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calendar // july's kawaii crossing bunting emporium wallpaper



Is it July already? Really? This year has been weird and both slow and fast and now here we are, halfway through 2020. I have mixed feelings about that, but I will say that I've been looking forward to this month ever since I planned out this Kawaii Crossing series. Because this month's shop is...the Bunting Emporium!

Now, you may not have ever seen a real bunting emporium, but two years ago on my Podcast, we had a conversation that led to us inventing this imaginary shop. And I've loved the idea ever since! When I thought about what would be good in July, I knew this was my opportunity to create my own version of this fun place to buy bunting and flags and banners, oh my! 

Just like these elements decorate your home (or other places), please enjoy some wallpapers to decorate your favorite screen!


pattern // kawaii crossing beach shop embroidery design

Beach Shop Embroidery Pattern
Did you forget your sunscreen? Do you need a new swimsuit? Or maybe you're ready to buy a surfboard? Stop by the Kawaii Crossing Beach Shop! This month's free embroidery pattern may be a little later than usual, but it's here!

I kind love this shell-shaped shop, and maybe because it's fun to say. But also because it reminds me a litte bit of Spongebob Squarepants and the cheesy souvenir stores you find on warm-weather vacations. Do I typically buy things there? No. Do I enjoy perusing the odd mix of items they sell? Yes.

And I hope you enjoy stitching this curious little shop and adding it to your collection of Kawaii Crossing patterns.


Happy Stitching!

pattern // kawaii crossing beach shop cross stitch

Kawaii Crossing Beach Shop Cross Stitch

I'm very happy to share with you, at long last, the beach shop cross stitch pattern! As always, this is free for you to enjoy and add to your growing town. The embroidery version is coming this week, I promise!

When I shared my beach shop illustration for this month's Kawaii Crossing addition, I mentioned that I'm not a beach gal. Pools are more my thing, but with a history of melanoma, I still have to stay safe and when it comes to the sun. All of that said, right now I could really go for a big adorondac chair on the deck of a beach house with a giant umbrella, and an iced tea in my hand as I watch people surf and play in the sand.

Kawaii Crossing Beach Shop Cross Stitch

Instead, we'll just have to stitch, which can feel like a little vacation (or staycation!) of its own.

When I chose the colors for this whole big project, I didn't take into account how similar the lavendar shades are when you stitch them next to each other. That means that the definition on the shell is subtle if you use the colors in the chart. I opted to leave them that way in the chart because I didn't want to suddenly add more colors, but if you want to make yours stand out more, use a darker purple. I'd suggest working with DMC 208 in place of 209 in this one.

Also, I maaaaayyy have stitched mine wrong when it comes to where the bottom of the shop meets the grass. Ignore the photos and go with what's on the chart.

Kawaii Crossing Beach Shop Cross Stitch

The full Kawaii Crossing Stitching Club chart (so far) is below or if you'd like the individual shop charts, which are a little easier to see when printed, they are under the cross stitch patterns from this year. Personally, I like pulling up the pattern on a screen so that I can enlarge it as needed.



calendar // june's kawaii crossing beach shop wallpaper



June is here and it's not what I expected. How about you? Because I make smiling happy things, it's easy to think that that's how I am or that it's all I care about. When my heart is breaking and our world is hurting, I always question if I should share my kawaii creations because it might seem insensitive or ingenuine. But I believe there can be joy in the midst of mourning and calling for justice, so here I am with a new wallpaper. With the hope that I can share a bit of joy as we work toward a better (much-needed) future.

I am not a beach girl. So it confuses even me that I chose to add a beach shop to the streets of Kawaii Crossing. But whether you're able to visit a beach or not, whether you're want to or not, you have to admit that a shell-shaped shop that sells surfboards, swimwear, and souvenirs is very appealing.

So add some joy to your screen and enjoy some virtual beach time!


summer reading stitching club registration

Summer Reading Stitching Club

Summer is here and that means it's time for Summer Reading Stitching Club! When you were growing up, or maybe even as an adult, did you participate in a summer reading club at your local library? I LOVED it as a kid and I'm bringing that to my new Wild Olive Stitching Club.

This year, summer reading clubs will feel different in many communities, but that doesn't mean we can't have our own version online...with embroidery and English paper piecing! I chose 12 classic children's books to embroider on little hand-pieced books, which will then become a quilted book bag. If you'd rather, you could also make them into a mini quilt.

Summer Reading Stitching Club
Summer Reading Stitching Club

Each week, club members will receive an embroidery pattern PDF by email, along with some other fun along the way. The patterns represent key elements or characters from books, but the books will be a surprise each time (though you can probably guess a few from the photos!). Taking a cue from illustrated classics, these patterns are all stitched in a single color. It makes stitching them fast and easy while giving them a bold look!

Summer Reading Stitching Club
Summer Reading Stitching Club
Summer Reading Stitching Club

Summer Reading Stitching Club combines several needlecrafts that I love. Embroidery (all simple stitches), English paper piecing (all the instructions come with the club), and sewing (all straight seams, but it will help if you know your way 'round a sewing machine).

If you've ever done one of my paid stitching clubs in the past, you'll be familiar with the process and format of this club. The Summer Reading Stitching Club will run from June 2 to August 25. That's 12 weeks of patterns, plus time for finishing.

When you sign up, you'll get a PDF welcome kit with a supply list, EPP templates, and instructions for getting ready.

Summer Reading Stitching Club
Summer Reading Stitching Club

The cost for the entire club is just $6.00 if you sign up by June 8. After that, the price will go up to $8.00.


The club starts June 2, so be sure to sign up early so you can stitch along with us!

Note: All of the books represented in this stitching club are considered classics, but a few contain views and character portrayals that are problematic at best. Rather than avoiding these titles completely, I see them as opportunities to think and talk about what makes these themes wrong then and now, where the beliefs still exist, and how we can do better going forward.

Questions? Ask in the comments and I'll get back to you right away!

pattern // kawaii crossing bakery cross stitch

Kawaii Crossing Bakery Cross Stitch

Well, I finished cross stitching the Kawaii Crossing Bakery, and now I have the free pattern for you!

Let me tell you, this little town is my happy place. And I just want to spend more time here. Like, I want to actually walk down these streets and visit the sewing shop, garden center, and bakery. Because a sweet and cute world is what I'm craving. How about you?

Kawaii Crossing Bakery Cross Stitch

As I added the bakery to my town, I continued stitching the streets a little. Stitching all of this early would make the rest of this a lot easier down the road (get it...streets? down the road?). But I'm adding it bit by bit. At any rate, I love seeing this second row showing up.

A few folks wanted to do theirs all in one long row, which is also fantastic, and I can't wait to see! If that's you, tag me (@molliejohanson) on Instagram and/or use the tag #kawaiicrossing or #wildolivestitchingclub so everyone can also see your work!

Kawaii Crossing Bakery Cross Stitch

Oh, and I over-stitched my green grass, so what you see doesn't match up with the chart. But it may? We shall see as I get started on the June design.

You can grab the updated Kawaii Crossing Stitching Club chart below or work with the individual shop charts, which are under the cross stitch patterns from this year.



pattern // kawaii crossing bakery embroidery pattern

Kawaii Crossing Bakery Embroidery Pattern

With sharing both embroidery and cross stitch patterns for the Kawaii Crossing Wild Olive Stitching Clubs, I like to mix it up with which one I'll share first each month. And this time the embroidery folks get their pattern first!

This happy little bakery is all ready for you to embroider. You can add it into the English paper piecing mini quilt design or stitch it large on a tea towel or apron for the kitchen!

When I introduced this bakery, I mentioned that it's inspired by my grandma, and if she were still living, I'd definitely be stitching a kitchen towel for her. In fact, my embroidery journey started with her letting me stitch on her kitchen towels. Over the years, when I'd be helping (and probably baking!) at her house, I'd find one of those towels with my colorful running stitches still in place along the hems.

Oh, and speaking of when I introduced the Kawaii Crossing bakery...I managed to get more yeast! Yay for more baking!


I'm also very excited to share that I have a new Stitching Club in the works! Summer, even staying home, is gonna be stitchy and fun!

project // millenium falcon felt plush

Millennium Falcon Felt Plush


Happy Star Wars Day! This May the Fourth, I'm very happy to share my pattern for making a felt Millennium Falcon.

I love, love, love making Star Wars projects, and usually they start as gifts for my brother. In the past, I've designed a Wompa, a Storm Trooper, Maz Kanata, C-3PO, and more. This particular plush is a little different from the others, in that it's a ship and not a character. But I think Star Wars fans would agree that the Millennium Falcon sort of is a character, right?

So here's the story on this. It's been a while since I shared a Star Wars Day pattern and that's because I started this two years ago. At least, I think that's when I started it. It's been so long that I couldn't actually find the step-by-step photos I took. Yikes!

Since I can't show you all the steps for this, I almost decided to let it be only a one-of-a-kind felt ship. But maaaaayybe you're up for trying this with a few simple instructions? I'll warn you that at times it was a little fiddly. But worth it, I think! Be sure to look at the photos as a guide for placement on the pieces.

Millennium Falcon Felt Plush

Here's what you need:

Grayish-tan felt in two shades (though you could use just one)
Charcoal gray felt
Aqua blue felt
Dark gray-tan embroidery floss
Needle
Pins and/or Wonder Clips
Stuffing

Millennium Falcon Plush Pattern PDF

1. Embroider the lines from the main ship piece in light gray-tan felt. Embroider the lines from the smaller pieces on dark gray-tan felt.

I did this before cutting out the shape because I used Sulky Sticky Fabri-Solvy, so I didn't want to risk it shrinking when soaking off the stabilizer.

I used three strands and back stitch for almost everything except the thick lines on the pattern. For those I did bullion knots. And for the dots on the small front piece I used french knots.

2. Cut out the embroidered Millennium Falcon shape (plus an extra one that's not embroidered) and the small embroidered pieces. Stitch the small pieces onto the main piece with whip stitch and three strands of embroidery floss. They should fit in the non-embroidered areas.

Millennium Falcon Felt Plush
Millennium Falcon Felt Plush

3. Cut a strip of aqua blue felt with the long rectangle template. Cut a long strip of light gray tan felt that's the same height as the blue strip (1-1/4" tall). I think mine was 24 inches? You can piece this together if you need to. Basically it will need to wrap around the sides of the Falcon.

I added a face to the blue piece because it's kinda my thing. You can do that too if you want, and now's the time! But it's more traditional without the face.

4. Join the end of the blue strip to the end of the tan strip. The blue will be the back of the ship when it goes into lightspeed. Start sewing the blue strip in place along the back where the two indents are, attaching it to the embroidered top. Use three strands of embroidery floss and whip stitch.

Continue sewing around the entire shape, fitting the tan felt into all the lines of the ship. You should end up with a little extra tan felt, which you can trim off. If you came up short, add another strip to finish it off.

5. Next, sew around the bottom in the same way. You should end up with an opening where the blue and tan meet.

6. Fill the Millennium Falcon with stuffing. When it puffs up a little, it's super cute! But don't overstuff it. Stitch the opening closed.

Millennium Falcon Felt Plush

7. For the escape pods and cockpit, using the templates, cut a curved piece of dark gray-tan felt and cut it in half. Cut one half-curved piece (the same size as the ones you just cut) from charcoal gray felt. Cut three charcoal gray circles and one dark gray-tan rectangle.

8. Stitch the curved pieces onto the circles and then stitch the end down where it overlaps. You should have pieces that flare out a little at the bottom.

9. For the gray-tan side escape pods, put a tiny bit of stuffing in each one and then stitch them down to the sides of the ship in the large indented areas.

10. For the cockpit, stitch the rectangle to the end of the charcoal gray piece and stitch it into a cylinder.

Now, this next part is the hardest to explain, because I kid you not, I just cut the thing. If it doesn't go well the first time, thankfully, felt isn't very expensive.

11. Flatten the cylinder on the cockpit piece and cut it off at about a 45-degree angle. Add some stuffing and stitch it onto the side of the ship as shown in the photos.

Millennium Falcon Felt Plush

All that's left to do is send your Millennium Falcon to infinity and beyond! Wait...that's the wrong movie.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this VERY paired down tutorial. I'll do my best to answer any questions, but a lot of this I just figured out as I went. As I said, this was made as a gift, but over a long period of time and without taking notes. Oops!

Also, my version of the Falcon is nowhere near as detailed as the real deal, even with all that stitching on top. This is more like an impression of the Millennium Falcon, and I kind of love that.

May the Fourth be with you!

NOTE: The Millennium Falcon is copyright Disney/LucasArts, and I'm only sharing this pattern as fan art. Please do not sell items made with this pattern.

calendar // may's kawaii crossing bakery wallpaper



It's May and time to visit the Kawaii Crossing bakery!

I planned out most of the shops for this year back in January and I knew that May needed to be a bakeshop of some kind. Why? Because May was my grandma's birthday month and she's who taught me to bake! She taught me many things, and lots of things remind me of her, but baked goods are at the top of the list. So in honor of Nanny, we have a swirled pecan roll bakery.

Of course, in January I wasn't aware that we'd all be staying at home and many people would start baking for the first time. Nor did I expect that we'd have a yeast shortage! Thankfully we bake a lot at my house and we started this stay-at-home order with a decent supply, but it's dwindling. Maybe this little bakery has some extra they would share?

While I dream of baking Nanny's rye bread, pecan rolls, and coffee bread, you can go ahead and grab a new wallpaper.


(I'm also about to make a bread starter so I can continue to bake yummy treats even without packaged yeast!)

pattern // kawaii crossing garden center embroidery pattern



Are you ready to embroider a kawaii garden center? This month's free Kawaii Crossing pattern is here! I really love this little flower pot shop and all its tiny details.

When I was little, I spent a lot of time at Frank's Nursery and Crafts. Did they have those stores by you? I have such happy memories of shopping there. Certainly lots of craft supplies. I even recently used some felt from my stash that still had Frank's price tags on the sheets!

But I also loved walking around outside by the plants. Like many garden centers, they had tiny pea gravel, separated by sidewalks. That pea gravel was my favorite. I used to look through it for "special" rocks and then slip them in my pocket. It's true. And boy did I get in trouble! My parents clearly didn't want me growing up to be a rock and landscaping thief. Ha!

Anyway, without realizing, I added a little yellow flower above the door on this garden center, which may have been a sub-conscious nod to Frank's. They had a similar yellow flower in their logo! But back to the pattern...

The tiny details that make this extra cute will make this a tricky pattern at times, but if you use only one or two strands on the bitty plants (on the shelf out front), that will help. That's for the tiny version that will work for the mini quilt. If you're using the larger version in the PDF those bits shouldn't be a problem.

Now, download the pattern and start stitching!