Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Christmas in July

I finished this pretty little lady a few days ago.  Because I inadvertently made her 2 columns thinner (who would complain about that?) and 2 rows shorter (bummer!) I adjusted the border a bit.

There is a new Christmas ornie SAL starting in August which I've joined.  Since I am already stitching some Christmas ornies this year, it seemed the perfect SAL to join.  The subject for August is Santa and happily, Santa was on my list for next month ... doubly perfect.

It has finally stopped raining in Pennsylvania (hooray!) and the beags took time to catch some well deserved rays.

Summer has finally arrived!

Monday, July 20, 2015

July update

Not much to show since last month.  Just a few smalls (I don't fell like working on the big projects right now).   I did, however, remember to take a picture of Autumn Log Cabin's progress from June.  It wasn't much but every little bit gets it closer to 'done'.

My haunted house for the Halloween Ornament SAL is from Handblessings.  I changed the look of this one significantly by changing the threads and fabric.

And finally, a group of snowmen from Prairie Schooler.  These will be made into ornaments for kids stuck in the hospital over Christmas.  All except the little one.  We were supposed to stitch on 14 ct fabric but I mistakenly grabbed 18 ct instead for the first one.

I'm afraid my whole stitching schedule has gone to hell and probably won't get back on track for awhile.  My dad died over a month ago.  My mom died 14 years ago.  I'm sure they're glad to be together again but I miss them both.


Friday, June 19, 2015

Sigh .... June already?!?

Not much stitching to show .... May was a super craptastic kind of month .... but here's what I stitched so far this month.

First up is Frank N Stein from Pickle Barrel Designs and my choice for June's Halloween Ornament SAL.

The designer had him in 3 pieces but that's too much finishing for me .... sooooo, I put him back together as a whole monster and now he's    A L I V E!  
My second piece is a Facebook group project.  It's a little quilt that's making it's way through our group and will be auctioned off to benefit cancer.  The theme is woodland things.  I picked a bluebird and flowers from a pattern that was gifted to me (Joyful Summer from CCN).
And while I was at it, I took a picture of the whole quilt to date ... isn't it adorable?
I guess since I used part of a gifted pattern, this will be June's Gifted Gorgeousness update.
Oh!  I almost forgot .... I did a little on the Autumn Log Cabin in May but didn't get a pic of it yet.  That'll be for the next update ... unless I forget again ;)

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Gifted Gorgeousness -- May edition

I missed WIPocalyse this month but got lots done on my Gifted Gorgeousness SAL.  I love the pastels, the whimsical flowers and all the little butterflies in this project. 


I'm adding a project to this SAL.  It is itself a SAL from the Sampler Life yahoo and Facebook group.  It's a Gifted Gorgeousness because each square is a gifted freebie from the most wonderful designers.  The first square on my project is from Faby Reilly, the second from Jane Hubble.

Thank you, ladies!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Magic broom on the fritz

Back in January I stitched my witch for the Halloween ornament SAL and then sadly set her aside until May (pumpkin month).  But as soon as May started, I immediately picked Fright Flight back up to finish this cute project.

I absolutely love the humor in this pattern.   How can you not smile at this little witch and her alternate ride?

Friday, May 1, 2015

Late for almost everything in April :(

Unfortunately, my stitching schedule went out the window for April.  My dad was in the hospital for a few weeks so the month was mostly spent in the car driving back and forth to visit him.  He's out now so things should return to normal.

Anyways, for April's WIPocalypse I didn't get as much done as I planned.  Only 2 projects received any attention.  The tulip sampler has one more square finished:

And the great pumpkin conspiracy has another pumpkin and some blue zigzags:

For the Gifted Gorgeousness SAL I finished Nevermore (which is a birthday present for a friend):

For the Halloween ornie SAL (this month's subject being tombstones) I took pieces of Nevermore for my ornament:

And then I started a new project that the Sampler Life group is stitching.  I love this square from Faby Reilly:
Just what I need .... another project ;)
And last but not least, for the final days of April, I decided to pick up Primitive Santa and put in his coat sleeve.
And that's it for April's stitching.  I hope May is a better month.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

IHSW in March

I'm a little late with my IHSW post but I did get some stitching done over the weekend.  I started and finished Just a Little Flaky from Val's Stuff.

Snowmen always make me smile and this little guy is no exception.  Except for the white thread, I totally disregarded the designer's thread colors/fabric and chose what was handy.

I finished another ornament before IHSW for the Halloween ornie SAL.  The subject for March is owls/crows.  I picked a pattern from the 2013 JCS Halloween issue that caught my eye the very first time I saw it.  But because it's on black fabric, I hesitated to stitch it.  However, I reasoned that since it's small I would try stitching it anyway ... Owl-O-Ween from Blackberry Lane Designs.

He's on a 28 ct black even weave using mostly DMC threads.  I was originally going to stitch him 2 over 2 but was having problems seeing so switched to 1 over 1 with better success.  I'm not sure why this works but I'm learning that 1 over 1 with my magnifier often works better for me.  I prefer a long stitch on the back so the threads don't disappear on the front.
Amazing ... that's 2 projects on black fabric now.  I guess it's not so bad after all.

Monday, March 16, 2015

March's Gifted Gorgeousness

I'm  a day late for the Gifted Gorgeousness SAL  mainly because my weekend was so busy doing non-stitching stuff.  But better late than never ....

To begin, I put the pretty pansy in it's frame and gave it to my friend (that took care of my Saturday).

I also started a DMC kit I received in an online exchange.  This is what it will look like

and this is where I stopped

Now it isn't going to look exactly like the finished picture because I substituted the mint green aida fabric with 35 ct white linen.  Even though I don't usually stitch on Aida, I wanted to use what came with the kit because it was such a pretty color.  Unfortunately, there was a nasty crease right smack dab in the middle of the Aida and no matter what I tried, it proved to be permanent.   Because I changed the fabric, I had to change the yellow thread to a slightly stronger shade for it to show up.  There is virtually no fear of running out of thread since I'm using 1 strand instead of the called for 2 (unless something horrible happens).  I'm not sure I like the light green of the butterfly because it matches the blue square so closely.  I may rip it all out and pick another darker green and restitch it.  I really like the soft pastels of this project ... perfect for Spring.

Switching seasons now to Autumn, I have Nevermore almost finished for the upcoming birthday gift.  It would be almost completely finished if I hadn't stitched the moonface about 5 threads to the left.  Of course I didn't notice until it was finished and I tried to add the 'hair' to it.  Rip, rip, rip :(

That's it for the Gift Gorgeousness update but there's more to report.  This time we switch to Christmas and my Santa for this year.  I decided to start on him early because I'm stitching him on black fabric (my least favorite to stitch on).  I was afraid if I didn't start early, I wouldn't get him done in time.  This is another kit with Aida.  Again I switched out the Aida for linen but this time I dyed my own black fabric.  I picked linen because I reasoned it has larger 'holes' and might be easier to stitch.  I used black Rit dye with salt, heat, crumpled and stirred the linen and let it set for over 4 hours.  I thought I would get a nice solid black piece of linen.  What I got wasn't solid, but mostly black with a dark purple cast in bright light.  Hmmm.  After letting it set for a couple days I decided I liked it and wouldn't try to get the solid black coverage. 
Here's what Santa will look like
And here's where he is so far

You can't really see the purple cast to the fabric in this picture ... well, maybe (?) a bit near the lighter areas.  Anyway, the really, really great part about this is that I'm having absolutely no problems stitching on this black fabric.  Woohoo!  In fact, I didn't want to put him down for another project.  Perhaps I'll stitch on black fabric more often now.

Happy St. Paddy's day everyone!


Thursday, March 5, 2015

WIPocalypse update for March's full moon

Of course the big news was finishing Mary Wigham but I was too excited to wait a couple days to post her pics for March's WIPocalypse update.  If you want to see Miss Mary in all her glory, just check out my previous post.  And yes, I'm still grinning and dancing.

I did a little stitching on Autumn Log Cabin this month and I am now officially around the corner.  I'm slowly getting closer to finishing this one.

And then I picked up Rosewood Manor's Tulip Sampler (an attempt to drag Spring back to Pennsylvania ... ugh!  will the snow ever go away?).  Another square done and the beginnings of a second one.  Not too shabby ;)

And finally, The Great Pumpkin Conspiracy has 4 new leaves and another bird.  Without actually counting stitches, I'm guessing this one is a little under half finished.  I think I'm going to get off the ground and move to the sky next time I pick this one up.

This is the first time I've tried a stitching rotation with so many projects.  It's going well so far and definitely keeping my interest.  It's a relatively informal rotation.  I didn't set an amount of time to stitch each piece or a particular day for a project or whatever.  Instead, I made a chart of the projects I wanted to work on this year and the months.  As I work on a project that month, I put a checkmark next to it (which makes me happy).   I stitch on the larger pieces for a day or 2 or 3 or whatever before switching.  While the smaller ornaments are stitched until finished.  Easy peasy pumpkin pie :)

I'm looking forward to the time change this weekend ... it'll be great having more daylight in the evenings.  Surely Spring can't be too far behind.


Monday, March 2, 2015

It's official ....


Not only is she finished but she's cleaned, pressed and ready for her photo shoot.


 Big smiles and major happy dancin' going on here!

Monday, February 23, 2015

February's IHSW

It was a good weekend for International Hermit Stitching Weekend.  Cold, snowy and definitely a stay-at-home-and-stitch weekend.  I worked on one small project and finished it ... hooray!  Before the weekend I had the top brown and word done only.  From Carriage House Samplings:

I didn't use any of the designers threads (oops, and I see that I'm not actually finished, part of the wood on the bottom, right is missing, will fix that after I'm done here).  The pattern called for a grey beard but I like Santa with a white one so I changed it.  And because the white didn't show up well against the fabric, I darkened the sign with a half stitch.  I also made his eyes brown and smaller.  They were a little creepy ... big, dark and hollow ...  kind of skull-like.  His eyes are supposed to be green but I didn't like them green and/or was too lazy to find a good green thread.

This guy is destined to be a gift for either my nephew or my stepmom .... I haven't decided yet.

Monday, February 16, 2015

A Tale of Two SALs

Well I'm a day late but hopefully not a dollar short for the Gifted Gorgeousness SAL.  I added another gifted item to this SAL because it's pretty and calls for Spring to get it's sorry arse here asap.  I'm sick of the cold and snow already!

This was a fun little stitch and all I need to do now is put it into the frame it came with.  The kit used ivory Aida but it was so horribly stiff I didn't want to use it.  I changed the fabric to a soft white 28 ct even weave I had on hand.  I'm going to give this to a friend who loves pansies.  I like it so much that I'm going to stitch it again for myself .  But first I have to match the dmc thread colors to the kit's threads.  I received this lovely kit at an EGA function.  I can't remember if it was at a past Christmas party or maybe the summer picnic.  

I also have an update on Nevermore from Prairie Schooler which will be a birthday present for a friend.  It's coming along nicely and should be on time for her birthday.

 I also finished February's skeleton for the Halloween Ornie SAL.  It's a redo but one I'm keeping for myself.  And since the first one was in brown and I'm tired of stitching with brown right now, I changed the palette to a cooler blue/grey.  What do you think of the effect?  It looks creepier and kind of ghostly to me compared to the more realistic brown.  And, yes, I'm going to add another spider but it'll be silver instead.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

February's WIPocalypse projects

It's the second full moon of 2015 already and time for the WIPocalypse update.  I did pretty well on my projects this month.  First up is the Great Pumpkin Conspiracy from Cross-eyed Cricket.  This one went from here

to here

Secondly, Mary Wigham went from here

to here

Unfortunately, Autumn Log Cabin didn't get a single new stitch in it.  But because I did so much on Mary Wigham, I'm okay with that.  Actually, I'm more than okay.  I am tickled pink!  She's so close to happy dance day my feet have started tapping. 

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Spooky mansions and witches

Even though it's only January, I'm working on Halloween.   Nevermore is working out much better on the 22ct fabric.  I finished the mansion and didn't swear at it once.  Which is good because I need to finish it by March for a birthday gift. 

I'm participating in the Halloween ornie SAL again this year.  We are to stitch an ornament a month.  January's topic is a fav of mine (who am I kidding, they're all favs of mine) ... witches.  I picked a larger project from Cross-eyed Cricket called Fright Flight for this witchy month and for May (aka pumpkin month).  

And now she'll have to wait until May to get her  balloon filled because February is SKELETON month.
What fun!

Monday, January 19, 2015

The first IHSW of 2015

Last weekend was the third weekend of the month which means International Hermit Stitching Weekend aka IHSW.  And I managed to get in some quality stitching time.

First up is Ho Ho Ho Santa from Prairie Schooler.  Before the weekend, I had Santa's beard and the tree stitched.  And now he's done :)  My first 2015 Christmas ornie finished during the first IHSW.

Next on my weekend stitching spree is Rocking Around the Tree.  Before the weekend I had all the green thread done in part 3 of this SAL.  Now I have the entire part 3 finished.  Well, except for an arch at the bottom.  It's supposed to be green but I'm afraid I'll run out of the green before finishing the top.   And since I'm using stash threads, I won't be able to get more of that dye lot.  I think I'll make it but until it's done, I'll be on pins and needles. You may (but probably won't) notice that the white stripes are more defined in this picture.  I wasn't happy with them (to pale compared to the rest of the parts) so I stitched over the x's and now I'm happy.

My third project for IHSW is a re-start.  I'm working on Nevermore from Prairie Schooler for a friend's birthday.  I started it in 28 ct over one a few weeks ago.  I've stitched over 1 on 28 ct before but this time it's not much fun.  I'm having problems with the lack of hole size and it was getting to be tedious and something to be avoided.  Even though I have the mansion almost finished, I decided to re-start this project on 22 ct hardanger fabric.  Good decision .... I happy to report the stitching is fun again.

I think I'll finish and save the first, tedious mansion for myself and turn it into a Halloween ornament.

And that's it for January's bit of hermit stitching.  Now off to visit other stitching hermits ... bye!