Archive for category Fanta Cat Designs

Fox Glove Fairy by Illusions Designs

Copyright Vicky Graham, Illusions Designs, Published by Fanta Cat Designs, 1995.

Fox Glove Fairy by Illusions

Chart: This Illusions chart is print on a folded A3 sheet of paper with the bottom of the plant on a separate A4/Letter sheet.  The overlap on the plant stem sheet is shown as 6 rows of backstitch but the cross stitch symbols are not repeated. This is effective as it gives enough information to ensure accurate placement but also ensures you do mistakenly repeat a row of stitches.

The chart pack also contains  a sheet on General Instructions for Counted Cross Stitch as well as specific information regarding quarter and three-quarter stitches and symbols in these Illusions charts.

Stitches: Pattern uses whole cross stitches, fractional stitches, couchwork and backstitch and beading.

Materials: DMC stranded cottons, Kreinik blending filament, Kreinik Cable and Mill Hill beads. Stitched on Wichelt 28ct “Pewter” Brittany (now Lugana).

Designer’s Notes: None

Why I was attracted to this design: I know these are really sweet and not my usual snarky dark fare, but I love these. The fairy wings are based on a real type of butterfly (I can’t remember which now). I have had a love of botanical plant studies for years, even simplistic versions like this :)

So why haven’t I stitched it? I stash faster than I stitch.  Also I’m not sure that a plain Pewter lugana is the right fabric to use these days of beautiful hand dyed fabrics.

Where can you buy it? Both Illusions Designs and Fanta Cat designs are now out of business.  Although Illusions was selling on eBay a couple of years ago, so I’m hoping Vicky might pop back up there or on Etsy sometime in the future.  Letha of Fanta Cat moved interstate a few years ago and struggled to re-setup the business after the move. Hopefully one day one or both of these women returns as these are beautiful designs!  For now I would scope out LNS or ONS that carry older stock or try the ubiquitous eBay.  Conversely – prod me into starting my copy.

Discussion questions: Do you know of any designs of proper botanical studies?  Alternately, any suggestions for a fabric for this design?

7 May 2012: Confused on fabric


Sand Castle by Camelot Designs

Copyright Sue Marshall, Camelot Designs, Published by Fanta Cat Designs 1991.

Sand Castle by Camelot Designs


Chart: This Camelot Designs chart is print on the inside of a folded, A3 cardboard sheet. As this is an older chart, it is hand-drawn, but the symbols are quite large and easy to see.  The only areas of difficulty are two small areas of mostly fractional stitches and backstitch. Otherwise this is an easy chart to see and follow.

The border cuts through the design.  These missing stitches are provided on the back page if you choose not to stitch the border. I like a designer who realises that not every stitcher appreciates the same elements of their designs, and provides alternatives.

Stitches: Pattern uses whole cross stitches, fractional stitches and backstitch.

Materials: DMC stranded cottons and Kreinik blending filament. Stitched on 14ct “Parchment Yorkshire” Aida. With this number of fractional stitches, I would not recommend stitching this on Aida!

Designer’s Notes: This is part of the Borderlands series.  Journey into the Borderlands, that place between waking and dreaming at the margins of imagination …

Why I was attracted to this design: I love fantasy designs.  I love historical designs. I love whimsical designs.  This design combines all three; a fantasy castle created as a sand castle … can’t you craft a fairy tale just looking at that design???

So why haven’t I stitched it? To be honest, I am dithering about that border.  I like the concept of the border, and I like how it twines about the design, sometimes over it and sometimes under it.  But I don’t like how it dominates the design. In that photo  the border just seems too dark and too overbearing.  Maybe I should go a few shades lighter?  Maybe I should stitch it and see: maybe it’s not that bad in real life? Maybe I should leave the border out altogether. So I sigh and put the chart back in the stash and pull out another one.

Where can you buy it? Camelor Designs are difficult to obtain and I do not understand the current supply chain. However this chart is currently for sale at at some LNS and ONS for $7.00.

Discussion questions: What are your recommendations for the border?  Also suggestions for an evenweave or linen substitution for “Parchment Yorkshire” Aida. This colour Aida is still being manufactured and sold as a variegated fabric, but I don’t know if that is the same as the fabric colour that was used on this model back in 1991.

9 Apr 2012: To border or not to border ???