowly inserting your felt circle.

Ways to use this pattern:

♡ Shrink the pattern by 50% and use 3″ hoops to make giftable ornaments!
♡ Decorate a corner of a cloth napkin
♡ Use pinking sheers to cut out a fabric gift tag to decorate a wrapped present
♡ Decorate small muslin satchels and fill them with potpourri – they make great sock drawer or car accessories!

If you’re an experienced stitcher, you can customize this easily.

♡ Try using single strand thread for the pine needles, use wagon wheel or French knots to make ornaments, or sew on some fun beads or buttons for additional texture or sparkle!

This pattern is easy. It uses a few stitches and any can be substituted for something else you prefer. If you’re a stickler for sticking to a pattern, I’ve even included the DMC embroidery color numbers so you can replicate it. But if you want to get creative, I’ve got a bunch of my favorite color palettes on my pinterest board here to get you inspired for something with your own flavor! I tend to prefer complimentary colors or double split complimentary colors. Pro tip: keep a small color wheel in your purse or save an image handily on your phone to help in picking out colors. The one I usually use is this one here. It’s small and can even fit in a comfy pocket if you’re purse averse like myself.If that’s too complicated, just be sure to have my Color Palettes board pulled up on your mobile phone for easy reference.

And of course, don’t forget the free pattern! (HURRY! It’s only free until the end of 2021, and then it’s less than a cup of coffee at Staryucks. Also, I don’t like coffee.)

Did you work up this pattern? Be sure to tag me on Instagram (@ambertheblog) so I can see your lovely creations!

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Indie Farming Sim Breaks Through Kickstarter Funding Goals

Look out, world! There’s a new farming sim in town, and they are SMASHING through their kickstarter goals!

Coral Island is a brand new farming sim game created by indie developers Stairway Games. At first glance, it might seem like your basic plant-harvest-repeat cycle resource management system, but take another look, and you’ll soon see why it completely shattered its kickstarter goal in the first two days (actually, in the first 36 hours).

A familiar top-down camera styling let’s players imagine themselves as the new farmer in town, a town that resides on Coral Island, a name given due to the coral reefs that surround it. While you work to manage your property, your livestock, crops, and more, you also have a chance to befriend the many varied and diverse people of the island. And, maybe, even meet an islander sure to become that special someone! You can marry, have children (up to two), and work to better the community, restore and protect the coral reefs, and keep the short-sighted Pufferfish Drilling Company from stepping in.

While it contains all the basics you’d expect from a farming sim game (mining, fishing, planting, harvesting, etc) it is confidently doing it in its own style, which is evident from the moment you watch the demo. The 3D styling is reminiscent of TemTem, with a solid mix of cute smooth textures and chunky geometrics that are as every bit as soothing to look at as is the environment they portray. Plump fruit, bright sunlight, and crystal clear water are the backdrop to this new farm, and the 3D models don’t stray too far from the expected norm in this way, but still manage to bring something with a cohesive unique style of its own.

A refreshing change is the mix of traditional character portraits alongside their 3D counterparts. When engaging in conversation, their illustrated avatar pops up alongside the dialogue box. Personally, this was the point where I decided this was the game for me. The art is charming, vaguely reminiscent of the new Disney style direction, and it beautifully renders for us a wide and diverse cast of islanders. The art made me want to get to know these characters and this story. David Lojaya has done a great job, and I’m honestly very excited to play the game to see more of his art and interpretation of these characters.

Most of their stretch goals have already been met, including islanders having different seasonal clothing, children (NPC and player’s children) aging through teen years, underwater mer-village access, bug catching, and so, so much more.

There is a lot to unpack here, and anything more that I would say would be a watered down version of what Stairway Games could say best themselves. Be sure to follow them on twitter, and don’t be late in participating in the kickstarter! There are only so many exclusive rewards, and you could have your chance to play as early as June this year.

So who’s going to be playing in the alpha with me???

"XOXO, Amber" in hand-styled script