Friday, July 04, 2014

Happy 4th

I returned from my retreat with a case of food poisoning and it's been nearly two weeks and I am still not back to normal.

I have been making progress on a few projects and brought one with me to New Hampshire. Because I was falling behind on my stitching deadlines I was setting for myself, I have shown the project to its recipient so I can work on it in front of him.

This is a Canvasworks brick cover. I'm stitching with a combination of Silk and Ivory and Planet Earth Silk. Every stitch is a pleasure.

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Retreat Finish

I finished this at retreat. But I came home sick and am finally catching up.

It's a Raymond Crawford Tiki cup. Not the best lighting for a photo this morning at 5:30, but you get the idea.

I may remove and restitch the nose. I'm not loving it.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Sunrise in Syria

Linda and Donna enjoying that first cup of coffee at 6 in the morning. Sun is rising, birds are singing. It's a beautiful day.

First finishes of the weekend - both wool. Jane has a turtle. Donna has a cardinal.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Retreat!

Today is all about packing. And unpacking. And repacking. Because I can't make up my mind what to bring on retreat. 

Tomorrow we leave for 5 days, 4 nights in the hills unbothered by modern electronics which gives us more time to stitch. This is a guild retreat and there are 19 of us going.

I made a list last week. I've crossed it out and started over a million times. Usually I don't have this much trouble. Maybe in the back of my mind I think I'm forgetting something? 

I now my packing is heavy on the canvas and light on linen projects. That's just where I am right now. I've got a couple of obligation pieces with deadlines for gift giving. I've got some fun stuff. I've got some serious stuff that requires concentration. Just trying to get the right balance. I'd bring it all, but that might require a moving truck!

 

Sunday, June 15, 2014

The Big and the Little

Damn the apologies for not posting. Let's just get right to things.

Starting with progress and a small finish. 

 It seems to me as I look back I always have big and little projects going at the same time. Maybe it's the contrast. Or maybe it's just my habit of having small, portable things to tote around with me. I always have a purse project. You never know when you can fit in 10 or 50 or 100 stitches. And little bits of progress add up to finishes. Eventually. 

 So here is my Bunny Project. Of course, I named it because I can. This is after the second embellishment class. I'm feeling fairly confident that I have the skills to stitch this well. Of course

 Ha. I've frogged that top corner of background twice. Once for color issues. The second time because the thread I was using was making the lilies recede. Ah, backgrounds and me - we just don't get along. It takes me forever to land on the correct things. I've been given guidance on this area and we'll see what happens when I get back to it. 

 My hibiscus. This I love. I rejected the burden stitch and oblique burden stitch as being too straight. The petals needed more movement. And I hit on this. It's a zigzag cashmere. Starts with a Watercolours, then a Planet Earth silk, and ends with just a hint of shine provided by Shimmer Floss. The middle will get its own special treatment eventually.

 I started to split stitch my bunny. Original plan called for Alpaca, but to me these bunnies need to be smooth, not fuzzy. So I'm using Pepper Pot and a chenille needle. I'm happy with this. 

 And then we have a piece back from the finisher. I stitched this back at the end of February when I went to Florida. It's the Portland Head lighthouse from ABS Designs. When I started stitching it, I had to google image the lighthouse and find a photo from this direction as 90% of all photos of this are from the other side. LOL (Sorry it looks crooked - that's just the photo. It's not crooked.) I'm so happy that Anne has a ton of these lighthouse ornament canvases as I'm planning on having a large collection.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Catching Up

Will I ever? I feel like there are million things I need to work on and so little time. 

But to encourage myself, as I was looking through photos, I grabbed these.




These five pieces were my UFO Challenge last year. I finished 3 out of 5. That beauty with the turquoise and orange is still languishing. And this weekend I've got another class. 

That multiple canvas piece, which is Gay Ann Rogers Echoes of Elizabeth is also not done. Major guilt. But they are both a little bit further along than these photos show. I haven't given up entirely. 

 
I pulled this out of my stash to stare at after seeing the movie, Tim's Vermeer. If you haven't seen it, I will highly recommend it for your viewing pleasure. The obsession and detail in that movie are astounding. 
 
And here is the piece I bought last June really intending to have made major project by now. I haven't even pulled threads yet. This one is waiting me for me to feel like I can do it justice. I'm getting closer every day. Just not quite there yet.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Here Comes Donna

Here comes Donna with a big a$$ project... 

 
At the end of April I took a canvas embellishment class with Beth Robertson and Suzanne Howren and in June we meet again. 

I found this canvas on my travels in Florida at Needlepoint in Paradise. It's a wonderful full service needlepoint shop in Naples if you ever happen to get down that way. I saw it hanging up high on the wall and I just couldn't resist it. It's a Melissa Shirley design piece by the artist Linda Carter Holman. 

I've got one strawberry finished except for the beads which obviously get put on last. Also started my branches with the new Silk Straw thread. I've got one lily finished except for the middle, but I'm stitching the stuff around the lillies before doing their centers. There's a lot going on on this canvas. Birds, butterflies, bunnies, flowers, strawberries, tablecloth(or is that the table?), and that vase! Lots of discussion on the vase. 

I've got a long way to go, but it makes me smile every time I look at it. When I was young I had a dutch bunny named Sneakers. She was a happy, lively little thing. I guess that's why I like this so much. 

In other stitchy news:
Lots of projects going on. A couple of gift type things so I can't post about them. 

Friday, April 25, 2014

A New Thread

We got a new thread in at the shop and I am always delighted by the opportunity to play with something new. 

This is Silk Straw by Silk Road Fibers being produced Alchemy Yarns and marketed by the Needlepointer out of Everett, Washington. 

It's 100% silk. There's 11.1 yards on a card which is pre-cut into 8 lengths about 50" long. 

So far I've only played with it to make smooth stitches. Which is does quite well. It's very soft and pliable. In fact, these stitches are smooth and pet-able (is that a word?)

Tremendously easy to work with. In fact, I didn't even use a laying tool, just my finger to stop it from twisting. Next up, trying to make it twist. I've got some branches to stitch and I might try this thread.

I also had just recently done a stitch sample with the Thread Gatherer's Sea Grass which is very similar, only it's 100% cotton. Both look like they should be a pain to stitch with, but both are remarkably easy.

The blue photo is the Silk Straw.

The light green is the Sea Grass. 


Friday, April 18, 2014

A Splash of Color

Way back two months ago I was in such a rush to redo the finishing on a piece before the Woodlawn Needlework Show deadline that I forgot to take a picture.

Was so surprised to win a blue ribbon for original canvas multi stitch.

Grateful, but surprised. There were more items in this category than there usually are.

The 603 is a piece I created two years ago for a challenge to surround something you love. It involves fabric transfer on congress cloth and then an extended dive into my fiber stash. I didn't have to buy a thing.

And Moxie got an honorable mention.

I wish you could all be here to see the show every March. The talent demonstrated with needle and thread is amazing.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Pacific Coast Collage

Back from the framers and this photo does not begin to do justice to it.

My husband went with me to Total Framing where we were agonizing over the mats. I had such a problem with the dark green outer border. I wanted, no I needed it to be less prominent. Every combo we were trying wasn't working. If my friend, Michelle, hadn't walked in to pick up some framing supplies, we might still be standing there dithering.

She said the magic word - orange.

And that was the solution. The thin inner orange mat fixed everything. After that picking out the frame was simple.

Love, love, love this!

Thank you, Laura J Perin, for the wonderful design.