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when you enjoy designing patterns of all kinds

Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater

My craft portfolio has always been diversified, but I feel it more these days. Especially as move into designing things like my latest knitting project, the Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater.

In one way or another, I've designed projects all my life. It started with wonky sewing projects, Perler bead fails, and a simple scarf idea that still didn't work. As I got older, I've essentially still done all of these things. But now I also make a lot of embroidery and cross stitch pattern, some English paper piecing, and most recently crochet.

Designing a sweater knitting pattern wasn't really in my plan, until I brought home a lovely bundle of yarn from England last summer. And actually, it wasn't until September that my sketch appeared. Still...was I really ready for this? The sketch was simple, so I thought I'd try to make it work.

Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater Sketch

It wasn't until January that I started swatching and trying out my plan. The first swatch was a mess. I had to figure out a better way. But then I found a classic lace stitch pattern that I loved. It's called Crest of the Wave stitch, which is where the title Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater came from.

And so yeah...I designed a sweater.

Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater

Even with the lace hem, this might be the easiest sweater you'll ever knit. You don't have to worry about shaping, there are no sleeves to set in, and the only seams are the shoulders which you graft together.

But the result is an easy-to-wear, easy-to-knit tunic. I love it with jeans, but I have a pencil skirt that I'll be pairing it with soon. It's also light and breezy, so I can find ways to wear it all year.

Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater
Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater

My favorite parts are the hems (I mean, come on...scalloped lace? I'm a sucker for scallops!) and the shoulders. Those little details just get me and make me feel like I actually designed a thing.

Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater

It feels strange at times to share all the knitting and crochet I'm working on these days. I'm supposed to be about the embroidery and such! But I'm simply expanding my needlecrafts, right?

Anyway, that's my story of how designing patterns grew into designing even more patterns. And honestly, there's so much more to come. If you're a knitter or know a knitter, I'd love it if you knit or share the Graceful Waves Tunic Pattern! You can find the FREE pattern at The Spruce Crafts and add it to your queue on Ravelry!

pattern // blueberry jelly cross stitch chart

Blueberry Jelly Cross Stitch Pattern

Hey, cross stitch fans! Your time is here, and the May Jam of the Month Club chart is ready for you to get stitching. The Blueberry Jelly pattern has cute little blueberries with teeny tiny faces, and a fun checked lid.

I'm a super slow cross stitcher, so I decided not to even try and make all the cross stitch versions of these jam jars. But that didn't stop me from grabbing the supplies. Because who can resist a craft supply photo?

Anyway, enjoy the Blueberry Jelly jar, as well as the shelf pattern with this new addition.

Blueberry Jelly Cross Stitch Pattern

If you're stitching the individual designs or a whole shelf, I'd love to see! Tag me on Instagram or use the hashtag #wildolivestitchingclub.


And if you're a cross stitch fan, you should also check out Cross Stitch Crazy Magazine! I have a set of kawaii cacti in the latest issue (number 256), plus I did an interview with them for this one too. It was Cross Stitch Crazy that got me designing cross stitch patterns, so I'm especially thankful to them.

pattern // may's jar of blueberry jelly

2019 May Jam of the Month Embroidery Pattern

Fill your shelves with the cutest jars of blueberry jelly with this free kawaii embroidery pattern!

It's May and we're stitching a jar of jolly jelly. I'm really quite smitten with this design...especially the colors. I've been a little behind on my own stitching, so it was fun to finally sit down and just stitch. The funny thing is that it only took about two hours. Why do I put these off?

For those who are new, this is the latest Jam of the Month Club pattern. If you haven't seen the rest of the patterns yet, be sure to check out the EPP shelf mini quilt that holds all the jar patterns, plus January, February, March, and April.

Have you been stitching along so far? I'd love to see your progress! Tag me on Instagram (@molliejohanson), use the #wildolivestitchingclub hashtag, or send me an email (molliejohanson at gmail dot com).

Need help learning the basics of embroidery? I can help with that!

Okay, now go and stitch a little jar with some super sweet blueberries. I promise they'll make your day berry happy!

calendar // may's blueberry jelly wallpapers

One berry, two berry, pick me a Blueberry!

I remember reading those words many, many times to a little boy I babysat when I was in high school. He LOVED the book Jamberry. And with jars of blueberry jelly lining the shelves this month, it just felt appropriate to quote a classic.

Yes, we're already up to May, and I have thoughts and feeling about it. But rather than focus on the passage of time, before you download a new wallpaper for your favorite device, I have a very important question:

When it comes to blueberry, do you vote jelly, jam, preserves, or some other variation of this? If you're not sure what the differences are, check out this helpful pin that summarizes (it also leads to a yummy-sounding savory jam!).

pattern // grapefruit jam embroidery and cross stitch designs

April ended up being a more difficult month than I anticipated. But while the month is almost over (like, in a few hours), I couldn't let it go by without posting my free patterns for the month. So without much ado, I present the Grapefruit Jam embroidery and cross stitch patterns!

I sincerely apologize for letting this go so long this month. AND for not having another one stitched just yet. But tomorrow starts a new month and a new shot at getting better. That goes for all of us. Because yay for fresh beginnings!

printable // holy week verse cards

Holy Week Printable Verse Cards

It's almost Holy Week, and I like to find my own Wild Olive ways of remebering, observing, and celebrating the most important week in history. This year I'm sharing these printble verse cards with you. The artwork is based on the Holy Week felt garland I made a few years ago.

These cards are a great way to learn a few verses from this week in Jesus' life, to mark these sections of your Bible, set around in your home to see Scripture daily, or even to add in to your Bible journaling.

Holy Week Printable Verse Cards
Holy Week Printable Verse Cards

All you need is some card stock and a pair of scissors.

I recommend printing the cards at the highest quality setting on your printer. You can also send this to an office supply print shop.

While I ask that you not use these commercially, I do love it when people share my work. Feel free to print as many as you want to give away, whether to a friend or your entire church.

Holy Week Printable Verse Cards
Holy Week Printable Verse Cards

For the cards, I could have chosen a lot more verses and icons to go with them. But I went with Palm Sunday, the Last Supper, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday. I'll also be sharing these on Instagram (I'm @molliejohanson there) on these key days, with some reflections.

Holy Week Printable Verse Cards
Holy Week Printable Verse Cards

Allow me to be candid. Sometimes I question whether I should put face on these objects that we connect with things that are holy. Like, do I cross a line by making communion cute? But here's the thing: my faith — my relationship with Jesus — is in every part of me. Or at least that's my hope! And making things cute is part of me, so why wouldn't I make these kawaii faith icons?

"So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work (for me, that means drawing cute things), and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him."

Romans 12:1 The Message (parentheses added by me!)

Holy Week Printable Verse Cards

May your Holy Week and your everyday ordinary life be filled with good things and God things!

calendar // april's pink grapefruit jam calendars

I was tempted to post this new April calendar wallpaper and pretend like I had posted it on time, but that you just stumbled upon it late. But I'm too honest for that. I'll gladly own up to falling behind again. Still? Yep. That's just how it is. And so, we flip the calendar page a few days after the first of the month.

March flew by in a flash, with me trying to squeeze things into the first half of the month as much as possible. That's so I could work on a giant project the last week of March. And what was that project? Basically it was taking a 5x7-foot space that was once my office and transforming it from the dumping ground it became, into this:

Me in My Craft Space

It's not finished yet. I still have empty shelves and TONS of stuff to go through. But it's a happy place right now and I'm looking forward to making it even better.

But now it's time to get back to making jam. And today, I've got some pink grapefruit jam! I will admit that I chose this flavor for it's color. Because isn't it yummy? I also found a recipe that inspired the look of my jam. It's Pink Grapefruit and Vanilla Bean Jam (hence the little specks in the jar).

I'm drawing the embroidery pattern right away and stitching as soon as possible this time. But for now, even though it's a little late, grab a calendar wallpaper for your computer, phone, or tablet.

pattern // raspberry jam cross stitch + shelves

March Cross Stitch Patterns

Good things come to those who wait, and in this case, the good is not one, but TWO patterns! To continue the Jam of the Month Club for cross stitch fans, today I'm sharing a jar of raspberry jam. But not only that, I have a chart for if you want to make a giant shelf unit for all your jam jars.

This large chart is kind of like the embroidery and english paper piecing idea. Instead of making a quilt that looks like shelves, you get to stitch them all. And since the shelves are all ready as a chart, you can get started on them, even as you wait for each months' pattern.

The individual jam patterns will all fit, sitting on the shelf and centered within a 30x30 block. The overall size of the shelves is a little under 8x12 inches when stitched on 14-count aida cloth.

If you stitch these or any of the embroidery patterns, be sure to tag them #wildolivestitchingclub so others can see, and tag me @molliejohanson so I can reshare too!

pattern // march's jar of raspberry jam

Raspberry Jam Embroidery Pattern

It's March 19, I'm posting this month's free Jam of the Month embroidery pattern, and I feel like I'm right on schedule. You may question me on that, but hear me out. I'm pretty sure it was right about this time last year that I was not getting the pattern actually stitched, but I was posting it anyway. And that's where I am today.

In an effort to keep all the rest of my work plates spinning, I had to let a few things drop. Stitching a raspberry jam jar was one of those. With any luck, I'll catch up on my own stitching soon. But lest I hold anyone else back, I present to you, this month's pattern!

Embroidery floss colors are in the PDF, and from there you can use your own creativity to stitch this gal. I'd also love to see your photos and even add a few into this post! Tag me on Instagram (@molliejohanson) or send me an email! (molliejohanson at gmail)

calendar // march's raspberry jam wallpapers

It's time to march into a new month with a new jar full of jam! Raspberry jam to be precise. Yes, shelves of raspberry jam on wallpapers for your screns!

Truth be told, I struggled with this month's choice. I wanted raspberry, but it's a similar color to last month's jam. In fact, there are quite a few jams, jellies, and preserves that come out that color. Yes, there are others, and I have some worked into the schedule. But I also wanted a bit of seasonal-ness to these. (Yes, I made up that word, and yes, I'm fine with it.)

These are some of the challenges of planning out a year of illustrated (and eventually stitched!) jars of jam.

The real point here, though, is to get you some calendar wallpapers for your computer, phone, or tablet. Grab what you need and enjoy!

By the way, raspberry jam is one of my favorites. Like, I could very happily eat it with a spoon. How about you?