Frame Busting Your Cross Stitch

Cross stitch cushion with snowflake and lettered design

It’s been an exciting week so I’m going to do a brief newsy roundup and then chat about getting out of my colour rut...surely I’m not alone in choosing the same colours again and again? After that I'm going to look at breaking cross stitch out of the frame and moving it back into contemporary interiors.

Bobbin and Fred are this week’s Feeling Stitchy’s Feeling Random Friday. It made my week, thank you so much Amy! Head on over to the Feeling Stitchy blog to discover their other featured designers and show them some love but make sure you come right back as that’s not all…

My Let it Snow cross stitch pillow is in this month’s Just CrossStitch! It’s been a fun release because it was spotted by a couple of friends before I got round to mentioning it. Jenny, the talented designer behind Home Stitchness, very kindly took a photo of it in the magazine as my copy is still winging its way to me, thank you Jenny!

Just CrossStitch Magazine Pae showing Let it Snow Cushion Project

I’d also like to say a hearty thank you to the new followers who’ve joined us and to those who were already following along. I did a little happy dance of joy for every single one of you, it’s the best feeling and I hope you enjoy the ride.

Thank You in a Heart
Designed by Freepik

As a designer I’ve worn a little groove and decorated it in my favourite colour combinations. Combinations I know as well as old friends, colours I roll out time and again knowing they'll delight and please. It’s a safe and happy and colourful little rut but it doesn’t challenge or stretch me.
If I want to grow I have to shoehorn my way out into the scary place where all of the other shades dwell. One way to do that is to design to a brief that’s very different to my own aesthetic and that’s how the Let it Snow pillow was born.

The design is a swift departure from my usual ‘cover the entire surface with bright colours and patterns’ but I love its rustic elegance. The muted palette of white and ice blues complement the ecru background and stitching on to a block colour means the project is quick to complete because there’s no background to fill in.

It’s the second project where I’ve stripped back the colour. The first was a set of six knitting and crochet stitch markers for Louise of Little School of Wool. At first it was hard to wrap my head around making something in shades of grey!

I only had a couple of skeins of dull, battleship grey in my collection and had never thought to add more. When the threads arrived I remember admiring the way the silvery greys shimmered and shined with surprise. The threads reminded me of precious metals and the beauty of pencil lead on paper.

My conversation with grey continued when Rachel from My Crafty Life shared silver grey's her yarn spirit colour because ‘it can be paired with brights, subtles, neutrals and always looks lovely…it’s an underrated and multifaceted shade’. Rachel’s spot on and I definitely overlooked grey and the effectiveness of muted palettes in my designs.

While I was completing the Let is Snow cushion I had a good idea about how it would fit into an interior design scheme so I’ve searched the internet high and low to rustle up some images that reflect how I thought it’d integrate into a home.

How perfect is Home by the Loch’s lovely room for the Let it Snow cushion? The blues of the snowflakes complement the blues of the bunting and upholstery fabrics and the ecru background ties in the exposed wood and wicker perfectly. A little touch of cross stitch would add an extra special homespun addition to this cosy and peaceful room.

Rustic Style Winter Garden Patio with Chiminea

We rarely use our garden in the winter. It rains often so it’s usually wet and most of our plants die down over the chillier months. It looks miserable out there until spring so I love the idea of creating a winter outside space to enjoy. I can picture being warmed by the chiminea, listening to the crackle of the flames, cuddling up with my Let it Snow cushion and, sipping a steaming mug of hot chocolate and enjoying the crisp air. Take that, January blues!

Cosy hanging chair with snow scape background

If this was mine you would not be able to get me out of it! I love the thought of watching the seasons change and the birds come and go in this comfy hanging seat. Curling up with my cross stitch cushion and gazing out in awe at the snow scape would be a divine way to dream up more stitching ideas, wouldn’t it?

Thinking about cross stitch in the home led me to explore the other ways cross stitch is being celebrated as part of an interior design scheme. I was delighted to find Charlotte Lancelot’s award winning collaborations with Gan.

Girl listening to music sat on chunky cross stitch floor cushion

Charlotte's Canevas collection celebrates oversized cross stitching as a way to transform everyday objects and bring the soft touch of handicrafts into contemporary homes.

Woman releaxing in bedroom with chunky cross stitch rug and foot stools

Then I found Laura Carwardine’s oversized cross stitch installation in a restaurant. This has to take the award for ultimate frame buster, Laura used over 17,000 stitches and covered an entire wall in glorious stitches!

Restaurant with chunky cross stitch wall installation

I love how the open spaces in the repeat pattern allowed the existing artwork to come through and create interest and texture. Rather than wiping the wall’s history clean Laura builds upon what’s already there to create something individual to that space.
A bit more digging led me onto Susanne ter Heerdt’s XXL cross stitch artworks! 

Mevrouw Roos XXL fleurt huize XXL permanent op. We genieten nog elke dag van haar. Ze blijft ons verrassen en aanzetten tot nieuwe ideeën. Maar er is één ding wat ze het liefst doet: bloeien! Fijne dag! En koop een roosje, voor wie dan ook. 🌹 ❎ 🌹 ❎ 🌹 ❎ 🌹 ❎ 🌹 ❎ 🌹 ❎ 🌹 ❎ 🌹 Miss XXL Rose permanently brightens our home. We still enjoy her every day. She keeps surprising us and encourages new ideas. But there's one thing she does the most: bloom! Have a nice day! And buy a rose for anyone. _ #interior #interieur #interiorstyling #instahome #binnenkijken #homedecor #decor #diy #design #crossstich #xstitch #walldecor #walldeco #homedecor #wallart #uniek #muurkunst #embroidery #borduren #mywork #art #kunst #styleandstitches #artstalentz #artist #flowerstagram #inspiration #photography #myfoto
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Susanne breaks out of a traditional frame and stitches her designs onto pegboards. These striking pieces still manage to create a huge impact yet are a more practical way some of us could bring cross stitch with a contemporary flavour into our homes.

Would you like to add more handicrafts to your home décor? Let me know how you would go about it in the comments below.

Would you like to frame bust your cross stitch and make your own Let it Snow cushion for a cosy space near you? The Jan/Feb issue of Just CrossStitch is on sale now. It’s is available both digitally and in print. The issue is brimming with loads of beautiful cross stitch designs and you can browse the list of projects here.

Me, Bobbin and Fred would LOVE to see your Let it Snow pillow so please do share a pic with us by tagging @bobbinandfred or #bobbinandfred on instagram or twitter.


Fred the Goat with speech bubble asking for social media shares


  1. Wow! There are some fabulous ideas here for busting cross stitch out of the frame. I love Laura Cawardine's oversized work. There are so many sophistiscated ideas here for bringing cross stitch into your home. Your cushion design is very pretty and I like the cute pom, pom trim. I often get stuck in a colour rut...I definitely need to get out of my comfort zone.

    1. Thank you so much :) I hope you have good fun breaking free from your colour comfort rut! Sending lots of colours and inspiration your way :D

  2. Absolutely brilliant blog post. I so enjoyed reading it. I have a grey bedroom. It is such a versatile colour and I find it very calming.

    I want to make an embroidered bedspread one day and some handmade cushions

    Fiona x

    1. Thank you very much, Fiona xo My bedroom's white and I find it the same, plus it's a fab backdrop for any colour so there's loads of possibilities furnishings wise. I love the sound of your embroidered bedspread and handmade cushions, I hope they become a reality as I'd love to see them!


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